Stories about happy

I am stationary, and Karachi is movement

Day 1 If I stared at the world around me, a few things would stare back. The clouds dancing in the iridescently blue sky, the sun shining in its eternal glow; maybe even the trees that stood amidst the streets of Karachi. The people are the only ones that won’t stare back. I long for the day where I can look at a person, and they’ll look back and we’ll have had a conversation; not with our lips, but with our eyes. It seems as if everyone is running somewhere. My mother is running to Khattak. My brother is running at ...

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Moving towards a trans-friendly Pakistan, finally

What a feeling it is when you just be yourself without having to be self-conscious about it. There’s not an iota of concern there. “I am who I am, I wear whatever I please and I express myself however I chose to,” thinks the person. I am not going to be shamed or persecuted by anyone, or entertain any fears about that happening. For many, a transgender, man or woman, it is but an idealised notion that is not always realised but is perhaps trending in the right direction now. In Peshawar, Pakistan, there was a birthday party for a 40-year-old transgender woman by the ...

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The demons on my stage

I was happy, content and so engrossed in the performance that the world ceased to exist for a few moments and then, suddenly, the whole act collapsed right in front of me. The performance ended abruptly. The audience didn’t even get a chance to applaud but I could hear a few startled gasps. People didn’t expect such a hurried finish. It wasn’t just hurried, but sudden and shocking. I went outside to catch some fresh air, hoping and praying to return in a few minutes to experience a dramatic ending to the performance, but I was wrong… they left, never ...

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Is social media the new monster-in-law?

Up until a few years ago, we only had to deal with the ever-increasing benchmark set by the oldest female in the house, usually the mother(monster)-in-law. The vicious cycle of the saas bahu was a daily opera limited to the confines of respective households and, eventually, the daughter-in-law came to accept that she was ‘not good enough’. When Fariha cooked her umpteenth daig of biryani, this time to perfection, with the rice not sticking to each other like khichdi and the yellow masala gleaming like sunshine, at some level she hoped her mother-in-law would finally let out a whistle. Instead, her mother-in-law ignored looking her in the eye and ...

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Govinda giving us a ‘Happy Ending’

Saif Ali Khan’s re-entry was a success back in the early 2000s. The hero who had fallen flat in the 90s was seen in a completely new light in movies like Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein, Dil Chahta Hai, Hum Tum, Salam Namaste, Kal Ho Na Ho, Race and Love Aaj Kal etcetera. And in movies like Omkara and the likes, he overshadowed anyone else who may have been in the film with him.  Unfortunately, nowadays I feel Saif Ali Khan’s performance is a bleak reminder of the hero he was in the 90s – none of the movies he is doing have any nostalgic value or cinematic value nor ...

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Jailed by my own brother

I am a computer engineer who graduated from one of the best universities for computer sciences and IT in Pakistan. I was very happy when I graduated in 2012. My GPA was not perfect, but it was still good enough to get a job. I was so happy. I had so many dreams, ones that would make my single mother very proud. I dreamt of getting some respect in this society that had treated me as a ‘yateem’ (orphan) for far too long. I dreamt of buying expensive dresses, being free and finding my ‘Mr Right’. I had dreams of becoming so ...

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I am happy being single, don’t force me to mingle!

If you live in Pakistan, have completed your studies and gotten a job, then you may be one of those victims who are constantly pinched with that one hot question day and night, “When are you getting married?” Everyone wants to know the answer to this million dollar question, whether it’s your parents, siblings, grandparents or relatives. It looks as if everyone’s happiness depends on your marriage. Your 100-year-old granny will advise you, “Beta, jaldi se shaadi kar lo take main apni zindagi main tumhare sar pe sehra saja dekh sakun.” (Son, get married quickly so that I can see you getting married while ...

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Get well soon Edhi sahib, you are one in a million!

Dear Edhi sahib, As you lay in the Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation for your routine dialysis, we hear worrying news that you have been admitted in the ICU. Edhi sahib, I am very worried about your deteriorating health, as I assume every Pakistani is. I have been checking the news every hour to find out about your well-being. I wish you a speedy and a complete recovery. You are 86-years-old, we pray you live to be 186. While, like every Pakistani, I am praying for you, a part of me is covertly but awfully scared. What if… you…? I am not known to be an emotionally ...

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Do you have the ‘Naik Perveen Syndrome’?

My list of friends on Facebook has increased quite dramatically since I got married. I am ‘added as a friend’ on a constant basis by most of the married women I have ever interacted with in my ‘youth’ or pre-marital days. But sadly or gladly, this drama isn’t one with a happy ending. It is sweet of them to count me in as a new member of the ‘married club’; all of them believe to be a part of the ‘my-married-life-fan-club’. My timeline has also dramatically shifted from ‘political’ posts to random quotes shared by the ‘Islamic Wife Club’, ‘I Love My Husband’, ...

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Say no to dolphin shows in Pakistan

Imagine a seventeen-year-old, full of energy, vigour and liveliness, always ready to get up and do something. Now, imagine confining these young, vivacious teenagers to a closet and training them to perform and entertain an audience. Does that make sense? This is exactly what we do to dolphins. A dolphin is a mammal just like us and the brain activity of a mature dolphin is second only to humans. They love to swim at 140 nautical miles a day, they migrate in social groups known as pods, hunt for live fish and help each other nurse their young. Moreover, as most of us have ...

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