Friday, 31 July 2009

The way I are

“But you don’t look Lebanese”

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been told this. In the beginning – trying to be clever – I would respond with a “what exactly do Lebanese people look like then?”

I now know better than to ask because there does actually seem to be a universally recognized look for Lebanese women.

So, to look more Lebanese apparently I need to:

• Wear loads more make up. Loads. Yes, even to go to Tesco’s because ‘who knows who you might run in to?’

• Get a nose job – slim line that septum baby and pinch those nostrils in. So what if my breathing is labored (no pain no gain right?). Fortunately, Lebanese banks provide financing options for this and any other 'improvements' I might need

• Desperately try to keep up with the latest in fad diets and exercise. Don’t worry, there’s no danger – I will be using celebrities as my primary source of research and everybody knows they know everything. Thankfully, they are also around to tell me how to vote.

• Leaving my hair curly was clearly poorly thought through and almost sacrilegious – I apologize

• While we’re on hair – what was I thinking not going blonde in the summer and black/red in the winter? How on earth am I going to blend in if I look different?

• Buy only branded, upmarket clothes and bags. Of course everything must be skin tight – there is no room for comfort here.

Glad I’ve compiled this list and can get started. Looking not Lebanese so that everyone knows I am Lebanese is crucial. How else will I find a husband?

It’s just more practical you know –should things not work out with my discerning future husband, he can easily find another prêt a porter Lebanese woman to take my place. Who knows, she may even be thinner.

Now excuse me while I go perfect my pout for Facebook pictures.


  1. Well, because I speake French, people will always ask me if I am Lebanese, well no I am not, but you speake French, well excuse my French for knowing another language. Now, I have nothing against Lebanese, some of them are even nice (only kidding and probably stereotyping), but it gets annoying.
    Let alone all the other stereotypes Arabs get tagged with regardless of nationality or religion.

  2. It's not your fault, Sara. The stereotype is a powerful thing. did you not see the CNN report on Beirut - the best party city?

  3. haha thanks for your comment Oussama - I get a lot of the opposite - 'you don't speak French?? but you're Lebanese!'

    Thanks for the link Mai - I hadn't seen that before. Hmmmm.....

  4. Have you read Anissa Rafeh's "Miss Guided : How to Step into the Lebanese Glam Lane" ? It does reflect a lot of your thoughts.

    Stereotyping is terrible, but unfortunately it exists.

  5. Haha thanks Kim - that's brilliant, I'll definitely look that up!

  6. hahahaha this is hilarious cuz!! but to the point and i agree with it a 100000% love u!