The Syrian Exception or, the Fly People!

Syrians have long believed that we are an exception to the regional rule. Stupid leaders, for instance, exist in Iraq and Somalia, but not in Syria. Oh no, “truth” be said, and certain mulish and other sordid qualities aside, our leaders tend to be smart, quite smart. So smart, in fact, they often outsmart themselves. 

As for civil wars, well, they happen in places like Lebanon and the Sudan, but not in Syria. Oh no no no. Our sectarianism, tribalism, Islamism, ethnic divides and other sources of civil disorder exist only in the eye of the beholder. But as long as we choose to remain blind and stick our heads in the sand, we cannot be aware of these things and, as such, they cannot hurt us.

Indeed, this is what being smart is all about: it is all about knowing when to acknowledge the existence of certain facts and problems, and when to ignore them. Moreover, and here is the awaited catch, inherited wisdom informs us that certain facts and problems should always be ignored. Always.

For this, and while shit happens throughout the region, it always happens elsewhere. We are just too smart, and too good, or at least our leaders are, to let it happen to us. No, we are not in the habit of letting ourselves drown in shit, albeit we are willing to admit that we are surrounded by it, and that we, occasionally, tend to eat and regurgitate it, and in rather prodigious amounts too.

So, here we are, surrounded by shit, but not sunk in it, somehow surviving the stench of it, while managing to find some source of strange sustenance in it. Hell, we must be a country of human flies. This seems to be indeed the secret of our continued success and the essence of our wonderful exceptionalism.

Yet, even flies get buried in shit every now and then. For the lousy thing about exceptions is that they tend to be as ephemeral as the rules. Our inherited wisdom somehow failed to make a note of that.

Indeed, the Jasmine-scented evenings of the Damascene “of yore” have long disappeared, though we continue to live off their faded memories in our shit-covered heads.

But what else can we do really? What else can be done?

We send our deepest sighs to heaven and keep logging our shit around. That’s what we can do. That’s all that can be done.

For shit-farming, our inherited wisdom informs us, is simply the only profession suitable for a people who have long let themselves be transmogrified into flies. That and shit-peddling, of course.

But, will they buy our shit at the UN, I wonder?

 

12 thoughts on “The Syrian Exception or, the Fly People!

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  2. Case in point, shit, Gizmo!Ammar, the technical explanation is that flys lay their eggs in shit and hatch out as maggots.We seem to have some infestation in New Orleans, too. Syria does not have a monopoly.

  3. I agree that a lot of pepole do noe see, or want so see, many huge problemes here and do not learn from what happened in places like Lebanon, sudan, iraq..And by that, it could just easily happen again here..

  4. a-you never fail to put a smile on my face … one marred by a cringe, obviously, but still.i am almost hoping that you’ll change your mind & stay.damn zionists.–raf*ps: “word verification” keeps the spamspamspamspamspamspam away.

  5. “Stupid leaders, for instance, exist in Iraq and Somalia, but not in Syria.”Reminds me of the 80’s…“The-re is no depression in New Zealand…””There-are-no refugees in the usa…”(Blam Blam Blam lyrics 1983)

  6. There was once a bird who wanted to defy the norm. It was winter and no he wasn’t going to fly south. After a few days in the cold blizzards, he couldn’t take it anymore and started off to the south. Halfway there his wings froze and he plummeted to the ground below. He knew he was a goner and he made the dumbest mistake ever. Soon a horse passed by and crapped on the small bird. The heat of the shit warmed him and defrosted his wings. Finally able to breathe and move freely, the bird was ecstatic and chirping in joy. A cat in a nearby bush heard the bird and pounced on the bird, swallowing him in one gulp.Moral of the Story: Everyone who shits on you doesn’t mean that their you’re enemy.Everyone who gets you out of shit aren’t necessarily your friend.And, if you’re warm and happy in a pile of shit….keep your mouth shut!

  7. Ray, at the end, problems tend to get worse. You cannot escape it at the end. Fight or flight!

  8. There was a bird who flew freely about the globe, following the warm weather, fruit and nectar that came with it, rejoicing in the celestial orbit.All at once a cataclysmic cataclysm clamped down on the world, pegged an axis to satan and threw up a cold wall of ice in the sky.The bird clapped its wings and flew east – but in the east there was ice. The bird clapped its wings and flew west – in the west, ice. The bird stretched its neck north and laboriously flapped its way toward the pole – ice (what else?). The bird took to the air one last time. Its extremities pinched by rime, its breast blue, the bird struggled south till finally it collapsed at its point of origin and would have wept were its tear ducts not freeze dried. For all about the bird was a frost. The bird saw a horse in the distance, snorting steam plumes into the bruised and colourless landscape. The horse strained on the horizon and when the bird squinted its rheumy eyes it saw the horse pulled a dray and on the dray a vault and driving the dray and the vault a warmly clothed figure with no expression. A wooden staff lashed the horse once, twice, three times (they say wood heats first when logged and then when burnt, but do they mention the third and fourth ways? When wood sears raised welted flesh and fuels the sadists grimace). The horse stumbled, a fourth blow fell or was it the fourteenth – the fortieth? Who can tell. The bird turned its back. There was no place free of the cold thing and no living thing free either. What could it do? The bird had only one direction left – its voice. And so, it sang. The horse and vault drew within earshot – and the horse grew angry. “How dare a bird sing when I pull such a load!”The horse strained and the staff lashed and the bird sung. As the horse passed the bird paused for a moment and called out “why do you pull that load?” The horse glared. “Horse, why do you pull that load – you are bigger then the staff, and the man – he is made of straw! Horse, why do you pull that load?” The horse turned and saw that his driver was indeed nothing but a strawman and the staff beating the horse’s rump was only a loose shaft which struck the horse’s side each time it pulled and the dray rocked. So angry, the horse reared up with its remaining strength as if to break away, but its hoof was aimed at the bird.Moral of the story: If you sing, watch other creatures hooves. If you revolt, watch where you put you feet.The horse struck the permafrost and split a shoe. Luck ran out.

  9. unfortunately …. UN used to buy shit from everywhere … but not ours by the way UN is the start two letters of unfortunately

  10. As with most of your poetic posts I can’t add any hope. I don’t know any bird and shit stories. What’s even worse, I am willing to worsen your misery by supporting efforts to get rid of Assad. There’s some idiot that thinks we should be supporting Assad in his oppression of the Shi’ite majority in order to get his help in stopping the aid flowing into Iraq’s terrorists. I was wondering what your view was, given that undermining Assad may result in a very unstable Syria. I will admit that my take on the situation is rather harsh R.E. the chaos that may result if Assad’s regime is toppled, but the welfare of our troops comes first, and the success of the Iraqi Democracy is a close second. I would value your comments highly.

  11. Amarji, you’re one of the rare true liberals (in the classic meaning) in Syria. There’s a lot of pseudo-liberal politically correct intellectuals today, but most are just reconverted leftists still trying to blame everything on the US and the zionists.

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