ya’ani is an arabic expression which means “so-so”, or “whatever”; something you reply when someone asks you how things are for you, and they aren’t so hot.. it is also commonly used as a filler.. much like how we use “uhms” in english or filipino..

people who grew up in other countries are a hybrid of sorts.. this is a repost from the facebook group ‘people who grew up in the middle east’.. it’s amusing, if you can relate..

those marked with * are the ones i couldn’t really relate to..

You may have lived in the Middle East if:

1) You watched Captain Majid. And you wanted to be just like him. *
2) You drank Bebsi, Fanta, Miranda, Sun Top, Tang, Capri-Sonne, Vimto and Canada Dry.
3) You’re STILL shaking the sand out of your shoes.
4) When you wanted fast food you got a shawarma.
5) You think American restaurants should serve lamb. With rice. *
6) Bebsi was cheaper than water. So was gasoline.
7) You remember when 80*F was cold, 90*F was cool, 105*F was warm, and 115*F was hot.
8 ) You wanted Saudi Arabia to go all the way in World Cup 1994. And cried when they didn’t. *
9) You know a friend who won a free car from the local mall. Twice.
10) Gulf Countries: Arabic is the 1st language. Urdu is the 2nd. Filipino is the 3rd. English is the 4th. Balad Ash-Sham: Arabic is the 1st language. English and French are tied for 2nd. Egypt: Egyptian is the 1st language. Arabic is the 2nd… musris, seriously: learn how to pronounce the jeem. It’s jamah, NOT GAMAH.
11) Some dumb ass American asked you if you rode a camel to school. And you told him that you’ve seen more Rolls Royce, Mercedes, BMW, and Lexus automobiles on the streets of Riyadh or Dubai than you’ve ever seen in the USA.
12) Your school had classes canceled because of a truck bomb or a SCUD missile attack.*
13) You know what the Burj Al Arab is.
14) You had satellite TV and never heard of cable until you came to the USA.
15) There are no lines at amusement parks. Push, shove, and run your ass off to get the bumper car before the other guy.
16) Airport workers offer to carry your bags for you and you say no.
17) Friday was the official weekend.
18) People who DIDN’T bribe got into trouble. *
19) There was no such thing as a non-smoking section. Anywhere. Even airline flight crews smoked on airplanes. In the aisles. Beside the no-smoking sign.
20) Your parents told you it was too hot to go outside.
21) You know that 3 people can fit on a motorcycle, 8 people can fit in a 5-seat car, and 20 people can fit in a 12-person minibus. *
22) You actually tried to surf a sand dune.
23) Your car or your parents’ car was equipped with dual AC’s.
24) The best Arab restaurant in every city south of Syria was Yamal Ash-Sham. *
25) You’ve seen scorpions and sand vipers in the wild.
26) You lived in a compound. *
27) Casio G-Shock: the only watches you’ve ever owned. *
28) You bought a dagger. And a sword.
29) Almost every McDonalds was two stories tall. The rest were three stories tall.
30) You never saw a building made of wood until you came to the USA. Everything was made of cement, brick, and marble.
31) Your front lawn had a rock garden instead of grass.
32) Your parents paid to get you out of military service. *
33) You watched BBC, CNN International, and Al-Jazeera… and consider American news to be for entertainment purposes only.
34) Lion Bar and Kit Kat are the greatest chocolate bars of all time.
35) Your school had armed guards and concrete barricades. *
36) Stores closed during prayer time. *
37) Restaurants had ladies sections. Swimming pools had women-only times.
38) Your mom and sister wore an abaya, even if they weren’t Muslim. *
39) You and your friends all thought you were gangstas.
40) You or your neighbor had a driver.
41) Most people on the road don’t realize there is a speed limit. Neither does the police.
42) There is NO such thing as Israel. It is Palestine.
43) You’ve been to a gold souk.
44) The movie Aladdin was banned by the government. So were Pokemon. *
45) You got back at your friend by pointing at him and yelling, “Yahood!�?
46) You owned Titanic, Jurrasic Park, and Star Wars Episode 1 weeks before they were playing in U.S. cinemas.
47) You currently own a cellphone that will be sold as the “latest technology” in the USA… in a year.
48) Bizza Hut had beef bebberoni.
49) You thought KFC stood for Kuwaiti Fried Chicken.
50) You still think Herfy or Hardees was better than McDonalds.
51) Everyone at school played football aka “soccer”. If there were desis, then some people played cricket.
52) Sports stores were always 90% football aka “soccer” gear, and every kid ended up buying a number 9 Ronaldo Brazil shirt.*
53) You know that camels can spit. Far.
54) The image of one camel mounting another is still burned into your childhood memory.
55) There was actually a point to owning a SUV and now you’re extremely pissed at how the USA has transformed a true off-road utility vehicle into a fashion statement for “soccer moms.”
56) You know for a fact that Bedouins can drive Toyota Land Cruisers, Nissan Patrols, and other 4×4 SUVs better than anyone else on the planet.
57) You ate dates all the time and couldn’t believe that they are considered exotic to Americans in “Raiders of the Lost Arc.”
58) You’ve seen a sword dance. At a wedding.
59) You’ve smoked sheesha aka argheela aka hookah aka hubbly bubbly but are shocked to find that the pipe would be considered drug paraphernalia in the USA.
60) You know that the Greeks took shawarmas from the Arabs and just renamed them gyros. And you’re outraged.
61) You’ve actually been in a sand storm and you know sand stings.
62) You laughed at how tiny the ants are in the USA.
63) You might not be able to play the drums but you CAN play the daff.
64) You know that Bedouins can make random, completely unsynched clapping into something that actually sounds like music. Especially if they are waving a sword around.
65) You drank mud aka Turkish Coffee… and you may have even liked it.
66) You cried when you realized you couldn’t buy goat milk at U.S. super markets. *
67) You know that monsters do exist. They are called camel spiders.
68) You rode ATVs, dirt bikes, and jet ski’s… when you were 8 years old.
69) You started driving cars on your dad’s knee… when you were 4 years old.
70) You still prefer a siwak to a toothbrush. *
71) Top 3 uses for your shahata (slippers): Killing cockroaches, smacking or throwing at your friend, and actually wearing them when the asphalt is too hot to go bare-foot. *
72) You or one of your friends thought hamburgers have ham in them.
73) You root for Saudi Arabia every World Cup… and when they are eliminated, you root for Brazil. *
74) When driving in Syria, nobody stays in their lanes. *
75) Syrian drivers don’t honk when pedestrians cross the road at night. Nor do they slow down. They flash their lights and speed up.
76) Syrian drivers are completely shocked and confused if someone flashes his blinker light before changing lanes or turning.
77) A Syrian cop told you that the stripped white lines on roads are just for decoration.
78) America is called Emreeka.
79) You could hear the call to prayer anywhere in the city.
80) You covered your lunchbox with SunTop stickers.
81) You ate La vache qui rit and thought the “Laughing Cow” was laughing because the cheese tasted so bad.
82) You watched some of the crappiest cartoons ever created on Saudi 2 such as Bionic 6, Spiral Zone, Bolek and Lolek, the Moomins, and Pow Wow the Indian Boy. *
83) You couldn’t help but giggle when a couple Americans flying on Saudi Arabian Airlines for the first time nearly pissed their pants upon hearing the Arabic audio recording of the Muslim prayer for travel played on the loudspeakers just before take-off. *


5 thoughts on “ya’ani

  1. cool..

    well, i’ve never been to the KSA.. i’d prolly go visit but i wouldn’t want to live there.. i don’t think i’d ever be happy in a place where women don’t get to vote or drive cars.. hehe.. glad to know you had fun there..

    nice to have made a new friend.. =)

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