I have been disregarding the news for a while, but it is becoming increasingly difficult to ignore the muscle flexing all over the place. Everyone is in on the game; local as well as international sources are either preaching war or predicting war. Dark clouds are packing over Beirut.
Sandbags on the green line, 1991
I find it hard to believe that Hezbollah would give the Israelis another excuse to bomb the smithereens out of us again, after Hezbollah leader Nasrallah said on New TV that had he known, they would not have done it, just as I find it equally unlikely that the Israelis will bomb us to smithereens again after the 2006 debacle. Now political leaders all over the world are - in general - not known for their superb governing skills, and people make stupid decisions all the time, and thus my argument is not likely to hold any ground.
However, I am going to ignore all these drums of war, as it is my experience that what you expect is not what is coming. But for all those ‘doemdenkers’ (Dutch word for prophets of doom); I present you with something colorful for these dark days; the designer sandbag.
‘A sandbag is a sack made of burlap, polypropylene or other materials that is filled with sand or soil and used for such purposes as flood control, military fortification, shielding glass windows in war zones and ballast’ (source).
A sandbag installation by Antenna Design
I still remember Beirut during the days when sandbags were a common sight on the streets; entire store fronts were covered with sandbags. But they’re a bit drab in color, and so this is the perfect item for any hip Beiruti who wants to be well prepared - yet glamorous at the same time - in case these prophets of doom have a case.
They’re designed by a company called Antenna Design, who say that they ‘are giving the sandbag a new 'skin' and context, which transforms the way it is perceived allowing it to enter a different realm of existence.' I think that is totally befitting for this town.
Now all we need is a Lebanese entrepreneur, and we’ve got a new trend going.