Stories published in March, 2013

Lionel Messi will always win over Cristiano Ronaldo

One of humanity’s greatest tragedies is our failure to remember what was. I say this while acknowledging the dynamics of an ever changing and evolving world that spares no second thoughts at leaving irrelevant ideology behind. Any sports writer worth his salt has, at one point or another, faced the behemoth task that is defining greatness. The generic basis eludes most, so you’ll forgive my candid snickering at those who believe they have witnessed its peak. (I refer to a blog post that previously appeared in this forum.) Ronaldo versus Messi is truly an argument for the ages. Yet have we forgotten all ...

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Na Kaho Tum Mere Nahin: Another drama serial for an unhappy wife

Na Kaho Tum Mere Nahin (NKTMN) – a drama serial on Hum TV that aired its last episode in the beginning of March – was a clichéd story of marital infidelity and domestic problems. The plot was straight forward – a husband and a wife and their two children live a peaceful life in a blissful house until they come under buri nazar ( the evil eye). The story revolves around the happy couple Mehreen (Saba Qamar) and Meerab’s (Ahsan Khan) lives. Meerab earns a humble living and Mehreen tries her best to make do with his meager salary to maintain a happy home. (Meerab and Mehreen.) Then ...

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They killed my chacha, Sibte Jafar, but they cannot kill his memory

In my 25 years of life, I have met three kinds of geniuses. First; the genius who is inaccessible. He is always busy, forever surrounded by people. With so much recognition and power, he becomes vulnerable and often, succumbs to worldly pressures and expectations. Second; the genius who is either a good orator, a good writer or a good thinker – not perhaps an all-rounder. He may even be accessible. The third kind of genius is my chacha (uncle). Strangely, he was like none other; always accessible, forever humble and eternally ready to serve humanity. He was my answer to absolutely any and every ...

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Iraq 10 years on: Blair and Bush have blood on their hands

When former British Prime Minister Tony Blair proudly proclaimed on BBC News that he had “no regrets” about the war in Iraq 10 years on, I was so disgusted, I had to switch the television off and try to calm myself down. In these 10 years, over 600,000 civilians have been killed, a civil war ensues and no so-called weapons of mass destruction (WMD) were ever found. I must highlight that people died on both sides. Despite whatever opinion we may have of US troops, 4,488 American soldiers and marines were killed and thousands were left with severe disabilities in ...

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The return of Musharraf

General (retd) Pervez Musharraf is all set to return to Pakistan by March 24. Listening to the numerous interviews being broadcast on Pakistani channels, one gets the impression that he fervently believes he will don his shining armour, mount his white steed and ride into the country to save it. However, does he ever once pause in his righteous declarations to ask the question: does Pakistan want him back? When Musharraf left Pakistan, it was considered a win for the democratic forces in the country, a country stunned and reeling from his draconian measures. The NRO and the suspension of the chief ...

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Someone else’s daughter

My daughter is a young lady now, A ‘woman of the time’, Geared up to conquer the world.   With all the support and confidence, Of her family, And above all, Her father, Behind her.   Her questions have also matured, She is perplexed to see, My diplomas and degrees, Talent and dreams, Gathering dust in musty, dog-eared folders, Packed away in dusty, yellowing, cardboard boxes; A graveyard of evidence, That I, too, was a woman of my time.   She is confused at my non-existent existence, An email-less, Facebook-less, cell-phone-less, near-servile existence.   ‘My father is the best man in the world’, She proclaims proudly, Then questions, The different boundaries, That define the identities, Of two women, In the same house.   I know I can put an ...

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When in China, wear Hello Kitty and eat snakes

China reeks of bureaucracy and pork. Women are obsessed with Hello Kitty jackets and men with skinny jeans. They stare at you if don’t look like them, they stare at you if you don’t dress like them, they even stare at you if you think it’s still cold enough to wear a jacket – it’s March but, hey, mornings are cold! I am in a love-hate relationship with China, and by China I mean Mainland China, not Taiwan. Taiwan is, well, just Taiwan. They say that “Chinese queue up even to pee” – it’s true! There are long lines awaiting your presence everywhere you ...

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Afridi’s bringing boom boom back!

I started following cricket sixteen years ago when I was hardly five. It has been the only sport which has kept me so engrossed for such a long period of time. My passion for cricket was ignited by my love for Shahid Afridi. My liking for all other sports fizzles out after a certain period of time, but cricket, for certain remains a sport which will continue to be a craze for me for the better part of my life. In my sixteen years of watching cricket, I have seen some of the greatest teams play and witnessed some of the ...

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We have no jobs because the state has no money

‘Pakistan is in economic dire straits!’ I hear this statement all the time. All sorts of conversations, political and otherwise, agree that the economic condition of Pakistan has become worse, but here we are still surviving and still managing. So, how messed up is our economy exactly? Read below to find out! 1. Our budget deficit Our budget deficit – that is the difference between what we have and what we spend – stands at 8.5%, when it should be close to about 4%. Simply put, we are spending way more than we are earning and because of this, we end up borrowing. When the government borrows money, it is ...

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Are you a Pakistani extremist?

Hi everyone, it’s been ages! I was recently looking through my old blog posts and reminiscing about all the fun that was had with my quizzes for Pakistanis: What kind of Pakistani life do you lead? And: The desi-elite political identity quiz Given how 2013 has kicked off with more terrorism and extremism-related incidents than any year I can remember in my short lifespan, I think now would be the right time to find out how infected we each are with the ‘extremism’ virus on a personal level. Take the quiz below! Q1: The Christian neighbourhood next to you has been burnt down to the ground ...

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