June 10, 2008

All you need to know about Shoes...

In some of my previous posts, I tried to teach you a few words in Iraqi dialect.

So let's recap. We've already covered the following words:



Today you will learn a new word that might come in very handy on certain occasions.

KUNDARA wil be the subject of today's lesson.


But not any shoe. You need to understand that in most Middle Eastern cultures, the shoe can be considered as an object of disrespect and or pollution/dirt.

For instance, in traditional homes, you leave your shoe at the door before entering, just like in a mosque.

In other instances, it is very shameful to sit and have your shoe pointing in someone's face. I noticed Americans have this very ugly habit of putting their feet up with their shoes on their desks and the sole of their shoe stares at you. Most impolite really. But then American never had any manners.

So building on this natural aversion to shoes, the shoe "concept" can be used when you want to insult someone or denigrate them.

You can say for example:

- ENTA KUNDARA = You're a Shoe. Or,

- IBN Al-KUNDARA = Son of a Shoe. Or,

- SHLON KUNDARA = What a Shoe!

And if you need to push it a little further, you may say :

- WIJHAQ WIJH AL-KUNDARA = Your face is like a shoe.

and even stronger would be

- BIL KUNDARA = a threatening remark involving the potential use of a shoe.

Of course you can use all the above.

If you feel that insults and threats are not sufficient and you want to pass onto actions involving shoes - then this is what you need to do

And before I finish today's lesson, let me remind you that both young and old can partake in the shoe action / ceremony.

See you next class and don't forget to rehearse.