ع QAHWA

Beauty Standards throughout the history.

Over the past decades, beauty standards have changed drastically, starting from the old Egyptian standards, the oldest of all, until 2020, the most recent ones. Women have been going back an forth through beauty standards trying to get into the ideal body shape to fit into some standard that mostly have been put by men. Get ready to have a quick trip through time to get to

know how our female ancestors looked back at the time.

• Ancient Egyptian:

Ancient Egyptian women were mostly known for their slim high waists, and narrow hips. Dark

long black braided hair was a trait any beautiful woman would be characterized by at the time. Golden, tanned, and bright skintone was the ideal color any attractive woman would have. As for the heavy black eye makeup, kohl, it was mostly applied as a protection from the sun, but soon enough it became the signature look of both women and men.

• Ancient Greek:

As for ancient Greek women, their beauty standards may be considered weird in our current days; unibrows were so in fashion that women would get dark pigment to draw a one in case they were born with naturally good plucked eyebrows. They also considered blonde curly hair beautiful, so women used vinegar, trying to get a lighter hair color. However, they never knew it

might cause hair loss, so wigs were quite common back then. As for long hair, it was considered a very beautiful trait. So only high class rich woman were allowed to keep their hair long. Chubby women were also considered eye pleasing as well.

• Heian Japan:

Another weird beauty standard concerning eyebrows were also initiated in Japan. Women in court would shave off their eyebrows and draw new smudged ones. They also would never cut off their hair as long hair was considered beautiful back then. They would taint their lips and

cheeks red, and their face white. And because their teeth looked so yellow in comparison to their white painted faces, they would paint their teeth black.

• Renaissance:

Long time ago in Italy, men would search for beautiful woman for marriage. As beauty was tied to virtue, the more beautiful a woman is the more virtuous she was thought to be. A chubby woman with a round stomach seemed to be the perfect wife back then as it was thought this

body figure was more ready for mother hood. Other must-haves were strawberry blonde curls and a high forehead. Women at this time bleached their hair and plucked or shaved their hairlines to get this look.

• 18th-Century France: 

As for France, the city of love, woman with oval face and a slight double chin were considered more lucky than others. And yet again curly long hair seemed to preside the beauty standards. Grey, and white faces were so beautiful at the time and women would regularly use heavy makeup to achieve such look; it is said that those makeup products were often made with

poisonous lead and mercury; however women wouldn’t care less. All they wanted to achieve was meet the beauty standards!

• Elizabethan Era:

As queen Elizabeth rose to the throne, new beauty standards started to emerge. Women back at the time took her majesty as a role model in beauty. So beautiful women would usually imitate her style, red lips and cheeks, bright eyes, and fair reddish hair. They also preferred to have thin eyebrows. White skin tone usually was considered a sign of delicacy and nobelty, as usually poor people would work alot in the sun till they get tanned body color. So the more lighter a woman’s skintone is, the more noble she is.

• Victorian Era:

In the Victorian era, a period where alot of feminists would oppose, a fragile weak woman was considered way more feminine and pretty than an independent one. They used to wear corsets in order to get the smallest waist possible. Pale faces with zero freckles or pimples or redness

were considered more into fashion. It was even considered that a woman with tuberculosis was said to be beautiful, as they would get a very pale face and thin fragile bodies. Makeup products

were also considered a taboo. So a if a woman with naturally red lips or cheeks was mistaken for putting makeup, this might cause her a huge scandal back at the day.

• World war one, 1914-1918:

During world war one, where men were sent to military, women got more independence and responsibility as they had to find jobs till men came back. So most women would cut off their hair and imitate men’s style. Small breasts and petite thin body figure was considered more beautiful. Women were also trying to get rid of the Victorian beauty standards.

• The end of world war two, 1945:

By the 50s, the end of world war 2, women started buying more makeup; they even started adapting the small waist fashion. As men returned from battle reclaiming their jobs, women left their work-clothes behind and felt the need (fashion dictated) to be feminine again.

• Old and modern arabs:

As for Arabian beauty standards, they haven’t evolved much. Olive skin, dark hair, big eyes and an hour glass figure are typical features of beautiful women in the Gulf region. Women would usually use kohl to make their eyes look more attractive.

• 2020:

Today, 2020, plump large lips, thick defined eyebrows, small pointed nose, and a curvy body are some traits any beautiful girl would acquire.

After all, as you can see, beauty standards have always been changing ever since the beginning

of creation. As soon as we, women, would get accustomed to a trait, or a characteristic it would get out of fashion and another beauty standard would replace an old one. Stop trying to fit into

a beauty standards that would soon get replaced. Just be comfortable in your own skin, and be yourself. You are the one who set your own beauty standards.

Journey to self peace: COMPTON

Raised by an influential man 

Grew up to lead a gang.

These streets change ya

These streets shape ya

These streets make ya

And these streets save ya

These streets are my brethren’s death.

18 and dumb never know about life

Me and my homie just roamin around

For him to fall down, in his back, a knife

No one saw it it was night no crowd.

Trust no one is the only rule

Make one mistake and your blood is the pool.

People here don’t care no more.

The sound of gunshots is what they wake up for.

That police siren is the wake up call 

Leave the street or you’re in the hall.

These streets raised me.

The smell of blood, the screams of moms, the sound of gunshots,

These things dont phase me.

Im the man of these streets until the death of me.

They all on my back they want to get rid of me.

Im the danger and Im the predator.

The only way they’ll ever get me, is when….

———————————

Newspaper: The Aztecs Gang leader was found dead yesterday midnight. Police say that they found two gunshots in the back of his head. He died on a notebook which is believed to be his diary. Police tried to read what was written on the sheets put the blood covered it all up. More to come later

Journey to self peace:LONDON

The Rain is My Best Friend.

Tick tock, says the clock on the wall. It’s 12:00 AM and I am all alone in a room with my dusty heart, a numb mind, and heavy rain dropping on the ceiling window like bullets. London: the big, smoked city of dreams where everyone could feel the ordinary scent of faith; it’s where I live, or should I say, where I pretend to be alive. With love birds walking hand in hand, young couples warming each other up with hugs, and photographers rushing so they don’t miss the chance of taking pictures that symbolize romance, purity and happiness, rainy nights in London are said to be the best. Sadly, not for me. The rainy nights of London remind me of the worst scenes of my life, when I was alone in my room, scared of the rain dropping heavily on my window. These nights remind me of writing my feelings down with my body hurting as if I had just been in a fight with ten body builders, my heart aching, and my head in flames. I am someone who struggles in this life. I struggle with society, my parents, my friends, sometimes even with my own self. Now, whomever will read this will think of me as a person who lives to struggle. However, one should be fair; let me explain why I struggle with all of this. I struggle with my parents because they are extremely successful; successful to the extent that they don’t have time for me. My parents are famous, rich doctors. They own one of the most famous hospitals out there. They spend the only free time they have either fighting, or lecturing me for things I never did, and I know I would never do. I struggle with my friends because I simply don’t have any. In my opinion, no one knows the real meaning of friendship; that’s why I am someone who does not have any friends. I struggle with society because it keeps up with people who don’t deserve to live; people who hurt, abuse, kill, insult and do much more awful things. I struggle with myself for not minding my own business; for always struggling with the past and its struggles. All those struggles flash into my mind on those rainy nights where everything, except for the clouds, is silent and cold. I just can’t seem to mind my own business, how can I? How can I do so when I see how life is treating everyone? How can I do so when I see how life is treating me? Funny how we can relate to each other’s pain, yet we can’t fight for each other’s cases. I thought I’d find a way to end my struggles, but I figured out that I should end me, not my struggles. It was a cold day. No one was home; even the housekeeper was on vacation. The house was silent… pin-drop silence. I could hear my bare feet stepping towards the roof. I stood on the edge of the roof, wondering whether jumping would be more painful than the pain I felt back on these rainy nights. Ding dong… the door bell? Who could it possibly have been? It wasn’t 10:00 PM yet. Part of me told me to ignore the bell and jump.. just jump. Another part of me forced me not to, telling me that maybe this bell is my second chance in life. Ding dong. The bell again; but this time, it was followed by a lot of phone calls, my mom calling my name, and my dad hitting the door so hard. I stood there, paralyzed, thinking why I couldn’t end this story. Suddenly, the door opened, my parents fearfully and hurriedly climbing the stairs. I heard my mom breathing heavily, as well as dad praying for my well-being. When they reached me, I jumped, but in the opposite direction. I fell down on the roof’s floor sobbing. My parents leaned closer and hugged me, both of them at once, and I couldn’t find an adjective to describes how much I missed that feeling. It’s weird, isn’t it? Currently, I am being medicated. I am seeing a therapist and attending group therapy sessions with people I can understand. It was hard to face the world with six mental illnesses. I always hear cold remarks about my sickness, but my therapist said that if one knows how to deal with an issue form A to Z, he or she shouldn’t blame others who don’t. Sometimes, people treat me as if I‘m scary. At other times, people treat me like I have a mental disability, not a psychological issue. However, my sickness changed me a lot; saying that it changed me to the better would be kind of ironic, but it made me stronger, and soon enough, it will make me the strongest. I am sure that one day, I will come out of this strong, fearless and free. I am sure that one day, I will no longer be in my room. Instead, I will enjoy the rainy nights of  London like lovers and photographers and other people who never miss a walk on these nights, allowing the wind to blow my hair, feeling the cold breeze on my nose and forehead. I am sure that one day, the rain that once fell on me as harsh as  bullets will finally feel as soft as fabric.

Journey to self peace: DOWNTOWN CAIRO

وسط البلد؛ القاهره
بقالي كذا يوم بقعد في بلكونة بيتنا اللي بيطل على تمثال طلعت حرب……التمثال اللي من ساعة ما اتولد و هو لسه زي ما هو. ده التمثال اللي كان بيشوف وشي و لسه بيشوفه كل يوم….هو الوحيد اللي عارف انا اد ايه سهرت الليالي و عافرت عشان احاول ابقى اللي انا عايزاه و لكن كل ده اتدمر لما جريت وراء هدف عمره ما كان هدفي….انا كنت مجرد آله مسخّره و مطيعه في ايد صاحب الهدف. آله بتسمع الكلام و تبذل كل جهدها عشان تنفذ و خلاص لان الآله ديه اللي هي انا، عمرها ما حددت لنفسها هدف معين…عمرها ما اتمسكت ب اي حاجه او جريت وراء حاجه. و ده كان العائق الوحيد في طريق تحقيق احلامي و اهدافي اللي ظهرت بعد وقت طويل شويه….ده كان السبب اللي خلاني عمري ما احس ب اني سعيده او حتى قريبه من السعاده.

.. في الاوقات اللي زي دي و الدنيا هاديه و مفيش صوت زاعجني غير الصوت اللي مش بيسكت جوايا و صوت العيال اللي بتلعب في الشارع كل يوم؛ بحس ساعتها ان انا ضيعت حاجات كتير اوي و على قد اللي ضيعته، على قد التفكير و الاصوات اللي مش بتفارقني لحظه. بحاول ادور على حاجه تشغلني و لكن مش بلاقي غير زينة العيد اللي متعلقه في كل بلكونه من البلكونات. بفضل اتفرج عليهم كلهم و اتابع حركاتهم واحده واحده لمجرد اني اشغل نفسي ب اي حاجه….بحاول اهرب من الواقع عن طريق اي حاجه. حتى ان اللي بيشغلني اوي؛ زينة الجيران اللي قدامنا اللي عمرها ما بتتشال طول السنه. بتفضل منوره كل يوم بليل و على قد الليالي اللي قعدتها هنا في البلكونه بفكر، عمري ما شفتها طفت مره واحده. و لكن في وسط كل ده، بفتكر نفسي زمان ايام المدرسه و سهري بليل وانا بقرأ كتاب او لما كنت بقعد اكتب روايات و قصص و شعر…..بفتكر الايام ديه وانا بتحسر على اللي معملتوش زمان. لما بشوف ازاي انا كنت متمسكه بهواياتي ديه و كانت قد ايه مهمه بالنسبالي و قد اي خلتني ابتدي مرحله جديده من الحياء. ازاي ادتني امل في اني شخص ممكن يطلع حاجات مبتكره و جديده. و لكن برجع افتكر ازاي مقدرتش اخليها تبقي هي كل حياتي. و كان في صوت بيقولي متخليهاش بس هوايات….انتي موهوبه و تعملي اكتر.
على الجانب الاخر، اخترت بعد مناقشات و تفكير اني ابقى مهندسه عشان شغلها حلو و مش كله وسايط. حاولت ادور على نفسي كتير في الشغل ده و احاول اكون نفسي و لكن كل مره كنت بفشل. دائما كنت حاطه في دماغي ان يمكن ده اللي انا كنت عايزاه و ده اللي هنجح فيه….بس للأسف كنت بحس اني انا اتحاطت في مكان مش مكاني. حاولت كتير اتغير و احاول احب اللي انا عايزاه بس فشلت و تمثال طلعت حرب يشهد هو و زينة الجيران.

و لكن انهارده بس اقدر انسى كل التفكير اللي فات، و اقدر انجح في حياتي. انا بصيت للحياه من منظور تاني النهارده او يمكن الحياه هي اللي ندهتلي عشان ابص لما اتعرض عليا شغل في مجال الاعلام. هو يمكن بعيد عن اللي طول عمري عايزاه و لكنه اول خطوه في طريق اكتشاف نفسي و اكتشاف اللي انا بحبه. يمكن ده كله كان القدر عايز يلعب لعبته و لكنه اتأخر حبتين عليا. ببص تاني للزينه و تمثال طلعت حرب و بقوم البس و انزل عشان اكل ايس كريم من العبد؛ اللي مفيش منه غير في وسط البلد.

Journey To Self Peace: TOKYO

Once upon a time, a never-ending story. A story where pain changes people. Some became rude, and some became silent!
Mine started in the beautiful streets of Tokyo.
Isn’t it weird that even in the loudest city of Tokyo, I can still hear your heart beats, I can still hear your soft voice whispering in my ears. These streets of Tokyo are full of people but only your shadow I can see. Looking to those bright billboards, remind me of how brightly we announced our love to the world, how we delightfully dug our love in every corner of this city.
Looking to the shinny moon, remind me of how beautiful you were…. yes beautiful but as far as the moon from earth.
I can see the light in this city are still working, but what about the light in my heart?
I’ve always been the girl who feel love in someone’s eyes. I felt so tiny in this big world. I was once the girl who would feel hope no matter how far it was. Indeed I loved everything in this world but it was all until you took everything and disappeared.
I don’t feel anymore pain or grief for you, nor is there any love or desire. I am no longer in the habit of having you around. Why are tears still in my eyes then? Why do I cry even today? Do I miss you? Huh?
You said we’re gonna live together forever and never separate. All those vows and promises of love are false. I believe days will pass and turn into years but I shall forever remember you with silent tears. This fake world is temporary,
my pain is true.
O beloved, this relationship of ours
is a delusion like a mirage. Eyes, which used to dream together,
they have cried much on separation today.
Eyes, which used to stay the nights awake together,
they shut even in the morning now….
Eyes, which used to enjoy the sun,
now stop and look for some shade..
The breathe is choked, the heart is troubled,
wondering why my life is about to cry..
why my hope seems like a disappointment,
why is there a storm of questions in my heart…. I’m too sad to cry, too tired to get up. I didn’t even try cause I’m scared to mess up. Sometimes, the lines get all blury. I learned a lot, I grew, I have changed. I couldn’t stay no longer, i had to walk away for you and for myself. My heart no longer beat or bleed for you!. My wrong love…, it has always seemed right!. I have known trials, struggles and most importantly I’ve known loss and I have found my way out of depth. Why do I cry even today? Why are tears still in my eyes?
Perhaps I miss you, that’s why i am crying today…. Perhaps I am set free, perhaps not… just perhaps….

What You Decide is What They See

Hundreds of years ago, a baby girl was born. Her parents were were more than excited to meet her , and prepared for her coming day for months, but when this baby was born, their excitement was ripped away. She wasn’t the “beautiful” child her parents wanted. Her hair wasn’t that of a princess, and her face wasn’t that of an enchantress. She opposed every “rule” of beauty people had chosen to put.

When her parents saw her face, they were ashamed and mad at the world that had given them an ugly child. And so, they hid her. They hid her until they realized that they couldn’t hide her forever. They would have to accept their daughter’s appearance ,and teach her that beauty is within. But how could they do that when they didn’t truely believe it themselves?

They raised her with love, but lacked admiration. For years, they hid her from herself as they knew that when she becomes old enough to see her reflection, it would break her heart and shatter it into a million pieces. 

A mirror was their worst enemy ,and their number one opponent who they’d destroy without hesitation.

For many years the child’s parents hid her distorted face from her own self and tried to raise her like a “normal” child. 

As she grew older, she began to notice. She began to notice the wicked stares and shrieks she got from passing villagers, the whispers and giggles from girls her age and how they hurried away when she approached ,and how her grandparents visited once and never visited again, but she never seemed to understand it.

The only forgiving creature was her pig that her parents had bought her for Christmas to protect her from immense loneliness. 

Why a pig?, You might wonder. Her parents thought a pig among other animals almost resembled her among other people. “Ugly” and “unwanted” but the girl never thought so, as she pet her precious ball of cuteness.

Life went on, until one bitter night, when the girl was outside feeding her pig. The winds blew her parents yells to her ears along with the harsh breaking of glass.

She ran to the window and watched as her mother had shattered a mirror.

She walked in, her heart heavy with questions she’d been ignoring for years.

Why? 

Why no mirrors? Why do people stare? Why do they laugh? Why do they hate? She just wanted to understand, and with a shaking hand she grabbed a piece of a shattered mirror and looked at the reflection.

A reflection that was the opposite of everything a meaningless world had deemed beautiful. A reflection that she despised before she ever saw.

She screamed…She screamed as the image and her mother’s screams pierced her eyes, but nothing was louder than a million thoughts in her head. 

No longer could she see the light, no longer could she see the beauty within that her parents claimed was what mattered. 

If so, why would they hide her? Why would they cry?

And with one final scream, and one final tear, she shattered along with the reflection, into a million pieces, no longer anywhere to be found, and to this day she haunts our every mirror, with the most hurtful thoughts.

Ugly.

Unacceptable.

Hedious.

Hide yourself.

If only she knew the world’s standards never mattered, if only she knew she should’ve looked inside, if only she knew all what mattered was how she looked at herself ,she would’ve seen the beauty of a million princesses right in her eyes.

2020 Rising Stars

Life is a generations game where a generation gives a role to the one after it to provide the youthful touch of talent in the work preformed. It’s such a faithful thing to see the upcoming generation in this great presence. This year in Ramadan there was a huge load of youthfulness in the characters played in many series. Ramadan this year provided a lot of opportunities for the new generation of actors and actresses to shine. The new generation of talents proved itself and its capability to reflect lights on it and to fulfill their scenes.

  Ahmed Dash: 

It’s not Ahmed’s first time to show up in a series of course. There’s been years of him providing great and amazing work, there’s been years of him mastering characters that people loved and still love since his very first time to act. However this year, people noticed that Adel (in ElPrince series) was quite different and special, people noticed that it was Ahmed’s first time to play such a challenging and controversial character yet he has mastered it skillfully. Although acting as a drug addict is not easy; as it requires a lot of body language expressions, acting as a drug addict healing from the poison in his blood is way harder ,because it needs a lot of effort in genuinely conveying the pain that a person like that might be feeling. Yet, this challenge didn’t stop Ahmed from acting the character professionally to convince everyone. Ahmed Dash is a truly creative and artistic star full of youth power , talent ,and passion. This makes everyone assume that Ahmed Dash’s future in being an actor will be glowing and full of art.

Layla Ahmed Zaher: 

Everyone has waited for Layla Zaher who finally came back to the scene after 6 years. Despite the talent in Layla’s family ,and despite that she is the daughter of the great Ahmed Zaher, Layla has a very special technique in acting that people loved this year in her character as Nora (in Elfetewa series) with the great Yasser Galal. Nora’s character was very kind and sensitive which has captured people’s feelings of sympathy and love to her through out the whole series. Some people say that Layla Zaher’s character has been the touch of beauty in Elfetewa. A character like Nora was new to Layla yet, she still mastered it very well. Being out of scene for 6 whole years didn’t affect Layla, instead it increased her skills and passion for acting. The return of Layla Zaher to the scene at this age and with that much charm and as this very special character proved how talented and creative she is. Layla Zaher is one of the special people in the new generation. she will shine bright in scenes for the rest of her future.

Lella Fada:
Lella Fada plays the character (Layla in ElPrince series) . Layla was such an amazing character that everyone fell in love with and with her guitar and singing skills that were breathtaking. It’s Lella’s first time in the scene and she fluently captured people’s attention and love in both singing and acting. The character layla wasn’t easy; layla was a drug addict as well. she acted her character in front of Ahmed dash ,and they made an amazing duo together. Lella Managed to act the character better than required and managed to make people wait for Layla’s scenes in every episode. Many people turned emotional when layla died due to an overdose. However as the series went on, people tended to miss the character layla and her relationship with Adel a lot more than expected. Lella Fada’s first time acting went so successfully which makes it easy for us to assume that she will have an artistic future in both singing and acting.

Hassan Malek: 

Hassan Malek made a huge difference in Ramadan 2020 as many people loved his character as Mazen (in le3bt El Nesyan) which is quite unique. Mazen, a teenager who struggles from diabetes that he got due to a problem in controlling his diet and the food consumed. People found out that Mazen’s problem and struggle with its causes is quite different compared to any other problem that faced a teenager in the Egyptian drama before. Some people were also interested and happy that the series had switched the light on on another problem like that and showed how to deal with it in the teenage years. The love and attachment to Mazen grew day by day and episode by episode from Le3bt El Nesyan fans. Out of the many things that people loved about the character Mazen, his relationship with his father that was quite special and lovely preformed was their favorite . As well as his relationship with Tamara ,his girlfriend. This relationship gained so much attention especially from the teenagers. Hassan Malek’s first time to show on screen was absolutely obsessive and professional. People are interested to see the future of a shining star like Hassan Malek.

    The new generation of actors did a great job in Ramadan 2020 as they had huge opportunities to perform as great characters to help present their talents. Seeing the new generation shining and showing up more obvious will also give teenagers who watch them the confidence to speak their minds and show their talents more. It was amazing to see a lot of new rising stars in this Ramadan and we hope this will continue forever.

A far away life

We were under the same stars
when you told me that our
loved ones are always there,
guarding us from the sky.
We were under the same stars
when you showed me your face
for the last time
and uttered your final goodbye.
I‘m sending you this letter
from my world to yours,
from my heart to yours,
hoping that one day,
it might reach you.
I’m sending you this letter
straight from the source,
my words laced with remorse,
until I can finally meet you.
For you, I crossed the oceans;
I traveled the extra mile.
You left long ago, yet stayed in my heart for a while.
I’ll admit, I went with the flow.
I’ll admit, I moved on.
But to you there’s no equal;
I still think about you till dawn.
Your soul left your body,
but your name’s still carved in my heart.
We’ve been like this from the start;
miles away, but never apart.
We had a lot planned for tomorrow,
but tomorrow never came.
Fate, time, or ourselves?
Where shall we put the blame?
It’s only the good memories that count; it’s the only thing I can claim
after god claimed your soul
and put an end to our flame.

Suffering out of blame

Looking around me, seeing every single color of heaven, but why am I blind to see colors in my life, neither in any place I go to. I have been broken due to what I have passed through; it was harsh; I couldn’t handle my self-flagellation. What proved that the blame was on me was that everyone hated being part of my life ,or even passing through its trailer. It’s not always by the crowd around you; it’s by the meaning they add to your life. I am perplexed about how I feel lonely even though there are a lot of people around me…funny, I mean nothing to them. I am lost in an ocean of memories…“aching” memories ,and no one is here to rescue drowning with my short breath.

Once upon a heartbreak, as any young kid, I fell in love with life ,but life didn’t share the same feelings with me. When you don’t get support from your own family, your home will not feel like home. How am I supposed to be confident in this huge world if I am not given the confidence I need from my small world? How can I not blame myself over other’s mistakes if I am the dilemma in everything I do? I became bare with nothing but a broken soul. I tried to search for safety and happiness in someone that will be my family, someone who will give me the support I deserve, and someone who will help me regain my strength.

Looking at yourself in the mirror ,but seeing the reflection of everything else but you. Wondering if you were alive from the very beginning. It ended up searching for safety and wasn’t the guide to the light. I could’ve searched about my own self that I lost ages ago; the one I lost when I lost trust in people and faith in life. I met people on my journey that made me regret being alive here …in this world l. I had millions of questions on my mind; I had millions of screams floating on the top of my lungs. Is everyone turning toxic ,or am I the toxic one? Are people treating me horribly or am I the one who can’t deal with them properly? Is this fair or am I the one who deserves this? Like anyone with nothing but an overthinking sick mind, I kept on asking these questions until it turned to be a trap. I had no one to guide me out…no one. When no one is there for you, the dark black side inside of you becomes the only shoulder to cry on.

The black side in me is a strong tornado that took me far away from the shore. The shore of safety and strength that was my goal throughout my journey. I knew that self confidence is the backbone that supports you through-out the harsh times. I realized that my suffering will not end, and my blindness to see colors in my own life will always be a carousel with non ending rounds.

An Exclusive Talent

Today we are introducing a groundbreaking talent. Someone who despite having a professional career as an HR Expert and a Career Development Trainer, still managed to work on his talent and never forgot his other side. I introduce Mahmoud Mahmoud, known as Squared The Rapper.
The first question that came to our minds, and basically everyone’s, is what’s the reason behind the name Squared. Mahmoud answered “My real birth name is Mahmoud Mahmoud. So one of my friends one day said, as a joke, your name should be Mahmoud Squared (as in the mathematical symbol² ) and it became a thing ever since”.
He raps his originals, covers other rap songs, and adds his own emotionally melting lyrics to some of the most popular songs. He is quite different from the mainstream Egyptian Rap Scene.

It all started when Mahmoud was 13 years old. He used to listen to a lot of rap and hip-hop music, and tried to copy the rappers in the way they talk, dress, and rap. At the age of 15, he started writing his own song lyrics, but, quoting him, “They were terrible at the time”.

When we asked him when did you start taking it seriously?
He replied “I’ve been in love with the music, but I never really thought of taking it professionally until November 2018 when I started writing poems to express myself and the feelings I had but couldn’t convey. A year later, I decided to change the way I write to fit in a rap form since I’ve always loved rap, and finally, I created my Instagram page a month ago to share my writings with everyone else after I got inspired by a group of Egyptian singers called “@letsgobigmusic” who’re always sharing their music with the world.”

Mahmoud’s first time rapping in front of people was in middle school when he performed “My Name Is” by his idol, Eminem.

When we asked Mahmoud If he started his Rapping career for fame, business or just because he enjoys doing it. He answered excitedly “I enjoy writing lyrics, a lot! Whether I’m letting out my emotions on paper or just inspired to write about something, writing is always a go-to for me. At the moment, I’m definitely doing it just because I enjoy doing it. However, as any human being in the world, when they do something good they want everyone else to see it, so that’s what I’m working on as well. I’m trying to spread my music as much as I can so people can hear it, and hopefully if I’m good enough, it’ll evolve to become a business as well.”

When we asked him if he would have the chance to work with only one rapper, who will it be?
He answered “That’s a very tough question, because if I got the chance, I’d love to work with a lot of my favorite rappers. However, right now I’d choose Joyner Lucas.”

We asked Mahmoud about the Egyptan Rap scene and asked him to describe it in one word. He jokingly said “Autotune”

Mahmoud didn’t agree to the idea that rap can be done by anyone who can speak fast and fluent. He also added that it isn’t a must to rap quickly to be considered as a rapper. Some of the greatest rappers in history have a slow style, so it’s not necessarily about speed. Rapping is a talent that consists of content, flow, and delivery. Unfortunately, with how the Rap Scene now is, most rappers are focusing too much on the flow and delivery, but they’re missing the quality of the content. So yeah, Rap is a talent that not everyone has or can do.

Who helped you in your career as a rapper?
Rapping and performing wise, I never really had someone to teach me how to rap or how to work on my flow, lyrics, etc.. I taught myself everything by listening to a lot of different artists, and I eventually improved myself over the years. However, a lot of musicians that I follow help me a lot, maybe not directly or tangibly, but they always inspire me to pour out my heart in everything. Also, one of the main reasons behind my videos and my music is my Videographer best friend, Timmy, who I consider as more than a brother , and he’s always helping me with anything I need to make sure I present something with good quality to my audience, so I owe that man a lot!

Have you ever been criticized? And on what? And what was your reaction?
“I used to get criticized A LOT when I was young, because I was doing something different than what our society is used to, and at that time, it was a bit difficult to be understood. I dressed differently, spoke a different language, and was perceived as the “Trying to be cool” guy. At first, it used to bother me a lot, but then I got used to it and coped with it. Now because I’m a lot older, my talent has grown better than how it used to be back in the day, and with the Rap Scene growing bigger in Egypt everyday, the criticism is now much less than how it used to be.”

When we asked him who are the competitors you listen to the most?
He answered confidently “I don’t have any competitors actually. I’m not on a stage where I have competitors and people who are dissing me or vice versa, and I hope that I never really reach that stage, because I’m a peaceful type of guy. I just listen to people who inspire me and who have great music.”

Why do you prefer singing rap covers and not original songs?
“I’m actually working on my own original songs right now and hopefully will release an EP/Album soon. However, the songs I cover are some of my favorite songs, and other people’s favorites as well, so I thought why not put a rap verse in there and see if people like the mixture. The album will be around 10 songs, or 11 If we are counting the intro, and I am working on it but it’ll definitely take some time.

3al2hwa is glad to have this chance of interviewing such a talent.