You Know You’re From Two Cultures When…

Alrighty! Given this insane summer heat, it only seems fitting that we put a little humor back into our daily rituals, so I’m going to give it to you, and give it to you good!

As some of you may know, I am half-Arab and half-Circassian. Circassians are from Russia, for the people who do not know! So growing up, a lot of my experiences have not just been defined by one culture, but by TWO. In my household, it was never just an Arab thing, or a Circassian thing. It was a mix of both…especially one or the other when it was convenient! So, if you’re a product of two cultures, like I am, please, laugh along with me:

1. You know you’re an Arab girl when the weather starts to get warm and you are suddenly missing the cold because your strict parents won’t let you wear shorts and a tank top! #ILOVETURTLENECKS #LongSleevesForDays!


2. You know you’re a Circassian girl when tete is making HALIVA and it brings out another side of you that the world has never seen! #HALIVAisGOLD #ChildhoodMemories.


3. You know you’re an Arab Muslim girl when your mom knows your period cycle and reminds you to take off your nail polish, because you’re about to go right back to praying, sis! #ArabMomsKnowEverything…Literally!


4. You know you’re a Circassian girl when you have to explain to the general population what Circassian is!


5. You know you’re an Arab girl when your Baba tells you to take that paint off your face… Baba it’s makeup… BALA makeup BALA batata!


6. You know you’re a Circassian girl when you rep your Circassian but only speak Araby. *Disclaimer – I say this as it applies to me and others I know. Circassians do speak the native language but the ones I know do not*.


7. You know you’re an Arab girl when your second cousin from overseas all the sudden compliments you while his mom is seeking a bride. #NotInterested #tooCLOSE.


8. You know you’re an Arab girl when the teacher pauses and you quickly just say your name to save the embarrassment! #I’veBeenCalledAminoBefore.


9. You know you’re an Arab when you’re being disciplined and your tete’s slipper follows you throughout the entire house like a boomerang until you get SLAPPED! #TetesShahata #ThatSlipperHasAMindOfIt’sOwn!


10. You know you’re a Circassian when the CBA is your Friday night hangout spot! #CircassianBenevelonetAssociation #CircassiansInNewJersey.


11. You know you’re Circassian when mom is making “Ships & Basta” for dinner and you cannot contain your excitement!

If none of these were funny, I apologize but I laughed my booty off while writing it. Shoutout to all my Arabs & Circassian brothers and sisters! It has been an interesting life having two cultures that are very opposite!

I will say this to sum it all up: I love being both Arab and Circassian. It truly is an experience to have two different culture and traditions to follow and participate in. Although I have not had much exposure to my Arab side, I still appreciate the culture and traditions that we Arabs possess.

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