Friday, June 09, 2006

What a joke!



The other day I had a bit of an extra time to read about the trial of the war-defeated Saddam; how the witnesses are being kept behind curtains, the stand off between the prosecutors and the defendants – finger-pointing, smirking, pouting, gesturing, shrugging bellicosely .. you know, the sort of things that Bush does when he’s crisscrossed. And of course the latest judge who reminds me of the classic series of Hadji Radi and Abousy in Under the Barber’s Blade (only Iraqis will dig that one) especially that Arabic class teacher when he scolds elderly students ...hey you, why you’ve stuck your nose? and you, what made you jump on like that? and yes you, ooouuuuttt (Barraaaahhh) And along these lines I began to laugh and I’ve even conjured up few jokes that cracked me up, which made think of how we the Baghdadis have such embracing sense of humor. We actually can make jokes of everyone if there is a cause beyond reasonable doubt just so we can be egalitarian.

But unlike the pot-head Egyptian jokes, which require certain ‘allo ya oummem’ mood, ours would certainly leave indelible life-time smiles - unless we’re tipsy then the jokes could leave some lasting scars! And the jokes are full of cute slang that keep us united, but the shrewd ones are the best, like this one: when one day the Ottoman governor in Baghdad was so perplexed about how could the Baghdadis figure the news of the Sultan in Istanbul before his personal messenger brings it to him, he ordered his messenger to bring no news from the Sultan to see what happens. And the governor was effectively told that the Baghdadis say there is no news today from the Sultan! The governor gets so frustrated and reined the Mukhtar in (a neighborhood rep.) to shed some lights on this mystery, and the Mukhtar told him that when the messenger brings news he would walk brazenly, sits at one or two cafés to have a tea or Shisha, talks a bit and then he goes off. This time the messenger zoomed passed us hurriedly, which was obvious he brought nothing from the Sultan!

The zillions of SMS jokes I receive every week can really make my day – with all due respect to minorities and patriotic factions ‘min bab al mahabeh’ & democracy! And for some reason the night time is the best time for us to enjoy our good jokes – when the metabolism slows down. Perhaps it is the best way to laugh the hard day off so we can go to our beds all cleansed, rinsed and content, hoping for a nice dream before the inevitable dusty big-bang wake-up alarm.

Then later I remembered how Saddam had executed a few men who joked about him, and I really got upset. Now why would anyone kill someone for telling a joke? It’s a joke for god’s sake (Like how Layla Al-attar was blown up by a US missile for drawing caricature of Bush’s father’s face at Al- Rasheed’s entrance) I know Iraqis can get perturbed, cuss, swear, and emulate over bad jokes but to kill then it has to be some sick mind’s joke. And that crime angered me more than the Dujail case. And I thought if there was one reason to prosecute Saddam it had to be for having executed people who told jokes. I can just imagine: Saddam is found guilty for joke crimes!! Then I laughed and I said: ‘what a joke’.

1 Comments:

At 8:19 AM, Blogger baghdadi said...

There is a real true well known story that took place in 1988 in Baghdad . ....It is about two well known Iraqi professors specialised doctors , who both were excuted because one of them was telling a joke about sadam and the other has laughed for the jock .

 

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