There's a fever hitting the region and this time it's not the Arab Spring... If you've experienced any of the following ailments, you may be suffering the distinctly Arab condition (also contagious and untreatable) that's been medically billed 'Very Arab Problems'.
It's not even lunchtime and you've probably already felt the urge to shave or pluck away at your fuzzy skin cause a stray upper-lip hair is the last thing you ladies want exposed by the sunny light of day! Or, you've fobbed off five prospective social calendar dates with inshallah, or you've insulted a colleague by not greeting him with enough vim and vigor (or profuse kissing). Well, don't panic, you're not alone in the jumpy Middle East and beyond; over 450 million Arabs around the world go through these scenarios that are uniquely Arab - matters that a non Arab person would not have the foggiest idea about, let alone break out into a sweat over.
Arabs can be collectively identified as a rabble of proud, preaching and highly inflammable but generous-hearted loose canons, struggling to make it through the day without taking offense or insulting each others' families. And medics report the bankrupt-inducing tendency to pick up the tab when dining out.
Allow us to take you on a quick trip through our laboratory of symptoms that get you a diagnosis; have a peek inside the sensitive, paranoid, clingy world of the Arab psyche, through highlights all the way from repetitive greeting/ parting loops to loud lively conversations that suggest someone's died. But hark, there is reason to their madness -- and at least they're happy to inflict their condition on non-stricken 'outsiders' who may begin to suffer symptoms after time spent in their midst.
So join us in this arcade of Arab anxieties as we take you through some of the woes that are uniquely Arab. And we're not just talking about camels and falafels. We're talking about the idiosynchracies of the very Arabic complex and mentality. These issues or dilemmas would not be experienced by non-Arabs who have a different kettle of life-concerns . So yalla, fasten your seat belts - (though none of them do!) - here we go!