Thursday, June 30, 2005

Strange Day

Its been a really strange day. I finally had my economics exam (stupid pre-reqs) thank god its over. I woke up on time, without an alarm, to make it to the exam. Considering that it was an 8:30 exam, this is a major achievement for me. The exam, 60 MCQs in 2 hours, was not that bad. For some reason, a good number of my answers were option C. Either I am going to ace it or go down in flames. Further on, I finished my exam and looked at the watch 10:10 how often does that happen. 10:10 exact!! I went out to grab a cup of coffee and the local Tim Hortons was closed – CLOSED. Timmy’s is never closed at this time. I had coffee yesterday at noon there and its just 10:30 right now.

With a heavy head and a body yearning for caffeine I got back home to a message from an ex-boss about a future opportunity. Awesome!! I turn on the computer to email him lo and behold, there’s a friend online from Pakistan – the internet is supposed to be down there these days, yet she’s online. While I am splitting time between email and chat another friend logs on and tell me that one of my best friends had a baby boy today!! WOW !!

There’s thunder, for real, and really strong winds start blowing in the background. RAIN, dancing with the gushes of wind, takes over the neighborhood. And soon enough, as though paying tribute to Karachi, there’s a power failure. Its quarter past one now. I am sitting in the dark, sucking on ol’ lappies battery, typing this and listening to Nusrat. The song playing is Gorakh Dhunda – ironic, isn’t it!!

(lights were out till almost 2:30 in the afternoon)

Sunday, June 26, 2005

I Have Had It

I am sick of reading the same old news about Pakistan. I really am, I go through the Dawn website, I tune into Geo, I read the Friday times and since the past 10 years, there hasnt been any development. Whats happening, where are things going wrong? why are people quiet??? It really does bother me.
Surly some of you may point to some massive beautification project in Lahore or some grand new hotel in Islamabad, some new flyovers and underground trains in the making for Karachi or even the new Gwadar port but are these really indicators of social development?
Ok, then what about the fact mosques are no longer secure, people cant pray without the fear of being blown to bits by a deranged fundo who is giving up his life "in the name of Allah", since the past few years, the politicians have been debating about wether the president "sheds his uniform" or not, is that what tax payers are paying these guys for, debating about appearances and perceptions and power play instead of development. You must be thinking, who pays taxes nowadays, well guess what, the middle class does. They dont have the privelege to control taxes, its deducted automaticaly from their salaries.
People who are claiming to be flag bearers of religion dont even allow establishment of schools in their own villages, the people in the rural areas have no hope for the future and urbanites are scared shitless to take out their cellphone in a public place lest someone snatch it from them at gun point.

Social Development, RIGHT!

Then theres the whole issue of the high level of despeartion in a male-dominated conservative society where every other thing is a taboo. Women suffer. Directly or indirectly, physically or emotionally, at times by their families, at times by their co-workers, at times by that random dude in the street who keeps eyeing them with perverted fantasies. Is that what these fundo mullahs call a righteous society? They themselves are pervs of the higest order.

I say we have become a nation of the emotionally dead. Both you and me, those within and those outside of the country, the politicians and the people. We have become a nation of selfish cliques. With every clique having disparate visions and diverging goals. This has a resulted in two things, the huge gap between the various cadres of the society and a high level of intolerance. People, cliques, believe in taking decisions beneficial to themselves as opposed to the entirety of the nation. We dont tolerate each other, we kill, we fight, we feud. We jump on bandwagons that ultimately destroy us. Some take pride in their ethnic identiities while other have a chin up in whims of religious superiority.

Its not the way it was supposed to be. Its time we made a difference, its time our goals converged, its time we break out of the cliques. Its time that people dont get shot on the newly built flyovers. Its time that friends could walk on the streets at wee hours of night without any fear. Its time to embrace social tolerance. Its time to realize the difference between those who claim they are right and those who really are. Its time for a change, its for a turnaround, its time for everyone to come together, have a single voice and move our beloved nation forward.

We can do it, if we want!

Saturday, June 25, 2005

The "Durderian" Philosophy

Life, as we see it, is not what it seems. Our actions are a reflection of the deep thoughts that engulf our brain. Its a twisted world out there, if you look at the big picture, there are no winners, there are no loosers. There are just unique amalgamations of cell and biogenetic processes that are searching for a means to fill the gap that exists between a satisfied mind and a satisfied soul.
We have become people who are slaves to the invisible. We are slaves of what we think we own. We buy our masters, we choose our rulers, we claim to look beyond the imminent but we cant even see what surronds our immediate existence. We cant look far, we cant look near, we only see illusions that make us feel that there is no gap between what we have and what we want to be.
Satisfaction is a temporal concept to us, there is no lasting satisfaction. This leads us to believe that nothing lasts forever, emotions, relations and creations. Change dictates our motives, we seek change, we say its what we need. We need it because our search is ever continuing, we are looking for something that we arent sure of, we cant see what we really need, we cant see the cause, we are chasing symptoms. We are not nipping the roots but triming the leaves.
We have become usable and reusable. We pick, we eat, we chew, we enjoy, we spit, we stomp, we toss and walk on. We dont buy products, we buy happiness, but we also know that happiness can not be bought, then what are we really buying? A jolt just to keep the spirit alive and hopeful? A means to justify our existence?
And then we fear the ultimate outcome. Death. We seek change, yet we cant find comfort in the ultimate change. We want to be different and yet keep the same frames of reference. The problem lies not in the mind, not in the heart but in the soul. The soul feeds heart and trains the mind. We have, at some point, sold or souls, of our own accord or not, that is a sepearate question. But what prevails is the fact that our hearts and mind are not in our control. We have lost the capability to comprehend in a beneficial manner. Beneficial to us, to those around us, and to those around those around us. We make claims of being a developed society yet arent we all just a gathering of individuals striving to go one up on each other, gain an advantage, one benefit and move up? Up what, you ask? Well, you tell me, since you want to go up and so does everyone else, but up what? up where?
Why can there not be an equilibrium. Why cant we all step back, see the big picture, realize the existence of the ultimate end, get over our fancy fears that are just a mutilated creation of our minds which get sicker by the day. Why dont we help each other in achieving a common level, why dont we seek permanent solutions to fill the gaps, why dont we all, as a group, think and seek to regain the control that we have lost. Its about time that you wake up and smell the coffee.

"This is your life and it's ending, one minute at a time."
- Tyler Durden

Friday, June 24, 2005

The Chinese Are Taking Over The World

I usally dont blog about the world of business but this just blew me away. The chinese are building up on their economoc ammo. Last year they acquired one of the major Canadian mining company, Noranda, then Lenovo, a chinese computer manufacturer, bought IBM's PC business. We were all sort of surprised. IBM's PC business wasnt doing that great and it was susceptible to take over - but a Chinses company, that was beyond the realms of imagination for some us.
Now, theres an another twist, Unocal, a 100 year old upstream oil exploration company is facing a takeover bid from CONOOC, China's third largest upstream company. The even more ironic aspect of this takeover battle is that CONOOC is rivaling a bid from Chevron, and who doesnt know Chevron!
You must either be going wow, or ok so whatever, the chinese are trying to buy out an oil company. Well hear this - Maytag the famous home appliance company is also facing a take over bid from another Chinese manufacturer, Haier. Those of you in Karachi might recall Haier as the cheap chinese telvesions that were promoted by displays at PSO pumps. Talk about BTL marketing.
Now the Maytag bid is peanuts as compared to the Unocal one ($2.1BN vs. $18.5BN) but the physcological impact is huge.

The chinese, my friends, are taking over the world and you heard it first, on this blog !! :P

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Along Came Julian ...

That's Julian ... Posted by Hello
I have been meaning to tell this story for a while but, couldn't find the time and then the picture etc, finally its all together. So that's Julian. Julian has a very unusual story. A month or so ago, when school started, Julian started hanging around my friends Jaime and Ryan's (or as we call them, The Murphy Twins) place. Being the animal lovers that they they would occasionally leave some milk water bread and at times pastrami and other meats for Julian. They suspected that Julian, who was at that point an unnamed cat (better known as The Cat), was abandoned by one of their neighbours who had gone home for the summers. The Cat was domesticated enough to prove that she surely wasnt a stray. So that's how things would go, The Cat would show up get some pity food and walk away.
Then one wednesday night, the twins were walking back home when they saw Julian (who had been christened by this time)roaming around the schools vicinity. It seemed Julian was looking for them since it saw them and ran straight up to them. Julian was shivering, Julian seemed unfed, Julian seemed to be shaken. The twins took Julian home, put on the sofa and covered it with a small towel to keep it warm. A little while later, Ryan decided to check on Julian. He was shocked and yelled out to Jaime " Julian is shitting its guts out."
No, it wasnt guts, it was actually the early stages of the miracle of kitten birth. What ryan had seen was kitty placenta. Julian had three kitten that night on the twin's fouton. They have now adopted Julian and her trio for another 4 weeks so that the kids can grow up. After that, Julian and the trio are off to a farm.
The picture up there, is from last night. The twins are in TO and I am looking after Julian and the Trio. So I decided to catch a snap while while Julan enjoys her special strentgh Whiskas milk.
Now is that a cool story or what??

Friday, June 10, 2005

Random Word of the Day

Being in a primarily english speaking environment where even the desis either speak in english or the anglify the mother tounge, its easy to forget some words. And then, at times like this, the words suddenly pop back into the head, out of the blue.
The one word that came to my mind today was "Jamal Ghota" - - - - - - no i am not suffering from constepation, but for some strange reason, i found myself thinking jamal ghota - and then like looking through a dictionary, my mind took a quick run down the history of the various comical conversations that me and friends would have with regards to Jamal Gotha.
From a friends disgusting prank that involved Jamal Gotha, to the word being used to describe the diatribe of one person in my undergrad class.

Hence, the random word of the day is JAMAL GHOTA

PS: for those of you who dont know, Jamal Ghota is a herbal laxative.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Harleys Rock

We had representative come in from Harley Davidson Motorcycles to speak to us in the advertising class. As anticipated he rode on his Harley. Its a mean beast - the sound the feel the look - its a must have.
Lifes goal # 53: Own a harley before I turn 40

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Yadoon Mein Meri Aati Ho Kiyoon ?

I never thought that years and years after being away for that someone who touched me immensly, I would be talking about that person But you know how sometimes, somethings happens that all of a sudden make your mind travel to that point in time where things went wrong and you think, what would it have been like had things worked out - had you not been the way you were had i not been the way i was. Had I been the way I am now and you the way you are. I guess its true that distance makes the heart grow fonder, but what makes more sense is that humans desire the most of what they cant have.

At this point, 3:37 Am on a friday night, I am much the same. Listening to VS's unreleased Ab Ho Ga Kiya and going over the line "Yaadein teri kiyoon aati hain" and absolutely ignoring the dame that i met out on town this night and just imaging how great it could have been. Ah the level of curisotiy and the fact that at some point in my life, I actually lost bad, makes me realize the essence of existence and the presence of an ominpotent being that guides us all.

Cherish what you have!