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My Year in Review

What better way to end a great year than to sit down and think about the great memories and opportunities it has brought you. Overall this year was a very good year, perhaps one of the best years I've lived so far. This year has been full of achievements and memories that I would like to share with my readers as a tribute to my readers.

January:
Though I did not know it then, this month has probably set the ground-stone for my career life. In this month I took one of the major decisions that I will ever make. During a period where all my friends were filling in medical school applications, begging for recommendations and stressing over their grades, I decided, and after three years of premedical studies, that I will not be applying to any medical school and forgo the idea of med-school. This decision has came after a lot of considerations and consultations with family and close friends. It was not an issue of grades nor the issue of time, but I had a more clear vision where I wante…

Live from Fikr 9 Conference

(10:30 AM) Mohammad: The Arab Thought Foundation is having its 9th Fikr conference today in Beirut. The event started with the word of Dr. Soliman Abdel Moneim, Secretary General of the Arab Thought Foundation, as well as HRH Khalid Al Faisal, Chairman of Arab Thought Foundation and His Excellency Michel Sleiman, President of the Republic of Lebanon. Also attending the event was the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri and Speaker of Parliment Nabih Berri.

(11:50 AM) Eman:  The first speech entitled “Arab’s Role in Shaping the Future”, his majesty Yousuf bin Alawi bin Abdelullah, the Minster of Foreigners Affairs in the Sultanate of Oman, was interviewed about his experience in various field concerning the future. The main questions lied within politics, economics and culture. (details follow later.)

(12: 35 PM) Mohammad: Parag Khanna, Expert in International relations and Director of the Global Governance Initiative in USA, is the second speaker. He spoke about "Geopolitical Chang…

Ten Commonly Believed Myths about the Human Body

ENERGY DIMENSION:We have learned much about our bodies through old wives’ tales handed down from our moms and grandmothers and even in school, but not all of it is correct. Here we look at 10 misconceptions that might surprise you.

1. Warts can be caught from other animals like toads
Human warts are caused by a virus that affects only humans, the human pappiloma virus. They cannot be caught by animals with warts and certainly not by toads whose bumps are not warts but glands.


2. Sugar makes children hyperactive False! Twelve controlled, double blind trials have shown that there is absolutely no connection between children’s behavior and their sugar intake. One thing was found, namely that parents rate their child’s behavior as more hyper when they thought they had been given a sugary drink. “The studies included sugar from sweets, chocolate and natural sources. Even in studies of those who were considered “sensitive” to sugar, children did not behave differently after eating sugar-full or…

World AIDS Day Concert

Under the High Patronage of the First Lady of Lebanon
Mrs. WAFAA MICHEL SLEIMAN

The Soins Infirmiers et Développement Communautaire (SIDC) is organising, in collaboration with Vivre Positif and the Centre de Santé de l’Université St. Joseph and with the attendance of Miss Lebanon 2010, Ms. Rahaf Abdallah, a concert on the occasion of World AIDS Day.


Ms. Grace Deeband:
Violinist: Joelle SaadéPianists: Vladimir Kurumilian and Liliane ChlelaPop Rock: The Weirdos
The concert’s proceeds will go to support needs people living with HIV (PLHIV) Date and Place: 10 December 2010 at 8:30 at Pierre Abou Khater Auditorium, USJ, Rue de Damas RSVP: contact info@sidc-lebanon.org or call +961 1 482 428, +961480714 Tickets will also be available at the door.


Follow SIDC's account on twitter here

I Love My (Curly) Hair

MIND SOUP: I really do. I love my mane of long, thick curly hair. It wasn't easy having long, curly hair in Lebanon. People would always bug me about it. "Why don't you straighten it?" "It's boring that you always keep it curly, why don't you change the look?" "You would look so MUCH better with straight hair."

I didn't want to waste my money at the hairdresser (and damage my hair) to straighten my hair, not to mention all the products I'd have to buy. But apart from that, my hair is who I am. I make the best of what I have and what I have is curly hair. If you have naturally straight hair, then flaunt it! I see nothing wrong in that. I just would get so annoyed when people would bug me about embracing what I have. Now that I'm an adult, I'm glad that I kept my hair curly. The girls in my high school and in undergrad ended up giving into pressure and now have straight hair. Every year, I'd see another girl give in and tr…

Non-AUB guests entrance to campus for "Blogging Lebanon"

We have been asked several times this week if non-AUB people can attend the "Blogging Lebanon" event which is taking place on December 3 in the American University of Beirut. And the answer is Of Course.

However due to AUB's strict security policy, non-AUB guest will have to bring with them an official form of identification. These include an official Lebanese ID (hawiye), Ikhraj Qayd or Passport. This will definitely facilitate your entrance to campus. AUBOC will try its best to minimize these security measures as best as possible, but please make sure you have one of the above forms of identification.

For AUB alumni, it is recommended that they bring you Almuni ID, yet, any other form of identification would be fine.

If for some reason you face any problems with having access to campus, please call AUBOC's president Mohammad Hijazi at this number 70-920 641.

Lebanese Blogosphere Embraces LGBT Bloggers

MIND SOUP: Everyone knows that blogging has exploded recently in Lebanon. There's even a Blogging Convention in a mere couple of weeks where our very own Moudz will be in attendance! With that said, as blogging in general is becoming more and more popular in Lebanon, so are Lebanese LGBT blogs.

The blogs are very new, less than a year old and two new ones popped up just this month. The themes of the blog are as diverse as the Lebanese LGBT community itself. Posts include favorite music, coming out stories, bad dates, and complaining about Lebanon (the hallmark of a Lebanese blog). Most of the blogs are anonymous (due to privacy concerns and the rampant homophobia still present in Lebanon).

Beirut Boy: The author is a young, Lebanese businessman in his 20s. He posts about dating, music, fashion, and is an activist for gay rights in Lebanon. He (as well as many other bloggers) has joined the Save Aya campaign.

Gay in Beirut: This blog mainly has humorous and light-hearted posts about t…

Google.com Celebrates Lebanese Independence Day

I was doing some google search a while ago and I was totally struck by google.com's front page. Google.com (not even the Lebanese version google.com.lb that I don't use because it returns the search in Arabic even though I try to change it all the time) has the Lebanese flag on its main logo to celebrate Lebanese Independences day which falls today (November 22).
I'm glad that at least google is giving this day some attention. Personally, I don't care that much since I don't believe that Lebanon is completely independent anyway.
Ironically if you press on the link, you would see this leads to a search result for "Lebanon Independence Day". The third result for this search would be: PressTV - Iran hails Lebanon Independence Day. Could my point BE any more proven? Happy Lebanese Independence Everyone!

Blogging Lebanon on December 3

After its unfortunate cancellation last May due to student protests at the American University of Beirut, AUB's Online Collaborative is announcing the relaunch of AUB's First Lebanese Bloggers Convention, now renamed to Blogging Lebanon.

This event that attracted many bloggers from the Arab and international scene is rescheduled to Friday December 3, 2010 at the American University of Beirut.

The aim of this convention is to gather bloggers from around the region under one roof. The event will include several guest speaker from different backgrounds who will share their experiences and discuss different topics related to blogging and social media, such cultural aspects, privacy issues, importance of blogs, political implications, and dangers etc...

Below is the list of guest speakers we have so far:
(Her Majesty) Frances Guy, British Ambassador to the Republic of Lebanon, http://blogs.fco.gov.uk/roller/guy/Imad Bazzi, Executive Director of CyberAct and Journalist, www.trella.or…

Mind Soup featured in Trashed Magazine

Mind Soup was featured in TimeOut Beirut's student magazine Trashed in its pilot issue. Even though I have been very lately and not posting regularly, I'm very glad that the blog is still getting a lot hits and publicity. Im very excited that we will reach 100,000 visitors this month.


The text reads:
Mohammad Hijazi, 21, Biology and Business Administration, AUB
[moudz.blogspot.com]

Mind Soup is a cultural blog about Lebanon and the Middle East. It contains posts about various topics including music videos, fun news, entertainment, politics, science, sports, poetry, fails, technology and much more. The blog has several contributers, mainly Moudz and Daisy who maintain the blog. Recurrent topics include student life, Lebanon, Beirut, Middle East, and AUB.

Worldwide companies that fund Israel

Cadbury Schweppes – announced on Dec. 17, 2002 plans to invest $4.5 m in Israeli confectionary maker and distributor Carmit after a year’s trial association with Carmit whereby the latter distributed Cadbury’s goods in Israel. The money, Cadbury specified, will paid in the first three months of 2003 and will be used for the advertising to promote its products in Israel. Carmit will become Carmit-Cadbury

Coca-Cola – bought 43% of Neviot Water in 2001 for c. $20 million, a company which has 40% of the Israeli bottled water market

 in January 2002 Coca-Cola reported it was beginning negotiations to acquire Golan Wineries, located in the Golan Heights in Dec. 2000 bought 33.3%of StoreAlliance, Israeli computer technology supplier, for $5 million through its Israeli subsidiaryuntil July 2000 Coca-Cola owned Mayanot Eden which is a water-company based in the Golanannounced in July 2002 that, in return for millions of dollars in tax breaks from the Israeli government, it will build a new plant…

AUB Music Club presents "November Rain"

Date: Tuesday, November 9 · 8:00pm - 10:30pm
Location: AUB West Hall Bathish

The AUB Music Club in association with the AUB President's Club is proud to present November Rain! This is the first of hopefully many awesome events that will take place throughout this year. AUB's talented muscians will be performing on the stage of Bathish (West Hall). They will be covering different musical styles including blues, rock, jazz, alternative and more...

Bands that will be performing:
Lazzy LungHome MadePluggedThe Passive StandoutsAlong with other classical, jazz & acoustic solo pieces...
-Ticket Price: 5,000 L.L sold as of Monday November 1st on the Music Club stand outside West Hall and at the door.
-Non A.U.B students must bring their official ID!
- Check out the event's Facebook page.

Hope to see you there!

Tripoli Emergency Fail

And they say we don't have laws in Lebanon, in such cases please call 112 instead of 140... :S

Song of the week: Rascal Flatts - Every Day

Between Beirut and Amman: Four Conferences You Must NOT Miss in December!

December is proving to be a very busy month for me, as well as social media enthusiasts and Arab intellectuals. Below are four conferences/forums/conventions

To kick December off, AUB's Online Collaborative will be hosting its first Blogging Lebanon convention on December 3 where Lebanese bloggers and Arab and International bloggers in Lebanon in the area will be joining to share their experience and give valuable insight about the blogging scene in the Arab World. Click here for the latest information about this event.

The Arab Thought Foundation is holding its annual conference "Fikr 9" which will take place this year in Beirut on December 8 & 9 with a special workshop for youth on December 7. This year's conference has the theme of "Building the Future." The conference will address the major issues facing the Arab World. During my meeting with the organizers last week, they have expressed their great enthusiasm about welcoming bloggers who are willing …

Press Release: Relaunch of Blogging Lebanon Convention

ONLINE COLLABORATIVE: After its unfortunate cancellation last May due to student protests at the American University of Beirut, AUB's Online Collaborative is announcing the relaunch of AUB's First Lebanese Bloggers Convention, now renamed to Blogging Lebanon.
This event that attracted many bloggers from the Arab and international scene is rescheduled to Friday December 3, 2010 at the American University of Beirut (exact venue will be announced later.)
The aim of this convention is to gather bloggers from around the region under one roof. The event will include several guest speaker from different backgrounds who will share their experiences and discuss different topics related to blogging and social media, such cultural aspects, privacy issues, importance of blogs, political implications, and dangers etc...
Currently, the convention organizers are calling for guest speakers who are willing to give short presentations about their area of expertise. The event will also include exhi…

AUB Cafeteria Opens, more dislikes than likes

MIND SOUP: After more than one year of renovations, AUB's main cafeteria (the one in Ada Dodge Hall) had its "grande" opening last Thursday (October 14). During the last three working days, students have been flooding into the cafeteria, more disappointed than satisfied. Below is a detailed pros/cons description of the situation.

What we like:
Definitely the design and the wallpaper which captures the AUB spirit and successfully integrates itself in the AUB campus.The division of food sections is a good idea, students can get pasta, daily dishes, hot sandwiches, cold sandwiches, manakeesh, and drinks from different places, but this also a negative aspect (scattered lines of waiting people, crowding)The colors. I personally like the black, red and white retro thing that's going on.The modern furniture which is a well-deserved upgrade from the bus cafeteria that we had for the last year.Students have a new place to hang out. Main gate and West hall areas are less crowded…

Will you save Aya?

For more information: http://saveaya.org