If it’s 12 pm, it must be time for the talk shows.
Lebanese daily talk shows are, as one would expect, very indicative of their culture. They always have more than one female host, the maximum (including guest hosts) can go anywhere up to the dozen mark for a two hour thing. Subjects are usually restricted to make-up, Make Up, fashion (where the studio is, apparently, contractually obligated to have one of the hosts model everything), nutrition (low fat, she said LOW FAT!) and ornamental plant decoration. The chef usually prepares something bizarre that could only be made in Lebanon. One of them (and this I kid you not) somehow finds a way to make almost all his dishes bone-white. Not clear or of a whitish, roux quality — I’m talking chalk soup.
Egyptian talk shows chuck the cooking and fashion tips and nutrition entirely, and just invite over one of the hundreds of greying socio-political literati that Egypt has birthed post WW2. They come over, talk incessantly for two hours without cracking a sweat or a smile, and the host tries not to fall asleep (I’m sure what the guys are saying must be pretty interesting on the whole, but hosts are just like that). This sort of show is what the Lebanese have in the late night 9-12 slot, when all their people are back at home, snug in their leather couches, and feel the need to get right chuffed about culture and current affairs.
Emarati and Kuwaiti shows tend to be similar to Lebanese shows, except there’s always only one host (female), the chef pops up throughout the thing and cooks (if you’re Kuwaiti) something Western European involving Filo Pastry and (if you’re Emarati) Big Pieces of Meat.
Emarati shows also tend to call in doctors and ‘specialists’ from the numerous ‘specialist’ hospitals that litter this country, and with them thise fine men and women of science bring charts, diagrams and the latest, hi-res digital snaps of a foul looking pox, or fungal tooth rot or other green decaying stuff on the flesh.
The hostess nods, smiles her well-practiced, top teeth only smile and informs everyone that after the break some delicious Big Pieces of Meat will be cooked.
Cut to Commercial.