Flipping the Bird can cost you!

Here’s something for you this morning that proves that, well, our illustrious courts and the honourable public prosecution offices are not busy; or put another way, they can’t refuse a case, no matter how frivolous we might consider it to be:

Flipping the Bird can cost you
تبرئة بحريني من «حركة يد»

برأت المحكمة الصغرى الجنائية الرابعة أمس، بحرينيا من تهمة السب والقذف، وذلك بعد ما وجهت له النيابة العامة أنه قــام برمي بحريني بإحدى طرق العلانية بما يخدش شرفه واعتبــاره من دون أن يتضمن إسناده واقعة معينــة وذلــك لعمل حركة بيده.
وكان المجني عليه، مارا بالقرب من أحد المطاعم بالعدلية، ووجد الطريق مغلقاً من قبل سيارة المتهم، فأخذ يطلق بوق السيارة، طالبا منه التحرك، إلا أن المتهم، رد عليه بحركة بيده.

Briefly: The court acquitted a defendant from a case of defamation brought against him by a motorist who claims to have the bird flipped to him when he asked the defendant to move his car which was blocking his way.
Al-Waqt – 26 Mar 08

I know.

I was dragged once to the police station when someone accused ME of flipping the bird. I was shocked! It cost me most of the day being investigated and being cross examined and all that jazz. Fortunately the case was not lodged and did not go further when my accuser was brought in and I disputed his vision – rightly – that I did not, in fact, flip him the bird; but rather, all I did was instruct him to “take it easy”. That is, for my dear Arab readers, I motioned “shway shway ya akhi waish feek” with my whole hand.

That got me off and the problem was resolved.

But it seems that flipping the bird is serious business in Bahrain, so my friends, don’t do it. I know road rage can do a lot to a person, but flipping the bird can cost you a lot more than you bargained for, given how diligent our legal system is, that is.

Good morning Amman!


  1. Loki

    hmmm, i’ve flipped the bird twice whilst driving. The first time to someone who tried to cut me up by almost forcing off my lane to compensate for the fact that he was in the wrong lane. I applied said flicking of birdage and watched the reaction.

    It was a Bahraini guy who got really really worked up and visibly upset. I started feeling bad and in the interest of good karma I pulled up next to him and apologized.

    The second time was to a Kuwaiti guy who had prevented me from moving into the right lane of a highway for the best part of a kilometer. When I slowed, he slowed, and when I accelerated, he accelerated. After breaking hard I ended up behind him and again proceed to to communicate to him via use of the my middle finger that I was less than ecstatic about this behavior.

    He followed me (or we both happened to be going to seef area) and proceeded to swear and shouting at every possible opportunity. He also attempted to spit at me car but failed to take into account the velocity of the air around his car and ended up spitting on himself.

    Anyways, I’ve decided its a stupid thing to do and that I’m better off not doing it in future.

  2. Abu Arron

    Ha, Ha. Your shway, shway excuse was exactly what worked to get me out of the clutches of the Chief Prosecutor at the local Police Station. I had (allegedly) flipped the bird at two plain clothes police in a dodgy pickup in Fintas, Kuwait. I thought they were a couple of loonies as they chased me for ages and, unfortunately, I thought heading for the local cop shop would put an end to the matter.

    But no, I was hauled (at gunpoint) into the CP’s office. Just another of my many “war stories” from Kuwait and I didn’t need laxatives for a few weeks after that.

    BTW, the best bird flip I ever received was in Riyadh. It was so graphic and aggressive I laughed for ages – and I’m still smiling remembering it.

  3. ammaro

    wow, is it really that big a deal? sad. you can easily screw up anyones day by claiming they flipped you the bird and then have them investigated all day. you can walk off laughing, knowing that you screwed up their day. hmmm…

  4. ammaro

    actually, im remembering new york now… drivers swear there at each other all the frickin time…

    so one day me and some buddies were driving down there, when this $@!^&#@ cut us off really badly, so my friend leans halfway out the window and gives him the longest, most extreme, disrespectful insult ever (ie, you sonofab#%^@ bast@$S muthe$#@%^^@$ pile of cr@# useless etc etc etc). the guy he was swearing at turned back and gave him a thumbs up for coming up with such a great insult. lovely city, that.

  5. Aliandra

    This is actually a crime in Bahrain?

    It’s happened so often in New York City that it’s lost its shock value.

  6. yousifcom

    Hehehehe.. This reminds me with a story of a cousin of mine few years a go. While driving on King Faisal Highway, he got close to another car. When the other driver shouted, my cousin gave him the finger. The funny part is that the other driver just happen to be a BIG guy at the traffic directorate. He was called in the next morning. His car were kept at the traffic directorate for three days …. He will never do it again.

  7. Abu Arron

    Yes Ammaro, you can seriously screw up someone’s day by making such an accusation. A friend was threatened with 3 months jail in Dubai for flipping the bird.

    Another good way to screw up someone’s day/week is to advertise a 2 year old Yaris for 1000BHD in the GDN and supply your victims mobile number. No, don’t do it, that’s just plain mean. 😆

  8. Henry

    can some one explane wht fliping the bird is
    I dont understand I am from the U.K.


  9. victoria

    Flipping the bird is showing your middle finger to someone in an insulting manner , like the baby in the photo Mahmood kindly provided. Though hopefully the baby was unaware of this otherwise could be sitting in his playpen surrounded by wooden bars for time out !!

    To be honest I wonder why Bahraini officials allow such meaningless legislation .. The cost to impose such a law and potential for injustices to occur like the one Mahmood mentioned should negate its usefulness… We need to accept that in a free society some people are going to behave in ways that will annoy us but that is no reason to cart them off to prison for being uncouth…

    We have to stop being so over-sensitive and insecure.

  10. Finlandi

    me and my friends were arrested for just that about 2 years ago.

    i guy driving a security car almost hit us because of reckless driving and we shouted at him.. so he stopped the car right in front of ours, and called the cops.. this was on the high way near Bapco by the way, so you can imagine the traffic jams caused by him.. we spent 4 hours trying to sort it out.. at the end we just left and to this day we have no idea what happened to that case

  11. howard_coward

    No intent to insult or defame, but I think one flips the bird AT, not TO. So the “motorist who claims to have the bird flipped to him…” should have claimed that the bird was flipped at him. It is of course possible to flip a bird TO, depending on the size of the bird.

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