ADEL KARAM: LIVE FROM BEIRUT (2018) – Full Transcript

Adel Karam goes back to his hometown to appear at Beirut's renowned Casino du Liban where his standup pokes fun at everything from relationships to regional social issues with his distinctly local blend of smart, sarcastic humour.

Recorded at the Casino du Liban, Beirut

Hello. Wow, this is great! This is great! Good evening. Good evening! God rest his soul! Hello there. “Hello.” So bored! How are you all? This is so cool. That much! Hello up there. Good evening! Yeah, I see you. It’s like you’ve arrived from outer space! I want to say thank you for being here. Thank you for traveling all the way from Beirut to be here. Quite a distance. I came on Thursday so I wouldn’t be late. I usually don’t travel for anyone. See how important you are to me? I came on Thursday.
Can I come down and kiss you all? Will this make you late for anything if I come down to kiss you all? We love to kiss. It’s amazing how much we love it! We Lebanese just adore kissing each other. Is anyone here not Lebanese? Yeah? Where are you from? – Where are you from? – Jordan. Jordan? You arrived from Jordan just now? Welcome. I have a real issue with Jordanians. You know why? Because you kiss three times, just like us. We kiss three times. And I didn’t know that in Jordan, you kiss… Some time ago, I was in Jordan and met someone. We were about to greet each other with a kiss. I started my… and he also started his… and we kept on going sideways like that. It was dramatic! His tongue touched my tonsils! I looked at him and said, “That’s it! What are you doing tonight?” What? We really should stop this kissing!
Who in the audience is not Lebanese? – Where are you from? – Syria. I said not Lebanese! With all confidence, Syria. We’re your guests now, God bless you! I welcome us over here in your country. We’re almost competing with them here. Glad that you’re here with us. The Syrians and us kiss in the same way. Or do you have a different way? Two kisses, like Europeans. Perfect. Not like us Lebanese and Jordanians.
Who else is not Lebanese? There’s a crowd here from abroad! Where are you from? Egypt? Great. In Egypt too it’s just two kisses, right? Two kisses, nice! Now this is culture, not like us!

We are a horny people! The minute we see each other, we kiss! Jesus! But with all due respect to all your nationalities, we Lebanese are super kissers. You see how the minute we meet, we start kissing? You’ve only left him for five minutes, but when he sees you again, he goes… Come! Come! Not like this. Like this! In whatever situation, we kiss. Whatever, we kiss. Even if a guy is sick, you kiss him. He sneezes. So what? If one guy is sick, he infects half of Lebanon! When we meet, we kiss. We say farewell, we kiss. And those guys with a bushy beard! It’s a new trend. Now what is that? A new trend, that! He comes to kiss you, no chance he won’t. The minute he hugs you, you feel his fur! It’s like you’re kissing a bear! Totally drowned by it! If the beard is sharp like steel, it’s like being on an emery board! But that’s not the guy I usually meet. I only get the guy who, just as you enter the men’s room, you hear the flush, then the door opens and out he comes, barely finished his business. And there we are. “Hello! Come here, you.” And you go, “Hello. Hello!” He says, “Come here, you.” And you start thinking of what he’s been up to in there. Didn’t wipe it. And he sees you. “Hello.” He touches your face. “Who’s my best friend? Who’s the guy I love, man?”

I wish we would learn from women… how they kiss. They kiss from a distance. There’s always a space. You’d think they were disgusted by each other! “Hi!” We could be sweaty, and still kiss. It’s like kissing someone in the rain at the Roucha.

Some guys are born kissers. Like the guy who sells clothes on Haamra Street at 1 p. m. Just eaten falafel, and has his falafel sandwich in his hand, a chilli pepper in the other, and holding it out so it wouldn’t drip on him. You know that guy? Standing there munching on the sandwich, his moustache full of falafel crumbs, tahini and chilli pepper, and chilli pepper seeds dangling from his nose hair! You look at his face and he goes, “Hello! Come here, you. Come here, you.” He hugs you and you get one side with tahini and the other, red turnips!
But the worst is the guy who’s eaten chicken, then had a breath mint. He comes over, close to your ear… “Hey, dear!” He blows it all in your ear. And the smell of garlic is everywhere! You say, “You smell like garlic.” He says, “I had a breath mint!” What mint? You need a stomach pump, damn you! If you decide to add up all the kisses you get in a day, mathematically, it’s like you’ve had sex. All day long, kiss, kiss, kiss. You should be up here…come on!

Speaking of food and falafel, we Lebanese, for those who don’t know us, and this is just my personal opinion, our stomachs are like garbage cans! Whatever you dump in, we eat it. Everything. I mean, have you ever thought about the sheep that falls into our hands? Poor thing! When a Lebanese gets his hands on a sheep, he’s worse than ISIS! We make it disappear! We eat every bit of it. We leave nothing out! The head is made into nifa. You’re invited to a nifa meal, the best thing they offer is the eyeball. “Here, try it, it’s tasty and crunchy. But juicy!” The tongue we cook with lime and garlic, and they say, “Wow! Delicious.” The liver we make into sawda. Is anything more delicious than having raw sawda for breakfast with onion and mint? Delicious!
What else? The intestines. We don’t throw them out! For those of you who are not familiar with how the Lebanese do it, we don’t throw out the intestines. We make them into sausages. We stuff them with rice and meat. You could say, “Ew! There used to be shit in there!” And I’d say, “That’s OK. We wash them first.” Even if there’s still a bit of shit, we douse them in lime and garlic, no problem. No big deal.
Now, is there anything tastier than the sheep’s balls? They’re delicious. But my favorite is the fatty tail. That’s really something, if you think about it, though. The sheep grazes all day long, eating greens. So his tail is right over his asshole. All day long, he grazes then… You’ll be totally grossed out by sheep, just you wait! You know that we eat every bit of the sheep except his penis! I never got that! Why not? Suck on it! Suck on it and see where that’ll get you.
The fleece? We never throw out the fleece. We make it into a rug. Not right to waste any part of the sheep. You have a friend who’s a taxi driver, he’ll think the world of you if you give him the fleece. He’d put it on the dashboard, with that waving-hand thing.

And what’s hot now is that toy dog. You stick it on the dashboard and he goes… You just press the brakes and… Then with all that, they tell you you’ll be fine. When you eat sheep meat, drink Araak with it. It kills the microbes. What microbes? Do you see what crap you’re eating? You need to drink acid to clear that! A while ago, I was invited to a friend’s. They had slaughtered a sheep. I ate so much! I pigged out. I sucked the bones, legs, intestines. I was going to burst! I was suffering! That’s normal. No way you won’t suffer after eating like that. All kinds of microbes were floating in my stomach. They immediately took me to the ER. Now, our Lebanese hospitals are odd. If you go there in an ambulance, the minute they reach the ER, they press the brakes and open the door and they dump you on a wheelchair like you were a pizza ready for the oven. The minute I got there, they put me on a wheelchair, and I’m dying here! And what can I do? Whenever I go to the hospital, no one believes I’m sick! Weird! What? Can’t I get sick? The minute I got there… You know, once you get to the ER, before they ask what’s wrong with you, their first question is, insurance or no insurance? They want to make sure they’re getting paid! They want to know how to handle you. They wouldn’t believe I was sick. A woman came over. They’re all venomous. They can really choose them. She walked over, and I was sprawled on the chair. She came over… “Oh, it’s you. You’ve come to make fun of us?” Dripping venom! Then another one…a question they always ask me. “Where’s Abbas?” Abbas and I should be sick together! They put me on the stretcher, dumped me there. The third venomous lady came, trying to insert the drip. I’m in agony! My screams are going up to God. She kept jabbing and jabbing. She needed a hammer to push in whatever the heck that was! She drilled my bones and finally it got in. I screamed in pain! She said, “Enough. Are you the only one who gets to hurt people?”

After they examined me, that’s where the problem started. They said, “You need a colonoscopy.” You laughed because you went through that too. I saw you flinch. Yeah, colonoscopy. Who’s been through that? Who has the courage to say he’s been through with it? You’ve all been through it! You’re all lying! Who’s been through it up there? You all have your hands on your asses! Not me! OK, they sent me to the colonoscopy specialist. He came to explain. He said, “We’ll do this procedure because we have to know what’s happening inside. We’ll go in and find out.” I said, “But, Doctor, it might hurt my tonsils.” He said, “No, they won’t hurt.” I said, “Don’t you go in from here?” He said, “No, from down there.” I said, “OK. So what do we do?” He said, “Don’t worry. Just relax.” “What do I do now?” He said, “We’ll have to give you an anesthetic. Do you want a local or a general anesthetic?” I said, “I’ve never done this before.” I thought it was a money trap, so I said a local anesthetic. I shouldn’t have said that. They dressed me in a gown. The gown for the colonoscopy is different from that of the hospital. You remember it, right? It’s like…You know the Teletubbies? You look just like Teletubbies. You wear a full-on onesie, but…open in the ass! So they know where to aim! And during the procedure, you’re not alone. There are four or five others ready for this procedure. You’re all standing there looking like Teletubbies with your asses out there, and the nurses looking at all those asses! Is that a woman or a guy laughing? A ringing laugh! So, they came and stuck in the colonoscope. They lay me on my side. On your side so he can check you. That doctor had two trainees with him. I’m lying there, and the trainees… are taking notes. “First, you dip it in the Vaseline, put it in the Vaseline.” The doctor is explaining. It’s a colonoscope! Not a…Colonoscope! He dips it in the Vaseline and starts to poke it in. The trainees with him are really focusing so they don’t miss anything. They don’t want to fail. He kept poking and poking. You’d think it’s local anesthetic. But, no! There’s something to be said about that! Poking and poking till I felt… Doctor! As he was poking and stuffing it in, a student came rushing in. “Sorry, Professor, for being late. Traffic was terrible.” No worries, we’ll get it out again. And there I was. To tell you the truth, I kind of liked it! It’s kind of special! So he said, “Don’t worry, we’ll put it in the Vaseline, and stuff it in again.” Stuff, stuff, stuff… A fourth student came in. “Sorry, Professor…” I said, “Fuck! I’m gonna start liking that! I’ve never considered that. You’re making me think about it! It was supposed to be simple. What is this?” I said, “Doctor, what are you doing?” He said, “It’s OK.” He started pulling it out. I said, “What do you mean, it’s OK? Before the fourth student, I was this size. Now I’m this size!” We finished the procedure, and they said, “Mr. Karam, you have to spend the night in the hospital. We’ll take you up to the room to rest.” I said, “OK.” He said, “You have insurance?” I said, “Sure.” “But your insurance covers you for second class.” I said, “What is that?” I didn’t know what second class meant. I thought…second class, OK, it’s cheaper, but it’s OK. Turns out, there’s a big difference between second class and first class. A whole different story. They took me to the appropriate floor, sitting in the wheelchair. In second class, there is no privacy. Everyone on the second-class floor knew I’d had a colonoscopy. Everyone! They put me in a wheelchair that had the round rubber thing so I could sit. A guy passing by said, “What? You got stuffed? Cool!” They took me to my room. Number 104, I still remember it. On my way, a Bengali orderly looked at me. He said, “Hello, sir, how was the colonoscopy? Hurt your ass?” Anyway, they took me to the room. In second-class rooms, there are two beds. I didn’t know. It was my first time. Thank God I was old enough. So, there were two beds in the room. The one on the left had a view. What view, you ask? A cemetery! The right-hand-side bed was against the wall. What’s cool is, when they take you to the room, they throw you on the bed like a sack of potatoes. “Throw him!” And there you are. That’s what it’s like in second class. The nurses came to hang the drip and take my temperature. In the next bed there was an elderly man, about 80 years old. I got to know him and his wife. She was, like, 70. His name was Abo Dani, and his wife, Em Dani. I’ll tell you all about them. The nurses came; two nurses in charge of the whole floor in second class. Their names were Enaam and Aida. What blew my mind was when you call for Enaam, ten nurses answer! And when you call Aida, ten answer! That floor was specifically for the Enaams and Aidas! Enaam had served 15 years of hard labor in prison, and then was pardoned. Her hair was black and crinkly, thick eyebrows, itty-bitty eyes, and sideburns running down to her mouth, with a bleached moustache, as if the problem were its color! Aida, on the other hand, she was short, skinny, with short white hair, a fuzz of hair here, and she hates men. They came to take my temperature. They lay me on my side, with my face to the wall and my ass to Abo Dani. At this point, my asshole was this wide. The thermometer wouldn’t stay in! She puts it towards the bottom, it slips. She puts it up top… Now, mind you, Abo Dani had been there for a long time, so he’s familiar with Enaam and Aida. He was joining in too! Abo Dani looked and said, “I don’t know. Son, clench your asshole so this will work.” I said, “Abo Dani, what do you mean? I’m clenching! It’s not working.” Then Em Dani chimes in, “Wrap some gauze around it to thicken it.” Yeah, right, all between me, Abo Dani, Em Dani, Enaam and Aida. Em Dani got up, came closer and looked at my ass. She said, “Abo Dani, I see a zit. I don’t like the look of his ass.” He said, “Tell him to put some mallow on it. It’ll go.” Abo Dani is really something. I liked him a lot. We got quite attached. He had been in that room for a long time. A long time in 104. How did I know that? When I got into the room, it didn’t feel like entering a hospital room. It felt like I was going into Abo Dani’s home. Em Dani had put a welcome mat at the door. Then as I was lying there, I noticed there was a shelf under the TV. Em Dani had her children’s pictures up on it! Dani as a child, Dani as he got older, Dani is fat, a picture of Danielle, their elder daughter, married and living in Canada. On top of the TV, Em Dani had put a piece of crotchet work. You know, crotchet. What did it say? “Our Father who art in Heaven…” Crotchet work saying, “Our Father who art in Heaven…” on top of the TV! In the corner Em Dani had put up a shrine to the Virgin Mary, with dripping candles, and a charity box for the restoration of Mar Shalita church. Thank God the doctor came. He didn’t come to my room. The doctors don’t usually come to second class. Only trainees. Impossible to see a doctor. Even if you holler, no doctor comes, only trainees. One came and said, “Mr. Karam, the doctor told us to tell you that you’ll need to spend another night in hospital.” I said, “Wait! OK. Is it possible to upgrade to first class?” He said, “Sure.” I said, “Fine. Send me a surgeon. I’ll have to sell you my kidney, I guess.” The move is expensive! The change to first class is an issue! Damn expensive. Anyway, I was moved to first class. In first class, there’s no Enaam and Aida. There’s Cynthia and Jennifer. You feel euphoric the minute you reach first class. You smell the jasmine. You look, and there are Cynthia and Jennifer. Let me tell you about them. They look kind of like Anabella. Tall, beautiful, sexy, you could just eat them up! Gorgeous. They live on toast and quinoa. Just lovely. What’s cool is that when they come to hook up the drip, they’re nothing like Enaam and Aida. When Enaam came to do that, she stepped on the bed, smashed my face and hooked up the drip. Cynthia bent down and hooked it up. Five-star treatment in first class! If only you could see how Cynthia received me. They’re multi-lingual! “Bonsoir, Monsieur Karam, welcome to first class. Welcome, Mr. Karam.” The room, let me tell you about that. Lovely. Very spacious, white walls. No green walls here. A king-size bed, an LED-screen TV…curved! The remote control is there in your hand. Not like with Em Dani! Only a champ could get it from her. If you touch it…stop it! In first class, there are no trainees. They’re all professors and up. A professor came to check on my status. I was asleep. Snoozing. I felt his hand touching my ear. “Mr. Karam? Mr. Karam? Sorry to wake you up. We just need to check on you. I’m Professor Ajeeaa.” I said, “Hello, Professor.” He said, “Guess who is here with me.” I looked and said, “Who?” He said, “The insurance company manager, the hospital manager and the doctor. Look who else is here.” I looked up and saw all the saints there. Even Mar Shalita was there! Food in first class is another story. When you eat there, it’s like watching one of those cooking shows on MTV. Unbelievable. I asked, “What are we having today?” She said, “Mr. Karam, today it’s duck with cauliflower and red radish.” I said, “Wow, cool.” She went on, “And for dessert, we have puff pastry with a raspberry and cherry reduction.” I said, “Perfect!” The food comes accompanied by a violinist! There I was using the fork and knife and… When I finished, I saw Jennifer standing. She said, “Mr. Karam, we’re ready to burp you.” Six months later, I went to the hospital to visit a sick friend. He had some health problems. When I went there, I realized that that was where Abo Dani was. So I decided to go and see how he was doing. On my way, I met a trainee and asked him, “Is Abo Dani still here?” He said, “Where else would he be? He’s kind like a guinea pig! We’re experimenting on him! He’s here for good!” I got to his room, and found some extras that Em Dani had added. Things I hadn’t seen before. They installed a bell! His name was on the door: Edmond Megaes, and, in brackets, Abo Dani. I heard a whirring sound inside. I rang the bell…birds chirruping. She couldn’t hear it. I knocked hard on the door. She finally opened it. Her hair was up and she was vacuuming! She’d brought down the winter clothes and laid out a rug. She even had a Christmas tree up. As I walked in, I heard Abo Dani… I said, “Hey, Abo Dani, how are you now? I hope you’re feeling better.” He said, “Yeah, thanks to yesterday’s meal.”

My dear Abo Dani, I will never forget him, like I will never forget my trip to Africa. I want to tell you about my experience there. There might be a lot of people who know about it, but also there are many who don’t. Who’s been to Africa? Anyone visited Africa? We should all go visit Africa. We men should go visit Africa to get an idea of what things are like there. Some time ago I went to Africa to visit my friend Ali Shour. I love my friend. Bonjour, Aloush. I’ll tell you. I was with Ali in the Ivory Coast, a beautiful country. The roads, left and right, are lined with banana trees. I was in the car with Ali, I remember. We were talking. I am a bachelor, and this was guys’ talk. I said, “Aloush, I want to meet an African woman. Everything is naturally ‘built in.’ No plastic surgery.” “Yeah, sure,” he said. “I know a beautiful woman, I’ll call her.” He was calling her, we’re sitting in traffic. I swear to you, this is what happened. I was sitting in the car, and over on this side, there’s a river. As he was calling her, I was looking around. I saw a guy bathing. An African guy. At first glance, I thought he had three legs. I saw three legs! I looked again and, no, not three legs! He saw me staring at him down there, so what did he do? He hauled it up, and started scrubbing himself. He picked a banana leaf and started scrubbing. He was grabbing it and scrubbing. I mean, what is that? I couldn’t believe it! I said, “Ali, hang up. Don’t just hang up, switch it off!” He said, “Why?” I said, “Look! What is that? He’s in the water. It’s shrunk, but it’s still that long!” He said, “So what?” I said, “Cancel the call. I don’t want that woman.” He said, “But we already called her.” I said, “I don’t want to look bad!” He said, “Why?” I said, “Imagine I go to the hotel, I strip down and she comes in. The first thing she’ll say is, ‘Where is it?’ She’s used to the half-meter and more! What would she think of 17 centimeters? She won’t even see it! She would need a pair of tweezers to pull it out! I’ll be humiliated. Don’t want it. Did I come to Africa to be humiliated? She’ll be like, ‘Alright, just come and tickle me.'” Their sizes are really different. Different. No, no. I was traumatized. I noticed something else there too. They sell water in a bag, and pistachios in a bottle. Go figure. They are so comfortable with their sex organs. No problem. Here, things are censored. There, it’s all good. If a guy feels like it, he just whips it out, right there and then. I went to the hotel, depressed. My room was on the 13th floor. Out on the balcony having a smoke. I used to smoke back then. I saw the hotel manager walking around with a guy talking about removing a banana tree, and doing this and that. I saw him, and I guess he needed to pee. Mind you, I’m on 13th floor. He unzipped his pants and started rolling it out like a rope! And I’m standing there on the 13th floor, and I see something really long! Really! And he’s just talking as he was pulling it out, and he was going about his business. On the other side, a woman had this red sack on her head. She’s topless, with a tree leaf here, and walking along. Big ass! She was going to pass in front of the guy as he was peeing. Right in front of him. For a second, I imagined he was gonna tell his friend to grab the other end of it and go like this. “Come.” After that… After that I told Ali, I don’t want to go to Africa. From now on, if I travel, I’d be better off going to China. In China, 17 centimeters, you’d be a champ! Rocco, the stud! You laughed when I said Rocco! Guess you know who he is! Rocco is a porn star. She blushed! She knows him. Only men are supposed to laugh at that. I said Rocco and she went… Speaking of porn, you know? Statistics show that we Arabs rank number one in watching porn sites. Seriously. But we don’t admit it. You know who else doesn’t admit it? Women. You ask a woman, do you watch porn? She goes, “Ew! Disgusting!” A new bride would be sitting there and the groom comes along, thinking that she’s… He’d asked her before, “Do you watch porn?” She said, “No, that’s disgusting! Don’t mention porn!” He starts undressing and turns around, she’s there in high heels and lingerie. Suddenly it’s all spilling out. “What shall we do today, baby? Eagle position?” “What’s the eagle position?” “You climb on top of the closet, jump off, and I’ll be here with my legs wide open, and when you get here you flap and gyrate.” He’s shocked! “How do you know? You’ve never seen porn.” “Yeah, whatever. I know a few things. Let’s try the chandelier position.” “What’s that?” “You climb up the chandelier, you twirl, I lay here, you come down on top of me and twirl.” “Where do you get these ideas?” “You know what my favorite position is? The washing machine. I sit on top of the washing machine, you stand, and the washing machine does all the work.” So you know Rocco. He gets really sweaty! A lot! Have any of you ever watched a full porn movie? I’ve only gotten as far as 15 minutes, that’s my maximum. No more. I wish someone would tell me. What happens at the end? Does the leading man die? I would like to know what happens to him. How does a porn movie end? I don’t know. You finish off and that’s it. In porn movies, the leading man is always the pizza delivery guy. Before I started acting, I worked in a pizza place. I had my eye on our neighbor. I was waiting for her to order a pizza. One day, she did. I got ready and put on my pants, wearing nothing underneath. In porn movies they slip off their pants and they’re ready. I arrived with the pizza, ready for action and doing all the porn-star moves. Like this. She opened the door, took the pizza, kicked the door shut. There’s also the pool man. Yeah? He’s always cute. The women sit there around the pool, lying there, then they get topless. And he’s there cleaning the pool. And they’re there, flirting. He moves closer. And closer. And he does them! But the best guy is the plumber who wears his overalls, with nothing underneath. She calls him, “Please, I need a plumber.” He arrives right away. She opens the door, he’s standing there, with a body like a V! He undoes his overalls, and he’s naked! Our plumbers are different! Our plumber comes over with a belly, he bends down and you see his ass. A plumber comes to your house to fix the tap. He bends over and you can see red butt cheeks. There are different levels. Plumber with red butt cheeks, plumber with non-red hairy ass, and the higher level has red butt cheeks and hairy ass. Hair coming out at you. No hair on top, but hair down there. You’d be standing in dripping water with your wife. He’s bending over, in front of her. And there’s his ass! “Enough! Shut up! Let him fix the tap. It’s good he came!” I don’t watch porn. It means nothing to me now. My advice to all guys is, if you want to watch something to get you worked up, watch a women’s tennis match. I speak from experience. When I watch a women’s tennis match, I get…a shiver! When you see the match, you feel like they’re challenging you. Think about it. Their skirts are so short, and their thighs! How do they get those? So long! The way she holds the racket! You get the point! When I go to watch a match, I prepare myself. A towel, a whisky bottle, tissue paper, a trash bin, and I sit, ready. I’m prepared. I won’t watch otherwise. Look at how they stand, holding the racket like that. The director always takes close-ups of her face. You see the sweat running down. And she goes… The other player, with her thighs. He takes a shot from below, going up, with sweat running down. The short skirt, and two balls stacked there. And the referee says, “Quiet, please.” He wants silence. It starts and she dribbles the ball… I pull off the towel and get going. And I go… Damn you! In porn, we don’t go more than 15 minutes. Here, we don’t go more than one set! I can tell you all this because I’m not married. Can you imagine if I were married? God forbid! I hate marriage. I was married once. It’s my fault, not hers I don’t want to be overdramatic. But I won’t have it. I don’t even like going to weddings. Weddings in Lebanon are weird. I noticed something. Our weddings here, if you don’t know, are all the same. I hate going to weddings. Hate it! When I get invited, I feel I’m going to applaud a couple who are going to screw after a while. The shittiest occasion in the world! Imagine, standing there clapping… What the hell is this? And weddings here are all the same. The venue always has a staircase. If you go to any wedding, there’s a staircase, and the bride comes down. There’s always a wedding procession. This last wedding had extra. Not a regular procession, but 100 costumed performers. And on the other side, 100 costumed women. They took us back in history to Saladin’s days. Women carrying water jugs. And the men swinging their swords. If you go to the toilet, you have to be careful. They might slice you in half! There’s this loud guy at the party who stands with the microphone, calling for the bride to come down the stairs. As he does that, everyone is supposed to stand there waiting for the bride to appear. I was sitting there at this wedding. Luckily I knew the groom, not the bride. This guy started shouting. She was on a seat carried by four guys. She sits there and they carry her down the stairs, so that people can be awed! So the guy starts calling for her… “Reveal yourself, you beautiful gazelle.” “Reveal yourself, face of the moon.” “Reveal yourself, night moon…” When he says that, she’s supposed to appear up there. The minute he said that, something appeared. Night Moon appeared up there… and everyone went… A woman sitting next to me wet her pants! “What is that?” You know the witch on the broom? She’s a beauty compared to our Night Moon. Coming down those stairs, the four guys were like… And she’s just sitting there. And that idiot, the groom… thinks she’s a real beauty! It was such a shock, because Lebanese women are usually beautiful! But at weddings, I’m not sure what happens! Do you see what happens to women when they go to weddings? They all think they have to surpass the beauty of Night Moon. She’ll be, like, 1.30 meters tall, and her husband is 1.85 meters. At weddings. She’ll be walking with her husband… She’s in high heels, with huge hair, tons of eyeliner, in her shimmering dress, holding her husband’s hand. He’s walking next to her and she’s strutting along. Avatar! At that wedding, I was scared shitless! And Night Moon’s girlfriends. Usually at the table, you’re with people you don’t know, so you can mingle. A girl was sitting next to me in a shimmering dress, next to her mom. Her mom was like… with all the nipping and tucking, this was here and that was there! A little too much nipping and tucking! No more places to tuck! She’s sitting next to her mom, who starts to poke her. “Get up and dance. Get up and dance! That’s Patrick, just arrived from Dubai.” Her mom is her pimp! I’m, like, what is this? And the fat girl, a friend of Night Moon, all she cares about is catching the bouquet. Wants to get hitched. She has, like, 250 bouquets, but it hasn’t worked yet. She has a greenhouse at home. No matter. Night Moon got hitched by chance! My favorite is the girl who had her eye on that idiot. But Night Moon got him first. Know when she showed her true colors? The dancing. The music started and she got up. So cool, she got up to dance. Showing him her moves. Like, “Look what you’re missing out on, asshole!” There’s also that mutual friend of Night Moon and the idiot. He’s always this huge guy. One meter 95. He picked up the idiot and picked up Night Moon like this and started to dance with them, jumping up three meters. Can you imagine? He’s in a shiny gray suit and white shoes, red hair that’s sticky because he’s sweating. He’s carrying them both because he’s friends with them both. Just like being in a rodeo! Hang on! Night Moon wipes her eyeliner and looks even shittier. And the more he sweats, the more he wipes his face on her dress. She kicks him and says “You’ll dirty the dress, you bastard! It’s rented!” But the best at the wedding are the groom’s friends. They’ve been drunk for two days. They arrive drunk and leaning on each other. One is leaning like this, and the other like this, drinking whisky. It’s not going in their mouths! It’s spilling. And they’re telling terrible jokes. Like… Their mouths are drooling! “Hey, groom… Hey, groom.” They want everyone to listen. “Groom, we want you to make us hold our heads up high.” I looked at him and said, “What do you mean? What’s your head got to do over there between her thighs? Say something else!” So what did they start joking about? One said, “Listen to this. Hey, groom. Did you eat caviar?” Egging him on. The other guy poked him. “No no, groom. Eat shrimps.” I said to him, “Eat shit.” The best thing for you two. No more dumb jokes. Enough. I left that wedding and it was the end of my sorrows. I don’t go to weddings anymore. I am happy to attend funerals. If the idiot and Night Moon die, I will be the first at their funeral. I love going to funerals. I really like it. I really enjoy it. The minute they see me, they poke each other “He’s here. The one who makes you forget about your sadness.” I kiss them, and I don’t know, should I look happy? Sad? I feel lost at a funeral. We also have a certain way at funerals. In Lebanon, all the funerals you go to are exactly the same. The family members stand to receive condolences. You go, “May he rest in peace.” There’s always that one who hugs you tightly and starts to cry. “We lost our dear one, we lost him.” He sniffles all over you. You say, “May he rest in peace, God be with you.” You go to the deceased’s family and ask, “Who’s that?” They don’t know! He sniffled all over me! Who is he?” And then you’re sitting there and the coffee guy comes along. “Coffee, sir?” “No, thanks.” He walks around. “Water?” “No, thanks.” Then he offers it over your shoulder. “Coffee?” At every funeral, there’s the liar. The coffin is in the middle of the room. I’m sure you’ve seen this. The coffin is in the room, he waits till there’s no crowd. He’s been hiding somewhere. He wants to be the star. He approaches. “Where is he? Where is he? I lost my dear one! You shouldn’t be lying there! Get up, little one. Get up, my dear.” The family starts to cry. “I lost my dear one! What happened? How did he die? He was with me three days ago. He was OK.” He hasn’t seen him for three years. “You’re a liar. You shouldn’t be here. Only Aunty Audette should be here.” Aunty Audette. I’ve run into Aunty Audette at, like, 15 funerals. She’s about 75. But looking at her, you’d say she’s around 50. Nipped and tucked. Always smiling. Her husband died 45 years ago, and she looks like this, and she’s so old. Two guys carry her in. They go with her to put her in front of the coffin. They carry her in. “Where is he?” These two are always with Aunty Audette. They go with her to funerals to put her in front of the coffin. They throw her. And she starts. “No, no, no. This is not possible. This is not possible. You shouldn’t be lying there!” She kisses his cold hand. “You left us too soon.” But something I’ve heard from her, at all 15 funerals, she says the same thing. She says to every dead body she sees, “Give my love to Edward.” That’s her husband who died 45 years ago. How can he send her love to Edward? Is he the Lebanese postal service? How can he do that? She imagines he’ll go up there, “Hi, guys. Which one of you is Edward?” And Edward is over there playing backgammon. He says, “I’m Edward”. He says, “Audette sends you love.” “Yeah, I know. You’re the fourth one today passing on her love.” So he asks him, “Edward, how did you die?” “I killed myself to get away from that bitch!” I’m really happy to see you all. I had so much fun with you. I hope you had fun too. In every show… This is such a big night for me, such a big night for me as a Lebanese. The first Lebanese to be on Netflix. You deserve it. – Thank you, dear! – You really deserve it. My dear Alex, I recognize your voice. If you’ll allow me, since this is such a special show, I would like to dedicate each show to my father. He left us 18 years ago and I really love him very much. I really do. And I want to say something, Dad, through Netflix, Dad, I dedicate my show to you. Wait! Dad, give my love to Edward.


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