When you ask shSaar? emotions are running high. There's been bad news, something's off and everyone's looking awkward. Or, as in the comic above, the phrase is used when there's a lot of suspense ... but really nothing happening at all (maadrii meaning "I don't know").

shSaar is a contraction of shinu (what) and Saar (happened). There are a lot of these bunched-up consonants in Kuwaiti Arabic. The present tense of the verb "to happen" is an example, being ySiir or tSiir (depending on whether the subject is masculine or feminine, respectively).

So shSaar is a great phrase for creating something out of nothing. Let's consider a few examples.

Exhibit A:

Reality TV shows. shSaar tawaa? this fashion designer drawls with a conviction that would make UN leaders shudder, but really he just witnessed someone wearing his lamé creation back-to-front.

Exhibit B:

B, C, D, Z-grade movies. This terrorised teen can't cope with his dinner plate, didn't he specifically tell his mother "no straight lines"? Here we see him wailing shgaa:d yiSiir? rhetorically to anyone who'll lend an ear.

Exhibit C:

Soap operas that have long run their course but still get funding. shSaar fii-k? gasps Miss Stackhouse as her senior citizen boyfriend returns home with blood on his hands and a dead corpse in tow. But, hasn't he done this every night? For 80 episodes? And 7 whole seasons? 

Who needs television anyway when a lot of very real, almost unbelievable things Saaraw in Kuwait's shopping malls? 

Here is today's verb in all its forms:

It happened (m)
It happens (m)
It will happen (m)
It happened (f)
It happens (f)
It will happen (f)
They happened (pl)
They happen (pl)
They will happen (pl)

How was today's post?