Thursday, September 30, 2004

one of the very brilliant rubes, which is on :D

Mina at 12:55 AM


Wednesday, September 29, 2004

ticket's here. have to get going with packing. am singing norah jones in my head- 'painter song', very sweet. feeling faintly hysterical for reasons of my own. pete's fright was a fabrication; i don't believe it but i'm glad for him; he's doesn't handle sudden shocks very well. what a mean, bitchy thing to do to him; somehow i'm not surprised- some people really don't give a hoot about other people's feelings, damn them all to somewhere smelly and nasty :P. wore a forest green kameez today, spent some time in urban dynamics of the punjab trying to put a label to the grass? too light. mint? possibly, the colour of the leaf itself but description-wise mint green is much lighter. i settled on pine needles, rainwashed pine-needle green. pretty. jane's world had been doing a eudora welty tribute- enjoyed that immensely. i once blogged a part of a poem from the strip, and the poetess wrote to me with the whole thing! quite wonderful that was. jane's world is a great strip- funny, artsy and entirely human. another strip i enjoy hugely is get fuzzy- it's there on the left. brilliant, brilliant art and comedic work there.
i-tin-er-ra-ry, such a cumbersome word. i got mary janes from servis today, they're technically school shoes ("oooh, woh wale dikhaenge?") but i'm in love with them. plus the salesman was an absolute sweetheart; i've never had so much fun buying shoes before. he asked if i wanted them for school or not; i said to wear to college, and grinned at him. lots of people think sana and i are much younger than we actually are. yay for the full moon, although it's never 100%. you can wish on a full moon. the sky looked like God today, in the morning, and something i could call holy happened. that story for another time, when i'm not tired and thinking of sweaters, trains from heathrow and the economics quiz on friday. the blog clock is an hour behind lahore time because it does karachi time and i claim 'songbird' for myself, it's mineminemine. :)

Mina at 10:31 PM


Grover on X
Grover on Ecstasy

You're funny, you're loveable, you're entertaining,
you like to call yourself "Super
Grover!"--You're obviously on ecstasy.
But that's why we love you. Be careful, ok?

Which Sesame Street Muppet's Dark Secret Are You?
brought to you by

Mina at 10:18 PM


Tuesday, September 28, 2004

guess what, i
dreamed of you the other night
i was in a hedge maze and

you sang to me across the
leafy spines of treebush

but never macheted your way
across so
i had to go on



i woke up crying because
the moon went dark

Mina at 4:10 PM


Monday, September 27, 2004

happy birthday bhootay! *toots paper tooty-thing* a blog birthday-wish, so appropriate, no? hehehehehe ;)

Mina at 11:51 AM


i thank You God for most this amazing
day: for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky;and for everything
wich is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun's birthday;this is the birth
day of life and love and wings:and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any-lifted from the no
of all nothing-human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

e e cummings

Mina at 11:51 AM


that girl with the white hijaab, she was in my physics class. she's got a voice that isn't technically loud, but hard and piercing so that it's louder than any yelling. and she's got this punctilious blerghness about her, the knowitall smugness that some people have. i am better, my way is better than yours, plus i'm not going to roast my butt in hell like you are in your teeny weeny kameez and baggy shalwar and uff that hair, don't you ever brush? yes, i know i'm making gross assumptions about her and i hate it when people presume to think they know what's going on inside my head too. but it's okay, because i'm getting the flu and i'm allowed to be cranky. bwahaha. and she really is annoying. and now she's turned around to yell at a friend for laughing-
'tumhare orkut profile pe "i'm a serious person", jhoot ki hudd hoti hai'
'no no you make me laugh-'
'bullshit hi hudd hoti hai'
*conversation proceeds at speed of light and sound of bullhorn*

i'm leaving in a week, and mum is getting into pre-travel super-efficiency mode. didn't help that i had only a couple of sleep hours under my belt yesterday, but i had suitcases hauled out of high cupboards, dug out sweaters and khaddar ke jorey and paisley scarves. hercules and antipodean stables, psshhh. bless sara apa and fazli for their generous closet-raiding (ahhh that coat, i want to roam around wearing it 24/7 with those grey trousers, yum!)...clothes, check. ticket, allowances, itinerary, travelling-alone-or-not: i have to call the lazy farts at the B.C. since i have the karachi number but not the lahore one (wonder why vaisay, that's a bit out-of-order), i said let's call good old information, like all PTCL-paying good little citizens do. One-Seven has gone techno, and after listening to kenny g (aaaaaaaarghh what is that, a clarinet? why does it always sound the bloody same?) interspersed with a computerized urdu and english mem voice telling me to wait because the all the operators were busy (y'ahan, at 9:45 a.m what exactly are you busy with, other than the pressing concerns of lipton and co.?) for 10 minutes i get a 'khudahafiz- gootbye' and click! when i finally got through to a woman who sounded like she had been woken from a drug-induced stupor, i got another computer voice repeating 1, 4 and 2 a bajillion times! i listened in complete befuddlement to the urdu and then the english version, writing down whatever number kept echoing and feeling very annoyed and bewildered at the resulting number on my notepad. needless to say, i didn't call the string of binary digits, Allah jaane kya tha :S i'm gonna call the karachi contact and tell him to dig up the info, bwahaha.

the boy at the PC behind me keeps sniffing, and it sounds like a fairly large, chunky animal snorting. something of a warthog perhaps. i'm tempted to hand him a tissue, but that'd be like mina-the-global-mother. ufff he's driving me mad- oh no! another one! boys never ever have tissues on them, they'll go snorting on everyone's head all the live long day but never carry tissues. aieee here he goes agian, must save myself before i throw my mousepad at his head and yell 'stooooooopppppp for the love of God, STTOOPP!!!'

Mina at 11:16 AM


Sunday, September 26, 2004

yesterday- twenty-five years of lahore grammar school, and my branch is where it all began. twenty-five years; that's twenty batches. there were people in their late twenties, early thirties, wearing their signed uniforms and council sashes (those sashes; made you feel like you were FBI and the president all rolled into one broad, stripey piece of cloth). getting off at the gate made me feel like i was three years younger, and ready to be launched out of the car, backpack strapped and hand on handle (super-efficient parents ke bache are the launchpad kind). it was great- met up with people i haven't seen in ages; seniors i had so much fun with but hadn't seen or thought of in years, juniors i recognised (yay!), teachers- and MoonShine ;) thanks for coming over, it was great meeting you :D red carnation next time ;)

phir party. party was okay. went, danced almost nonstop for two hours and then went to ayesha's house with her for the night...which was great, girlie bonding supreme :) am tired and feeling a little feverish- my throat is killing me- so i won't wax eloquent today. la la la.

Mina at 11:58 AM


Friday, September 24, 2004

When someone asks for you, swimming up from the drugged false sleep of anaesthesia, it’s a strange mélange of emotions you feel. Love, because her eyelids are pink and her voice childish through the cloudy, mazy dreamscape she’s speaking from. She is very small underneath the sheet, and asks for a kiss. Gratefulness for her being safe, and well again. Relief at having her back, because when they wheeled her away we felt like orphans, the two of us, holding hands like children. Or like the ones who watch a ship slowly drift out of a harbour, feeling like their heart goes with the vessel.... fluttering on the billow of a sunset sail. She waved, her eyes big and glittering with nervous dread.


"i think the nurse thinks we're scared"
"huuuunh, we are not!" *drops hand and crosses arms all macho*

"mainey naii karnaaaaaa"
"you don't have to do anything baby, all you gotta do is sleep"

"look what i'm wearing in your honour"

there was an old unconscious woman who had no nose

i don't want to wear ICU chappals, heaven knows who's ringwormy feet have gone in them (but i do anyway)

"my gown's scotch-taped shut heehee" (it really was)

Mina at 10:09 PM


ah yes, another thing. please take some time to hit the breast cancer and hunger site links, they in turn lead to the child health, rainforest and animal rescue sites....a click only takes a second, and if you're helping people, plants and animals with one little finger, then that's pretty cool i think- consider it your good deed of the morning :)

Mina at 9:35 AM


every time someone around me lights up i wish an aandhi would start to blow away all the smoke that invariably is going to drift my way (it always does; smoke likes me :P). feels like it's beginning to corrode my breathing tubes, my throat feels scratchy often. hai hai. i don't read second-hand smoking stats (i have an idea and i don't like the sound of what i know) because they're only going to put my already hyper imagination into overdrive and i'll be yelling 'emphysema! emphysema!' every time i cough (yeh ho sakta hai, vehm and vehemence is a lethal combination). yuck yaar, YUUCCCCKKKKKK! every time i hear 'soota de' i breathe quickly so i can get some clean air into my lungs to prepare for the onslaught of stinky toxic crap that's about to go into the poor things- and let's not even begin on the hair-and-clothes-smelling-of-smoke issue. no, it isn't sexy. and when i choke and cough on your billowing clouds of carbon monoxide ("kh-aaaacckkk") it don't help the cause none. i love you, but i shore as hell am gonna complain and pull faces and order you to suck back the poison air you just purposely blew at me (lol). all of you. be happy i don't pull out the facts on what a mess you're turning your insides into (any more).... and... and... oh all right, you can keep your lighter. (fire fetish :P)

Mina at 8:42 AM


Wednesday, September 22, 2004

i'm holding a book, and inside it is a story, by me. in english and urdu. and it's a book, a real life, glossy paged beautiful book. this moment is just so emotional, and reverent.... as if this is the culmination of times to come, this is it.... i've come home.

Mina at 8:40 PM


yesterday on my way to university, we took the back route (which would be through township and the very charmingly named 'qainchi', although there's nothing charming about it physically)....and in the span of twenty minutes, i counted NINETY-SEVEN donkeys. yup, that's right folks, and this is not counting the one dead and two i-think-i-imagined-after-the-eightieth-one donkeys. ninety-seven donkeys in twenty minutes, which makes an average of about five donkeys a minute. i began counting in the first place because for the past few days i've been noticing that there have been billions of donkeys on that route, and yesterday i decided to put it to empirical test. there's a lot to see when you take the back route; p'raps i will wax eloquent on it one of these blogs.

Mina at 8:25 AM


Tuesday, September 21, 2004

it's 12:58, exactly, at the time of finger hitting keyboard. i'm sleepy, i have to take off my contacts still but i post because i can...and also 'cause i'm waiting for two downloads to get off gmail already! the moon looks like a copper fingertip and i wish i had more eva cassidy to listen to (she wins, squirrel, hands and ears down). dratted windows XP administrator rubbish, i can't install anything (yes skype! i haven't forgotten! PROMISE). i wonder why random weird men continually add me to their orkut; what's the point? making your list bigger? (okay that sounds kind of psycho, i think i've been emptying too many junk folders :P)

good, one DL down.

i wonder who MoonShine is; i'm so terrible at the name-face-connection apologies if i know you but have forgotten.

where's my fancy-schmancy toolbar, bhai? gimmit back! the evil LUMS lab guy nabbed me on MSN, i was JUST about to click it shut when the rabid old baboon materalised ot of nowhere and has shut my ID down for a week. i'm so annoyed that i've been telling everyone i know of my righteous indignation. boo.

second DL down, yay! now i can go sleep, and listen to a bunch of black men yelling around tomorrow. (the CD infiltration is *so* on hehe)

oh, dekho, its 1:25. i don't type slow, i multi-task too much.

Mina at 1:53 AM


Sunday, September 19, 2004


Approval is such a [good thing]

When 'the elders' beam upon you

Shaabaash beta, follow

In the path we cleared for you

You know what will be the outcome, for
Each step you take you make our rut
Deeper and deeper

A convenient chasm for other goodgirls

Like you to fall into

But we approve, we are happy.

We, not you.

We will dress you up in the best our money
and social status
can afford. The outfit, the jewels, the
brand-new Mercedes. Anything
your heart desires, except

Him, or That, or Them.

We approve, we are happy

Happy to look past your vacant eyes
Pleased to clasp diamonds around your wrist
And onto your fingers as a reward-

Good girl, say Yes and here are your sparkly
toys. Be Blinded, there’s a sweetheart.


It isn’t so bad, that’s what everyone says
I wonder how you can bear to juxtapose
The words with the event. ‘So bad’
is not good enough for a lifetime.

Mina at 11:07 AM


Saturday, September 18, 2004

went to two mehndis yesterday. one was terribly hot but important, the other was icily air-conditioned but irrelevant. spent the most part of the latter event hanging out with my mother's friends who, i might add at this juncture, are the coolest women i know. also gleefully evil, because when the mother of the bride came 'round with her mehndi wala patta from the rasm, they grabbed me and made sure i ended up with a big smear of mehndi down my palm. which, in essence, is supposed to mean that i'm marked for the next wedding. everyone seemed most amused. *lol*

Mina at 10:08 AM


Thursday, September 16, 2004

it has just occurred to me that i have an economics quiz tomorrow and i don't quite know how convexity goes. good thing abhi khayal aagaya ('the thought occurred to me right now' for the people who don't speak urdu- imagine, there are some of those here too :D) otherwise t'would have been rather troublesome to have to leap out of bed at three a.m, hysterically ransack sana's desk for the textbook and blearily begin to read up on consumer preferences and the suchlike.

i'm going to england. i will mash this extremely huge statement in between paragraphs of a-day-in-the-life-of-mina to hide the ABSOLUTE FANTASTICNESS of it. this is a perfect world: people ask for you to fly over to newcastle for a week and show them the only thing you really want to do in life, and that this thing is something you're actually good at. i think the AAIIEEEE I'M SO EXCITED, YAY I'M DOING WHAT I NEED TO BE DOING element of this will escape, but you never know ;)

by the almost-end of literature of conflict i had an almost uncontrollable urge to rip my nameplate out of its wooden groove and smack my forehead with it. sometimes questioning authority for seventy minutes straight makes you want to start gnawing at your arm and shrieking arcane voodoo mumbo-jumbo. sometimes.

today i'm wearing my man-pants. i love them enough to have annexed them from ayesha's closet and guarded jealously from the clutches of sana-of-the-olive-pants-fetish. these are (olive) cotton cargoes with pockets made for putting your hands in and sauntering around. despite the fact that i rarely, if ever, saunter. but i can lounge against a wall and do a james dean sneer, if push comes to shove. a girl in man pants, i enjoy this in some way that i can't put my finger on yet. jaunty. yup, i'm jaunty today. if i were wearing a fedora, it'd be tilted. but i think you do that to fedoras anyway. must get me one of those.

Mina at 3:36 PM


Tuesday, September 14, 2004

i bought shoes today, black flip-flops with sparkly black straps. this is what i would like to tell the world today. yay for shoes. *nods*

Mina at 5:04 PM


Monday, September 13, 2004

her hands lie in her
fingers making a smooth line with her arm,
one long bare curve
quietly defenceless, growing into
repose- but only for a while,
only until we get there
only while
one war is battled by
trees that
and the
smudges itself

poem for huma

Mina at 8:22 PM


Sunday, September 12, 2004

Upend the rain stick and what happens next
Is a music you never would have known
To listen for. In a cactus stalk

Downpour, sluice-rush, spillage and backwash
Come flowing through. You stand there like a pipe
Being played by water, you shake it again lightly

And diminuendo runs through all its scales
Like a gutter stopping trickling. And now here comes
A sprinkle of drops out of the freshened leaves,

Then subtle little wets off grass and daisies;
Then glitter-drizzle, almost-breaths of air.
Upend the stick again. What happens next

Is undiminished for having happened once,
Twice, ten, a thousand times before.
Who cares if all the music that transpires

Is the fall of grit or dry seeds through a cactus?
You are like a rich man entering heaven
Through the ear of a raindrop. Listen now again.

The Rain Stick
Seamus Heaney

Mina at 10:30 AM


I love the sea, I love the shore
I love the rocks, and what is more
With you there they'd never be a bore
'cause I love being here with you.

Singing in the shower, laughing by the hour
Life is such a breezy game.
Love all kinds of weather, as long as we're together
I love to hear you say my name.

I like good wine and fine cuisine
and candlelight, I like the scene
But baby if you know what I mean
I love being here with you!

lyric extract ~ I Love Being Here With You

Mina at 10:24 AM


Grey on charcoal, the
thread on the carpet
arches its spine. Prehistoric
skull like a deformed baby.

Antediluvian thread on the carpet
is a fossil of beneath-the-mattresses

Mina at 10:22 AM


Saturday, September 11, 2004

At the end of class, there are those last five or seven minutes that suddenly make sitting in one’s seat for a second longer a task quite equal to cleaning out the Augean stables. Some teachers will smile wryly as notebooks are flipped shut and ballpoint pens clicked into retract with blatant abandon, throw up their hands and let you leave. Some will persevere earnestly, speeding up what they’re saying in an attempt to finishtheclassagendafortodaynomatterwhat- I suppose even teachers have consciences. And some will go on a tangent, and say things that they maybe wouldn’t have said to an attentive class. You can tell a lot about a teacher by watching them as their seventy-five minutes of twice-a-week glory begins to fade.
At the end of Philosophy of Mind- at the end of course outlines and final exam weightage, preliminary definitions and the first round of the many many questions to be shot to and fro- Dr. Hussain said something that lettered itself across my mind, smugly self-confident like Georgia O’Keefe painting her lover’s name across the red sky and skyscraper tops of an imaginary city. It sits above all the chaos of the past week. He said that if we really looked inside of ourselves, we would be frightened by what we saw. And that we’re afraid of freedom.
It’s something I have often thought about, perhaps more so because I am the girl with the plans- the grandiose, elaborate plans that involve much gesticulation, scattered bursts of laughter and the liberal use of the word ‘imagine!’. They rarely are ever carried out, are ever within the bounds of what one can really do but they exist, nonetheless, as the flag-bearers of the ‘if’. But what I wonder is- if someone handed me the keys and said go, would I?
I am of the opinion that I know myself. That I don’t lie to myself, that I see myself. Do I really…do any of us face the things we don’t want to see inside us? How black is your black, how pure is your white? When people say things we don’t want to hear, why don’t we want to hear them? Because they only mirror a tiny voice inside you that says ‘well, that isn’t so far off the mark, is it’? Do any of us know what we’re really capable of, greatness and monstrosity alike? If someone laid me out on a platter, what would I feel? Surprise, nonchalance, horror? Maybe we’re afraid because freedom means trust, and that is a tall order to fill.

Mina at 1:03 AM


Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Ashfaque Ahmed
1925- 2004

In memory of a truly remarkable man, even though I have not read your words. I hope my respect counts.

Mina at 9:29 AM


Sunday, September 05, 2004

God bless Saif bhai, who was once the front man for a band here in his college stud-man days (when he used to come pick us up from school the would be a mad flurry in the staff room lol) and knows his guitar. Yesterday I lopped off my pretty shiny white-and-pink uber feminine nails (sigh) in about four seconds flat while he tuned Clarissa up a little and showed me some moooves *lol* Yay for big brothers! Now I'm going to play 'Walk of Life' even if my fingertips fall off. Which is what I had decided for 'I Wanna Grow Old With You' but when you can play Dire Straits phooey on Adam Sandler. Specially when you can say 'be-bop-a-lua'.

here comes johnny singin' oldie goldies

Mina at 10:41 AM


Saturday, September 04, 2004

The hand that signed the paper felled a city;
Five sovereign fingers taxed the breath,
Doubled the globe of dead and halved a country;
These five kings did a king to death.

The mighty hand leads to a sloping shoulder,
The finger joints are cramped with chalk;
A goose's quill has put an end to murder
That put an end to talk.

The hand that signed the treaty bred a fever,
And famine grew, and locusts came;
Great is the hand that holds dominion over
Man by a scribbled name.

The five kings count the dead but do not soften
The crusted wound nor pat the brow;
A hand rules pity as a hand rules heaven;
Hands have no tears to flow.

The Hand That Signed The Paper
Dylan Thomas

Mina at 1:17 AM


Beslan, Russia. Breaking news. Chechen rebels- 20 dead, 10 alive still, 10 of this 30 believed to be Arab- taking women and children hostage inside a school gymnasium. 210 children are dead, as many more adults dead or wounded. One boy amongst those who escaped couldn’t remember his name, his eyes were blank. Mothers with pretty fingernails wide-eyed and staring over the hands that cover their faces. People lifting sheets from stilled bodies, terrified of the chance that they may find a face they love.
One man’s rebel is another man’s hero. One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom-fighter. And we are living in a world where there are people desperate enough to kill babies to make their voice heard. We are living in a world where governments believe that the only solution to a problem is to beat dissent into submission. Force to answer force. War is unspeakably horrific, but it is still some form of a fair fight. Killing women? Blowing up children who went to school in the morning probably looking forward to recess or dreading a math exam and never came home? Unforgivable. I understand that sometimes the only way to make someone, anyone listen is by violence, because nobody will listen to you if you won’t scream. But does anyone realize that an eye for an eye is nothing but endless hell? Where has decency gone? Where has the bigger man gone, the one who was supposed to listen to what the oppressed, the poor, the weak had to say? Who had to because it was his responsibility to, by very nature of his power? We live in a world where power is everything, where money is what makes a nation great- not its poets, its philosophers, its scientists, its humanists. Everyone is Brutus, and if you dare hope to be a Caesar or even an Anthony, we all know where you’re ending up. Everyone makes fun of Communists for being idealists, stupid, IRS funded. At least they have a dream, a hope, a cause for something better. Maybe democracy isn’t such a great idea. Maybe we don’t deserve to rule ourselves, democracy or communism or whatever. We should have a monarch or a dictator who can keep us under control because we are all savages. What does democracy care, as long as you re-elect them to office? So they’ll cut taxes (Ricardian equivalence means that’s bullshit), build a hospital (and wait two months just to see a doctor), pave a few roads (wait until it rains). Makes you happy because your butt is a little more cushioned, your health a little safer, your money feels like a little more for a while. And the next time a minority demands it rights, the army will pound them into pieces instead of solving the real issue at hand: a group demanding that democracy be their right too. There is no terrorism in a world where the underdog has a voice that is heard. There is justice, but we don’t understand what that means. Because justice means giving up some of your power, your luxuries, your wealth so that the other person can breathe like you do. Justice means keeping your word, something nobody knows the meaning of any more. Justice means knowing that your power, your arrogance is a fleeting thing, that a real republic is one where everyone is heard. That a real leader is one who an entire nation loves- and that means everyone, not just the 51% majority in the Parliament. We don’t know what respect is, respect for anyone, not even ourselves. Because really, if you respected the rights of other people, there would be no-one crashing planes into skyscrapers. There would be nobody blowing themselves up in the name of God because whoever was running your goddamn government would respect him or herself enough to do the right thing, and that is listen and take action. We are no better than animals. We should be ashamed. Is this all there is left to life? Who can get ahead faster, stronger, bigger? Who is going to stop and help up those who fell along the way? Who is going to wait for the gunshot before taking off? Who is going to fight fair? Nobody, that’s who. And my heart goes out to every single life that has been lost, that is hanging by a thread waiting, hoping, watching….because nobody gives a damn about anyone but themselves. Because greed and egos have no ears to hear with, nor eyes to see.

Mina at 1:13 AM


Thursday, September 02, 2004

yay! look at my moon calendar! :D you're allowed to wish on a full moon so don't forget, aajkal hai. aaaallsooooo....presenting white ninja, for the first time on gorpy! *clap clap* its a little on the tiny side, but barra hota to it would have gone a little psycho and eik dabbe main hona chahieye jhyoo know :D white ninja is in the toolbar, go have a peekie. have a good day, little chickies (or whatever's left of it :) ) !

Mina at 5:51 PM


"white ninja puts a wiffle ball on a pylon"

Mina at 5:50 PM


stalking sana doing what she should be doing for the rest of her life

Mina at 12:52 PM



Mina at 12:50 PM