Saturday, November 22, 2008

americans in the emirates

Browsing blogosphere, I came across this post at young, Blog Sheikh's.

The post, and a linked article talks about lack of Americans in the UAE. It's true, sort of uncanny yet funny in a way. I mean, there really hasn't been many Americans living in the UAE, in fact very few. Yet, we've always had KFC & Pizza Hut - Coke & Pepsi. We've had all that amazing music & the movies. However, for those growing up back in the day, television shows perhaps had a larger impact in our lives. Shows that often opened up our world in ways other medium couldn't - sometimes by actually bringing to life American ways of life, stories, people and places we may never have known or actually venture to ourselves. In strange ways it helped connect with ways people live, think and feel - help us think outside the box and outside of ourselves.

I grew up on shows like - Maude, Leave it to Beaver, The Waltons, Starsky & Hutch, Charlie's Angels, Newhart, Fat Albert, Knight Rider, Murder she wrote, The Full House, 21 Jump street, Knots Landing, Dallas, Falcon Crest, The Simpsons, G I Joe, B&B, Golden Girls, 90210 and tons more! OK, so perhaps, some of those weren't the best shows. However, I think, we definitely had Americans in the UAE. Perhaps not in flesh and blood, but they certainly were amongst us :)

18 comments:

kaya said...

Oh my god! I too grew up in Iran on stuff like The Waltons( Good night, John boy!), Little House on the Prairie, Fat Albert, The 6 million Dollar man, Starsky and Hutch, and swooned over Don Johnson(Miami Vice)(ewwwww!!!).
There used to be so much anticipation waiting for the next episode, wondering what lesson Little Laura Ingalls would teach us that day. And now with the internet, I feel violated and cheated, having come across some nasty pictures of that sweet innocent toothy kid, with her two pigtails flying as she raced down the prairie.
I think the franchises came later. KFC was the first. What a treat to go out and eat, at this place that was almost like Disneyland. You know you saw it on TV and you could actually go to a place you had seen on a Tv show. It was almost magical, dare i say that.
And now 30 years later I gag at the thought of wanting to eat at any of these places.
(I'M FIRST!! I'M FIRST!!)

Mars said...

american media is underestimated and overestimated.

kaya said...

Like their fully faltoo phillum (hollywood) stars, and their franchises.

Anonymous said...

I find your view interesteing and innocent in nice way ;-)

kaya said...

Dear anon
Rosh is also interesting and innocent
in a nice way!!
LMFAO!!

BuJassem said...

any conclusions Mr Rosh?
Is that a good thing? or not?

moviemania said...

You know rosh, that's very true. I always wondered how there are barely any Americans in the UAE. Most Westerners are Europeans. It's very interesting considering the fact that American media is so dominant in the UAE.

Jayne said...

Something like 80% of the US population doesn't have a passport, which means the majority of them don't travel outside of their borders.............indeed many are led to believe that the USA is indeed the world! There are heaps living in Europe, but somehow, I get the feeling that Arab countries don't hold any kind of appeal.

Max said...

Went to American high school here in Abu Dhabi and we had only one American student in my senior class of 97, lol. As most people who grew up in the region are quite familiar with the good old sitcoms and cartoons.

Sometimes my buddies and I would sit and try to recall all the shows and cartoons we used to watch on Channel 33 :D

rosh said...

Kaya, not sure, why I forgot, the folks from Little house! Personally, shows back then had charm and soul - today, it's a different world and a different set of shows, some positive. I particularly didn't dig MV or DJ - though it did bring about a hard realistic view of Miami.

Mars, yup! I still don't get hype with "news readers" - a Katie Couric at $15million a year - have you watched her evening telecasts - what gives? Seriously, I don't get it. Though the positives outweigh.

ummm..thanks Anon :)

rosh said...

Mr BuJ: jee a deep/thoughtful question from ya, as always :) Yup! it's a good thing, indeed. You know, moving to America, I've been incredibly fortunate, 'cause there has been such little settling phase - in terms of culture/ways of life, making friends, "connecting" with Joe & Jane, communication and of course career. Am not saying it's given those tele shows :) However, I've always felt, there's been a blissful state of pre-awareness which helped along the way - does that make sense? And as someone who've had his battles fitting in, I fit in quite easily/well :) All said, in spite flaws, this nation and it's people stand head & shoulders above all else, and am super pleased at the opportunity.

rosh said...

Nicely said MM! Personally, I find connecting with Americans easier/smoother than EU folks - not that EU aren't nice or anything :)

Jayne, it's true. Though I think the figure is perhaps 70% or less, though there are more people travelling. Plus, this country is so vast and beautiful with much variety, so perhaps, there's much to do and see here as is, I suppose?

Ahlan wa sahlan Max. Welcome to my blog :) Yes, that sounds right, plenty of American shows, corporations, food, culture - and just one American haha :) Howz gorgeous Camella ?!

Jayne said...

Rosh - it's true what you say about the good 'ol USofA - there's so much to see/offer. Hubs & I are planning to do a 6-9mth cross country tour in 3yrs time, on the bikes of course :-D
Camella came with Max & the rest of us to Fujairah last weekend, to the M.E. HOG rally. She's such a little tart! She's got quite an attitude about her now, as she went on tour with us to SA :-)

Anonymous said...

Very interesting point Rosh. I add
you have innocent way of thinking.

ammaro said...

americans dont really need to leave the USA... they have everything from snowy mountains to deserts to all sorts of food etc all within their borders. if they really wanted to travel, mexico or canada is enough for them.

blimey.

Steve Ballmer said...

I like it over there too!

Bridget Jones said...

@ Ammaro, all they need is a bit of culture that's not just skin deep ha! ;)

Jayne said...

Totally separate subject:
Have a good Christmas Rosh. I wish you good health, plus much love & laughter in the New Year :-)