لا تشارك ابو دوايه ولا اللى حزامه خيط
La tesharek abu dawaya wala elli hezamu kheit
Translation: Don’t go into business with someone who owns a pipe or whose belt is threadbare.
Meaning: Those who smoke narcotics and those who don’t own strong belts to help them carry heavy weight are unreliable, so don’t go into business with them. This saying, now outdated, contains archaic words and references that may make it hard for the contemporary listener to understand. "Dawaya" is the clay bowl at the end of a smoking pipe, and belts used to carry heavy weights, although still in use, are less common now than was the case in pre-industrial societies.
Source: Egyptian Proverbs, (Al-Ahram Center for Translation and Publishing, 1986) by Ahmed Taymour Pasha
Translated by: Nabil Shawkat