Month: August 2016
I was young, stupid and filled with all those emotional and feeling-like hormones when I first read this book and loved the book but God gave me a second chance to read this book again and He also gave me the serenity to change my perception about this book. Frankly speaking, it was Pathetic, like really really Pathetic with a Capital-P. You have a choice in this world, I believe, about how to tell stories and that’s the way how I put it: Things that compelled me to change the way I look at this book A. it is said that, this book is romantic and filled with staccato bursts of humor, if that’s what they think is romance and humor, God forbid, I don’t wanna live on this planet. B. Some childish and peevish idea with which Hazel looked at life like, why are breakfast foods is called breakfast food. C. You know what really sucked? The writing of The Fault in our Stars. You know what really sucked apart from the writing of TFIOS? Dying. You know what really sucked apart from dying? Dying while reading the writing of TFIOS. Ffs What’s with all the metaphors. With so redundant metaphors, It made me forgot what metaphor truly meant. Notes for the future, Killing a protagonist in the end doesn’t make the ending worth remembering or the book emotionally likeable. And D is for those who happen to understand A, B and C.
The only thing which was exciting was, Peter Van Houten, but that character rock. I believe he is the most hated fictional character after he deliberately, in disdainful approach, made Oh-So-Hazel feel insulted. But I mean like, seriously, some mysteries (ending of An Imperial Affliction) are better to be left unsolved. Cuz once the magician shows its tricks, it’s not magic anymore. If today I happen to know what is a Bermuda Triangle or Crop circles or how the Egyptian pyramids were built, I wouldn’t bother telling the world or even a single soul because that will simply take the beauty out of it.
How it Happened (with me)
Once upon a time, on a sunny, in fact a very sunny, sun screeching Sunday. The kind of heat that normal July days are overwhelmed in Pakistan, wouldn’t be wrong to say especially Lahore. It was one of those days where people mostly stayed home instead of roaming on the roads or in the malls and waited for the shadows to prevail to ghoom-shoom around the city. But on the other hand, I was so excited to just enter in a bookstore and smell books with barely enough money in my pocket to eat and to pay the return fare. No other thing attracts me so much as a debutante Pakistani writer. So I was in a Dilemma but curiosity got the better of me. And that decision made me to reach home in 75 minutes with a famished stomach growling really bad and a shirt sticking sweat with really tired feet, glowing red.
How It Happened
Just as the universe started with a bang as the scientist claimed it to be, this book was no less than a big-bang. This book was a storm holding it in its pages and I came into its grip and this book just didn’t let me go anywhere right from the start. The story and the riots that arises in a family was so Desi-sheshi that every desi person has suffered from, at least any one of, the consequences explained in book and that’s what makes this book so on next level and likable by everyone. There isn’t a single page where you feel bored or feel agitated by the Awesome Dadi LOL slang-shlangs. To those who haven’t suffered from any joint-family or any family affairs would certainly not like or understand or sometimes feel the blood rising in their body but vice versa would love each and every single aspect belonging to this book.
Hats off to the debutante who never let me feel that it was her first novel. It was amazingly and masterly written. The comedy and funny type of fiction usually, I mean mostly, ends up with a very nasty end, kinda fucking everything up. But as this book started with a bang it sure did end likewise.
In short, it was really worth every single step.
The song of the nation is in the air,
This air, I breathed in;
the wisdom of our fathers,
the love of our mother,
is crowded with the passion of our brothers,
the joy of our little children
The flag of my nation;
Green representing Islam and Muslims majority,
White stripe signifies religious minorities,
The Crescent symbolize sign of progress,
Five corner of Star portrays the five pillars of Islam,
On whom this nation, this country’s built, and
Fierce light with which this nation shines
I stand under the flag of one nation,
the nation of past, present and future,
the dust of our nation is formed;
by the blood of our soldiers,
who stand many battles,
for the protection of this nation,
who extinguish the flames of enemies with their blood,
who came to spark fire in our home,
who sacrificed their today’s,
for our tomorrow’s
By the dynasty of our leaders,
who worked under the shadow of day and night,
to make this nation shine again,
under the terror of chains
By the passion of our people,
who believed in this nation,
and stood for their rights and,
created a history of true patriotism
Faith, Unity and Discipline,
The song of our nation,
that binds us through thick and thin,
The motto of our nation,
that binds us in sickness and in health,
The three piers of our nation,
that creates a sense of peace in our nation
Those three words that finally set us Free
At last my nation is finally at Liberty,
The nation’s air salutes our martyrs who lead us towards the road to liberty,
Liberty isn’t something that is given,
Liberty is something that is taken!
Is Death just a beginning?
can escape is the only way to escape?
We spend our lives, fearing our deaths;
Scared of inhaling, that final breath,
Scared we may die, in the blink of an eye,
It is a consistent thought, throughout our lives.
It’s our destiny to die,
we cannot stop our fate, no matter how hard we try,
So rejoice in the fact, you’re alive right now,
For tomorrow you may be floating away into the clouds,
going away, far away from this place,
where you cherish your first breath,
where you took your first step,
where you spoke your first word,
where you learn to love,
where you grow old,
the place you love more than anything,
Love wins, love always wins,
once you learn how to die,
you’ll learn how to live,
Love is the only rational act
If you must love, love yourself
and thy people who you know and who you not,
who you love and who you not,
cuz in the End, what really matters;
Love, Kindness, Honesty, Prejudice
Swallow up your pride, be notorious
Dig down, dig deep down and find your inner-self,
Learn how to love and how to let love in,
Love increases when its multiplied,
we can illuminate our grim graves by
good deeds done in this phase of life
The worst part of dying is,
dying without leaving a legacy behind,
Dying is not the end,
it’s just the start of a new life, a new chapter,
yet to be explored, yet to be read,
full of adventures, full of heaven
This life is like a movie, whilst
the after-life is a novel,
Life which we are living is a reflection,
of the life which is yet to come,
Death is inevitable,
it’s a bell that has to ring,
we are too busy being afraid of it,
we are afraid of the pain,
we are afraid of the grief,
that we forgot how to live, so
don’t be afraid of it, embrace it
We are just the speck of dust in this galaxy,
We hold so close those things which are of no use,
stack of money, big car, massive house, mountain-like Pride,
stop and reflect what you achieved,
kindness, respect, honor, dignity, love
devote yourself that gives you purpose and meaning,
We all know we are going to die,
but we all forgot about the death,
and we started not believing in it,
if we did, we’d do things differently,
we are the Deathstar of our own show,
Just before your final breath,
remember this for all time,
your goodbyes were made,
a Long time ago…
Pakistan, or maybe Asian country[ies], is one of those countries where even a teenager knows more about whats going around in its country regarding politics especially politics. So there is very little of anything of what he/she don’t know. Since the Independence Day, in fact long before the Independence Day, we all know what happened in India-subcontinent and how everything turned out to be what it is now.
Pakistan: A hard country is one of those current affair book which revolves around mainly since Pakistan came into being. Anatol Lieven covered entire history of Pakistan in a single book. It is remarkably, serendipitously, extraordinarily written. Everything was discussed with facts and opinions in detail. To talk about the Pakistan culture, Army, Democracy, Dictatorship, Taliban, 9/11 condition in Pakistan, Afghanistan influence on the politics and economy of Pakistan, Provinces, Education, Economy, Media in Pakistan, relation with different countries, Nuclear weapon, Political parties and politicians background, nothing was left in between. And they certainly provide a great mass to write in a college/university exam and it certainly won me a scholarship.
Apart from that, this book wouldn’t be a success in Pakistan because, I believe, there isn’t a single thing in the entire book of which a teenage whether a boy or a girl likewise don’t know. We, nation, consciously or unconsciously, somehow knows the insight of our country. It would’ve been a real success if he had written on some other non-Asian country.
Still though it’s a great effort by the author as he lived for nearly 25 years here to know about us. There were some aspects in the book of which the authors perception or conception weren’t legit especially about the role of MQM. The MQM chapter was laughing out loud part. The LMFAO moment, on 9/11 an American soldier said, “We were not scared of death while fighting out enemies”. I hope you could feel the irony behind it. To highlight the statistics since 9/11 there are more deaths in Pak-Afghan areas or it won’t be wrong to say, of Muslims, than it happened that single day. Once I read, “When a killer takes revenge from someone who has imposed great worries to the killer family, he shoots only one bullet but when he despises that person he shoots all the round in the body of the victim.”
Back to the MQM, I, certainly know what is it with MQM during Musharraf and Asif Ali Zardari regime, what were their motives or on whom orders they created a massacre in Karachi in 2007 against The Lawyer Movement under the chief justice of Pakistan vigilance. I think it’s not that difficult to figure out now.
Most of the book was discussed and revolved around the Taliban both Pakistani and Afghani, and there were a huge part missing of what Lieven, himself, thought about the Taliban’s. Hats off to Lieven who, somehow, deliberately tried every huthkanda (means) to defend the US activities in Afghanistan or Iraq or Pakistan or well, to be not specific, all over the fuckin world. And we all know who is supporting these Taliban’s both Afghani and Pakistani. The conspiracy is much bigger than we think it is. No matter what Lieven wrote, everything was true and a plain fact but according to his point of view and by those people who he interviewed but that didn’t mean that it was universally true. The last line of the book was,
Pakistan is stronger than it looks and will probably survive as a state; but if these patterns (falling economy) continue, it will not do so for ever.
Believe it or not, even if the Pakistani economy faces some kind of a black day where every sector either government or private obliterate and turned to ashes, Pakistan, my country, will still survive not because of its strong army or strength of its people to stand united under one flag but because we have one thing, the one on which this country is based on, which no other nation was ever built upon.
We may not be in the list of top developed countries, or ruled a whole subcontinent, have jobs or even have a mediocre literacy rate, our politicians are corrupt, our people are unfair and unjust, terrorism rules 365 days in one area or the other, poverty clouds are all over, sense and sensibility is impossible. Believe me we are stronger than we look because we are a hard and patriotic and naturally can sacrifice our life for this country with a smile across our lips and a middle finger pointing towards our enemies.
Once someone left me in trance and answerless when they asked me, “What does Pakistan mean to you?” I tried and tried hard to figure it out, to come up with a satisfying answer to myself but after thinking and over thinking, only one things come to mind, Home!