Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Missing Link

Every summer, Aramco is bombarded by summer students and interns yearning for a sniff of the all mighty ARAMCO…

Although it is usually the relatively new employees who are stuck training and tutoring the even younger employees, we never seem to mind it because you feel that they deserve to be taught and enlightened. Because when you were new all you really wished and hoped for was for someone to hold your hand and walk you through the ins and outs and do's and don'ts…

I am bothered by one thing though… Why do we still have colleges that teach in Arabic?

I am very proud of my Arabic heritage and language. What I am not is ignorant enough to believe that a person who is a Finance graduate with a 4.0 GPA will be able to survive in a 100% English based corporate culture. Is it just easier for whoever is responsible to turn a blind eye and fall for the we need to hold on to our language and one day Islamic Finance will take over the world and then we will strike, then we will convert all the Financial lingo into Arabic, and force every bank to comply or face bankruptcy…

I, ignorantly, thought that the point of having schools and colleges and universities (mind you I am calling them universities in the loosest sense possible) was to prepare the youth for the job market, to prepare them for the real world. However there seems to be a missing link between what is taught at school and what the real working environment is like. I am not even asking for strong academic bases at these schools and I am not asking them to compete with Harvard and LBS. I just expect some common sense and some realism is the preparation of the youth.

I might be blowing this simple thing out of proportion, but I should not be blamed because I am only scratching the surface of these academic issues. I am sitting at my desk, listening to my colleague struggle to explain basic financial concepts to a summer employee because of the language barrier. The summer guy looks smart enough, but I wonder if he can survive in the real working world.

The saddest thing is, he is not the one to blame.

p.s. I mean no harm with this post, and I have met many exceptions to this post, but I am talking about the general public who are only taught English when they turn 14 and don't use it in their everyday life.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Froggy's Got Talent

Like many other guys, I haven't been blessed with good handwriting. My handwriting resembles that of a 6 year old boy scribbling in his notebook while riding a jet ski.

Generally speaking I am terrible at creating something good on a piece of paper, be it a drawing or text. Like Mocha has stated in the past, nothing beats putting pen to paper and writing, I completely agree with her statement and this is why this frustrates me.

I was in an informal meeting at my mother's office and little froglet was running around the office causing havoc. He eventually decided to come and sit next to me. So to keep him entertained I decided to draw a few animals for him to see if he recognizes them.

You can judge for yourselves how that little adventure went

p.s. I didn't draw Mickey Mouse.
p.p.s. The dinosaur on the top is supposed to be Barney

Saturday, June 12, 2010

That's life.. That's what all the people say..

I guess my life isn't as interesting as I once thought it was. You win this round Ke$ha..

Good morning everyone..

p.s. In case you didn't get the reference, Ke$ha - Tik Tok
p.p.s I changed the layout because I got complaints about my previous one not being reader friendly

Sunday, April 25, 2010

These are my confessions

  • I hate/am afraid of using sharp knives. I was peeling an apple for Baby Froglet the other day was terrified while doing so
  • I curse a lot more than I should. But never in front of Baby Froglet, and less so in front of Mrs. Froggy
  • I enjoy watching "Glee"... the shame
  • I persuaded Mrs. Froggy to buy the "Glee" soundtrack CDs for herself, but in reality am looking forward to us having a road trip and singing those cheesy songs together
  • I sing at the top of my lungs when I am alone in the car
  • I sometimes talk to myself when I'm alone in the car
  • I think I spend too much time alone in the car
  • I'm not crazy about insects
  • I'm not crazy about ladders
  • I sometimes play dumb around people just to get them to leave me alone
  • I also might agree with what those people are saying just to end the conversation
  • I am fairly opinionated
  • Well, maybe a bit more than fairly
  • I sometimes act like I understand what a conversation is about just so I don't look like an idiot
  • I used to snap a lot, but now I only I only snap if you snap at me first. Very mature, I know
I realized some of my guy friends follow my blog and know who I am, so I'm just gonna add a few things to sound like more of a man:
  • I can only do 430 sit-ups a day. Much less that what I used to be able to do
  • I punched a moose in the face for looking at my wife
  • I was deep frying a whole cow to eat before I went to the gym and to spice things up I marinated it in gun powder
Thats about it. Other than that I'm practically perfect ;)

Saturday, April 03, 2010

1001 Inventions

Pretty cool video by the Jameel Foundation done as part of the "1001 Inventions" touring exhibition currently residing in London.

"Oscar-winning actor and screen legend Sir Ben Kingsley has taken the starring role in a short feature film about the scientific heritage of Muslim civilisation. The mini-movie, entitled 1001 Inventions and the Library of Secrets, accompanies a global touring exhibition that this currently open to the public at the Science Museum in London. The exhibition runs till 30th June 2010 and then goes on an international tour.

In the movie, Sir Ben takes on the role of a mysterious and cantankerous librarian who takes a group of school children on an enlightening journey to meet pioneering scientists and engineers from the history of Muslim civilization"

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Third world something

I always find myself coming back to this topic, and for that I apologize oh dear readers...

Many of my posts are focused on poking jokes at the mannerisms and actions of Saudi's and Arabs in general. However, most of you read through the sarcasm at the pain I feel for my country and countrymen. It saddens me that I have very little hope that we will ever rise as a nation of greatness.

Yes, most of what I focus on are little acts of un-organization, whether be it in driving, queuing, riding elevators, or even racist and sexism or how people with special needs are treated as second class citizens. These might sound of feel like secondary things for a country, specially if they don't affect the economy or the GDP. However, they still affect the everyday lives of the citizens, which should deem it important.

I always say that good education is what is missing us, I still stand by my opinion. But it seems like education on its own is not enough. The government has been sending students to study abroad like its going out of fashion, and yes, MOHE (ministry of higher education) is doing a better job picking the students but its still not enough.

To me, the main aim of this endeavor should be to send potential future leaders to come back with the "ways-of-the-west" and try and implement them here where they apply. But what is happening is that our students are not monitored, not prepped, and not held responsible for the time or money spent on them to have this opportunity.

An article a few weeks ago showed that a large percentage (I think it was 60%, not sure) of the Saudi students in the US were actually paying other students to take their exams on their behalf.
Of course I don't only blame MOHE for not monitoring our young future leaders, I blame their parents for not keeping tabs on them, and their parents for not raising their children with the sense of belonging to something bigger, be it a country or religion.

I know I am over simplifying the issue, but I can't fathom how we still have issues with people driving like maniacs for no apparent reason, people who still marry this kids off without their knowledge or consent, people who think that their actions do not have a domino effect...

I'm tired of watching and judging people, and I'm tired of not being able to do anything about it.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Queue etiquette

Dear Mochness, I know this is long overdue, but I did make a promise to compile this list.. so here you go..

Check out the first Frogman lesson in Etiquette

· The queue is a lie

· You are more important than everyone else in the queue

· The most efficient queues are parallel to the counter

· When approaching a queue, feel free to start a new one, the already existing queue is soo last season

· When jumping the queue, do it silently while avoiding eye contact

· Acting like everyone else is invisible helps

· When approaching a busy counter, start making your order immediately

· Waiving your money around helps

· Never apologize for cutting a queue… NEVER

· If you actually stood in the queue, feel free to take as much time as you want while ordering, you obviously did not have enough time to prepare for this difficult decisive moment

· Finishing your phone call while ordering is also acceptable

· Women are allowed to cut queues… Nay, they must cut queues. God forbid they stand amongst the men.

Monday, March 08, 2010

A hole in my head

i've been getting very severe headaches for the past two weeks.. and its been killing my productivity and my mood...

its a sharp pain on the right back side of my head where the neck connects with the head..

i've been trying to monitor what is causing it but failing miserably, so here i am , turning to my trusty blog to bitch about it..

i stopped my caffiene intake, which wasn't that big to start with.
i'm sleeping earlier to get more hours of sleep.
i started reducing the time i spend in front of the computer screen.

i am now keeping a log of the frequency, so when i eventually give in and go to a doctor, i have something to show.

any suggestions as to what could be causing this are VERY welcome..

Sunday, February 21, 2010

28 hour day

One day I will try this...

One day..

Saturday, February 20, 2010


  • I ran into one of the most racist people in Saudi Arabia last week. We were boarding the plane and the flight had a considerable number of Sri lankan ladies, who were presumably helpers or maids.. Every passenger took their seat, no matter who it was next to, until this girl/woman around the age of 30 walked in. As she was instructed to sit next to 2 Sri lankan ladies she freaked out. She started loudly stating her discontent and disbelief that SHE, the great empress of class, was to be seated next to THE HELP.. oh the shame.. She kept on refusing to take her seat until one of her friends decided to switch with her... what a bitch..
  • Go watch Adam.
  • I'm totally addicted to Joshua Radin's new unreleased song, When you find me.
  • Carlos Ruiz Zafon has a new book... yaaaaaaaay

Saturday, February 06, 2010

The road to self discovery is long and annoying, with no pit stops

An American University asks every potential MBA applicant the following question:

"What matters the most to you, and why?"

They expect every applicant to write an essay with a "suggested length" of 750 words to answer this question.


I read the question about 3 months ago, and I am still struggling with the answer. I struggle not because my life is empty and I have nothing that I am passionate about. On contraire, I found that there is a lot that I care about, but how can you define which is the ultimate one?

Saying that religion or God is the most important thing in my life is the easiest answer, but is it the truest??

As the days rolled on, and the "right" answers were crossed off for being too pretentious and unfaithful, I started getting obsessed. I started thinking that although I always believed that I am a man of purpose, I realized that I can't define that purpose. I found that I can't even be true to myself in answering that question.


So tell me dear reader, "what matters the most to you, and why?"


p.s. yes I am totally going to ignore the fact that I have disappeared for while :)