A Short Story! Are You A Prawn? 1

Are You A Prawn?

By Majid Al Suleimany

August 20th 2015

I had posted the below poster in the Social Media and it received unbelievable overwhelming positive responses – and I wished I had received similar at least with my Books Postings at least!

Prawns

A long time ago when my sister was alive – I visited Tanzania on holidays! My late sister PBUH Allah Rahmah had invited me for lunch! Guess what was on the menu –all prawns and lobsters – coconut rice and grilled barbequed lobsters and prawns – and with the coconut curry lobsters! She found me not partaking the food with the zeal she had expected to emanate from me – as she knew that I do like my food!

I told her – My sister you forgot that I do not eat sea food except fish only? She was devastated – and she lamented that she had gone very early in the morning that day to buy the prawns and lobsters that had costed her quite a lot for a widowed at home woman! In the end she ordered for me just plain chicken curry from a nearby restaurant – and I ate with the rice!

Crab

Crab

When I was a student in UK in the early 1970s – there was a Big Students Annual Party thrown up by Shell International – the parent company of Petroleum Development Oman PDO which had sent me for the course in UK! Everybody was enjoying themselves with the lobsters and prawn infested dinner with exception of you know who- who got served separately with chicken legs instead!

At a Departmental party years later – my Top Boss who simply hated me as a person and my guts was boasting loudly – already top drunk – that only ‘poofs and sissies’ he knows do not eat prawns, crabs and lobsters – that were the main menu! So indirectly he may have known that I do not eat these things – and perhaps to make me sad and miserable?

lobster[1]

So from that day onwards, I always gave an excuse not to attend any more parties from his side! Ironically – and what they say – what goes around; comes around – because many had ‘food poisoning’ from the lobsters I gather – and had to go for treatment at the Medical clinic – except the Host who seemed more protected by the alcohol!

A Big Joke after the weekend in the Offices! I understand that is why Her Majesty The Queen never partakes sea food on her travels abroad!

prawns 2

At this party above – a good Indian friend volunteered an ‘explanation’ as to why I do not eat lobsters etc.! He used reincarnation theology being himself a Hindu person – though top drunk too – that perhaps in my past life I was a lobster – so how can you eat your own kind? That is cannibalism – he asserted! Though I wanted to challenge him if he was sure of ‘lobsters not eating lobsters theory’ – but I thought better of it – and went just quiet! What about ‘big lobsters’ eating ‘smaller ones’? I could Google eat – but who really cares? Certainly not I!

At a family gathering one day my son in law Ali pinned me down to offer a ‘logical explanation’ as to why I ‘do not eat lobsters, prawns and crabs’ – his nickname being Ali The Fisherman! These things upset them more! Despite I do not eat ‘these things’ I do buy and allow them to be cooked for visitors – and guess what the topic will turn to when I do not partake the stuff – every time even if they have heard of it before! So I sarcastically and cynically retort – finish the dinner – and I will tell you why! Oh – they say in disgust – because they have heard of it before!

If you like lobsters, prawns and crabs – may I suggest you do not read The Addendum? J !

But frankly – it is true the poster that – Some people are like prawns! No guts, no spine and a head full of shit! But market value is always high! (Or are proud and conceited! Like I always say after the Offices environments – it is in Families where people most misbehave and conduct themselves badly! And behave just like prawns!

I hope you have enjoyed the article. If you have – please let The Chief Editor and The CEO of Oman Daily Observer – observerfeatures@gmail.com – editorobserver@gmail.com – know that ‘you miss my Columns – Between Us Only! That used to run every Sunday and Wednesday before being abruptly ended more than 2 years ago- when I criticised The Egyptian Army murdering in cold blood their own peoples demonstrating for reinstalling Morsi as elected President of Egypt! And the support they got from some GCC countries! I am not Egyptian – nor Pro or Anti Morsi- but a human being observing my faith and as with human feelings and concerns!

How many Omanis can write like this? Allah Kareem! God Is Great! Ameen! Amen!

 
Take Care!

Best wishes and regards,
 

Majid Al Suleimany

August 20th 2015

ADDENDUM!

Repeat – Please do not read if you like lobsters, prawns and crabs!

In the island of Mafia aka Chole -100 miles from Dar es Salaam – Commercial Capital of Tanzania – my late Father PBUH Allah Rahmah – he liked sea food like crabs, prawns and lobsters! If you see how they are cooked still alive – you will never eat one again!

So they put these large crabs still alive and deadly – into a big boiling hot pot! They cover the pot with a tin cover and lay a big stone on top of it! You can hear the ‘tap’ tap – tap – tap as they ‘try to get out’ – open the cover please! We are being steamed hot alive here! The taping goes on for a long while – because they have a life of their own!

One day ‘one strong crab’ managed to push the lid and stone away! Our African house boy pushed it back in – and put a larger stone more on the lid! It took more than 5 minutes of incessant tapping to end!

How can you eat  these things – after this? I ask you!

After all, they look so ugly and terrible – like Big Insects! L !

P.S. You were warned not to come here! Have a Smile! Take Care!

A Personal Message! Reply

Message To My Fans & Readers!

Dear All & After Compliments;

Ramadhan Kareem!

Whenever I go out (which is rarely nowadays!) and in social gatherings – I get the same questions – again and again – as to when my articles in Between Us Only! series in The Oman Daily Observer will resume? Or if I had tried the other newspapers like Times of Oman and Muscat Daily? I have – but did not succeed!

I used to write for Muscat Daily a few years ago with the Column Title At My Workplace! After a series of articles – and as I was under the impression of getting payments? – they said NO to me because they thought ‘I was just volunteering for free’! Nobody gives you lunch nowadays for free – so why with my articles!

Frankly I have tried hard with The Oman Daily Observer – but the new people there (The Old Guards and The Mafias Joint Scheme) are dead set against my articles – started with a ‘technicality’ to reduce my column schedule for only one per week! I had two columns – one Between Us Only! on Sundays and At The Workplace! (Offices Related) on Wednesdays. They started by removing the columns headings – so it showed I was writing two columns under one name! I refused to reduce my columns sequences – because we had a valid written enforceable contract – and two sides must agree to any changes! This was sidelined and marginalized – because no one in his right senses and mind can sue a Governmental Newspaper – and expect any favourite results – or inadvertently consequences and repercussions per se!

See what I am saying is this!

First – The East Africans say – If someone wants to insult you – he does not need to choose his words carefully! Because anything will do (go) – because the sole purpose is ‘just to insult you’! There is also the expression that if you are a guest in a house – the host does not need to tell you to go – and you have exceeded your welcome! Body signs and mannerisms would just do the trick for you to get the signals – that it is time for you to go now!

Also the expression – if someone denies you beans (mbaazi) he only reduces your gas (mishuuzi!) – with due apologies. Forget for now – Utakioona kilicho mtoa khanga manyoya! Now you will see how the turkey lost its feathers! Like most metaphors – it means something much bigger than just literal meaning!

Second – there is nothing that I have not covered in my 13 years duration with the said newspapers! Nothing – simply put! Even taboo subjects that most writers are scared to even border – let alone touch!

Third – All my articles are in my books. You can order them directly if you wish! Even the bookshops returned my books – and one is so notorious (expatriate) to even have called me to say – Come and take your books – they are just occupying space – and NOBODY wants to buy them!

This kind of thing can ONLY happen in Oman – because we are docile people – scared stiff of certain groups of expatriates that have come to dominate, control and rule us – that we bend backwards ‘in order just to look nice and sound pleasant’! – and we all compete for places to sound nice and good to them.

Mind you the majority of the expatriates are good decent nice people – who appreciate and respect the welcome and reception given to them as ‘invited guests’ in our country! But there are a few misguided and supported by some forces internally that think and act otherwise – and these are the people that do most harm and damages – and that includes stopping their few who dare to speak shut up – so we can still control and dominate them for longer still!

Allah God Help and Protect Preserve us all – Ameen Amen!

Fourth – You can still order my books directly as here below:-

Starting with the latest one

http://www.createspacecom/4304972         Wipe My Tears!

http://www.createspace.com/4153263        Short Takes 2 – Between Us Only!

http://www.createspace.com/4153269        The Sequel 3 – Between Us Only!

http://www.trafford.com/08-0890               The Sequel   – Between Us Only!

http://www.createspace.com                           Short Takes – Between Us Only! ***

http://www.myownmajid.com                        Between Us Only! Original – Blue Book.

Other Arab Management Books (2) and Road Safety now 3 – with Arabic Version – Behind The Wheel! here and at http://www.myown-ebooks.com and http://www.bethesafedriver.com

Fifth – Let me rest now! I am tired banging my head against brick walls – and making it red and bruised only! Besides, I am dead tired – and have learnt to let go of all the Excess Baggage I have been carrying for so long – and the losers is only my family and I!

I have learnt to accept my fate – and whatever will come – let it come now!

I have been known to have said so many times in the past – I told you so! But you did not listen to me! I can still say that once again – if needed to be said!

The Romans have said – Those that the gods want to destroy – they make them not see, hear or speak! Or us Arabs – There is no one so blind but with eyes – but cannot see! So deaf but with ears – but cannot hear! And so dumb – but with a mouth – but cannot speak!

A good friend (British) once advised cautioned me – if you were in Saddam Team – you would have ended shot – as the first ones too!

Let me rest now. I am now 65 – with different priorities – and the paramount now is my family – my children and grandchildren!

Please forgive me and with my due sincere and genuine apologies!

Take Care!

Ramadhan Kareem!

Best Wishes and Regards,

Majid Al Suleimany

Wipe My Tears BUO ST 2 BUO TS 3 The Sequel Short Takes Between Us Only!

Bye For Now!

Evaluating and Assessing The Boss! 1

At My Workplace!

Evaluating and Assessing The Boss!

I guess you are asking yourself if you have read it right – yes you did – evaluating and assessing the boss! How is that possible? Read on…

Some decades back, when the videos just came in, I purchased my first video machine. It was a double-headed machine – that meant you could play in one whilst recording a channel on the other! One of the gift videos was named The Party where the late Peter Sellers was playing an Indian (Hrundi V. Bakshi) mistakenly invited for a party. In one of the scenes, an irate film producer (the boss) is seen ‘insulting Hrundi’ – Stay out of this! Who do you think you are? – Hrundi replies – In India we do not think who we are – we know WHAT we are!

In what is known in Human Resources and in Management, the boss too is assessed by what is known as The 360 Degrees Assessment tool. This is instead of the usual one vertical down where it is always the boss that assesses the staff below him – or in rare cases lateral too of lesser officials! In the later, because the top guy has passed on the responsibilities to that official.

Not to bog you with many details, the system operates like this. All those people that interact and interface with the boss form an artificial circle around the boss – and he being in the middle! Each one has an opportunity and chance to evaluate and assess the boss (or the person in the middle and centre). This includes customers and clients, people from other departments, his own subordinates – and his peers too. Of course the top boss maybe involved too – but he is only one of the players in the exercise.

The 360 Degrees Assessment

The exercise is supposed to be more open, objective and constructive – and it aims in building up – and not harming anyway or destroying. It is after looking for the best interests and advantages of the establishment – and not the other way around! Trust me in this – it is easier to preach than in reality practice what you preach! Even from the so-called ‘democratic’ countries of the world! When he is an Official being so assessed he could even be worse than those from ‘lesser democratic’ places – because he knows all the tricks – and uses them!

Image – Others Running Too (Images Faded)

The Boss Seems Far Away – But Is It Really?

One of the usual tricks played on the lots of naïve believing lots like us is to ask ‘for more information and clarity’ from the person assessing him badly – ‘so I can learn more in correcting and amending (remedial!) myself. Taken on face value the person giving the assessment in secrecy and anonymity is exposed. Or use the information for their own advantages and interests! The other way around is ‘mischief and trouble’ making towards the boss being assessed – as a pay-back time! Thus ‘making mountains out of mole hills’ comes into place! As a result of all these games, gimmicks and scheming the concept had not taken off – even here in Oman – and even in Oil and Gas sector where it was once introduced!

You Are Right In The Centre!

Which reminds me of the scene in the comedy series of Outsourced – which is all about a USA Call Centre outsourced (as the name suggests!) to India! As usual again, the top guy comes from home – and for ‘domestic reasons’ the assistant is from home country. It is hilarious the way the local guy tries to entrap his Western boss – so he can take his place – forgetting the usual that if he goes another from base country would come in instead! The same scenarios are played in the equal funny one of a British company too in India (where else is good English spoken?) called Mumbai Calling!

Smiling At The Boss – How will she rank him?

In one of the scenes in Outsourced, the top guyfrom USA  calls directly and to speak to the Assistant Manager Rajiv – and thinking he is being called to take over! Instead Rajiv is told that he is going to be assessed by his subordinates in an Anonymous Assessment. He is heard to lament – But Sir – this is highly irregular – in India nobody dares to criticize the boss – but just do what he is told to do!

Below Rajiv and Boss Todd!

Rajiv (in suit between girls) and Todd and Staff Below

Being unpopular with his staff, he uses antics, games and ploys to win over his subordinates – so he can get a good rate and ranking to please the bosses in USA! He is successful in this – but contrary to his expectations and hopes – the top guy says to him – You must be like Todd (Rajiv’s boss) to be a Manager – with backbone and the right mantle and prerequisites – (because he Todd got a bad ranking  – Rajiv’s hand too in this!). You are their boss – not their friends to be liked by them! Rajiv losses – again!

Now do you believe in all the things I have said above? Take Care!

By:

Majid Al Suleimany