And don’t tell me it never happened

AND DON’T TELL ME IT NEVER HAPPENED. REMEMBER WHEN…..

1. You stared at a digital watch continuously in the last minute of the hour to catch the moment when all numbers changed at once?

2. You tried to control your pee and succeeded for hours, only to fail seconds before you got your pants off?

3. The cop signaled to the car behind you or right in front of you to stop and your heart sank, even though you weren’t doing anything wrong?

4. Your wife or parents or someone called and asked where you were, and you spontaneously lied, without any reason at all?

5. You met someone and couldn’t remember his name and kept making lame efforts to get him to tell it, like ‘how do you spell your name?’

6. You nodded your head when asked if you knew about something even when you had no idea what it was?

7. You told a story claiming it happened to someone you know, when actually you had just heard it from someone who claimed it had happened to someone he/she knew?

8. You laughed at a joke or a witty remark hiding the fact that you did not get it?

9. You did not recognize the voice on the phone but pretended that you did, all the while trying to recall the name?

10. You pressed ‘like’ on a status not because you liked it, but because you wanted people to see that you liked such stuff?

Shuntoo on Knowledge

“I know.” I said.

“That’s an arrogant statement bacchay! I think you people either have a really high opinion of yourselves or you don’t know what knowledge means.” Shuntoo said.

“Enlighten me then, O Master!” I said sarcastically. “Please define the concept for me.”

“Not my job. That is not a very difficult task. Find out the meaning of words you so conveniently use. Or are you too lethargic for that?”

“But at least give me a clue.” I persisted.

“Well, I will say this much for your benefit. Knowledge is a fact that is true and you believe it to be true and your belief is not based on what you heard on Geo, Dunya or some other channel and your belief will not change even if somebody posts on facebook that it is wrong.” He said and before I could reply, he got up, lit a cigarette and left.

Conspiracies

People have always been fond of a little conspiracy and a little imagination and it is amazing to see the kind of things they come up with. I am sure you have all heard stuff like

1. The US government planned and executed the 9/11 attacks itself.

2. No person called Osama Bin Laden ever existed.

3. Asif Ali Zardari had Benazir Bhutto killed.

4. The world is going to end in December (of every year).

5. Aliens from other planets have visited the Earth many times.

6. It is possible to turn lead into gold.

7. The CIA has future world maps in which Pakistan does not exist.

8. Dengue is the result of chemical warfare by the Jews and America.

9. Suicide bombers will be welcomed by numerous Hurs in paradise and all those who condemn them will rot in hell.

10. All elections in Pakistan and maybe the world are rigged by intelligence agencies.

I laugh like crazy when I think about the things people come up with, and I am scared shitless whenever I realize that I have absolutely no evidence to prove that any of these theories is not actually true. Huh?

I heard this story from a friend

I heard this story from a friend recently, and thought I must share it

‘A boy was standing in front of a hospital with his friends when an ambulance arrived and the hospital staff took a young girl out of the ambulance and into the hospital. The girl had been badly injured in an accident. As she was being carried inside, the boy overheard that she desperately need A-ve blood, which was extremely rare. The boy ran inside and told the doctor that he his blood group was A -ve. An hour later, the boy was back outside after donating blood for the girl.

When his friends asked him why he had donated blood to a girl he didn’t even know, he replied, “Yaar! Did you see the girl? She was a real piece; so I thought what better chance could I have with her than having saved her life. Now just wait till she gets well and is told that I was the hero who gave her my blood. Cool na?” The friends were impressed.

When the boy got home that evening, his father said, “Hey! I heard you’ve been giving a lot of blood shlood to young girls!” He replied with a serious expression. “O that! Actually, dad, the girl had lost a lot of blood, her life was in danger. And you know how rare A-ve blood group is! I thought that if I didn’t step up, she might not be able to get the blood in time. Since God had put this rare group of blood in my veins, I considered it my moral duty to help.” His father looked amused and a little perplexed; “But your friend was telling me that you gave blood because the girl was a real piece and that you were actually helping her to become a hero in her eyes so that you could have a chance with here later.”

“O come on Dad!” the boy said, “I had to tell such a story to my friends. If I had told them that I was doing it because it was my moral duty, they would have made fun of me for the rest of my life.” Dad was satisfied.

The next day, as he entered college, one of his friends said, “Hey, hero! I met your dad last night. Did you tell him that you gave blood to that girl because you thought it was a moral obligation or something?” “O come on yaar!” the boy replied, “I had to tell such a story to dad. If I had told him that I had helped the girl cos she was a tota, he would’ve killed me.” The friend was satisfied.

That evening, when the boy was alone in his room, he just could not decide why he had donated blood. He was totally confused.’

Moral of the story? Well, I guess most of the time, if not all the time, we are not sure why we do what we do. Our reasons depend on who’s asking and our brain simply comes up with the logic that would satisfy the inquirer. We act, speak and rationalize our life according to who is watching, listening or asking. Maybe that’s why people get really uncomfortable when a video camera is recording their words and actions. They don’t know who their audience would be, so they don’t know how to act or what to say.

The scariest part? Even when we are alone, we don’t really know why we did what we did. When we ask ourselves, our brain again comes up with an explanation that would satisfy the inquirer, ourselves. And even more confusing is that once we give such answers to a couple of people, we feel the urge to stick to them since we have already committed to them and the chances of getting to the bottom of things become even less.

Another example. Why did I write this? Why, of course because I want to contribute to the world and share whatever useful things I hear with others. It is sort of a moral obligation. Or so my brain tells me!

Just when I was beginning to

1. Enjoy the cool air from my air-conditioner, it was time for load shedding again.

2. Relax and blame all my problems on God and other people, God sent other people who helped solve my problems.

3. Go down the depression lane thinking that my life was less than I deserved, my life appeared in front of me and showed me that it was actually much more, that I hadn’t done anything to deserve all the blessings I had.

4. Celebrate the respite from PPP, I saw the budget speech.

5. Think that Pakistanis cannot be any worse than what they are, I saw our cricket team’s performance.

6. Give a speech on how bright our future looked, a teenager threw his coke bottle on the road without even thinking twice.

7. Explain to him that Muslims are misunderstood, a bearded fellow stopped us and told him that wearing shorts was a huge sin.

8. Motivate a friend to aim higher, look beyond the ordinary and fulfill his dreams, his wife called and asked him to get home early and bring a pack of diapers and a dozen eggs.

9. Believe that Sahir Lodhi was the most intolerable thing on TV, I saw Maya Khan.

10. Think that the 10 things syndrome was over, this idea came from nowhere.

Giving meaning to life

Have you ever felt that your life does not have any purpose? You have? So have I. And then I realized that the fault does not lie with life. It lies with me. It is my responsibility to give my life meaning; and if I have not been able to do that satisfactorily, I thank God that I still have some life left. I can still make it meaningful. So, you have four choices. Keep looking for a meaning, keep waiting for the meaning to reveal itself, keep trying to give meaning to life, or do all three; that is, keep trying to make your existence meaningful while keeping an eye out for the truth to reveal itself. Take your pick.

To Err is human

To err is human. And I see people around me who are too scared to err, too apologetic of their humanness. Sometimes I feel we live in the middle of clowns and jokers. All our jokes revolve around someone’s stupidity, and we try to point out and laugh at every mistake, every slip, every error. That’s how we survive. Our survival is based on a two-point agenda. Look for opportunities to make fun of others. And try to avoid being made fun of by others.

Entrenched in this existence where every day is a potential disaster where we could be the butt of jokes, we try to be as similar to everyone else as we can, because if we are just like the other person, the other person wouldn’t be able to make fun of us, since that would mean making fun of himself. Hell, we don’t even get unusual haircuts, wear unusual clothes or say things that could be perceived as different enough to be laughed at.

We survive, we exist, but we hardly ever live. We are afraid to take risks, afraid to be different, afraid to try new things, afraid to live. We just spend our lives for survival, and as everyone knows, that is a mission doomed from the start.

I sometimes feel that he has this funny tendency of taking things too seriously. At other times, though I think he has a serious problem, he finds everything funny;

Is he the only one in this population of around seven billion who wants to be unique in a manner that he wants to be just like everyone else…..only better. Is he the only one who wants to be different and wants everyone else to be different just like him?

Does he really think that thought is useless? Does he imagine that we live in a world where imagination has no place? He gave a long speech the other day on the complete futility of words. He convinced the audience that no one can be convinced. The audience was so thrilled when he proved that any sort of appreciation is generally counter-productive, that they applauded for a full minute.

I think they all believed him when he said that belief is a mirage. They loved his idea that philosophy and ideas are the domain of the impractical and should be ignored. In the end, he was hailed as a hero and they promised to follow him to the ends of the earth because they trusted him. They were in awe of this man, who was so different from all the others; who hated being a leader and said that awe was the hobby of weak minds.

APNAY LIYE, QAUM KE LIYE!

1. Save Gas. Bathe in cold water, eat raw food and stop using CNG-fuelled vehicles.

2. Save Electricity. Sleep as soon as it gets dark and enjoy sweat in the summers. These things have been proven to be healthy.

3. Save Electricity. Stop watching TV as it only causes headaches and gives bad news. This habit would also save them from watching stupid ads such as the one asking them to save gas.

4. Save Petrol. Walk.

5. Save Food. Fast everyday. This would not only reduce their weights but also improve their aakhirah. To avoid Israaf, they should also keep sehr and iftar limited to a date or two.

6. Save Railways. Stop moving from one city to the other. After all, all cities are in equally bad shape now, so what’s the point?

7. Save Paper and Ink. Do not bother with elections. Just ask the whole lot to toss and decide who gets the joyride next time. And of course, we could also flip for how many waves of the Tsunami get into the Parliament.

8. Save Water. Stop washing clothes and other stuff. What’s the occasion? Why so much pretense?

9. Save Intellect. Continue to avoid thinking. We have survived this long without it, so why bother now?

Stupid Questions

Probably the most annoying are the stupid questions people keep asking.

1. They call you in the middle of the night and then ask “Did I disturb you?” For heaven’s sake man, even if I was not sleeping, you should be very sure that whatever I was doing, a call at that hour is disturbing.

2. You enter your house or office all drenched and they inquire “Is it raining?” What else did you think, Einstein? That I took a shower in my car?

3. Sitting in a restaurant, they would conveniently point to a dish on the menu and ask the waiter “Is this good?” What response do they expect from an employee of the same restaurant? He won’t say “No sir! That’s awful, the cook spits in it” even if that were the truth.

4. A friend of theirs is sobbing in a corner, and they would ask “Is something wrong?” I wonder if they ever hear a reply like “No no! I am just doing tear Yoga as part of my Kung Fu training.”

5. And their favourite seems to be the question they keep asking every kid they meet. “Mama acchhi hain ya Baba?” Give the kid a break man, I know there are too many dysfunctional families around but you don’t have to mess up the kid’s mind just because you don’t have anything more sensible to ask.

And then there are the completely unnecessary statements of the obvious.

6. “Ohh! It’s ten p.m.” Yes sir I am not blind and I can tell the time from a clock.

7. “It is so hot today.” Hmm! Really? I wouldn’t know, since I live in an air-conditioned hole in the ground.

8. “Light aa gayee” or even more irritating “Light chalee gayee!” I have not come from the Stone Age, I know what it means when the room suddenly goes dark or is lit up.

And Finally the totally illogical ways to start a sentence that are too common to tolerate now.

9. “I don’t think I should say this…” Then don’t say it na! Why can’t you trust your own thinking?

10. “Promise me you won’t mind” Now how can I make such a promise without knowing what you have to say. You could be about to say something indecent about my mother for all I know. Do you really think I decide to mind or not mind something before hearing it?