Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Piss Take

I'm getting easily stressed out these days. Yesterday I spent a whole hour stuck in traffic trying to get through from one end to the other of my main street. In the traffic mesh some punk Kia minivan driver tried to drive into me. I rolled down my window to have and had a go at him. The thing is that I was ahead of him and he was coming at me at an angle and if I didn't have a go at him I wouldn't have had enough clearance to move forward without breaking my side view mirror.

I fuelled up the car on the way too, that took 20 minutes of my time at the most. As I was fuelling the car, the gas pump attendant asked me if I wanted more than the 'legal' ration of 50 litres at a time, I asked him if it would cost me extra. He said no, and that he was asking just because. So when the counter reached 50 litres he zeroed it and I continued to pump another 20 litres into my car. So I do the maths (70 litres X 350 dinars a litre = 24,500 dinars) of how much I owe him and him 25,000 dinars and then he bitches about only giving him a 500 dinars tip. I don't even know why the guy even deserves one, he didn't even hold the pump for me.

It took me two whole hours to get to uni, by which time I made it only to my last class. And then it took me another whole hour to get home.

Then at college, the teacher was giving a lecture and Suzy sitting next to me pointed out that the teacher was only speaking to me since everybody else was chit chatting. And their chit chatting got so loud that I couldn't hear the teacher any more. It takes the piss that it takes me two hours to get to bleeding college and not be able to listen to what the teacher has to say. Nobody in my class seems to have any interest at all to learn what's being taught for the purpose to apply it in the future.

On my way home I bought a bottle of whiskey, got home, drank fell asleep. Woke up at around one in the morning took a long shower. Felt much better.

Today was no better, I got to college late again. I must admit that I'm leaving home a bit late. I walk into class to see just the teacher there standing on his own. I asked him some questions and he gave me his photocopies so I could study some of the material I missed the previous morning. I go down to the garden, find my smiling classmates sitting in plastic chairs bathing in the sun. Bathing in their glory that they didn't attend class. Thank god these guys weren't studying medicine.

We only had one other class today and the teacher's on vacation for an operation in Jordan I think. We played a game called 'Bat'. Two teams, one team has a ring that's hidden in one of their stretched out closed palms and then the leader of the other team has to figure out which hand it's in. It's a bit like poker since to figure out who has the ring and in which hand the leader of the other team has to read the members that are hiding the ring while those that are hiding the ring are trying to suppress any tell tale signs and try to throw off the leader of the other team with even the simplest twitch of the wrist.

Way back from college was a pain, I ended up paying nearly twice the usual fare to the cab driver since he gave me the a grand tour of Baghdad to get me home. He even took me through one neighbourhood that at the end that had long been deemed 'unsafe', that me and the driver were left trying to reconcile our memories of the neighbourhood to that it was now. It was just a street and it was so peaceful, so peaceful one could hear the birds chirping. And then there were the shops that had been blown to bits too and the knowledge that nobody comes here since it was labelled dangerous.

When I got home Nahida wasn't here, instead Mo, a Sudanese guy that helps her with odd stuff such as the gardening, sat there in the garage waiting for me so could leave. Because I don't have the key to the house. He tells me that the Ati, Sudanese guy that lives with us got nabbed by the cops and Nahida had gone to go get him out. Nahida came back an hour or so later. Ati apparently was acting suspicious and was extra suspicious since he was wearing boots just like those that the Americans wear. So some dumb cops asked him for his papers, the papers didn't seem to be in order to them and him being Darfourian unable to speak in Arabic fluently couldn't explain the special circumstance that he's in, they chucked him at the local police station. Nahida tried to get him released but the cops there said that since those cops that brought him in are of a different kind they can't release him themselves.

When Nahida came back she made several calls. It seems Ati is going to be stuck there till Sunday at least since the judge in charge of this type of problem has a death in the family. Nahida saw him, and she said that he looks okay. I hope he doesn't get some over place where they might rough him up. Having been in an Iraqi jail myself, I feel for him. Knowing that you've done nothing wrong and just waiting for a fucked up bureaucracy to release you is so agonizing.

And then I read that comment by tmpName, and I realise that Nahida still hasn't given me any word on preparing my transfer papers. So I throw a long fit at her after which she gets me to hear from the secretary at the registrar's office that my transfer papers are at the ministry waiting to be processed with another 340 students from our college, all of which aren't being processed because the ministry isn't doing their job.

I've been stressed out ever since I read that first comment on my last post. And I've got to thank tmpName for responding to that, so... Thank you tmpName. But seriously what's in the past is in the past. I'm sick of the government bringing up the past to try to show themselves as the good guys. This government is in alliance with militias. Sectarian militias that are going about knocking people off and kicking them out of their homes. A couple days ago India was describing to me, how the Shiites have been leading the offensive on clearing Sunnis from their homes neighbourhood after neighbourhood.

From al-Kadhamiya they cleared they displaced the Sunnis from al-Hurria, now al-Hurria is a Shiite stronghold. Ghazaliya which was once a mixed neighbourhood, is now Sunni on one side and Shiite on the other. Al-Hurria and the Shiite half of al-Ghazaliya is now executing a campaign on hai-alAdel which has borders on both. Hai-alAdel which is now mostly Sunni, and more so since some of the Shiite homes in hai-alAdel got kicked out by Sunnis that were displaced from al-Hurria.

I ran what I just said through with the cab drivers I took today and they both told me that it was true. And the second one went so far as to point out that it was the Shiite militias that were taking the offensive while the Sunnis were trying to hold their ground.

And this government isn't trying to stop this, because they're in alliance with the punks that are taking the offensive. And then there's the governments of America and Britain showing their support for the new monster in town. It's a royal piss take.

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