Sunday, January 30, 2005

List of Things Done Today That Will Probably Never Be Done Again

Run across the intersection of M.M Alam Road and Main Boulevard and not be hit by a car.

Lie down smack in the middle of Main Boulevard, right opposite Qasr-e-Noor. Twice.

Wave at four cameras in succession.

Be told “bhaag, cheeti, bhaag!”

Smile at a cool uncle who had only one arm as he jogged past.

Dip a finger in the suspicious, albeit cold, water of the fountain on Liberty Chowk.

Swing around one of the trees on a green belt in the middle of an otherwise busy road.

Run down said empty road with my siblings, cousins, parents, an aunt and an uncle, laughing all the way.

See that funny boy in full GC sporting regalia jumping up and down like a manic ant on its hind legs.

Almost play street football (with a water bottle) with skinny little boys I don’t know from Adam.

Yay! Next weekend, bring on the two-seater Cessna :D

Mina at 2:25 PM


Saturday, January 29, 2005

whoooaaaaa are these aampapar are KHATTAY or WHAT? my mouth's puckering like a goldfish, my tastebuds are screaming and my borderline throat is in shocked disbelief.......YUMMAAAYY!

Mina at 7:49 PM


Friday, January 28, 2005

Para que tú me oigas
mis palabras
se adelgazan a veces
como las huellas de las gaviotas en las playas.

Collar, cascabel ebrio
para tus manos suaves como las uvas.

Y las miro lejanas mis palabras.
Más que mías son tuyas.
Van trepando en mi viejo dolor como las yedras.

Ellas trepan así por las paredes húmedas.
Eres tú la culpable de este juego sangriento.

Ellas están huyendo de mi guarida oscura.
Todo lo llenas tú, todo lo llenas.

Antes que tú poblaron la soledad que ocupas,
y están acostumbradas más que tú a mi tristeza.

Ahora quiero que digan lo que quiero decirte
para que tú las oigas como quiero que me oigas.

El viento de la angustia aún las suele arrastrar.
Huracanes de sueños aún a veces las tumban.
Escuchas otras voces en mi voz dolorida.
Llanto de viejas bocas, sangre de viejas súplicas.
Ámame, compañera. No me abandones. Sígueme.
Sígueme, compañera, en esa ola de angustia.

Pero se van tiñendo con tu amor mis palabras.
Todo lo ocupas tú, todo lo ocupas.

Voy haciendo de todas un collar infinito
para tus blancas manos, suaves como las uvas.

Para que tú me oigas
Neftalí Tuyes

Mina at 10:46 AM


Wednesday, January 26, 2005

maybe it was the time, maybe it was the empty stomach. maybe it was the untamed, unromantically tousled hair hanging down her shoulders, the stretched-out legs in jeans not hers. maybe it was the purple smudged sky, the cigarette smoke not hers either. maybe it was the cooling concrete, the caffeine headache. maybe it was just the overwhelming detachment of a body not wanting to cut itself, not wanting to wring itself out with brine, not wanting to starve or be ill or shriek, even. stumbling over spaces, picking up silences and trying to shape them into cubes of speech to place in the air. trying to catch a moonbeam in a hand, only not half as pretty, or the tiniest bit silver.

i heard there was a secret chord...but you don't really care for music- do you?

Mina at 8:06 PM


Tuesday, January 25, 2005

'turn left! turn left!'
'arrey why should i turn left, we have to go right.'
'no na! i want a challi!'
'you want a challi?' she took her eyes off the road long enough to look at him, caught between amusement and incredulity. 'i thought was that my job.'
'haan, but you're driving too, and that was my job.' he grinned and pulled the ash-tray open, looking for change. his fingers came out sooty, and a faint line creased the smoothness between his eyebrows.
she was turning left, and didn't look at him.
'jee, jaan?'
his gaze fixed on her hands as she deftly turned the steering wheel. they gripped the leather cover with easy confidence. her nails were painted with a shiny, clear polish, and the only adornment they wore was a large antique silver ring, set with four diamond-shaped pink amethysts. hands, fingers, nails. wash them, and they were newborn. fingers don't bear the stamp of their experience the way a face or an eye would.
'have you been smoking?'
she pursed her mouth, parking on the shoulder a foot ahead of the challi-wallah.
'not really.'
'what does that mean?'
she pushed her sunglasses onto her head and turned to face him.
'it means not recently.'
'no wonder.' he pulled the ash-tray out and showed her the contents. she peered inside, sniffed some ash and sneezed.
'at least it's old,' she replied dryly, honking the horn at the blackened, ragged boy manning the big ashy basket. he scowled and shoved the tray back in.
'you know how much i hate it.'
she stared out of the window, looking at the weeping willow sway its fronds above the canal. it was a blustery day, a hint of rain in the air. she pressed a fingertip to the glass, leaving behind a misty, squashed circle.
'i know.'
he wanted to reply. wanted. he sighed and looked out of his window. the sky was turning aandhi was gathering its skirts. leaves danced across the green belt. the radio twanged.
the challi-wallah walked up with a beautiful sunny challi.

Mina at 6:50 PM


worn out, loved in,
one eyeball hangs by a thread and
holes leak wooden stuffing

- waiting for


Mina at 5:46 PM


Monday, January 24, 2005

having spent my entire day writing about or reading about greeks, i think t'would be grand to have mythology for a history. the hellenic ministry for culture's server is called odysseus, who was the coolest greek according to them. he's a mythological character, but he's greek, so he becomes real. meri nani ki nani ki nani athena thi. i wonder how societies with a strong myth tradition reconcile religion, myth, lineage and history. i descend from jason, who is for all intents and purposes a character in a story. but hello, he's there in that there frieze so he must have been real at some point or another- and wouldn't that be somethin'! gotta go back to athens, and look at the acropolis all lit up gold and yellow from the sidewalk outside the hotel with the crabby fat woman at the desk. roam the flea market again, and eat an apple from the crates tilted outside a little fresh produce shop, and get one of those strappy leather mineral water-bottle holders...haha...digression! but good times.

Mina at 10:27 PM


Twelve days to the sixth- let the countdown to Basant begin! (jammie, illustration for this one pliss ;) )

Mina at 2:54 PM


sometimes other people's work makes me feel....glutinous. not molasses, molasses is sweet and sticky and beautifully woody-coloured. molasses is licky. glutinous is not. it's cornstarch and overcooked rice, wibbly-wobbly translucent goo that coagulates on top of the lentil soup when you refrigerate it. you read it and your eyeballs suddenly feel solid and the air thickens like white sauce sitting in the pan too long. terribly presumptuous of me, of course, to say something as uncomplimentary as likening people's personal offerings to tri-bonded carbohydrates when i hold pretensions of being able to have words dance at my fingertips myself and thus construct sentences of a length that would turn henry james quite the exact shade of springtime foliage but hey, at half past one a.m, you can do just about anything you want. that, and also the fact that the slightly blurred internal mechanics of a mind at this hour generate the most wonderful kind of english, it's really quite entertaining to let the faucet run and see what comes out.

Mina at 1:59 AM


nothing like a girlfriend to straighten your hair, head and heart out- even if it only went to halves ;) love you, elmo!

Mina at 1:41 AM


Saturday, January 22, 2005

He peered over the ledge. the concrete was bumpy and seemed to stretch into infinity like some kind of malign rockwalled elastic. He sighed, and rested his face on his hands. This was going to be a problem. The rain dripped down, pattering on the leaves of the tree near the ledge. It sounded like tiny feet running barefoot on a smooth floor. He mused a while, looking at the water…and then she bounded into the corner of his eyes. He tried to look nonchalant, surreptitiously turning his head just a little to watch her. She ran up the pillar and skipped onto the beam, her tail bouncing like a fluffy ribbon. She ran up and down the beam, flexing, as I were- and then leapt off. His breath stopped for a second, but then a branch of the tree dipped and shook. She had jumped onto the tree. Show-off, he muttered darkly, watching the tree vibrate as she probably ran down the branch. He washed his face defensively; quick, neat, tiny movements. He groomed his tail swiftly, pulling it around him like a luxurious furry boa.
There he was, a beautiful chubby squirrel with a lovely bushy tail and elegant beige fur, and he couldn’t get his pretty butt off a ledge and go running down like all the other squirrels did. It was most upsetting. He peered over again. Buss. This was it. He put one paw forth, than another, gripping the edge tightly. One. He rocked forward. Two. He squeezed his eyes shut, breathed in deeply and sat right back down. Great. Just great. He sighed and put his face back on his paws. She ran back up. Didn’t look breathless, didn’t look tired. Just looked spunky and energetic, looked like she was having fun. And he was stuck on a boring windowsill- a bathroom windowsill, no less. Him, quite a wonderful squirrel in his own right. This was just too much. Of course he could jump off a ledge. Nothing to it. Everyone did it all the time, squirrels could do anything. Even fly, his great-uncle Bobby could soar for miles and miles. He'd been, naturally, quite the bee's knees. Of course, his real name wasn’t Bobby, but his father’s side of the family always had a bit of a farangi streak. And here was a girl, running around, in the rain, as whizzy as you please. Bobby Chacha’s tail would have dropped off in indignance.
Crikey! She was talking to him!! He swallowed a squeak as she hop-skip-jumped over to the beam closest to the ledge, all lithe and athletic.
‘Want to come jump on the tree? It’s fun!’ she called up, her eyes asparkle with all that blasted gymnastics. No, I don’t want to play your silly girl games thank you very much, I’d much rather sit here on my high ledge and ponder deep philosophy. I’d rather stay here quite nice and safe and look the hunk I know I am and be mysterious and deep. No, just no. Say it, you fool rodent!
‘Cool! Let’s go!’ she said, running off to make room for him to jump onto the beam. Jump off the ledge and onto the beam. Oh my sainted Aunt Basheeran. She tilted her head expectantly, and smiled at him. Smiled. His knees shook, why exactly he wasn’t sure, but they quaked. Wahhh why him, why did he get into stupid messes like this, whywhywhy did he have such a big clapper that never said what it was supposed to, why- the toilet flushed, and she called up to him-
‘I’m going, if you don’t want to!’
Oh no no no, that’s not part of the plan missy, you can’t just skip around bright-eyed and pretty and then run away! Jump you fool! Jump!
She began leaping up the beam, towards the tree.
His heart was leaping against his ribs, trying to jump right out and his stomach felt like an ocean with Moby Dick thrashing inside. His feet turned to pebbles.
She reached the end of the beam, and was getting ready for the run-up preceding the jump. She was so pretty, and the beam was so far off...what if he missed, and broke something? What if he went splat, like Cousin Farah's nani had? What if-
Jump! Stop thinking! Just jump! C'mon!
She began the run-up.
Everything was in slow motion. She was going to jump, and he’d be a pretty, elegantly beige squirrel that never left the stupid bathroom windowsill to come and play for the rest of his life. Stay on the stupid ledge, why don’tcha, and be a mummy-daddy squirrel forever. Oh god.
She jumped.
The branch jiggled, the leaves shook and then all was still once more. The rain pattered down. He scowled and looked the other way. Then he put his face on his paws and stared down the ledge again.

Mina at 2:58 PM


Friday, January 21, 2005

Eid Moo-barik! Have a beefy-ful day ;)

Mina at 3:06 AM


Thursday, January 20, 2005

it flickers, one gaze never
slumbers any

one eye never closes, shimmers and
glows not-their light

midnight and angelvoices
melting, curving, flying away

if you would i could
stay, and

my collarbones would be newlife

Mina at 11:48 PM


the goats are screaming.

Mina at 7:13 PM


Wednesday, January 19, 2005

responses to the last instalment of the he-she daydream, as it were, have been interesting. y'all seem to think that i've written about an ideal scenario. perfection. really, it's only two people sitting on a sofa and doing their own thing. yes, they don't have to speak to fill the silence, they can be separate and yet part of a whole. but that isn't an elusive glass bubble on a shelf beyond your reach- at all.
it's a woman looking at a man, her man. your women will have, at one point or another, probably thought the things 'she' is thinking- so if you knew what was going on behind her eyes what would happen, would perfection suddenly become real? too bad knowing is more of intuition than actual words, and thus so easily missed. sometimes even words slide off, unabsorbed.
what i'm trying to put across is that those two down there, they aren't symbols of the remarkable. they are you and your lover, whenever you two are just hanging out- there is something magic already there. there is something magic in a look across a room, a tilt of a head towards a whispering mouth, two elbows on the same arm-rest. you already have your perfection or have had it at some point in your lives or another. when we see things from a distance we ooh and aah and let our hearts constrict in wistful longing and forget- the smugness of belonging will quite often blur the resonance of the music in your life.
what am i saying, really? i'm smiling wryly and reminding you to listen closer, look harder. perfection is not a unicorn in the forest of jewelled fruit. 'it's just the nearness of you', like the beautiful song by norah jones goes, that can mean a world. delight is in the details, in the atoms of the whole. in the turn of the wrist, the crease of a laugh line, in the sound of a voice. the big things are obvious as far as romance is concerned. they're wonderful, obviously. how can they not be? but when a head of wet hair moves you, that's a different kind of sweetness. perfection? you bet.

Mina at 5:04 PM


Monday, January 17, 2005

She watched him over the top of her book. He was sprawled on the other end of the sofa in an easy, relaxed arrangement of limbs that bespoke an effortless, quiet confidence. His long denim-clad legs were stretched out in front of him. The bottoms were frayed and faded, and his feet neat. She noticed them with appreciation- well-groomed hands and feet were so essential. She turned her eyes back to her page as he channel-surfed, one finger pressing a button. His other hand lay at a distance from his side, palm facing upward. His fingers curled in a little, unconsciously, like a leaf, or a small boy’s sleeping hand. The cuffs of his shirt were unbuttoned and rolled up a turn so his wrist was bare. He had large, square hands balanced on an incongruously fragile looking wrist that belonged more to his fingers than his palm. He never wore a watch, preferring instead a faded leather strap on his left wrist. Where it came from and why he wore it was something he had never told her, and she had never asked again. She turned a page, and he breathed, and she put her breath in sync with his. He hadn’t shaved, but his hair had been cut recently. His barber had left a smooth arc over his ears, a clean line across the back of his neck. Contrasted with the shadow on his jaw, the skin just beneath his ear looked like silk, soft and sweet. The shallow between his collarbones dipped a little as he stifled a yawn and pushed himself deeper into the cushions with a small sigh. He shut his eyes for a brief moment, his lashes fluting outward just a little, his mouth pliantly defenseless. When she looked up again, he was frowning a small wrinkle at the top of each of his eyebrows at the screen. As he passed familiar music by he flexed a foot, and it made a cracking noise. She winced, and he looked at her from the corner of his eye. She wrinkled her nose at him, and he smiled a lopsided apology, extending his free arm and wrapping his hand around one of her ankles in a firm hold, hooking his index finger inside her beaded anklet. She put a hand down and looped her pinky though his. They breathed in sync, he changed the channel again, and she smiled at her book.

Mina at 7:31 PM


Proudness- go, Arooj! a woo hoo and then some!

Mina at 7:14 PM


live music depresses me. i thought i was weird until amma said it did that to her too, and to nani (wa-hey, we're all weird!). the level of impact goes beyond happy-enjoyment and crosses into sad-enjoyment. we love it, love it to distraction, but it goes deeper than most folkses. if you see me with my head down on my knees at a concert, don't ask if i'm okay. i am, just in a strange way. i'm standing on a long, rolling moor scattered with dark brush....the sky is dark with clouds, heavy with imminent rain. the wind is whipping at my hair, my clothes.. but i'm not cold. it's sepia and grey, the picture, with muted purples and green, and the trees are thin, dark and tall on the edges of the frame. that's where i am; that's where i'm singing along, my heart brimming with a strange and wonderful, keening sorrow.

Mina at 9:21 AM


Saturday, January 15, 2005

come on, i want to show you something.

he frowned a little, quizzical. she made her oh come on now trust me and play along face and started walking swiftly ahead.

they walked down the empty street, and two beige stray dogs curled their tails and watched them pass. he put his hands in his jacket pockets and she swung hers back and forth. their shoulders bumped sometimes.

he looked up. the drab concrete stretched for miles, it seemed, and the iron staircase looked small and skinny next to it, like a withered winter vine clinging stubbornly to a wall.

i'm not going up that thing.

her nostrils flared. oh come on. it'll be worth it i promise.

somehow i don't think so. raised eyebrows at her and swung his elbows back and forth. she smiled anyway.

you're a big baby. i'm going, you stay here then and be left out.

she put her foot on the first rung and began climbing up. he strode ahead and followed. she looked back and grinned.

you better not be looking up my skirt!

if you had been wearing one, i would have!

they reached the top of the water tank. she got there a minute before him, climbing steadily and swiftly. she had obviously done this many times before. she was sitting on the ledge that ran round the roof and he stifled an impulse to pull her back. her legs dangled off the edge, her hands were at her sides.

isn't it gorgeous?

and it was.

Mina at 6:12 PM


how the evening was spent I

Mina at 5:47 PM


how the evening was spent II

Mina at 5:46 PM


Take the quiz: "What Broadway Musical Are You?"

You are the Broadway Musical Cats by Andrew Lloyd Weber. You are a friendly, upbeat person, but sometimes you don't get the hint about when it's a good time to leave a situation.

yay cats, wah that it closed on broadway a few years ago :( always wanted to see it.

Mina at 1:05 AM


Friday, January 14, 2005

Take the quiz: "What Constellation are you?"

Cassiopeia - The Queen
You are known for being beautiful, but your vanity will be your downfall. Keep any daughters away from the sea and watch out for serpents...

Mina at 11:51 PM


'i don't want to do this any more.'
'oh, come on na! it's easy, i promise.'
she glanced at him sidelong.
he grinned, looking down over the edge. they were so high up that it was windy, and the clouds were below them.
'of course i'm a liar, but i'm telling you it's going to work.'
she flexed her shoulders nervously.
'mhm, and if it doesn't?'
'well, then-'
he leapt back all of a sudden and gave her a walloping hard push. she shrieked something earsplitting and tumbled over the edge, arms flailing and hair flying. he laughed out loud at her terror. and then she floated right back up, flapping her wings with wryly affronted languidness.
'you're an asshole, you know that.'
he stretched his arms over his head and nodded, yawning.
she rolled her eyes and floated up and down, treading air.
'that's one thing- how're you going to get down?'
the thought struck him as he slowly brought his gaze to meet hers.
'oh, shit.'
then she laughed, and flew away.

Mina at 11:04 AM


Thursday, January 13, 2005

i think i'm going to be drastically ill, and throw up until i turn into a raisin and then i'll have to stay in bed and read my blasted henry james instead of milan kundera which i crave to and drink ORS. sigh. i know i'm going to be sick, no sane person can function like this. lunchless, sleepless, hopeless, luckless and everythinginbetweenless except for pretty underwear and toe socks. and green day's sofarsogood newest offering in the discman. and the beautiful sunsets aajkal, dammit i missed today's. i was going to sit on the roof and watch it but i went and drank chai instead. grumble. i feel green :S this always happens when i be supergirl for extended periods of time. but i went to the park today; during my period of staringintospaceduringanexam i decided i was going to lie under my tree today. and i did. hooray for me i say. if i were green i would technically then be a leaf, would i not? i wouldn't mind being a leaf on a tree for a day. hmm. i saw appendage-girl today too! hahaha most interesting, poor A looked like he wanted to run like a hairy cat whose fur was afire...khekhe...two consecutive american lit. classes, 've are all goinkto diyee'...i didn't go today, a quiz followed by an exam is quite enough finger-fry for a day. my writing bump's been flattened :P it used to be much bigger, i almost miss it. maybe it was all those pencils, and switching to ballpoint/fountain pen eased the pressure. poo. i still touch it to remember which side left it, it's an instinctive habit :) i miss my fountain pen, it's exactly like seamus heaney put it in 'digging'- "Between my finger and my thumb/The squat pen rests; snug as a gun.". it's a silver scheaffer, handed down from daddy and beautiful. quink ink only. never let other people use your fountain pen, they'll ruin the set of the nib, because everyone holds their pen differently. ballpoints are disgusting to write with, i hate them. i prefer pencils, only they smudge something awful. i'm reading up on the elgin marbles for applied ethics. omer came by in his characteristic quiet wafting-into-the-frame, laughed, and remarked 'so, the greek've lost their marbles?'. hehehe. puns crack me up. i have to go and meet the concept of canning folkses in a bit. probably a lost cause, and i will sit and nibble my mouth and listen to techie talk and not say anything because it's quite pointless, and proceed to be sidelined with the utmost kindliness. it isn't friday, i kept thinking it was for days and days. yay that it isn't. dear dear, i should have read more of isabel's adventures, would have got a nice chunk of it done too....she reminds me of me several times, to be quite honest, and really not pompous-shompous at all but she does. the point about the freedom of not having to be what everyone expects when you're far from the people who expect it came from the heart. ali and bhutta are probably 'home' by now. mehreen will come home in four or five months, yay. basant is next month and none of my friends will come 'cept for huma and p'raps saadxebandali. bloody night basant. i've hated all the ones i've been to, the building would quake every time someone walked too hard and i had to make small talk with some very uninteresting people, not to mention wear a big fat sweater and look like a curly-headed eskimo while other girls pranced about in high heels (for BASANT! even if it were a night one!) and floopy half-sleeved georgette nonsense...hmpf. it really gets my goat when girls pretend they're reptiles and don't feel a thing when i'm skinnier but probably look like the pillsbury dougboy crossed with a bandit, what with the shawl wrapped 'round. at least i'm warm, poo t'you. and there's never anyone whose jacket would be worth a wear anyway. i nearly slit my throat with dor the last time i was at some putrid night affair, which was very annoying/embarassing and hence doubly annoying because i never get stuck in dor. it's just too ignominous for a basant pro to be thus entagled, really just wrong. hahaha. hmm. time to meet the chappies, being punctual is supremely important. ta ta.

Mina at 6:26 PM


Wednesday, January 12, 2005

'tis such a beautiful day,
(it's quite out of monet)!
a day for the sun and sky!
'tis such a wonderful day
to shout 'hip hip hurray!
what a splendiferous t'day to be I!'

Mina at 1:51 PM


Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Take the quiz: "Are You Beavis or Butthead?"

You're Butthead. You're the smarter of the two. Let's just say that while Beavis becomes a frycook at McDonald's, you'll become the manager. I guess that means you know a thing or two about success.

Mina at 8:09 PM


Take the quiz: "Method of Suicide"

You have come to terms with your demons and wish to see yourself bleed. Your method of suicide is Mutilation.

knew it! 4 on 5! (1 for that's just scary)

Mina at 8:01 PM


Take the quiz: "What crazy ass poet are you? (pics)"

Robert Browning
No one knows what the hell you are talking about and your work is full of creeps. You like writing for the hell of it and thought talent surpassed all things. You are devoted being, even if your poetry is wild, you are still not all that weird. You are a lover and will continue to be successful for many moons.

boo-yah, missed being sylvia plath by one point! khekhe

Mina at 7:51 PM


Take the quiz: "Are you a burger"

ure not a burger aww
ure no burger


Mina at 7:49 PM


Monday, January 10, 2005

Sometimes birthdays are best extended- so my extended present comes a day after, because it makes birthday magic pull itself a little farther, and a longer sparkle is always just yummy.

Hmm. How to describe a Xainab K. The fact that she prefers an X to a Z should say something: this girl is unconventionality personified. Xeb is the most in-your-face person I've ever met, and she pulls it off with the most amazing balance of brains, beauty and sass that after she leaves, you stand and blink a little before moving on- and don't think that she's particularly bitchy or evil. That's not part of her dictionary (unless you piss her off, of course, and then I'd imagine getting caught in a swarm of locusts a better fate). Neither is thinking twice, 'I don't know' or 'I can't do it'. Xeb is supergirl. When she speaks Gujrati she sounds like an angel. She would thumb her nose at the world and sail away in a sieve at any given time ('pah! who says you can't do it? of course you can!') and not only be automatic captain of the pea-green sails and boss everyone around, but also be bailing water and singing mad sailor songs too....and then dare everyone to skinny-dip in the sea. She's like that. Glass and metal, water and sand, wood and wind. She'll yell at you for trying to talk down to her, and then make you carry her books. And you will, because she's Xeb. Fiercely loving, completely self-assured and unapologetically confident, elle est la look- and how! It's such a unique joy knowing you Xainab, you're an adventure every day. Here's to so many more years of writing a birthday note for you, beautiful Jumblie :)

Mina at 9:05 AM


Sunday, January 09, 2005

Take the quiz: "Is ur liver made of jello?"

rasberry jello
ur mellow, thats cool

*takes a bow*

Mina at 7:58 PM


Happy Birthday, Xebilicious one! :D

Birthday Present!

Mina at 1:56 PM


Saturday, January 08, 2005

they circle each other and
i have never seen such a


pair of partridges as them, poking
and sniffing and scowling, pair of
puckish, peckish, positively


madlyinlove birds as them, their
nets are lovingly mayhemed into
so much anarchy that there is none any

(for H and A: lol)

Mina at 1:35 PM


It is true love because
I put on eyeliner and a concerto and make pungent observations about the great issues of the day
Even when there's no one here but him,
And because
I do not resent watching the Green Bay Packers
Even though I am philosophically opposed to football,
And because
When he is late for dinner and I know he must be either having an affair or lying dead in the middle of the street,
I always hope he's dead.

It's true love because
If he said quit drinking martinis but I kept drinking them and the next morning I couldn't get out of bed,
He wouldn't tell me he told me,
And because
He is willing to wear unironed undershorts
Out of respect for the fact that I am philosophically opposed to ironing,
And because
If his mother was drowning and I was drowning and he had to choose one of us to save,
He says he'd save me.

It's true love because
When he went to San Francisco on business while I had to stay home with the painters and the exterminator and the baby who was getting the chicken pox,
He understood why I hated him,
And because
When I said that playing the stock market was juvenile and irresponsible and then the stock I wouldn't let him buy went up twenty-six points,
I understood why he hated me,
And because
Despite cigarette cough, tooth decay, acid indigestion, dandruff, and other features of married life that tend to dampen the fires of passion,
We still feel something
We can call
True love.

True Love ~ Judith Viorst
(stolen off Shah's blog bwahahaha)

Mina at 1:26 PM


Friday, January 07, 2005

a reaction, for a writer, is always an interesting and rather vital thing, which is why i've enabled comments on my blog. i like to know what you think, good or bad. i love it when people argue on my blog, think out loud, drop by to say hey.
no more anonymous commenters on gorpy from now on, though: i welcome criticism but i will not tolerate a foul mouth. it's a shame that learning to read and write hasn't taught some of us what an education truly means, including to disagree without descending to one's basest level. i'm going to miss my anonymous commenters- the funny, interesting, spontaneous posts you have left have been a joy; it's a shame that one creepy, rude jerk has to taint things- but i'd love it if you still came; all it takes is three minutes, after all, or a quick note to the old inbox :)

Mina at 10:07 PM


the police van takes prisoners from one grey block of grimy concrete to another. a large breadbox, rusted navy and peeling white; the only way prisoners breathe is through a narrow slash of painted navy wire net just under the ceiling. if you're tall enough you can watch freedom pass you by, breathe the sweet smell of donkey shit, truck exhaust and fresh fruit that waves its banner of life, cruel grapes you will never reach.
he stood inside the dank gloom, fingers hooked into the spaces between the netting, far as they could go. each time the van swerved his hands clutched their support, and his fingers went white as the wire dug into them. he breathed in the scratchy mustiness of his loi, staring at the chaos of the mandi. two men squatted on the divider, a piece of bright, sky blue plastic sacking spread out on the moist almost-mud. they were pulling guavas out of a tokri, spilling them on the blue, fingers expertly revolving, probing, tossing them in the air and adding to their respective piles. a burly, bearded man coaxed his donkey cart along, clucking at his white, long-lashed beast. the bananas on the cart were still palely green at the bottom; they would keep for at least a day or two more. the man standing next to him inside their hollow can licked his lips, and sighed, his eyes following the donkey cart as the van lurched ahead, honking irritably at the throng of life.
he averted his eyes from his hungering neighbour and went back to the mandi. in the car next to the van, a girl sat next to the window. the car was white, a driver at the wheel. the seats had covers on them, and there were several cassettes in the shallow dish in front of the gearshift. he wondered if Fatima had kept his Kishore Kumar collection after he had left. sounds of shouting drew his attention to the left, where two donkeys were standing miserably smack in the middle of the road, talking to each other placidly. their owners were tugging at their reins, pulling their ears, smacking their patchy bottoms with sticks of sugar cane but those donkeys weren't done just yet. something inside him opened, flooding his gut with a storm of longing. he was glad his loi left only his eyes uncovered; he didn't want anyone to guess. when he looked up, the car was still alongside. the girl was staring at the van, and their gaze met. her eyes widened. he rocognized the horror; he had felt it too, the first time a metal lattice had creakily locked itself behind him. the tops of the girl's fingers appeared at the base of the window she was seated next to, mimicking the way his fingertips pushed through the wire. his eyes were huge and liquid above the brown fabric. the donkeys finished their conversation, and the traffic breathed a sigh of relief as it began to surge forward again.
i looked away as the van turned left, and we sped on.

Mina at 10:26 AM


Monday, January 03, 2005

Thank you, Allah, for sorrow, because then my joy is so much sweeter.
Thank you for lies, so that I learn to recognise the truth.
Thank you for lists to be ripped up so I remember that only You know what the future holds.
Thank you for sleeplessness, so that a dream is a gift.
Thank you for enemies, so I can value my friends the way they deserve.
Thank you for miracles, so I never forget to watch for signs of Your hand.
Thank you for the cold, so it won't take much to be warm again.
Thank you for duplicity, because it keeps me straight.
Thank you for hate, so I know how to keep my love pure.
Thank you for the chaos, so that the silence won't echo.

Thank you for bleeding, so I know I am real.

Mina at 6:44 PM


Sunday, January 02, 2005

Where have all the good men gone
And where are all the gods?
Where's the street-wise Hercules
To fight the rising odds?
Isn't there a white knight upon a fiery steed?
Late at night I toss and turn and dream of what I need

I need a hero
I'm holding out for a hero 'til the end of the night
He's gotta be strong
And he's gotta be fast
And he's gotta be fresh from the fight
I need a hero
I'm holding out for a hero 'til the morning light
He's gotta be sure
And it's gotta be soon
And he's gotta be larger than life

Somewhere after midnight
In my wildest fantasy
Somewhere just beyond my reach
There's someone reaching back for me
Racing on the thunder and rising with the heat
It's gonna take a superman to sweep me off my feet

Holding out for a Hero ~ Frou Frou/ Tina Turner (lyric extract)

A hero sounds good, methinks....yup. Anything else won't do as well.

Mina at 11:49 AM


Sabina Hossain, born on Christmas in Surrey :D Niece number three!

Mina at 10:26 AM


Saturday, January 01, 2005

it all begins with a name.

what is your name?

do you accept?

yes, yes yes.

mubarik ho.

a word, really, a word with a meaning that parents in love will bestow with all the hope and happiness they can muster. the first name i had meant one who conquers; one who achieves, surmounts, blazes through with swords of truth and beauty and light. my parents posess poetic streaks, needless to say. then they called me hope, and i call myself faith. sometimes i laugh at myself.

what's your name?

i love you.

four letters. five letters. middle names. light, gift, life, praise, the brave one. laden with good, face of a flower, blessings. stars, sun, moon. honest, pious, beautiful. we're all so many aspirations and want-to-bes; we spend our lives living up to something or the other. i wonder how much of that is our personal ideal and how much other people's. does it matter whose it is, as long as we're more solid, more strong, happier-better off in the end? but i digress, as always.

everything you are begins- and ends- with your name.

Mina at 4:39 PM


All photographs below courtesy our official footoo-boy Salman S. Qadeer (on the sidebar as 'whispers') and his Canon one-step-ahead-of-mine Powershot! *applause*

Mina at 4:33 PM


the jora-bringing day :)

Mina at 3:02 PM


eishi trying not to laugh at the dancing kids

Mina at 3:01 PM


eishi n' me

Mina at 2:57 PM


jerry doin' the chaudhry saab lol

Mina at 2:32 PM


milady and

Mina at 2:31 PM


sabeen and tamkeen :)

Mina at 2:29 PM


pretty! meesha and ahmed in action

Mina at 2:28 PM


gule and asad

Mina at 2:27 PM


the village dinner-dholki: ahmed, gule and i ;)

Mina at 2:25 PM


doodh-pilai hehe

Mina at 2:24 PM


meesha and i

Mina at 2:23 PM


pete and ibs cutoos!

Mina at 2:20 PM


us lot

Mina at 2:20 PM



Mina at 2:17 PM


Mina's New Year Hitlist

Work harder.
Pray more.
Try to trust people -and myself- more.
Wear my contacts more often.
Stop procrastinating and get published, dammit!
Wear high heels as much as possible.
Dance. Lots.
Finally finish 'The Far Pavilions'.
Try not to get caught up in 'fix-up fever'.
Get an eyebrow pierced.
Read Ovid. And the Iliad.
Wangle a motorcycle ride.
Stand straighter.
Work for a charity.
Drive more. Drive ALONE for distances farther than the market.
Sing at a LUMS concert.
Live in a cardboard box for a day.
Hone my Punjabi.
Learn to play Clarissa properly.
Say 'bollocks!' more often.
Be an RJ for once.

Mina at 1:15 PM