A night at the Opera

Recently I went to a Plácido Domingo concert which in case you’re wondering is an Opera concert. I went for two reasons, it was free and my mum persuaded (read forced) me to go. While I’m not a true fan of the opera, I certainly enjoyed the show.

Anyway, something interesting happened that I want to write about.

Among the opera singers was one black woman. I later find out her name is Angel Joy Blue (that’s actually her real name btw). When she first walked across the stage to sing, a white woman sat in front of me snickered to the man beside her “What’s she doing here?”

Well, it didn’t take long to find out.

Grappling With the Language of Love


We often hear about how hard it is to be articulate in a foreign language, but when I began to study Arabic, what took me a long time to learn was not how to speak but how to listen.

Looking back, I see that my inability to listen well cost me my first love.

The man I loved was an Iraqi doctor. Young like me, he had been forced out of his country by war and had come to Syria to work in a refugee camp. This was in 2008, before the revolution.

I was in Syria to study Arabic. We met in that camp, and for the next year we were constantly falling in and out of love, breaking up and getting back together, pouring out our hearts and fighting, mostly because of all he wanted to tell me was that I didn’t understand.

Thought #2: Workaholic

Tap, tap tap. Clatter, clatter, clatter. I hear them fervently type away. They stop. They take a deep breath. They read out loud and/or think aloud what they are typing. They resume. I’ve become so accustomed to the pattern of sounds, I tune it out easily. This process repeats and recycles itself for the entire 9-5p shift.

During my first few days I could not help but think, what are they saying so much? Who do they communicate with so frequently? These people are the definition of workaholics.

Workaholic: (work·a·hol·ic)

wərkəˈhôlik, wərkəˈhälik/



1. a person who compulsively works hard and long hours.

Why aren’t there more male muses?

I dabble in the arts and I look for inspiration in everything. Well, almost everything. I’ve been painting since I was thirteen, and my tendency has been to draw women; women in nature, portraits of women, and women in different settings of life. 

Image by: Maira Brudereau

Lately, I’ve wanted to explore the other side of the coin and draw men. So I’ve been looking for a muse. A male muse. Strange perhaps, but let me explain. 

A muse is a person — typically a woman — who is a source of artistic inspiration. We’ve seen examples since the dawn of time of men looking at women and wanting to (pro)create. Picasso is one of many male artists who has had muses, women he desired and who fueled his creativity. However, we rarely hear about female artists and their muses. Which begs the question can men be a source of artistic inspiration for women?

I say HELL YEAH, I’ve (Instagram stalked) seen my fair share of men who have inspired my desire to (pro)create. So what’s up with the disparity in muses?