Thursday, December 30, 2004i've never been big on stuffed animals. i don't particularly love teddy bears and woolly weird animals, most of them have staring evil eyes and the most vacant expressions imaginable. the occasional little yellow beanie-dog and the battered goofy from disneyland (or the elmo that i'd like to have) is fine, but i don't understand how giant white, hairy teddies holding satin hearts are cute and huggy in any way, or why a roomful of stuffed cretins is desirable for some :S
how-everrrrr: today i got my first ever teddy bear, and a) i didn't buy it for me! and b) i love it!yay! he's purple and squishyyy and soft and is wearing a grey williams hoodie with little hood pullies too! his name is wendy squishy mugglestone and i like him very, very much- thaaaank you, wendykins :D
Mina at 7:29 PM
Wednesday, December 29, 2004she's small, but thinks big. she doesn't pretend to be what she isn't. she scares easily, worries too much for sanity and is so ticklish that all you have to do is waggle a finger at her and she'll flinch and giggle. she laughs funny. she is afraid of lizards, but she'll kill cockroaches in a flash if you need to be rescued. she hates it if you touch her hair and she used to hate being hugged. now she does it all the time. she's hyper-critical and will never say what you want to hear, but she's a good listener. she cusses people out and then tells you not to. she sings in the shower sometimes and can't sleep without washing her feet. she will grumble for half an hour about stupid people with over-active imaginations who watch the exorcist thrice and then get scared at night every time, but will let you sleep in her bed anyway. she hates it if you jump onto her newly-made bed, but if you smooth the sheets back out it's okay. a good way to annoy her is to tell her you used her towel, or her brush. she loves aampapar and gogo paan masala and could eat potato chips her entire life. she's got the kind of hair that baby dolls do, silky and sweet-smelling and soft. it used to be really long. she's mean, but never has problems apologizing. she's opinionated and clueless and takes six months to read an agatha christie, but she never gives up. she likes to go through cupboards, pockets, suitcases, zippered compartments and the suchlike so she knows exactly where everything is, and any treasure she finds is hers. i always want her stuff. she's a lazy old cow but will cook for thirty-five people for your eighteenth surprise birthday. she likes watching that cheap-o SMS channel and For Love or Money and is not scared of big dogs. she doesn't necessarily prefer apple juice over orange, or vice versa. i think she'd go for the pineapple. she's pretty. makeup looks sexy on her. she only wears high heels when she feels like a diva, or abbu gets after her to enough. she's light enough to piggyback, but the backs of her knees are so tickly that you can't anyway. 'she's always hungray' ;)). she played with ali's action figures more than she played barbies with me, and was always the one who'd jump off the wall standing up (as opposed to sitting down and heaving yourself off). she lived in a cardboard box with me for an entire day and we didn't fight even once. she's good for adventures and does crazy dances in the living room. she used to cycle in the middle of the road, weaving back and forth so i could never overtake her- she likes doing sadist things like that. she still asks me what to wear, which i love. she won't let me wear her rainbow stripey toe-socks. she invents funny words and hooks people onto them. she loves it if you call her 'channa'. she's artistic and creative, and can see a cartoon character in everyone's face. she has long, straight fingers and the second toe on her foot is a little longer than her big toe. she knows what 'goopy la tu' is. whenever we play taboo on the same team we're unbeatable. she's good at checkers and always makes the clever, maddening three-way words in scrabble. she's tactful and protective and a big baby. she used to chew with her mouth open when she was five, and it was fascinating to watch her. it still is. she's like that, that funny little sister of mine.
happy birthday, sand :)
Mina at 9:23 AM
Monday, December 20, 2004this isn't really happening, is it?
Mina at 9:27 AM
Mina at 9:16 AM
Saturday, December 18, 2004Masochism becomes an elevation, as snobby puts it, of whatever you have. This makes sense, I think. Loving means what, doggedly keeping your eyes on the good, the warm, the happiness, because you’re willing to forgive, let go, overlook, ignore- because you see something in the other person that makes all the not-so-perfect things irrelevant for you. It doesn’t matter. Masochism? Could you call it that? Everyone who has ever loved anyone knows how miserable it is. What are you doing then? Putting yourself second for someone, anyone, depends on the situation- because you love them. You need them around (the ‘need is a self-defined want’ debate later). Masochism comes around when you actually don’t mind being miserable. Don’t mind….or don’t know what else to do, really. Some people have to be miserable, it gives them something to do, a state to be in. Something is better than nothing, misery is feeling, even if it is of a rather scroggy kind. One way or another you’re not empty. You’ve got something to do with yourself. Blog fodder. The moon is full tonight, and she is not with me. Kabootar ja ja ja. So much for my happy ending, blah blah blah.
But can you really, truly love without the element of masochism, masochism being then the state of not-happiness in a person who does not feel the need to consider this not-happiness a problem. It’s what you do, isn’t it- indulgence in someone else. You’ll give them your jacket knowing you’ll be cold without it. Let them eat the best part of your fried egg, give them half of your candy bar, let them hog the blanket. I guess loving anyone involves suppressing your self to some degree, and that’s masochism. Gule’s point was why do we, as affectees of a particular cultural influence, keep on being doormats for the people we love? Her nani will feed the entire family mangoes and not eat them herself, there being scads more mangoes and she being a mango aficionado. No, she’ll adamantly refuse to eat a mango and will instead chew on all the mango peel- and be perfectly happy doing it. She won’t eat the mango. She wants to chew on the peel like some forlorn, abandoned poor relative. How come, bhai? Yeh kya baat hui (‘what is that supposed to mean’)? Is that masochism? Sounds like it. We agree that that’s just weird, but I know that if Sana asks for my Kit-Kat I will quite promptly break it into two and hand her the bigger half. I love my sister, I am not her doormat in the least- God knows we bicker and fight enough to last us several lifetimes and then some- but I will indulge her because I love her. Am I being self-effacing whenever I do that? Am I exhibiting some deep-seated masochist indoctrination of thou-shalt-let-everyone-steamroll-thee-because-thou-art-a-woman when I roll my eyes and let a male friend eat half of my sandwich because he’s been eyeing it like a greedy, starving puppy? I let him eat it because I can go home and make myself another one and he has to go back to the dorm and eat dorm crap, and I think of that because I love him, not because his word is my command. I’m not being a doormat- or that’s what I think.
Masochism is an interesting phenomenon. The word is automatically SM (for less obvious reasons as well :P), you say it and studded neck collars, spiky leather boots, whips and handcuffs spring to mind. There are no relationships without masochism, funnily enough. The minute you place importance on anyone, they will take something of you with them whether they leave, stay or fade into the background like wallpaper in a room that gets too much sunlight. That’s all right- you take something from them too. Anonymous’ point holds, and I think mister Moiz will back me up on this one: purity of love comes when you can put yourself aside. Why you would be willing to risk complete destruction of your self by doing that is a question we answer ourselves.
Mina at 1:39 PM
Thursday, December 16, 2004on music
yay for huma, who burnt me the bestest CD for my birthday- it ranks right on the tail of fahd's twin-CD fantasticness and that is saying a lot :D 'the way you make me feel' (which is my favourite michael jackson song) to 'chutta kukkar banere te' (yeah baby! woo hoo!), this thing's got it all :D woo hoo i says!
*humming 'two princes'*
hopefully the variety books wallah wasn't BS-ing when he told me 'maps for lost lovers' was in the back room being sticky-labelled and would be available the next day....i want it! didn't go to watch sameer in action (sorry mehreen baby love;) ), sana and i were bone-tired. i've printed out most of my poetry, quite a bit of it there. i feel a little pleased at the bulk, although being super-critical child of my ancestors i don't like most of it.
on the masochist theory
gule and i were discussing her ph.d dissertation (mine being as yet vague). she holds that there is a strong masochist tendency in subconty people, particularly as far as relationships and love is concerned. ranjish hi sahi, dil hi dukhane keliye aa, the suchlike. i'm inclined to agree. my two cents: fatalism. none of us actually believe that the great good thing will happen. we'd like to, but i don't think anyone actually believes it.
more on this later, because it needs a more proper 'splanation in total, i'm going to the bazaar.
Mina at 11:17 AM
(paranthesis mine. naturally.)
Bittle Fairy studlock schmuck,
Smittle smack boo-aming buck.
Four eyes and palt and sepper hair,
Solitico-pocio leaning there.
DUdly mudly downright cudly,
Goddess lobes behind the studgudly.
Waaing, stampeeding, chicken running comeyea,
Olivia's deadyea, comeover chumyea! (hahaha yay)
Beary hair never scaryfairy,
Flowing robes of drowning blackshking dairy.
Bittle fairy studlock smack,
Swoosh for bilal, he's in the back!
Mina at 11:08 AM
Wednesday, December 15, 2004you know there's a problem when the poetry turns to urdu.
Mina at 9:11 PM
i love being a TA :D
Mina at 2:12 PMi don't like it.
'be mentally prepared', what the heck does that mean?
Mina at 9:27 AM
Monday, December 13, 2004okay okay okay! i succumb to the lure of the excessively long list of memememe! are you happy now? hehehehehhehe *goes on bold-fying spree*
01. Bought everyone in the pub a drink
02. Swam with dolphins (oooo)
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone (someone being me :D)
08. Said 'I love you' and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Done a striptease
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Stayed up all night long, and watched the sunrise
15. Seen the Northern Lights (hai i so want to)
16. Gone to a huge sports game
17. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
18. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
19. Touched an iceberg
20. Slept under the stars (not all night)
21. Changed a baby's diaper
22. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon (ooooo)
23. Watched a meteor shower
24. Gotten drunk on champagne
25. Given more than you can afford to charity
26. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
27. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
28. Had a food fight (food be much delicious and powerful commodity to waste) (horrors! beyond peanuts and popcorn, hell no)
29. Bet on a winning horse
30. Taken a sick day when you're not ill
31. Asked out a stranger (ok, an acquaintance, but for all intents and purposes, a stranger)
32. Had a snowball fight
33. Photocopied your bottom on the office photocopier3
34. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
35. Held a lamb
36. Enacted a favorite fantasy
37. Taken a midnight skinny dip (if only i had a beach)
38. Taken an ice cold bath/shower (only like a bajillion times:P)
39. Had a meaningful conversation with a beggar
40. Seen a total eclipse
41. Ridden a roller coaster
42. Hit a home run
43. Fit three weeks miraculously into three days
44. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
45. Adopted an accent for an entire day
46. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
47. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
48. Had two hard drives for your computer
49. Visited all 50 states
50. Loved your job for all accounts
51. Taken care of someone who was shit faced (or incredibly whiny)
52. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
53. Had amazing friends
54. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country (hehe)
55. Watched wild whales
56. Stolen a sign
57. Backpacked in Europe
58. Taken a road-trip
59. Rock climbing
60. Lied to foreign government's official in that country to avoid notice
61. Midnight walk on the beach (:( another one)
62. Sky diving
63. Visited Ireland
64. Been heartbroken longer then you were actually in love
65. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger's table and had a meal with them
66. Visited Japan
67. Bench-pressed your own weight
68. Milked a cow
69. Alphabetized your records
70. Pretended to be a superhero
71. Sung karaoke
72. Lounged around in bed all day
73. Posed nude in front of strangers
74. Scuba diving
75. Got it on to "Let's Get It On" by Marvin Gaye
76. Kissed in the rain
77. Played in the mud
78. Played in the rain
79. Gone to a drive-in theatre
80. Done something you should regret, but don't regret it
81. Visited the Great Wall of China
82. Discovered that someone who's not supposed to know about your blog has discovered your blog
83. Dropped Windows in favor of something better
84. Started a business
85. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken (so far, so good)
86. Toured ancient sites
87. Taken a martial arts class
88. Sword fought for the honor of a woman.
89. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
90. Gotten married
91. Been in a movie
92. Crashed a party
93. Loved someone you shouldn't have
94. Kissed someone so passionately it made them dizzy
95. Gotten divorced
96. Had sex at the office
97. Lied (not very well, but done it nohow)
97. (the real 97) Gone without food for 5 days
98. Made cookies from scratch
99. Won first prize in a costume contest
100. Ridden a gondola in Venice
101. Gotten a tattoo (do bubblegum wrapper ones count?)
102. Found that the texture of some materials can turn you on
103. Rafted the Snake River
104. Been on television news programs as an "expert"
105. Got flowers for no reason (yeah, i bought them for myself :P)
107. Got so drunk you don't remember anything
108. Been addicted to some form of illegal drug
109. Performed on stage
110. Been to Las Vegas.
111. Recorded music
112. Eaten shark
113. Had a one-night-stand
114. Gone to Thailand
115. Seen Moulin Rouge
116. Bought a house
117. Been in a combat zone
118. Buried one/both of your parents
120. Been on a cruise ship
121. Spoken more than one language fluently
122. Gotten into a fight while attempting to defend someone
123. Bounced a check
124. Performed in Rocky Horror
125. Read - and understood - your credit report
126. Raised children
127. Recently bought and played with a favorite childhood toy
128. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
129. Created and named your own constellation of stars (i'm going to do that tonight ;) )
130. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
131. Found out something significant that your ancestors did
132. Called or written your Congressperson
133. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
134. ...more than once?
135. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge (does drive count?)
136. Sang loudly in the car, and didn't stop when you knew someone was looking
137. Had an abortion, or your female partner did
138. Had plastic surgery
139. Survived an accident that you shouldn't have survived
140. Wrote articles for a large publication
141. Lost over 100 pounds
142. Held someone while they were having a flashback
143. Piloted an airplane
144. Petted a stingray
145. Broken someone's heart
146. Helped an animal give birth
147. Been fired or laid off from a job
148. Won money on a T.V. game show (won a goody-bag on radio, though :D)
149. Broken a bone
150. Killed a human being
151. Gone on an African photo safari
152. Ridden a motorcycle (not driven)
153. Driven any land vehicle at a speed of 100mph or faster?
154. Had a body part of yours below the neck pierced (does stapling your thumb twice count?)
155. Fired a rifle, shotgun or pistol
156. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
157. Ridden a horse
158. Had major surgery.
159. Had sex on a moving train
160. Had a snake as a pet
161. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
162. Slept through an entire flight: take, landing, during
163. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours (jet lag zindabad)
164. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
165. Visited all 7 continents
166. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
167. Eaten kangaroo meat
168. Fallen in love at an ancient Mayan burial ground (oooo)
170. Eaten sushi
171. Had your picture in the newspaper
172. Had 2 (or more) healthy romantic relationships for over a year in your lifetime
173. Changed someone's mind about something you care deeply about
174. Gotten someone fired for his or her actions
175. Gone back to school (visiting, yeah)
177. Changed your name
178. Petted a cockroach (yeah, with a wiper :P)
179. Eaten fried green tomatoes
180. Read The Iliad (and the aenid....and metamorphases...and ovid...gotta do all that!)
181. Selected one "important" author whom you missed in school, and read him/ her (pah! i read everything in school!)
182. Dined in a restaurant and stolen silverware, plates, cups because your apartment needed them
183. ...and gotten 86'ed from the restaurant because you did it so many times, they figured out it was you
184. Taught yourself an art from scratch (of course, it didn't work too well :P)
185. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
186. Apologized to someone years after inflicting the hurt
187. Skipped all your school reunions
188. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
189. Been elected to public office (i was student council twice, no elections for me bwahahaa)
190. Written your own computer language
191. Thought to yourself that you're living your dream
192. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
193. Built your own PC from parts
194. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn't know you.
195. Had a booth at a street fair
196. Dyed your hair
197: Been a DJ (dammit! so close!)
198: Found out someone was going to dump you via LiveJournal
199: Written your own role playing game
200: Lost your Best Friend for reasons of death
201: Fallen in love over the internet
202: Sung in a Barbers' Shop Quartet (how about an octuplet in the superstore?)
203: Eaten a live animal
204: Been able to communicate in a language you barely learnt barely three days earlier.
205: Gate-crashed a wedding and went up to get your pictures taken with the happy couple (we actually were videotaped burning up their dance floor :D)
these ones are mine!!! (happy, mehreen? lol):
205: Been so caught up in a book that you kept reading it, even in the shower
206: Run a lap-without stopping- inside the original Olympics stadium in Athens
207: Had recurring dreams
208: Fallen asleep underneath a tree
209: Eaten lollipops every day for weeks
210: Been inside a bombed-out building
211: Ridden a camel
212: Had a book you loved signed by the author
Add your own! :D
Mina at 9:18 AM
Sunday, December 12, 2004waterlogged boots bring
rare treasure, who
knew what the
Mina at 1:59 PM
Saturday, December 11, 2004on economics
i got me a C+, and i'm jubilant! some poor freshman went down the toilet, but then again- so did i when i was a poor freshie, welcome to the food chain of comparitive marking. issues in education is a pass/fail course, and such a fascination for LUMS. aisa bhi hota hai? only a pass or a fail? gasp! apparently at brown, that their standard grading: either you pass, or you fail. no A to D terrible-for-self-esteem business. although the high of an A+ is quite wonderful, i have to say. or a C+ ;)
in the average hindustani household, a paandaan is a must. it is a staple. you get a chaandi ka paandaan in your jahez. it's a given. amma, sadly enough, doesn't have one, largely because nobody in my house is partial enough to have to have a fully-stocked paandaan at home. i wonder if it would be viable to get a paandaan and stock it with meetha-paan ingredients, because i could have one of those all the time. nana's paandaan was great, he always let me eat his barri ilaichi. he had to give it up, i remember the day when there was no smoothed-with-age, pale yellow-silver paandaan on the side table. felt like something was terribly wrong, the space still has a paandaan shaped hole in the air above it.
jerry is the best dancing partner i've had, ever. other than the woman at the salsa class; she was diminutive and wearing a black frilly peasant top made of stiff chiffon, black beads and dark red lipstick. she was leading, which made her much cooler than some very accomplished, albeit male dancing partners i had. dancing is the best fun! parties are too crowded and the music is mostly always terrible, but dancing with a handful of good friends in your drawing room with the carpet rolled back and the discman plugged into the stereo is brill-ee-yunt. *grin* gule and i have reached a consensus: a man who knows how to dance gets huge points.
on brand-new niece
maybe it's just babies, but the little one smells sweet. she smells like flowers and the softest skin and warm woolly wraps knitted years ago by nani. i try to inhale her exhalations- it's the purest breath any human breathes, i think. all of us are becoming expert tiny-person handlers, we swap her around from left-arm crooks to right-arm crooks and varied laps with increasingly practised ease. amma and shehla khala have gone baby-mad, much to the amusement of us four daughters.
i'm getting books! present-books and present-to-myself books, and then books in-between because i've taken two literature courses this quarter, so plenty of words everywhere for the next three months. i'm in heaven. what a fantastic day. started out great, and ends just as wow-ly. yay for me :) Mashallah :)
Mina at 9:25 PM
Thursday, December 09, 2004ET go home......make mine a diamond ;)
Fantastic, fun article (thank you, Ray) about a list that talks about revamping that 100-things-before-I-die list compiled by some imaginative British scientists :) Give it a whirl!
Here's the pick of the list :D
Extract your own DNA by spitting gargled salt water into diluted washing-up liquid and slowly dribbling ice-cold gin down the side of the glass. Spindly white clumps which form in the mixture are, basically, you.
Link your home computer to the Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico (via setiathome.ssl.berkeley.edu) and you could be the first person to spot messages from aliens for which the telescope constantly checks. If your computer gets the first, the Americans promise to give you the credit.
Measure the speed of light by melting chocolate in microwave oven hotspots and measuring the distance between globs. Various calculations produce the answer and you can still eat the chocolate afterwards.
Be a gecko.Researchers in Manchester have almost succeeded in developing Velcro-like pads to fix to the feet of volunteers who will then be able to scuttle over the town hall or the Guardian's northern headquarters like lizards, with no risk of falling.
Write your name in atoms at IBM's Almaden research laboratory in San Jose, California - and, while you're saving up to go, simply see an atom by befriending a physicist at one of Britain's many university labs with the equipment to trap and cool atoms. Barium is best.
Use your excreta to enter the amazing world of the dung beetle. Much more basic but just as fascinating for some. If you are ever caught short in the open, says New Scientist, turn the accident into an opportunity by lingering nearby and watching what happens. "It won't take long for the beetles to appear, scuttle boldly up to your deposit and begin rolling balls of it away, head-butting it and pushing it with their forelegs." Reassuringly, it gets used as food and a beetle breeding nest.
Inhale helium and start singing.Old hat but a must for anyone who's never done it. But don't take too much and never use a pressurised source. If you do, in New Scientist's words, "you probably won't be singing anything. Ever".
When you've gone
Help nail a murderer.You can register ahead with Tennessee's body farm. Donated corpses are left out in the open to decompose before trainee forensic scientists get to work on them. An estimated 100 murderers have been convicted as a result.
Become a diamond. LifeGem of Chicago, Illinois, the book reveals, will take a few grains of your cremated remains, subject them to high pressure and temperature, and you will emerge from the process, 18 weeks later, as a sparkling one-carat diamond.
Mina at 7:34 PM
Mina at 6:22 PM
Monday, December 06, 2004First, are you our sort of a person?
Do you wear
A glass eye, false teeth or a crutch,
A brace or a hook,
Rubber breasts or a rubber crotch,
Stitches to show something's missing? No, no? Then
How can we give you a thing?
Open your hand.
Empty? Empty. Here is a hand
To fill it and willing
To bring teacups and roll away headaches
And do whatever you tell it.
Will you marry it?
It is guaranteed
To thumb shut your eyes at the end
And dissolve of sorrow.
We make new stock from the salt.
I notice you are stark naked.
How about this suit----
Black and stiff, but not a bad fit.
Will you marry it?
It is waterproof, shatterproof, proof
Against fire and bombs through the roof.
Believe me, they'll bury you in it.
Now your head, excuse me, is empty.
I have the ticket for that.
Come here, sweetie, out of the closet.
Well, what do you think of that ?
Naked as paper to start
But in twenty-five years she'll be silver,
In fifty, gold.
A living doll, everywhere you look.
It can sew, it can cook,
It can talk, talk , talk.
It works, there is nothing wrong with it.
You have a hole, it's a poultice.
You have an eye, it's an image.
My boy, it's your last resort.
Will you marry it, marry it, marry it.
Mina at 9:07 AM
Sunday, December 05, 2004i wonder sometimes if all of your kind are the same: millions of blunted nerve-endings that twitch, walk across a room, breathe- everything but. blunted, or maybe just turned away. folded away nice and neat, neatness doesn't trip you over in the dark.
Mina at 3:58 PM
Wednesday, December 01, 2004Dear God,
Thank you for my mother and father. Thank you for my sister and brother, and handmade cards at the stroke of midnight. Thank you for insanely punctual, off-key birthday singers from many oceans away, and equally kooky messages from similarly far women. Thank you for all the messages, actually, each and every one. Thank you for the 12 missed calls, and the calls that did get through. Thank you for the one call that finally did come. Thank you for the real cards and the e-cards and the flooding of the Orkut scrapbook. Thank you for all the blog mentions. Thank you for the CDs and windchimes, the goldfish and twenty-one balloons, all the other stuff, and Sharmeen in the driveway. Thank you for tiramisu with a lit cigarette to wish on, and random burstings-into-song in public. Thank you for filling my life to the brim with such beauty and wonder, and accept my apologies for sometimes not noticing it all. Yay for me, I haven't felt this lucky in a while :)
Mina at 10:01 AM