Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Deep quotes

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine forwarded me a short essay/answer he had written in response to a question posed in the business school application for Lahore University of Management and Sciences (LUMS).

Suffice to say, I could suggest no improvements to his masterpiece below:

Why do you want a MBA/Executive MBA degree from LUMS? How will you benefit from it? (maximum 4000 characters)



My motivation for joining LUMS stems from an inherent belief that there are no simple answers in real life. There is never a black or white answer, atleast for all the crucial questions. For those lucky enough to have it figured out, life must seem rather pale. But it is not for me to judge them. I live amongst non-linear roads, ones which wind back on themselves and where the forks in the road do not come with right way or wrong way signs. The only markers are your own judgments.


It is thus imperative to allow your instincts to be honed to meet such challenges. Our value systems and social constructs provide only a blurry view of which choices are better and which not. It is however a characteristic of every society to condition us in a manner that we become compatible with the society’s norms.



Isn't it absolute genius?!

You have to read it thrice to really be able to capture its full beauty. The first time you read it you sort of get sucked into believing its normal since the language isn't particularly jarring in the first sentence. Neither is the central theme particularly ludicrous - basically the guy just wants to be a flexible thinker but is expressing that in the stupidest way possible. Half way into the first paragraph, however, you feel your "what the FUCK is going on" sensation starting to kick in - probably around the time where the writer announces that his residence is third house down the non-linear road. So then you collect your thoughts and read it again, now prepared to appreciate the bullshit for what it really is. I would then urge you to read it a third time because there are some brilliant contradictions in there. Like, the "non-linear roads which wind back on themselves". He's basically telling the admissions panel that he likes going around in circles.

Just great stuff.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Lady and the Tramp


Nothing says "I love you" like your lady paying for your defense counsel.

For all the bad that's happened to Mohammad Asif over the last couple of years, he can at least take solace in the fact that he's found true love in the beautiful (or at LEAST fairly do-able) Veena Malik. This is one lady who knows that the way to a man's heart is his legal costs. The following is an excerpt from an article in the News announcing their nuptials:


Asif gave Veena a car as a gift on her birthday, while Veena bore Asif’s expenses including the fee of the lawyers he had hired in connection with cases relating to his cricketing career.


Now thats class. I wish sometimes the chicks im involved with would quit buying me colognes or clothes and just pay for my medical or foot my car insurance already. I wonder how Asif's mom evaluated the rishta? Ok, can she get along with the family? Check. Can she cook? Check. Can she manage the house servants? Check. Can she field questions from the anti-doping commission and liaise regularly with the lawyers defending Asif against charges of taking performance enhancing drugs which may cripple his career? Check.

Honestly though, I'm glad this happened. As some of you may know, Asif is back in the reckoning for a place in the Champions Trophy and I for one will consider Veena a breath of fresh air when it comes to eye candy in the player's family enclosures. After years of specimens like these:





we'll finally be treated to quality like this:




And why the hell not, I say? We Pakistani cricket fans are an oppressed lot. We usually have to wait for half a decade for the team to do anything of note, so why cant we spend the time in between oggling our heroes wives? Or would you rather watch another exhilirating Khurram Manzoor innings or a tense Danish Kaneria spell of bowling? Seriously, if anyone has a right to gratuitous relief, its us. I mean, sometimes I've caught myself checking out Chacha Cricket when times have been tough on the field (and for me personally).


So all hail this new pairing. May it bring good fortune to Pakistan cricket and may the prospect of boning his wife appear more appealing to Asif than snorting a line of cocaine.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Oh Hina, How i love thee

I'd like to begin with a quote from renowned philosopher, George Edward Moore:

"Other men said they have seen angels, But I have seen thee, And thou art enough."

Well said, George, well said. I saw an angel today, and her name is Hina Rabbani Khar.


She's the State Minister for Finance and Economic Affairs and with a seductive title like that, you can be sure that she had me at "State". This overachieving young lady puts the "fine" in "finance" and is being marketed by the PPP as a younger, smarter, non-psychotic Sarah Palin. Khar is renowned for her outside-the-box, maverick approach, which is on ample display in the picture below where she chose to quench her thirst with a bottle of Aquafina rather than stale Nestle or conventional tea:


Please forgive me for the effusive exhibition of my feelings, but you must understand, I am in the initial throes of infatuation. I cant hide what I feel, and what I feel is a deep longing for Hina.

You see, after Sherry Rehman left the public eye, I always felt there was a gaping hole in the "hot women in power" category. Fahmida Mirza is a poor man's milf. Fatima Bhutto's hot, i suppose, but she's not in power so she fails one of the two essential prerequisites for being a turn-on in this category. Kashmala Tariq is way above Fatima in the hotness category, but she has this stuck-up, high maintenance aura about her. With Hina, you get the wholesome, girl-next-door-who-owns-the-neighborhood vibe.

But I wasnt drawn to Hina by her looks only. She's quite a sharp cookie. Did you know she was the first woman to present a budget speech to the national assembly (check out the cute picture of her in that last link)? Did you also know that some organisation called the World Economic Forum put her on its list of young global leaders? Well neither did I until I saw her wikipedia page. I couldnt care less if its true or not. Im sure she's decently intelligent to get this far in life, if not cunning as a fox.

The point is, she's cute. She's in power. She could probably get me killed. So I can finally move on from Sherry Rehman.

=======================
Update:

I have just been alerted by a friend, coincidentally another Hina, that Hina Khar is married, though I'm awaiting confirmation on whether it's a happy marriage. Suffice to say that I'm incredibly upset with both Hinas at the moment.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Younis gives Fawad the crazy eyes

Q: When can you tell a Pakistani player has the potential to be a breakout star?




A: When Younis Khan makes it very clear he wants to rape him.

Check out Younis's expression in the photo above. If that look doesn't spell sodomy for Alam, I dont know what does. Subtlety aint one of Younis's strong suits, and there's nothing delicate about that fiery gaze he's directing at Alam. YK is sizing FA up. YK likes what he sees. YK is going to go to town on that boy after the end of the innings.

And why not?

You see, I'm not rehashing the old "pathans are ravenous gays" jokes, which are pretty tired. Neither am I implying that Younis is romantically interested in Fawad.

Rather, I'm talking about the ultimate test of character Younis subjects all emerging Pakistani cricketers to and this test is usually carried out in a roughly horizontal position (emphasis on "rough"). You see, the mark of any good player is the mark Younis leaves on his body. Misbah got it. Akmal got it. Afridi kind of gave it right back to Younis. But let no one accuse Younis of being an indiscriminate lover. Mohammad Sami never got it, even though many felt he had the potential. Sami wishes YK would have given it to him, but Sami could never have handled it.

Unlike Alam.

Fawad Alam may very well be the missing link in our batting line-up; the solution to all our problems. But far be it for Younis to simply celebrate him as such. Younis is not given to faint praise. He's seen them come and go. He's been around for guys like Mohammad Asif who were trumpeted as the second coming of Christ but couldn't handle a night with YK - turning to drugs and steroids to relieve the pain from that one night YK tested his mettle.

And if anybody thinks I'm talking out of my ass, check out Sidharth Mongia's confirmation of YK's special test:

Younis told him (Fawad) he had got something for him, which he would show him in the dressing room.


If Alam is ever to make it as a player, he has to grit his teeth and survive Younis's test. If he truly wants to convince himself and the world that he's for real, he has to withstand the thrust of Younis's argument. In order to earn the respect of his team and his country, he has to match Younis pound for pound. He has to let Younis drive his point in. Alam shouldn't approach this test half assed, but rather be very anal about the fact that Younis give him the full monty.

And I think the kid can do it.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Michael Bay can’t direct humans

Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen reviewed


[I have pasted a few randomly selected stills from the movie to give you a flavour of what I’m writing about]

About a quarter of the way through Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen, I had to ask myself:
Why, in spite of its many shortcomings, was I really enjoying this movie.


After all, there’s quite a lot not to like about the movie:

The Autobots weren’t given more of an individual identity as compared to the last movie – in fact, at least the last movie had more then passing references to the supporting Autobot cast. Once again, it’s all just Optimus and, to a lesser extent, Bumblebee. It sucks because its only possible for an audience to root for characters if they’re “humanized” to a degree, which would have been possible by allowing each Transformer to exhibit certain personality traits (gruffness, fear, eagerness).

The Decepticons seem weaker in this installment. Not only does the supreme badass Megatron cow down before his mentor, his mentor pretty much admits he’s going to shit bricks if a true Autobot leader shows up to a fight. So once Prime enters the fray, Michael Bay has already ensured that the audience knows its curtains for the bad guys. Also, I was hoping StarScream would get his chance in the sun this time around.


The comic element introduced by the human protagonist’s parents slips into camp at times. They’re funny at first, kind of like the American Pie dude’s father was funny in the movie. But the jokes deteriorate rapidly into farce. Sometimes it feels like you’re watching an Indian movie. You know - those serious Indian movies which rely on the “bumbling” hired help/servants to provide the laughs. It’s that bad. The humor in general is lame after the first half hour. It kills me that they could have utilized some of the time they wasted on jokes towards giving the robots more of an identity.

After the first 15-20 minutes, basically as soon as Sam walks into college, any scene without a robot sucks ass. Michael Bay canNOT handle hate, gravity, anguish, love – basically any aspect of human behavior and emotion. And, uffff, the dialogue is “has-to-be-heard-to-be-believed” bad.


Sam, the central protagonist, is an ungrateful shit. I mean, who the HELL would turn down an opportunity to hang out with the Transformers? If Optimus Prime came to you and asked you to be his spokesperson, would you actually tell him to leave you alone because you’re a “normal kid with normal problems”? Hell no! Can you imagine the kind of action a guy would get with those kind of friends? Frankly, its utterly implausible that a character Sam’s age would not want to be associated with the Autobots. Angst is angst but this is just fucking preposterous.

So what was it about this movie which had me hooked?


Well, I suppose it was a bunch of things but I’m having a hard time pinning it down.

It could be Optimus Prime. While the Autobot focus was mostly Optimus-oriented, the big guy made the most of his screen time. From his action sequences, to his unquestionably majestic presence, the guy is a movie unto himself. His character would have benefited so much more if he had a dynamic with at least ONE of the other Autobots. But regardless, he carries his race for 150 minutes.

Speaking of action sequences, that may very well be the reason I enjoyed this flick since Michael Bay outdoes himself in this regard. The robot battles in this installment will blow your mind right back through your asshole! The level of detail is spectacular – at times you can track each blow being traded by these massive machines. The special effects in the movie are truly summer-movie worthy and then some. There’s a sequence when some kind of Decepticon dog barfs thousands of spheres into a tunnel leading into a government facility. To watch those spheres combine and turn into something was beautiful – almost a work of art akin to the T-1000’s liquid effect from Terminator 2.

Oh, and the mid-movie fight sequence in the park/woods? To-fucking-die-for. That has to be one of my favorite action sequences of all time.



Notice how the good things about the movie follow a pattern of being non-human. It goes on. The plot being hatched by the Decepticons really hooks you in. You get to learn about a bit of the history of the Transformers and a BIT about where they come from (but not who made them). I’ll give Michael Bay credit for stumbling upon the realization that moviegoers MIGHT just want to know more about the eponymous characters of a movie they spent good money to see.

So yeah, I guess it’s a combination of the reasons above which made this such a fun movie. However, I don’t think I could stomach the human scenes again. Particularly the interaction between Sam and his girlfriend as well as his parents. I’ll deifnetly get the dvd so I can forward past that shit.


As a sidenote, Megan Fox, playing the character of Mikaela Banes, is also looking very nice through the course of the film. The following is a picture to illustrate my point:

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

An Open Letter to Salman Butt

Dear Salman Butt,

I hope this letter finds you well, and by “well” I do mean in inexorable pain and mental agony.

My name is PakFan69. Do not mistake my pseudonym as some kind of attempt to hide my identity. Nothing would make me happier than to tell you who I am, arrange a meeting between us, and then shoot you through your spinal chord. However, I speak to you today not as an individual, but as part of a larger collective. My words are those of hundreds upon thousands of Pakistani cricket fans - hence I have chosen the alias “PakFan”. As for an explanation of the “69” part, you can ask your sister about that one.

Salman, I don’t really know how to begin this. Most of me just wants to barrage you with obscenities and insults and point out how you have absolutely no talent and have chiefly contributed to some of our heaviest losses. Yet another part of me wants to actually try to understand you. How could God create someone so devoid of talent and backbone. Surely you must have SOME redeeming feature. I don’t think it’s possible for someone to be as waste of a bunch of atoms as you. If there isn’t anything worthwhile within you, surely you would have committed suicide by now to put an end to your wretched life, right? However, a very small part of me also wants to help you Salman; to nurture you. It’s a very small part, but its there nonetheless. I want to give you a guiding hand and help you through this difficult time and try to make a man out of you. I want to do all this because when you do make something of yourself after years of trial and error, I want to be there to take you to the ground we used to visit to perfect your technique and hire two gargantuan Afghanis to gang rape and sodomise the hell out of you and, when your sore-assed body crawls over to me, gasping out “whyyy, PakFan69 bhai, why”, I can pull out the revolver with the one bullet I’ve been saving for the last couple of years for this moment and shoot you through the face with it. A small part of me would do this, Salman, because I’m assuming that kind of betrayal and death would be more painful and heartwrenching for you than anything anyone else could think of. The fact that a father figure has that kind of contempt for you would conclusively make you realize what an overall shit you are before you passed over to the next life. But, like I said, only a small part of me wants to do all that because it would take too much time.




Salman, remember when you started out your career? People… it almost nauseates me to say this… people regarded you as the next SAEED ANWAR. Its kind of like saying that Jesse Jackson is the next God. No, that analogy is not apt because Jesse Jackson has done okay for himself in his narrow sphere. Its kind of like saying Dinara Safina is the next Steffi Graf. Again not totally apt because Dinara’s won a few titles and is the Number 1 tennis player in the world. Im having trouble finding a good analogy because I cant think of any instance where someone who is such an abject failure is compared to one of the greats in his field. Usually, the person being compared has SOME redeeming quality. But, as OBA rightly pointed out, you’re good at nothing.

Why were you touted as the next Saeed Anwar? Basically because you’re a left hander. That’s it, Salman. NOTHING else about you justifies that comparison. I adored Saeed Anwar and, right off the bat (heh), I felt personally injured at the comparison being made. Saeed was beautiful to watch. Whether he was driving through the off, or flicking through leg, he was one of those players who wasn’t capable of playing an ugly shot. You seem to have it in reverse – a graceful Salman Butt shot is the Haley’s Comet of world cricket. You can only, ONLY, play through the off side. And that too, only through certain gaps and channels in that off-side. Hell, I could draw a couple of lines through the offside field which would perfectly match the trajectory of your strokes.


The comparisons to Anwar were given weight by your record against India. Sure, you’ve scored a couple of hundreds against India. Does that make you good? Ijaz Ahmed had a good record against Australia, and where is he now? Having an asthama attack behind a jail cell on charges of fraud and waiting for his conjugal visit from Salim Malik’s sister. Even that frightening outcome would be too good for you.

The whole world took notice of you when you scored a hundred and a half century IN Australia against an attack which included Glen McGrath and Shane Warne. Those greats didn’t deserve to have a gandu like you score runs against them. A lot of very intelligent cricket fans thought that this was it – finally one half of our opening conundrum has been solved. Finally, we have another world class batsman in our line-up.

But I wasn’t fooled. I recognized you for the no-talent waste of space that you are. You were dropped once in that innings in Sydney and had two close lbw shouts turned down. Plus, your century came after we had lost the series and you had no pressure on you. And hey, every fucking bharwa dog has his day. That was yours. Even Vanilla Ice had one hit song. Where the fuck is he now?



Over the course of your career, you’ve actually ADDED to your shortcomings when most people try to improve on them. You’ve managed to become the worst fielder in our team, which is saying something for a Pakistani unit. Kamran Akmal must love having you around because the number of catches you let slip through your gay fingers takes the attention off him. Isn’t human existence supposed to follow a pattern of development – don’t we add to our skills or refine the existing ones? You seem to be deteriorating as time passes by. You’re the antithesis of a fine wine.

And now here we are. Our first test match after months and our first competitive game after the heady victory at the T20 World Cup. Bravo Salman, you managed to spoil both occasions for us. There was no need for that shot after Yousuf had just gotten out. Don’t you know you’re incapable of taking the attack to good bowlers and playing outside your limited comfort zone? And, in the space of a few seconds, you’ve extinguished most of the euphoria flowing out of the T20 triumph.



Tell me Salman, make me understand how a senior batsman in the team with 5 years of experience can play with such utter disregard for the circumstances around him. Explain to me why a guy who is supposedly the most educated guy in our team refuses to learn from his mistakes and doesnt put in the hard hours in correcting the substantial glitches in his technique. I don’t get it Salman – doesn’t being such an asshole affect you? When you wake up in the morning and look at your face in the mirror, what stops you from taking your razor blade and slitting your own throat as final penance for the embarrassments you’ve subjected Pakistan cricket to?


Salman do us all a favor and please exit the team. Currently your test and one day averages sit at 28 and 38 respectively and in the last year your average is probably half that. So, by your own standards, you’d still be going out at the top of your game. You seem to be sort of educated so maybe you can get a desk job of some sort. Im sure there is SOMEthing you can do in life. It’s just not cricket.

Kind regards,

PakFan69.

p.s. I also blame you for the death of Bob Woolmer.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Wimbledon quips

I thought these jokes up myself.

Honest.

Alright, so Tommy Haas beat Novak Djokovic in the quarter finals right?
At 31, Tommy is the oldest guy in the draw, yet made it into the Semis.
I guess he's proved to the world that he's no "haas"-been.

So Federer beat Ivo Karlovic in straight sets, huh?
Whether you're a Fed fan or not, you have to admit that Roger's a GOOD guy.
So you might say his victory over Karlovic was a triumph of good over Ivo-l (like, "evil", get it?)

Speaking of Karlovic, he despatched Fernando Verdasco in the earlier rounds, right?
Back in the first week, everyone was saying that Fernando would making it ll the way to the quarters.
But here were are and he's nowhere to be seen, prompting people to wonder "where'd-dasc-go".

Anybody catch Andy Murray's thumping of Juan Carlos Ferrero.
Man, they're still looking for someone who can get the better of Murray.
And I guess Ferrero wasnt the "Juan". So much for him being the chosen "Juan". (stole that last one from a Mourinho related headline).

Why did Lleyton Hewitt lose to Andy Roddick in their quaterfinal encounter?
Because Hewitt was lleyt-on his service return. (Actually he was pretty solid with his service return - i just didnt know what else to do with his name)

Thanks, i'll be here all week.