1. Dancing at the election parties of dubious Middle Eastern dictators
In my defence, at the time Bashar al-Assad was relatively benign, and Syria was the safest country in the region. Nobody knew that weak jawline and undefined chin were capable of so much evil.
Bashar’s face was plastered sky-high across every building. The beady eyes that seemed to express timidity rather than malevolence looked out from posters and flags unfurled by enthusiastic young men caught up in Bashar fervour, roaring around Damascus in the backs of trucks blasting out the al-Assad theme song (yes, he really did have one). The whole of Syria was dancing, drinking tea, and voting for the man whose name was the only one on the ballot.
I’ve since destroyed my “We Love You, Bashar” t-shirt.