And the Award Goes to…


Af­ter years of as­sid­u­ous psy­choex­is­ten­tial anal­y­sis and count­less nights of atro­cious in­ner de­bates, my scat­tered selves came to the ul­ti­mate con­clu­sion that the rea­son why they never seem to fig­ure out the point of award cer­e­monies in Le­banon boils down to one, clear-cut fact. There is no point at all. We tried ask­ing around, went hunt­ing for ver­bal clues be­tween the lines of nau­se­at­ingly for­mu­laic ac­cep­tance speeches and even­tu­ally re­sorted to so­cial me­dia for the lat­est in opin­ion­ated over­e­mo­tion­al­i­sa­tion, still no traces of a point were found.

From un­nec­es­sar­ily ver­bose in­tros to in­tel­lec­tu­ally chal­lenged re­marks, the Murex d’or trans­ported view­ers on a shame­lessly dis­or­dered 6-hour jour­ney into folk­loric pre­ten­tious­ness in its 16th (and ar­guably most clue­less) edi­tion.

My par­tic­u­larly ob­ser­vant selves strug­gled to tran­scend the out­dated for­mat as award pre­sen­ters took the stage June 2016 in strik­ingly un­har­mo­nious pairs to voice their cliché-packed dis­courses on a whoin­t­er­rupts-the-other-first ba­sis, wast­ing the au­di­ence’s al­ready wasted time to score points against each other.

And the cat­e­gories grad­u­ally un­folded with no clear in­ten­tion, let alone a tremen­dous lack of sub­stance, leav­ing us in sheer awe as to how far deeper the Le­banese drama-in­fused TV recipe can sink (well, it seems to have reached pre­vi­ously un­heard of depths this time).

We even tried to de­rive a last bit of hope from the re­fined fash­ion sense of the elite but stum­bled upon an over­load of pail­lettes that is bound to leave us aes­thet­i­cally paral­ysed for a min­i­mum of two life­times.

But re­gard­less of fairly triv­ial and to­tally ac­cept­able mat­ters of poor or­gan­i­sa­tion and nonex­is­tent co­or­di­na­tion, what is most per­plex­ing about this award cer­e­mony is the ex­tent to which it per­fectly re­flects the struc­ture, flaws and mech­a­nisms that make up the Le­banese so­ci­ety.

A para­noid so­ci­ety that feeds on ap­pear­ances but preaches hum­ble­ness. A trivia-driven com­mu­nity of in­di­vid­u­als who are just never able to fit their colos­sal egos into a mor­tal hu­man body. A bun­dle of mad­ness where a chaos of rules re­sulted in chaos be­ing the only rule.

Award sea­son has been of­fi­cially kicked off in the ‘Le­bane­sest’ pos­si­ble way. And here we are again, watch­ing our na­tion’s brighter-than-pail­lette fu­ture un­fold as the red car­pet un­folds (di­vulging its finest so­cialites and most fa­mous celebri­ties along the way). Far, so far away from any vi­able signs of so­cio­cul­tural evo­lu­tion, let alone a fore­see­able sys­tem­atic revo­lu­tion.

And the award goes to us. No, I am no longer re­fer­ring to my selves. I am re­fer­ring to the peo­ple. The award goes to us, for mak­ing peace with chaos and ac­cept­ing to be ruled by the ab­sence of rules.

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