Adonis Diaries

Introspection: Wrap up (#56)

Posted on: March 3, 2009

Wrap up


            I wrote an introspection piece in March 2006 which proves that the implicit intention for a full fledge auto-biography was simmering in my mind.  I realize that this summary piece could form a concise story of my life.


“Why am I how I am?” Five Factors (March 8, 2006)


I will attempt a candid self or auto psychoanalysis.

The evaluation of the results of my social status, so far, is pretty straightforward.

I am fifty-seven years old, have no steady job, and no longer marketable for a decent job.

My only monetary asset is an old car that I will be hard pressed to repair if it breaks down.

I have never been married, no illegitimate kids who knocked at my door, and I have got no current girlfriends.

I wouldn’t be able to entertain a girl even if a miracle love swoops across my way.

I live with my old folks; my dad keeps his silence, mother deviates occasionally.

My hardest working mother never stops offering her old fashioned remarks.


Now, I earned my PhD in Human Factors in engineering the hard way.

I earned it through sheer stubbornness, and for my inability to hold any jobs.

My cognitive capabilities are not commensurate to the requirements of higher education.

My emotional development is still in its infancy.

My physical conditioning is above average but smoking will decrease it horribly.

My musical abilities, in hearing, singing, or playing instrument are nil.

My artistic skills for acting, painting, sculpting, or drawing were never tested.

My verbal conversational, story telling, and oratorical skills are mediocre and counter-productive.

My interpersonal relationships, rhetorical, and communication training are poor.

That said, what may be the reasons for such a drastic failure in my social life?

A better question would be how I managed to live and survive so far?


Reason #1:

At five years of age I was transferred from Africa to Lebanon.

I am the first born child of parents who have been striving, from next to nothing, to survive.

They made good money after years of toil and hardship. 

They did well later on and then they exhausted all their savings.

As most Lebanese immigrants in Africa my folks went into the mercantile business.

They suffered immensely from the hardship of an under developed country.

They lacked all kinds of amenities, and were robbed completely several times.

Still, they turned their commerce around and it took off.


I was born in Bamako, the Capital of the now Republic of the Mali.

My primary language was French and then Bambara, the local African slang.

It was the so-called French Sudan and was a French colony then.

I suffered from Typhoid fever at the age of five.

I barely survived the infection.

I was confined in a cold chamber under close supervision for weeks.

I had to relearn walking and speaking.


Once in Lebanon, a new climate, new people, and a new language awaited me.

I was incarcerated in a boarding school with no relatives to visit on weekends or holydays:

My folks had to return to Africa for business for a two-year stretch before visiting us.

Every two years we had, my brother and sister, to learn to recognize them.

We were kind of forced to acknowledge these strange folks through gifts, and staying at home under duress.

We had many attempts at running away back to the boarding school.

I will try to be objective as best I can.

But I feel that my wings have been clipped at an early stage of life.


Reason #2:


At twelve of age my parents decided to come back to Lebanon for good.

They offered the rationale that they missed us and wanted to raise us as a family.

They in fact ran away after the independence of the Republic of Mali:

New laws put the squeeze on money transfer.

Many Lebanese merchants, including dad, were scared to death for any prison term.

Another cycle of relocation: new school, new location to Beirut instead of the mountain.

New emphasis on the French language, that I had totally forgotten, was imposed.

We were practically incarceration in an apartment under closer supervision.

We were forced feed in order to recover our health.

I remember the first week that I vomited my bowls of milk.

I remember that it took my aunt Therese to teach us.

I needed four hours of repetitions to memorize two sentences in French.

I remember waking up at three o’clock and walking to school.

I had to revise my studies, going back and forth in the playground.


Reason #3:  Adolescence


Until I was over 25 years I was frequently short on cash money; there were no credit cards then anyway.

My parents had an implicit philosophy that money in the pockets of kids is the ruin of the soul. They were well off and generous.

The only cash money I received were gifts on special occasions, Christmas, and Easter.

I could never bring myself to ask for extra money under any conditions.

I used to save these few pounds for the duration of the year.

I never built any taste for fashion, luxury, or any modern gizmos.

I could not indulge on paying visits to schoolmates, or going to movies with them.

Or eating out, or sharing with them the latest records.


My parents were relatively rich at the time.

 Our apartment was paid off, and well furnished.

My cousins envied us, but personally I was very poor.

I never was initiated to value money, generate money, or participate in any financial transactions or decision.

When older, I used to send letters to my nieces and nephews urging them to insist and persist for weekly allowances.

I received a lot of crap from my meddling in allowance suggestions.

I am striving for objectivity. I do feel strongly that to aim at riches we need to learn spending money.

I do feel strongly that to succeed in accomplishing a high standard of living is necessarily a learning process.


Reason #4: Fitness and handicaps


Not only that I didn’t look fit for sport activities, I was not handsome.

I was not a physical threat, and I wore ugly eyeglasses too since age 13.

To avoid breaking my “expensive” bad style eyeglasses I shun any group sport activities.

My eyeglasses never balanced well on my nose and they kept increasing in thickness.

Once, I was over 40, I damaged my glasses;

 I kept maintaining them with scotch tape for four years:

 I could not afford to replace my lousy eyeglasses.


I spent my spare time in middle school reading books, mostly French.

I didn’t try learning swimming until I was 26 years of age.

I didn’t venture snow skiing until I was over thirty.

Yes, I bought all the necessary sky equipments and gears.

Are these facts not objective enough for my asocial behavior?

Please enlighten me!


Reason #5: Cognitive and memory deficiencies


I failed the public examination in my last high school year.

I had to submit to it again at the end of autumn.

I barely made it the second time around.

But this summer was a period of humiliation and much more.

Many of my acquaintances, for my aloofness, thought that I was smart and bookish.

That perception crumbled to smithereens.

In that critical summer, my successful friends were enjoying their best summer.

I was plugging in, reluctantly, through books that I already vomited their contents.

That critical summer prevented me from joining the universities of my choices.

That summer prevented me of whatever engineering discipline that I might have selected.

That critical summer obstructed any dreams or potential plans that I might have devised.

May be a happy summer might have allowed me to befriend people.

I might have been offered opportunities for guidance to different fields of studies.

For example, studies that might have suited me better in cognitive abilities, temperament and acquired skills.

My near future was closed and I opted instead for physics at the Lebanese University.

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March 2009

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