Essential headgear of the revolution

breadhead.jpg An opposition supporter with pieces of bread taped onto his head shouts slogans during an anti-government protest in Sanaa yesterday. Tens of thousands of Yemenis squared off in street protests for and against the government on Thursday during an opposition-led "Day of Rage", a day after President Ali Abdullah Saleh offered to step down... but not until 2013. Reuters/Khaled Abdullah.



  1. I’m guessing this is a sarcastic pun that makes sense in Arabic? Or is it the Yemeni version of long cat? I’d like to know more.

  2. Well, whatever works.

    I don’t think I’d make it over to Lowe’s before they sold out of hard hats if this kind of thing went down in my neighborhood either.

    Luckily, I ride motorcycles, and my mom used to work for a construction corporation. We’re both covered in the headgear department.

  3. When you are too poor to afford meat helmets then it really is time for revolution.
    Too bad the bread bowl hasn’t made it to Yemen yet. And I don’t suppose the police are carrying baguette truncheons.

    1. Just letting you know you have another adoring fan. I’ve now had that stuck in my head for the last few minutes.

  4. Not to diminish on what’s going on in Egypt, but a little attention should perhaps be paid to events in Yemen, Jordan, and Algeria over the last few days. No matter the outcome of today’s huge protest in Cairo, these revolutions are only just getting started.

  5. “Honey, I know you want a divorce. Here’s my compromise: when I die, I won’t mind if you remarry.” #Mubarakstrategy

  6. I have a question; if all these demonstrations lead to overthrowing the governments of their respective countries – will women all of a sudden get human rights? There was a story a few days ago about a female reported (I think?) who remarked on how much less groping there was as she walked through the crowds in Cairo.

    1. I have a question; if all these demonstrations lead to overthrowing the governments of their respective countries – will women all of a sudden get human rights?

      Why yes! Also, everyone will get a pony.

      1. Yeah you’re right everyone ought to go home, nor ever fight against tyranny: because you just don’t know what may happen. Way to be rule by fear of the future.

        Are you really trying to say that woman’s rights may only be secured and protected by a Torture State?

        Fear Uncertainty Doubt

        jgs is spreading it

        1. Are you really trying to say that woman’s rights may only be secured and protected by a Torture State?

          Only in your fevered imagination.

          Go back and read the post you replied to. Read the words. Think about them. Try not to bring your own baggage to the party. Then play again.

          (FWIW the motives you impute to me are more-or-less diametrically opposite to my actual positions. To the extent that it’s virtually impossible for me to read your post without laughing. Or maybe I’m just sarcasm-challenged?)

    2. Women in Egypt have human rights. Any unwanted touching is illegal in Egypt. In fact, if a woman reported it to the police (or any guy that happened to be near her) the groper probably would have gotten his butt kicked right there in the street. The majority of Egyptian men are quite chivalrous, and would stand up for a woman as if she was his own mother/sister/wife.

      These things don’t happen because of a lack of rights…they happen because some guys are creepy perverts. That article about the groping was an exaggeration of the truth. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen (I’m sure it can happen anywhere in the world), but it’s never happened to me, my sister, my mother, or any of my female friends/family members, in Cairo or anywhere else in Egypt.

    1. As a shield against rocks falling from the sky, which are thrown up there by the “other side”.

      At least, that’s the scoop with the Egyptians – I’m not up on what’s happening in Yemen.

  7. It’s a trivialization of a man fighting for freedom without getting his head broke open, but it just reminds me of an RPG’s low level armour. Better defense than raggedy felt but not quite as good as cheese rind.

  8. Weirdly, Egyptian State Television has broadcast an telephone interview with someone who purports to be an organizer of the protests: that person claimed that Facebook, Freedom House in the USA, Israel and the Muslim Brotherhood are the jointly organizing this revolution.


    Nevertheless, Al-Jazeera has put other international news orgs to shame with their extensive coverage of these momentous events.

    1. The sermons to the protesters have stated that this is neither an ideological nor a religious revolution, and that the protesters’ goal is for political prisoners to be released, for the Government to resign, and for amendments to the Constitution: and they have been asking peacefully.

      What has been the Regime’s response?

      Violent counter-revolution.

      So the protesting crowds are now bigger than ever: and they have already shown that they will exercise their right to self-defense if attacked.

  9. Is it maybe a Princess Leia reference?

    I mean it kind of works. Plucky rebels, Mubarak as Vader. Kind of.

  10. This above all must be made clear to Americans: people from all walks of life, regardless of age, status, sex or religion, are participating in these protests against the Government.

    This is the Egyptian people who are protesting. There is none other.

    1. that is what brings me hope: everyday all-walks-of-life egyptians are pressing this forwards, not exclusively radicals, anti-west protesters, or religiously-motivated “islamists.”

      folks, in larger measure, like we are.

  11. I thought part of the reason for the protests was about the high cost of food. Maybe he’s bringing his demonstration pieces with him.

  12. Oooh, a fun new meme is born!

    “I have no idea what you’re talking about, so here’s a picture of an Egyptian with bread taped to his head.”

  13. Stay tuned for new announcement from US propaganda clowns : The “stealth Jihadists” are disguising themselves as FOOD now. Don’t be fooled !

    God bless these people, it’s a lesson in courage.

  14. Yes, cost of food among other things.

    “Global Food Prices Hit All-Time High As Violence Erupts In Yemen. Adding one more brick to the wall, world food prices have hit a new all-time high in January, according to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Along with crude oil’s surge past $100 a barrel thanks to civil unrest and violence in the streets of Egypt, and Cyclone Yasi tightening the supplies of hard commodities, the global economy will have to face increased inflationary pressures and the possibility of civil unrest amongst the world’s poor.” — Forbes, Feb 3rd,2011

    I’m not thinking this is funny or the beginning of “a fun new meme”. These people are suffering and not to be rude, but I feel embarrassed by some of the responses.

  15. While I’m absolutely for the overthrow of tyranny and wish the people of Egypt, Yemen, Jordan, and Algeria the best… this is an inherently ridiculous photo and laughing at it does not make one a racist or a Mubarak supporter.

    I find it extremely unlikely that bread is being used as protective headgear — there are many other household objects that one could tape to one’s head that would be more effective — and more likely that it’s some kind of pun.

    Alternately, this man is a goofball trying to stay sane in a crazy situation.

  16. Few know that during the American Revolution, the Founding Fathers wore loaves of bread on their heads. Some thought it was a political statement, and others a way of recognizing each other. The truth was they lost a bet with some Loyalists.

  17. I heard he’s protesting the tyranny of BoingBoing commenters insisting everyone talk only about Egypt.

  18. Ignoring the translation issues with this image there is a story about this for which I’d like to know more.

    The other story I am interested in is the allegation I have heard in my classroom for instance that wikileaks leaking of documents produced by the US that describe Mubarak’s corruption, other region leaders, has played a role in this widespread phenomenon in the Arab world. To anyone’s knowledge is this rooted in some degree of fact?

    Also I’m not sure which Americans Ugly Canuck is trying to convince about the purity of the Egyptian revolutions as not being lead by a specific ideology. It seems I am already at least aware as he is on this account.

    1. Hold on there – I was simply repeating what the protesters had said in their speeches, as reported by Al-Jazeera.

      I don’t know anything about the revolutionat ries ecxcept that they are anti-torture, anti-repression, and that they were non-violent until attacked.

      What is happening in Egypt is the Egyptian’s business: but I’m on the side of the obvious
      majority of Egyptians trying to remove a non-elected Government, one which uses torture and violence to repress political dissent, no less.

      Why shouldn’t I be?

      It rather seems to me that North American media is treating this revolution against Governmental torture and tyranny as something to be feared.

      What the hell?

  19. Symbolism, comedy, or insanity. I think most protests would benefit from a little intentional absurdity.

  20. I think we’d be fools not to consider wrybread’s insight on baked goods headgear. Me, I thought it might be the Egyptian version of the beer can hat.

  21. This is likely a protest over the rising cost of food VS horrible economic conditions.

    Food commodities have gone up 17% this year. The average annual wage of someone in Egypt is just over 2000$.

    El Presidante and Family are estimated to be worth 80+ BILLION.

    If this was my country, I might be strapping bread to my head as well.

  22. If you can use the bread in Yemen for a helmet I think I’ll skip the dinner rolls. I don’t need another crown on my teeth.

  23. Ah here we are: Coptic Chritians taking a large part in these protests, in Alexandria.

    The Coptic Christians are forming linked-arm “human chains” around those Muslim protesters who have stopped to pray for friday prayers, to forestall any attacked by the Government’s forces upon them while they pray.

    For this and other stories from the Egyptian Revolution:

  24. I think the intent is partially protective headgear. Maybe Super Bowl players/spectators could wear these on Sunday in solidarity.

    If I had a bag of bagels and concrete chunks were flying, I might do the same.

  25. This above all must be made clear to Americans: people from all walks of life, regardless of age, status, sex or religion, are participating in these protests against the Government.

    This is the Egyptian people who are protesting. There is none other.

    Why do people keep making this statement over and over? Is there some group in the US that is claiming responsibility for these protests that I haven’t seen?

    I mean sure people in the first couple days liked to call it the Twitter revolution or the Al Jazeera revolution, but I don’t think they literally meant that either one *caused* it but only facilitated the same way a cell phone does.

    1. The reason people keep emphasizing the broad base of this movement is that there are some in the US (on the Right) who insist that the protests are some operation of the Muslim Brotherhood or whoever, intent on turning Egypt into a clone of Iran circa 1979. That is the current trope.

  26. High food prices are contributing to the mideast unrest at the moment. A combination of high oil prices, crazy climate change, and US investors inflating the cost of commodities has resulted in high prices. I doubt Mr. Bread’s headgear is as random as it seems.

  27. The Internet was supposed to bring humanity together, fostering mutual understanding. Some days that happens a little bit. Other days a guy festoons his noggin with baked goods and I have no frikkin reason why.

  28. It’s obviously a protest about the public not getting enough food//living in poverty, while the government//dictator//who ever the hell is in charge, is feasting. It sort of reminds me of “Let them eat cake.”.. I don’t know. It’s sad.): The world has enough resources to be more then enough for everyone, yet there are such wide spread differences among places in poverty. Even in the U.S. people are starving, but for some reason we always get the ads on the television showing the little kids in Africa starving.
    I might only be fourteen.. But to me this message is spoken crystal clear.

  29. I can’t link to it, but I caught a video bite on CNN that showed a guy wearing a “sailor’s hat” made from a newspaper.

    Perhaps the frivolity is helping to keep people sane after a week of no work, no school, little access to cash and food sources, and a bunch of pro-government thugs trying to do them grave harm?

  30. re: “Even in the U.S. people are starving,”

    While I am sure there are those who go hungry, we have a lot of food programs set up. I remember eating gov. cheese.

    As for Africa, we give a lot of aid, but a lot of time the gov. or militia take most of it and it doesn’t get to where it needs to be.

    Of course we can’t just keep sending aid, what they need is a 2nd Green Revolution and sustainable farming in Africa.

  31. I wonder if any protesters in egypt are studying the 1986 people power revolution in the Philippines and the leader Cory Aquino. Would be nice for a few posters with Cory Aquino’s picture on it to be seen on the news

  32. he needs to hook up with seananners minecraft character and use the butter shoes on his bread head helmet. hmmm toast!

  33. Crusty kind of guy, isn’t he? Is he hoping a cute woman will walk up to him and “Oh, nice buns!” or is he just loafing around? Although with all the noise from the protest, I think he’ll barley hear her ….

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