Egyptian T-shirts

My roommates and I just love the colorful t-shirts we sometimes see people wearing here in Egypt. We just spotted someone in the Sadat metro station wearing a shirt that said “2 Times Sex a Day Keeps the Doctor Away!”

Other notable t-shirt quotes include “Orgasm donor” and my personal favorite, worn buy a muhajiba girl at AUC, “I’m the one you have to blow to get a drink in this place.”

More to come inshallah.

4 Responses to Egyptian T-shirts

  1. Rob says:

    if you asked them what those shirts mean they would probably have no clue. they’re wearing those shirts because they see some “coolness” in wearing English language slogans— it distinguishes them from the vast majority of Egyptians who don’t know English.

    I’ve noticed these kinds of shirt before too. But I’d be willing to bet that most who wear them don’t know what they mean. They usually have slang or tricky meanings that someone who isn’t very famiar with obscene English slang wouldn’t understand.

  2. ibnyaaqub says:

    Absolutely. I certainly don’t think that kind of stuff would fly in a place like Egypt if people actually new what it meant.

  3. Dee says:

    could not help but respond to this blog:

    To suggest that the kids wearing these shirts don’t know what the meaning of the words are, is what I call utter nonsense and somewhat underestimating the knowledge of these kids…even if it something vulgar.

    I know this because as someone who has gone to school there, lived there and has just been all-out immersed with the Egyptian students and people in Cairo(and someone who actually speaks to them as opposed to speaking about them), I am fully aware that they know. They’ve told me. They tell each other. The vast majority of them know.

    The reason why they wear it is not because they consider it “cool” because it is something in English, but because this is a form of self-expression, that unlike every other thing in Egypt and the rest of the Arab world, is not suppressed or censored. Why? Because it is the vast majority of the Egyptian population that doesn’t know the meaning of these words…Cairo people stand out as an exception because they have western influence more readily on hand and in their face than say, someone from the city where i am from, Zagazig..or some village.

    Another reason why the students would wear it, especially girls? Attention. And they do get attention by wearing it. And how else would they know they would receive attention if they didn’t know the meaning behind, oh say, “Orgasm?”

    But I wouldn’t rule out entirely that some people do wear such shirts because it’s in English. Yes, of course, there are people there like that.

    Here’s one thing I’d like to point out though: just because you see some Americans here that wear shirts in a different language, primarily in Chinese symbols, and don’t have a clue as to what it means, but wear them (and in some cases , get a tattoo that for all we know, could say “MoFo” in Chinese), doesn’t mean that you can generalize everyone that wears something in a different language in another corner of the world, as being ignorant of what it represents.

    By the way, this totally brings a wave of nostalgia my way.

    • ibnyaaqub says:

      Hey,
      Glad you commented, thanks. Fair point on the generalizing, which is always an issue. And certainly the girl at AUC knows what the “words” on her t-shirt mean. But I find it hard to believe that an Egyptian who is presumably religious (Ok, I know hijab does not necc mean she is religious, but she is at least dressing as such) would wear a shirt talking about blow jobs, especially if she understands the meaning of the shirt, and not just the words. I also find it hard to believe than an Egyptian parent would let his or her daughter out of the house wearing such a shirt if he or she knew what it meant.

      This is Egypt, not LA.

      Rob and I both speak to Egyptians as well, but fair enough I have never asked about their clothing. I also think we have to differentiate between AUC students and the “average” Egyptian. AUC kids wear shirts with English written on them, just as they wear Ray-bans, popped polo shirts, and Louis Vuitton or however you spell it bags because they, well, want to be , or at least look, American. So kids at AUC where this stuff because they bought it from Abercrombie, or H and M or whatever, and they want people to know that. And I don’t think that’s an unfair assessment, AUCians talk about this stuff all the time in their school newspapers.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: