Dr. Word asks: Can dust storms be Muslim?

by David Safier

You know those recent dust storms in Phoenix? The term for them is "haboob," and from what I've read, this phenomenon is limited to the southwest, the Middle East and the North Africa.

Apparently, some folks think A-mur-i-kan dust storms shouldn't be called by them furren names. Adam Serwer of the American Prospect is on it.

“I am insulted that local TV news crews are now calling this kind of storm a haboob,” Don Yonts, a resident of Gilbert, Ariz., wrote to The Arizona Republic after a particularly fierce, mile-high dust storm swept through the state on July 5. “How do they think our soldiers feel coming back to Arizona and hearing some Middle Eastern term?”

Serwer goes on to list some other words with Arabic origins which, like haboob, should probably be stricken from our vocabulary, lest they lead us astray:

  • sofa
  • Admiral
  • mattress
  • magazine
  • cotton
  • buddy

So put down that magazine, buddy, get your ass up off the sofa and help us fight against Sharia-law-words infiltrating our precious, patriotic A-mur-i-kan language!

(h/t to AZ Blue Meanie for the link.)

0 responses to “Dr. Word asks: Can dust storms be Muslim?

  1. Great:)

  2. AZterritory

    With what little wealth I have left, you’ll have to pry lamb kebabs, hummus, falafel, shwarma and mishi waraq ‘inab from my cold, dead fingers. (Great post, BTW)

  3. I : We can’t use those terrist arabic numerals any more. Remember IX/XI/MM1! USA! USA!

    II : We gotta give up the concept of zero (which was introduced to Western “thought” by latin translations of an Arabic mathematician’s book) I wonder if they reralize that without the concept of zero, WE CAN’T BALANCE THE BUDGET! AIEEEE!

    III : Under this new system, nearly everyone will have their wealth decimated (one of those NICE words we got from the Romans, not one of those terrist words we got from the Arabs!) because the largest number that can be expressed in roman numerals is: MMMMCMXCIX, which is 4999.


    iV : Building things will become a lot more difficult, as modern enginerring is built upon a base of algebra, which is horrible islamist math and tio be shunned. We’ll have to re-discover the geometry-based architecture and engineering methods used by the Greeks. Good luck applying that to microprocessors, Intel!

    On the plus side, once all our calculators and TeeVee remote controls are reconfigured for the new number system, we’ll all be able to immediately determine what year those movies were released in!

  4. At least they’re mostly right….with the population of AZ haboobs.

  5. AZterritory

    Or Esteban de Dorantes, the Black slave from what is now Morocco in Cabeza de Vaca’s shipwecked group 1528-36.

  6. David Safier

    If the “haboob” fits, wear it.

    Maybe the line should be, “Phoenix, the town that put ‘boob’ in haboob.”

  7. Of course, this says nothing about the fact that the grave of one Hadj Ali, also known as Hi Jolly, the famous U.S. Army camel-driver of the 1850s, is in Quartzsite, where it is marked with a prominent pyramid-shaped monument. Historians say the might have been the first Muslim to live in the United States.

    Just imagine, this monument is a mere 2500 miles or so from Ground Zero. Every time I pass it, I feel it happening all over again.

    Tom Prezelski

  8. AZterritory

    Sugar, alcohol, coffee, algebra, half the constellations (Aldebaran, et.al.) The only thing I don’t like about the term is that everyone is calling the population of AZ haboobs now.