Archive for August, 2008

Mania

Day 10,213 – Sunday – 09 Bhadra 1930 – 28 Shaban 1429 – 31 August 2008

Sundays. The one day in the week when after the excessive socializing, sleep deprivation and Saturdays one is given some peace and quiet. People who are not schizophrenic paranoid psychotics anyways. But, who am I to judge my own kind. For people in general, I have decided not to differentiate amongst the different kinds of people and be politically correct, Sundays are a great day. So are they for me.

Of course this includes eight hours of excessive Dilbert, obsessive compulsive overeating and a socially unacceptable quantity of sleep. If I dont control my mouth I will turn into a non baby Rhinoceros. Dont wish me luck, and please, please, please, please, dont hold your breath either.

Chaos

Day 10,212 – Saturday – 08 Bhadra 1930 – 26 Shaban 1429 – 30 August 2008

Yes, chaos. That is exactly what I experienced last night when I went out for food with my family. Coming from a middle class background and having lived on a civil servant’s salary we have all learnt to live sparingly. Food was something one ate at home. Except on very few occasions when one ate at a restaurant, with fresh napkins, and the forceful yet unrelenting resort to etiquette. I always used to think of restaurants as what heaven would be like. I have learnt that I was obviously wrong. Very wrong. Anyone who has been to Bar b que tonite will agree that if Heaven is anything similar to it then God is obviously having fun at our expense. I only hope that he is not. As usual, I have started to ramble, I shall return to the topic.

Due to these particular circumstances my family has no idea of how to behave in a restaurant. For starters there is not idea of how to give an order to the waiter. What you do is that once the waiter has arrived then anyone on the table who has not decided yet will ask the waiter to return in “five minutes”. If you are at any kind of a reasonable restaurant the waiter will come after five minutes; otherwise after much gesturing, shouting, poking, eye rolling and making obscene gestures you would be able to avail the services of a not-so-high-tip-getting-waiter. Once the waiter is at the table someone, anyone, anywhere, on the table will start to give his / her order. You will tell the waiter about your order for soup, main course, dessert and drinks along with any particulars for each item of food. Then you will become quiet. The ordering will go either clockwise or anticlockwise depending on who on the right or left of the first order starts to speak first, or louder. At the end of the order the person paying for the food, or the general leader of the group based on social situation or group structure will order appetizers. And that is it. Then the waiter will go.

There should be no excessive confusion on what to order. Unless there are dietary issues it does not matter if you have Mayo in your sandwich or not. There should be no interruption of other orders, the “Please make my steak medium well done” is not an adorable thing. Rather, when you say it, I want to poke my fork in your nose and see you bleed to death because I am giving my order now, and I will not be forced to live a life of miserable food because you could not make your brain work long or hard enough for it to churn out your choice of food from a menu which actually helped you select what you wanted to eat. That was incredibly vicious and virulent. I guess the old Jalal is coming back.

Thank God.

Actually, saying that this whole restaurant order thing if my family issue would be wrong. It is representative of Pakistanis’ lack of clarity of thought and ability to do simply tasks without adding a lot of confusion and excessive ignorance, interruptions and stupidity to the process. Something that I have grown to love. The social conduct of a Pakistani group is always an amazing experience. Usually from a distance.

So there it was. In other news, my cufflinks broke. They just clean broke off and I had to walk about my office with my sleeves all rolled up. Get so very turned on by guys who have their sleeves rolled up and their tie loosened. So hot!

Faraz

Day 10,207 – Monday – 03 Bhadra 1930 – 22 Shaban 1429 – 25 August 2008

Today, a great light has been lost forever. Ahmed Faraz. A great poet of Urdu. A great man.

Urdu, our society, our culture, our civilization and our people have lost a great presence. The loss can not be described in words.

The ever resounding noise in the background, Keht ur Rijaal, intensifies.

apnay maghmoom kivaron ko muqaffal kar lo

ab yahan koi naheen, koi naheen, aaye ga

But most of all, it was our love for him that will be lost, the love based on his contribution,

aur faraz chahiyen kitnee muhabbatain tujhe

maaon nay teray naam par bachon kay naam rakh diyay

We have lost a great man today, it is very unfortunate that in our day and age no others take the place of the ones lost.

We hope, we hope to see another Faraz, another Faiz, another great poet. We hope.

Change

Day 10,205 – Saturday – 01 Bhadra 1930 – 19 Shaban 1429 – 23 August 2008

Fucking internet connection fuck up. This is the seventh post in the past month that has gotten fucked up because of my fucking internet. Long pause with a reasonable amount of stress release and anger at my internet connection. Back to normal. Again. I love the sudden explosions of anger at minute things that I just can not control. The sudden and complete abandon to my feelings is very liberating.

And as I sit here musing about my personal life, my country hurtles headlong into a tunnel with no conception of where it may lead. The 14th of August came and went, and there seems to be nothing outwardly exciting to celebrate. Musharraf resigned; albeit I support the concept of democracy but a strong President would have been a good influence; and we must remember that his legacy is not solely negative. The PPP has nominated Zardari for President, need anyone say any more. The NRO has absolved our politicians of all sins, disgusting. The PMLN is bent upon making governance absolutely impossible. The MQM has nominated Zardari as the Presidential candidate, always a politically astute party with a lot of integrity. The PMLQ has nominated it’s own Presidential candidate. The restoration of the Judiciary is a complete bone of contention that might rip the coalition apart. Violent suicide bombings by the Taliban in Pakistani cities have had a massive toll on citizen’s lives and their conceptions of safety. All I can say is that, more our of hope than experience, I still believe that somehow this will get resolved and good things will happen. Let the dust settle.