Wednesday, November 30


xxxx says: hey man
Shak says: wahgwan
xxxx says: can we wear crosses
Shak says: sure. of course. why wouldnt we be able to?
xxxx says: goodies
xxxx says: goody
Shak says: idiot


xxxx says: salam
xxxx says: im missing yyyy
xxxx says: lol
Shak says: ngapls..... we dont need women
xxxx says: yeah
xxxx says: especially ones that dont let us down
xxxx says: ngapls ?
Shak says: nevermind.... even ones that dont let us down... dont need any of them
xxxx says: but how would life be without them
Shak says: we're doing ok as we are right???
xxxx says: yes
xxxx says: and marriage is a fard not a sunnah
Shak says: see we've been brainwashed into thinking we need a partner etc....
xxxx says: i mean not a fard but a sunnah
Shak says: exactly! im not agasint marraige... but better to stay single than to marry the worng person right??
xxxx says: yes i agree
Shak says: hi five!!!
xxxx says: what that
Shak says: hi five... innit. bachelors for life
xxxx says: yeah


xxxx says: bro u 100% serious about not getting married
Shak says: uhhh. yeh. sure. erm. are you?
xxxx says: no to be honest
Shak says: jebus
xxxx says: that dont mean i diagree qith a lot of what u said
Shak says: you coulda said that before
Shak says: ok fine. i'll get married. but only cos of you man.

Tuesday, November 29

So Here's A Hypothetical Situation

Imagine that the office's token fit girl has been sitting next to you for the past few weeks after being given a change in role.

Now imagine that this doesn't usually matter to you since you're one of the few in the place that isn't actually that interested.

Now imagine that every now and then you need to let one rip, and don't have time to either direct it into your seat or take a walk around the office, and that today is such a day.

Now imagine that sometimes this flatulence is quite stinky.

Now imagine that there happens to be no one else around to blame.

Now imagine that said token fit girl pulls out her smell spray and gives it a few squirts around the area.

Now imagine that the Earth hasn't yet opened up and swallowed you whole.

What do you do?

Monday, November 28

Game: Sonic Rush (DS)

Also picked up with the aforementioned DS since it was cheap, this is just Sonic on the handheld system. The same old stuff here, except now Sonic has all manner of new moves and even a frikin power bar to charge. The 3D bosses are a nice innovation though.

For me Sonic was about the purity and I'm not sure that I like Rush that much.

Game: Mario Kart DS

Everyone knows how great Mario Kart is - great enough to get me to buy a whole new system to play it's latest iteration on anyway. I've only played a bit, but it seems to be the most accessible MK to date and I was powersliding all over the place within minutes.

The addition of local wireless and Internet play are what makes this game super though. Mario Kart has always been a single player unfriendly game but usually you would only play multiplayer when you, well, had other players available. Now though you can play strangers and friends alike at almost any time that's convenient and while watching TV, lying in bed, or even sitting on the bog. Fantastic.

The best Mario Kart ever? Quite possibly.

Sunday, November 27

Film: Flightplan Click for more info

Passable hostage movie about a woman who has lost her daughter on a plane. Twisty enough to keep you guessing and interested, but somehow the payoff didn't quite pay off. Maybe things were a bit too convenient to be plausible, I dunno.

Saturday, November 26

Film: Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire Click for more info

The best Harry Potter movie yet? Well apparently, but I'm not convinced. It was really good and polished and had good scenes and a good story... However it lost major points for skipping so many pivotal moments in the book. I mean, what, no Sphinx??

Of course it was always going to be tough squeezing Rowley's biggest HP book into the same 2.5 hours as the last few. The thing is, as I've explained before about this brilliant series, is that every page of the book counts toward the story. Like a good mystery, the reader is able to figure out the end if they want to. However, the film cuts too many out for the viewer to do the same.

So no, at best this was just as good as the past three films. Which isn't a bad thing. And hey, if it happens to be the most accessible of the four for those who aren't particular bothered about HP, then that's no bad thing either.

Lunch at the British Museum

I thought that a museum would be a pretty odd place to meet a few friends over lunch; not in a bad way, but it's not like we'd have dinner in a zoo either. I was curious though especially since I had never visited the British Museum before.

Thankfully I arrived a good 40 minutes early. Now most of you know how I hate running late (whether it's me or someone else), but these 40 minutes gave me a chance to have a quick look over on the place - since salaat times are short now it would have been difficult to wander around after lunch itself.

Personally I preferred it to places like the Natural History Museum and even its sister the Science Museum (which had and always will be a childhood favourite, if only for the periscope). There's something about real history and witnessing objects from a time long ago that's almost romantic for me. To be in the presence of something that old kinda links us to the same people that built it.

Anyway, there are a few random piccies on Flickr anyway.

Lunch itself was great, again with my "mature" friends. And I honestly mean that as an endearment - at times I feel that I only have friends younger (and sillier) than I am (which is great btw), and having access to an equally wonderful bunch of people who I can instead talk about religion, politics, other boring stuff while also having a laugh in other ways brings a certain balance and completeness to my social circle.

Pretty lucky, that.

Friday, November 25

Film: Saw 2 Click for more info

Well this is a first. A sequel to a film I've already blogged about? Well it's been just over a year since Saw came out, so I guess so.

This was more of the same. And when I say that I mean that if you liked the first one then you'll like this too and vice versa; there is still enough freshness here to make it good in it's own way.

Due to the nature of the film, I can't really say much about the plot and stuff. Just know that there are "OMG, NO WAY", "NOOOO DON'T DO THAT" and "WHY ARE THEY SO STUPID" moments a plenty. So I guess I'll say what I said last time: Go watch - just make sure you don't go watching alone.

Wednesday, November 23

Things That Pee Me Off #41: Ever Changing Mobile Numbers

hey guys how are yous
right this is very important information
ok i have to lines now one for you t-moliers and one voda
i have an orange sim to recieve calls only ok
t-mobile 07xxxxxxxxx
vodafone 07xxxxxxxxx
orange 07xxxxxxxx
for those orange users send me a sms and ill switch the sims
ok thats the last number change i promise

I mean wtf? Hey look I'm all for redundancy but this is the second time this week that someone has given me an alternative number on which to call them. Not only that, but it's like they were doing me (and the many others they probably spammed) a favour by gracing us with yet another set of digits to store and manage.

Now, I understand someone having to change their number under certain circumstances (and no, getting a free phone and/or texts IS NOT one of them. Cheap ass), but doing it often and then for a trivial reason is both selfish and inconvenient - suppose my next of kin has an old number of yours for emergencies that suddenly doesn't work when needed? And do you really think it's better for fifty people to change their numbers than for you to spend a few extra pennies? Here's a clue: It's not.

Oh and doing it just so you can receive free evening minute booty calls from your new boif/goif isn't a justification either. If you're talking that much with them then you should be using a landline anyway. Or be married. Better still, dump them; why are you going out with someone that cheap anyway?

So do me a favour. Get a number and stick with it please. I don't want to check the time, date or phase of the moon to figure out which number I need to dial to get into contact with you. Maybe that's lazy but hey. Oh, and the first person to claim that I don't call anyway gets a slap. That's not the point.

Link Of The Day

IC Bans Hoodies and Hijabs

It's pretty astonishing considering the mindset of the university while I was there. It's hard to believe that anyone who manages to get into IC in the first place has time to be a terrorist too (alleged Babar Ahmed was an employee), but this just smacks of a knee-jerk Daily Mail reaction. Even more surprising is that IC is the first to implement such a rule.

Sunday, November 20

Film: Shaadi No 1 Click for more info

There are three types of Bollywood movies for me. First, the unmissable classic that contains all the magic that Bolly has to offer - a pretty cast, a decent script, good songs and emotion-wrenching plot. Second, you have the Salman Khan films which should all be sent to hell. Finally you have everything else.

Shaadi No 1 doesn't star Salman, but neither is it a classic. A good example of what is wrong with Bollywood, Shaadi is little style and even less substance. Bad songs, a ludicrous story, and... well just nothing interesting to note makes this yet another empty Bolly release. The one saving grace is the eye candy on offer (Esha Deol, Soha Ali Khan, Ayesha Takia, Riya Sen, Aarti Chhabria, with Ali Khan looking especially better than she usually does) but even that got boring after a while.

It's a shame, since it demonstrates that there really is a gulf between the good and bad in the world of Bollywood. In my opinion the market would be a lot more accessible if there was more in the middle. But hey; at least I didn't have to pay to watch today.

Thursday, November 17

107 Hours

That's how long I had been in my house without setting a foot out, even into the backgarden. It's probably a record since I can't remember the last time I spent a whole day indoors.

What a waste of time. Still, back at work now so yay.

Monday, November 14

Security Blanket

Since I'm officially ill and all that, tradition dictates that I'm supposed to lounge in front of the television wrapped up in a blanket. Nothing unusual about that, except I just realised that the blanket I use for this purpose has been mine for almost all of my life:

It's purple and pink (of course) and synthetic. It's also way too small for me now. But that hasn't stopped me from sleeping with it every day (that I'm at home at least) for the past 25 plus years. And like me, it's showing it's age; it's only my love for this blanket that has made it last this long.

Now, I'm not a hoarder and I'm not usually sentimental about material objects in this way. I wouldn't even describe it as a security blanket (despite the title above). On the other hand I wouldn't voluntarily give it up and I certainly will not allow particular nephews to inherit it (while I'm still breathing anyway), so there must be some kind of attachment there.

Weird eh?

Things That Pee Me Off #06: MSN PM Baiting

Why oh why do people leave half written cryptic and ambiguous messages on their MSN PMs? I'm talking about:

Tom - I agree 100%

Dick - HAHA You're so funny I can't believe you did that :):)

Harry - Yesterday was the best I ever had, but I'm not telling anyone or they'll want to know the details and ask me what happened even though that's precisely why I'm writing such a mysterious and ambiguous message. Haha I'm so smart, go me.

Honestly, they're worse than putting up famous quotes from history (but only just).

Why do people do this? Well maybe they feel it's they're being humble for allowing a friend to open the conversation rather than themselves. Or perhaps this way they get as many people to ask "OMG What the heck are you talking about? I want to know all about it and I'll be your best friend" messages and so get a good ego massage in the process. Or maybe they just want to be the centre of gossip because without this self marketing no one would actually care (when in fact that's usually the case anyway when others finally get the not so exciting details).

And yes, I'll admit that I sometimes too fall in this trap also, but I do change it as soon as I've realised and I humbly request that you all do too. In the meantime help me fight this transparent tactic of self promotion by keeping your curiosity in check and not taking the bait when you see one.

Sunday, November 13

Warning: Morbid Post Ahead

Although I wasn't too concerned about having been admitted into hospital, the place obviously made me think about life, mortality and whether I would die a virgin. Not because of the weekend's events, no, but in this busy world one can so easily fall under a bus, be involved in an air accident or fall into an industrial sized meat grinder. Ok, maybe not that last one but you see what I mean.

And of course, I don't mean that virgin thing literally. Well ok I maybe I do, but I'm also talking about everything that goes with a deep, full and meaningful relationship. I mean I've managed to do quite a bit in my life, perhaps even more than a lot of others. But a human's life is finite and it's impossible for everyone to experience everything or even just the things they want to. And I'm not even saying that everyone deserves to get what they want, just that it might suck for them if they didn't.

But hey. I'm sure when everything comes to an end we'll have bigger things to worry about.

Saturday, November 12


So I'm finally out of hospital. Some of you know the details and I don't think it's appropriate to blog them.

Although I'm haven't been completely cleared I am well enough to be home (but not allowed to work. Damn). Which is good since I was becoming well bored over there, even if I had Smallville and OTH to watch.

Finally, thanks for all the attention; my mobile has never been busier. Sniff.


So I'm spending the night and most of tomorrow under observation in A&E. I'm Blogging via my phone so can't say much easily. But don't worry, I don't think it's serious and the worst thing is the boredom. More tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 9

Saudi Pak Videos

Have now been posted - please ask me for the location.

Highlights include:

  • The rush at the Makkan Jummah.
  • A virtual tawaf.
  • Progressively busier tawafs from various angles.
  • The technical features of the Prophet's Mosque.
  • How people from Leicester act on planes.
Please be considerate and DO NOT copy, link to or distribute these. Thanks!

Link Of The Day

Maniac Muslim

Fantastically funny and also inspiring. Probably because it's all true, from the way fellow Muslims in congregation want to dismember your little toe to the people who insist on using aa, iA and mA in IM conversations.

Very similar to the now defunct Not-A-Fatwa! but not as in yer face and critical (possibly since the author has decided not to hide behind anonymity), I think the site goes a long way to show how human Muslims can be. Amen.

Thanks so Shar for the heads up.

Monday, November 7

Film: Serenity Click for more info

Based on the quickly canned yet in my opinion great Firefly, Serenity is a sci-fi flick that delivers on content rather than visuals. Of course that may mean it's only for the fans (since people in general are shallow tut), but it's worth checking out if you're into things that dare to be different.

If you are a Firefly fan too, then you may find that the series works better than the film. This isn't surprising since film spinoffs are not usually better than the shows they are based on (see: ST:TNG), but the flick does sit well with the series and ties up a few loose ends in the process.

Saturday, November 5

Coming Home

There's something positively final and possibly even poignant about airports. After all they are where holidays both begin and inevitably end; there is no turning back after you pass those departure gates. Sigh.

The flight home from Karachi was via Jeddah. As it turned out we were three of ten passengers on that leg which was quite humourous and needless to say I made use of the five seats that I had allocated to me: at this point I had had around 4 hours sleep in the last 48 hours.

The flight from Jeddah to London was less empty. In fact it was pretty full. And that, full of people from Leicester. Now no offence to any readers from Leicester (ahem) but I suspect that this was the first time many had used an airplane. Honestly I thought they were from Pakistan at first, running around like headless chickens not knowing where to go or what to do. And while searching for their seats some of them even had trouble counting and I swear they were struggling with their alphabets. Bless.

Otherwise, our approach to London was during a clear day and so we got to see Canary Wharf and a couple of other landmarks. I had forgotten that it was Guy Fawkes Day and it was quite surreal seeing fireworks explode from above!

And so we arrived. I always love that feeling going from the plane, past Passport Control and customs and on to Arrivals. Man, am I glad to be home.

Eid Full Time Report

After Jummah I went to see a few other relatives after finally coming home to shower before heading off to another chacha's house for Eid Dinner.

All my dad's siblings and their families (bar one) were there. This equates to around 150 people and it was very busy and packed and is something I'd never experience back in the UK. Totally random it was like each room in the house (and of course the roof) was a mini party of its own.

Despite the amazing evening I did feel that there was something missing. I think that I was expecting more of a buzz or vibe on the streets of Karachi - like Green Street but bigger yet more decent. Sea View and Clifton were probably alive in this way but we didn't get a chance to visit these places; the guys usually do all that on the day after Eid. And for those who are not keeping track that's the day I go home.

Friday, November 4

OK Everyone: I'm Not Engaged

So it's Eid. And I'm still not engaged to be married. And here's why:

  • As explained before there were no girls arranged beforehand for me to visit.
  • Apparently ten days is way too short to arrange anything on the fly. This is so even though a friend of mine did it and got married to boot in six days.
  • It being Ramadhan doesn't help.
  • The three of us actually massively totally absolutely suck at this marriage thing. Scrap the above. This is the only reason that counts really.

But this is good, see. This trip has finally made us all realise we have a problem here, and now that we've admitted that much we can now try to tackle it.

And so my folks have said that they'll try harder back in the UK. And I will too - online matrimonials will be revisited, leads chased and new friends made like mad. And if all this sounds desperate, it might just be 'cos we are. But again, that seems to no longer be something to be ashamed of.

Jeez. Don't you all just hate hype? Ho hum...

Eid Half Time Report

I've just come back from Jummah and am knackered as hell. After failing to get an early night, we had to wake up for Fajr as usual after two hours sleep. However instead of hitting the sack after that we had to attend the Eid salaat.

It was the first time I've prayed in an Eidgah (a field specifically set aside for Eid salaat), but it was a wonderful experience; I've never read with that many people before, around two thousand or so. It was also surprising how punctual it was - they said we'd start at 745am and 745am it was. In the UK we'd delay at least 15 minutes.

After that we decided to visit the graveyard as is traditionally done on Eid day. This is where my grandmother had been buried, although I had already been to see her this trip. However this visit was tainted by the horrendous traffic coming in and out of the graveyard - typical Pakistani mentality and lack of organisation made it chaos.

Then we went on to do the whole family visits thang. This isn't something we get to do in the UK since we don't have much family there, and it was nice doing the rounds with quickfire ten minute visits to all the relatives.

Oh and on a final note... The girls have definitely been out today. I knew Karachi girls were hot, but I didn't realise how much till today. Woot.

Thursday, November 3

Eid Mubarak!

Eid Mubarak to all that are celebrating today (or tomorrow if that's your thing).

We've just sighted the new moon ourselves here (Thursday night), so we're not too far behind. My flight back is on Saturday morning, so I'm thinking this is my last chance to get any kinda sleep before then. Eeep.

It's been an interesting Ramadhan for me this year. So much has happened and on the one hand it seems to have passed so quickly and on the other hand it feels like ages since the start. Of course you'll all read about it soon enough... Consider my bulk blogging a belated Eid gift for you all. Snigger.

Tuesday, November 1

Channel Hopping

The last time I visited Pakistan they had a total of 6-7 channels ranging from news to The Cartoon Network. This time, although the place I'm staying at had not television at all, there are now a good 60 odd channels available to those that subscribe. MTV, Channel V, two pretty good movie channels, Sony, SET Max and two B4Us are amongst the choice now. And all for 200 rupees a month? Bargain.

Faced with this choice has made me realise how much of a channel hopper I am. I can't just sit on one channel without knowing what is showing on the others, just in case there is something more interesting to watch. I'll even switch over something I'm thoroughly enjoying just to make sure I'm not missing out on other things.

Does that make me fussy? Am I the kind of guy who needs to check all of his options to be totally satisfied? It's not possible to always explore every choice, so will I ever be content?

Am I even talking about television anymore?