So summer is here again and with it comes the annual influx of derogatory, poorly researched articles by western ‘journalists’ doing their best to pick out the worst parts of Beirut culture after a quick holiday visiting a couple of nightclubs.
Last year CNN made a brave expedition through the jungle of Beirut’s rooftop bars, encouraging the world to think that the city was populated entirely by sparkling idiots who couldn’t care about tomorrow as long as the champagne was flowing and the iPhone still had enough battery to film the dead look in everyone’s eyes.
This year the Huffington Post have gone one step further, with a piece by David J Constable claiming that
‘Beirut has now overtaken both LA and Miami as the plastic surgery capital of the world.’
Unfortunately, David neglects to inform us exactly where he sourced this data from, and if he did manage to bump into a medical statistician armed with a verifiable set of figures in either of the two shit clubs he visited he must have forgotten to add it to the article.
And that was not the only piece of data he forgot to reference. With such gems as
‘Muslim, Christian and Druze women in Beirut dress surprisingly skimpy’
‘the women look like Cleopatra, with a dark natural beauty’
it seems that it was not a guidebook but his own penis that led him around the city.
Well if the Huffington Post can employ a pervert to make wild unsubstantiated claims Beirut Beat can go one better. If Beirut is the plastic surgery capital of the world it is also a few other things too.
Beirut is design capital of the world
As last month’s Design Week showed, Beirut has more talented designers, artists and creative thinkers than any other city in the world, possibly the universe.
From workshops and talks with renowned fashion designers…
non-profit fashion houses…
Arabic type-inspired furniture designers…
independent graphic designers…
renowned design educators and award winning film makers, the city embraced its design heritage and celebrated the rich culture of a very Middle Eastern art.
NB: Boob design does not qualify as design.
Beirut is the electronic music capital of the world
Per capita, there is more ground breaking electronic musicians in Beirut than any other city in the history mankind.
and song-writing performers including Munma
or hip hoppers Fareeq El Atrash
and Toufaar (who are from Bekaa but they deserve a mention for being amazing), there is enough new music coming from Beirut to give your ipod a heart attack.
NB: You may see many people with unusually large smiles at concerts and parties but trust me, it is not Botox.
Beirut is the western journalist capital of the world.
At the last estimate there were approximately 17 million western journalists in Beirut. Building nests in 5 star hotels wearing their best Jesus sandals and tattered baseball caps, they crawl around every conceivable public space, interviewing people about ‘issues’ and trying to twist your every word into a political dialogue about refugees or Iran.
I once sneezed when walking down the street and the next day found out it had been translated into a double page article about Gaza. The only way to avoid them is to stay away from rooftop bars. You heard it here first people.
(ps Sorry Bobby Fisk I wasn’t talking about you).
(pps There are loads of other great bands I didn’t mention, this article pretty much covers them all)