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Saturday, November 26, 2016

Fidel Castro: Dead at 90


Fidel Forever — 25.11.2016
Today I have seen many programs on TV, posts on the Net, emails, and a lot more on Facebook and Twitter, telling us how good Castro was, as well as how bad he was. We have seen Cuba mourning and eyes loaded with tears … and the Cubans in USA jumping with joy that he is dead.

Should my opinion of him and his one-time partner, Ché Guvera (who's picture people from Communists and Revolutionaries and Liberals and others post everywhere … and wear his T-Shirt Image in colleges and on the streets) change?

Ché Guevara
NO!!!

My encounter with Cuba has several things that I can recall.
Each one has been better than the other.

•••••

My first encounter was when I went to Cuba on my ship as a Merchant Navy Captain. We walked off the ship to get into the main city, but all we had were US$. We thought anybody would change them. But there was no shop around. The three of got on to a bus and offered the money to the driver who said he couldn't take US money. We said we had no other money and wanted to get to a bank to change this. He asked us to sit down.

Then, he put his hand in his pocket, brought out some small change, counted it, and put it in the ticket money box!!! His own money! He said we were guests and didn't have the money. He had the money and was paying it for us, since he can't take us free.

Wow!

•••••

My second encounter was going out into the city (after we had changed our money) and walk around the place, watching people eating ice-cream, smoking cigars, singing group songs on the road, dancing everywhere. They lived quite happily, it seemed to me, despite the fact that they had problems buying most things that we take for granted in our lives.

•••••

My third encounter was to go to the University with the ship's agents. He knew Che's daughter, Aleida Guevara.

Aleida with Fidel and Ché
She was wonderful and I remembered her telling us about her father who left them to go to Bolivia when she was 4 and was killed when she was only 7. Like her father, she is a strong Marxist. A Physician, she has been part of Cuba's growing interest in Education and Medical facilities, which I will talk a little about later.

(Aleida Guevara refused to go to a mass Pope Francis would lead during his historic Cuban trip, saying it would be “hypocritical” of her to be present.)

•••••

Many years later, my daughter, Ragni Marea, was at Hampshire College and had the option of going abroad to Paris or to a place in Cuba for a year's studies. When she wrote to me, I suggested that she go to Cuba. After all, I said to her, that Paris would probably be Paris when she comes out of College and she could visit it anytime. But if Castro died, Cuba wouldn't be worth visiting, somehow. So that's where she went for a year's studies.

•••••

Meanwhile, in Pakistan we had the worst Earthquake in history. More than thousands died. Thousands lost their homes. 

(I was in New Delhi, having breakfast at Tarun Tejpal's house He had gone to the bathroom. I felt a small jolt. He came out, wrapped in his towel, and asked f there was an earthquake. We got out of the house and many people were coming out and looking everywhere. New channels told us that there areas had been hit in Kashmir. No news of Pakistan, of course. I phoned BITS - Sabeen's and my software company - and found out that life has been much worse in Azad Kashmir.

Not just worse, much much worse, as I discovered three days later. A member of our team, Ziad Asim, had lost several members of his family and was now working at BITS on a software to bring people together in case they wanted to contribute goods to the earthquake victims. I asked him why he hadn't gone home. He said there is no place to go to. Everyone is dead. Sabeen was organising for places collecting the goods to be put on our website, so that people could deliver their goods there.)

Cuba sent us Doctors and Medical Aid facilities and Equipment that flew in every few days and added more and more. We were filled with their people here. They even sent out Pakistanis that they couldn't treat, locally, right into their own hospitals in Cuba. Even Ragni was called to translate some of the patient's broken-Urdu into English for the medical program workers there.

Had this earthquake happened in Cuba, would Pakistanis have said anything other than a few minor 'sorries' in the press. After all, our 'bosses' in the USA would hardly have been happy even with that!

•••••

Later on, when I was in Pakistan, Dr. Ghazala Aziz - a friend and a Doctor - was working with the people supporting the earthquake victims. She decided to hold a concert of Indian Classical Music stars, Shubha Mudgal and her husband Aneesh Pradhan, in Karachi to get money for these victims. 

Aneesh& Shubha
Shubha and Aneesh arrived here with their team and we had a concert that was lovely. The next day we took them out to the French Beach, with Farid Ayaz and Abu Mohammad's group so they could hear a live qavvaali at a hut that had been arranged.

I decided to call Ragni in Cuba so that she could listen to Shubha on my iPhone. She was a great fan of Shubha and Aneesh. A voice answered. I couldn't recognise it. So I called again. The same voice said, with some difficulty, "Abi. It's Ragni. I have fallen down. Hurt my back. Badly. I will be tested again, tomorrow. Please call again." - Stumped, I called Dr, Hasan Aziz (Ghazal's husband) out from the crowd. He spoke to Ragni and then told me that I should try and get to Cuba.

Ghazala gave me a number of a Doctor from Cuba, who was now in Pakistan. I called him and he said, "Don't worry about the Visa. I'll get it for you. Just get me to talk to the Doctor in Cuba and if he says you are needed, we will fly you out, asap, in one of our planes." Imagine — a Doctor willing to help me out, in the middle of his own work at the earthquake site. 

•••••

The next day I got a call from Cuba. Ragni spoke for a while and then the Doctor spoke to me and said that she'd hurt her back but was out of danger. She'd have to stay at home for 5 weeks and would not be able to return to her work at the University. He'd visit every week and I could call his home number and ask about Ragni. There was no need for me to come there.

I was glad that she was out of danger, though worried about her back. It later turned out that she'd hurt her vertebra in three places.

I was happy that she was being looked after by these people.

•••••

Four days later I got another phone call.
This was from Ragni's professor.

(I am quoting from memory and through what were, then, really happy tears. The words may not be quite right, but the gist is.)

"Dear Mr. Kidvai, Ragni is a wonderful student and can't attend her classes any more because of her hurt. I wanted your permission to visit her every two days and teach her what she has missed in class … so that when she finishes her course, I can give her the same test. I am sure she will pass. But I need your permission to do so and would like you to speak to her house people that it is OK by you."

•••••

I come from an area that, many realise, is known for its friendship and the way we treat our new and old friends. But this, I was never prepared for. I cannot say "Thank you" often enough to the Cuban people. May you live in Peace.


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Wednesday, November 02, 2016

A memory of the Vietnam War …

Fifty-one years ago this happened.





Read more »

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Saturday, October 29, 2016

Etymology - 2 (Or should that be Et 2?)

As I said in my last post — Etymology - 1 (Kind of …), just in case you missed it — Etymology is the study of the history of words, their origins, and how their form and meaning have changed over time. 


Te 2 Volume Compact OED

Because of my friend Masood Mahmood's description, I bought this 2 Volume Oxford English Dictionary, when my ship went to London. It had the full several volume dictionary compacted into two volumes. You had to use a magnifying glass to read the entries - and that came in the little box on the top.

This dictionary not only told us of the origins of most words, their movements from one language to another, the ways it had been used, the very first time it was used, it even offered us quotes of the words from well-known authors. Brilliant!


Among the first word I found when briefing through the volume — not an easy task, given its weight and the large magnifying glass being held — was Masquerade. The word, came from Masque - a face mask that people wore at these dance balls. And who did you think generally wore masks? Clowns! So what was the origin of this set of words? Think of Mascara, the eye shadow liner that women use and that does look a bit like the eyes of a mask if broadened in its application. You are getting close. Yes … the clowns made us laugh and were called Maskhara in Arabic. مسخرہ! There were hundreds more words there that came from Arabic, Persian, and Hindustani.




Soon after buying this dictionary I also bought
this delightful book.



Yiddish is a language that was used by Jews in central and eastern Europe before the Holocaust. It was originally a German dialect with words from Hebrew and several modern languages and is today spoken mainly in the US, Israel, and Russia. I loved Yiddish words and phrases (not only because many centuries ago my family was Jewish). I came across Yiddish words and phrases often in some American novels and very often in Jewish Humour and Satire. My admiration for Lenny Bruce - one that almost turned into worship - was another reason I loved Yiddish.

Reading Joys at the same time as reading many religious books, specially our own, I found the words had very different meanings in the Jewish language, Aramaic. Some words even came down to Yiddish, too.

I learnt, for example, the Jahannüm (جہنّم) was written as Ge Hennom, the name of a valley between two very high close mountains. The winds that went through it were terribly hot. A person guilty of treason was thrown live into that valley. The winds very slowly scorched him to a fiery death. 


This fun Yiddish dictionary, which had many interesting words, also had loads of humour - thanks to Rosten.  I still read it when I am feeling low.

Since some Yiddish words had their origins in Aramaic, Joys also got me interested in that language, too. I went looking for an Aramaic-English book, but that proved almost impossible. I did find smaller books, though, that translated parts of it, specially the Biblical stories, another area of my interest - and one that I really love.


For this who don't know anything about Aramaic,
Wikipedia says this:

The Aramaic language is a Semitic language closely related to Hebrew. Originally this language of the Aramaeans, it was used, in many dialectical forms, in Mesopotamia and Syria before 1000 B.C., and later became the lingua franca of the Middle East. Aram is the Hebrew word for ancient Syria. Aramaic survived the fall of Nineveh (612 B.C.) and Babylon (539 B.C.) and remained the official language of the Persian Empire (539-337 B.C.). Before the Christian era, Aramaic had become the language of the Jews in Palestine. Jesus preached in Aramaic, and parts of the Old Testament and much of the rabbinical literature were written in Aramaic language.



Potassium comes from the English word Potash. The chemical symbol, K, comes from Kalium, the Mediaeval Latin for Potash. Kalium was taken from the word alkali, which in turn came from Arabic: القَلْيَه‎‎ al-qalyah (= "plant ashes"). The similar-sounding English term alkali is from this same root. Elemental Potassium oxidizes rapidly in air and reacts vigorously with water, generating sufficient heat to ignite Hydrogen emitted in the reaction. Kali - a Hindu Goddess -  has her earliest appearance of a destroyer principally of evil forces, and is often portrayed standing or dancing on her consort, the Hindu god Shiva, who lies calm and prostrate beneath her. Her name came from the Indo-European language.





Ignis is Latin for Fire. In Hindi Agni means fire, and connotes the Vedic fire-god. In Sanskrit: “She Who Is Death”; In Hinduism, goddess of time, doomsday, and death. Another God that got its name from Indo-European languages.







Ether is the rarefied element formerly believed to fill the upper regions of space. It was all around us. It comes from Latin aethēr (“the upper pure, bright air”), from Ancient Greek αἰθήρ (aithḗr, “upper air”), from αἴθω (aíthō, “I burn, shine”). In Arabic it is Ithar (ایثر) and in modern Hindi it is Ishwar which comes from the Sanskrit word Ishvara meaning "the supreme lord who is around us all". Obviously one cannot help but see the links between this word, its Arabic equivalent, and the Hindi word. Here is a picture that describes the god.





Some of you, specially young readers, may ask
why should there be any Indo-European languages.
This is what actually happened
(taken from Herari's "Sapiens" - an amazing book!)



The Urdu word (مادر) followed the same Persian root.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Here are some more words that we use that come

from Aramaic and are used in Abrahamic Religions.

A word that struck me was Rachmon. This meant the kind of love that a mother gives to a child in her womb, never having yet seen it. Remember that many of our people also say Rakhman instead of Rahman (after all there is only a 'dot' on top of خ to make it a ح — kind of like a diacritical mark). So when the Jews say Rachmones be on you,  they mean that their God should give you the love that a mother gives to her child while it is in the womb. An undying love. The Arabic word (رحمٰن) came from this Aramaic word. ٰIt describes the Muslim God who loves them.

From the Quranic Verse [17.110]

Say: "Call upon Allah, or call upon Rahman: by whatever name ye call upon Him, (it is well): for to Him belong the Most Beautiful Names.""

(Translation: Abdullah Yusuf Ali) 


Nephesh is used in Arabic/Urdu as Nafs (نفس), and in the English Bible it as translated as Breath. A term we use often with slightly varying meanings in both these languages.

Rouach means Wind and is used as Rooh (روخ translated into روح : See my note above) in Arabic or Urdu. It is translated in the Bible as Spirit.

Shechinah is spelt Shekinah in English and is not in the Bible but comes from Talmudic writing. It is a grammatically feminine Hebrew word that means the dwelling or settling, and is used to denote 'the dwelling or settling divine presence of God'. In Arabic/Urdu it is Sakeenah (سکینہ), a common Urdu name for females.



There is so much to learn via Etymology. Let me end this post with a well-known Urdu word and how it may have been translated from Arabic into Hindustani.

Think of (ٰضیا)
pronounced in Arabic as Dhiya'
(and in English as Zia)
meaning "The Light".

Think of Diya (دیا)
used in Hindustani/Hindi/Urdu
as a lamp or "a source of light".

Could that difference have come from the ORIGINAL word being translated into two different forms by listening to the sounds and writing it in the Hindustani language in its Urdu and Hindi scripts? 


Happy Divali



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Thursday, October 27, 2016

Etymology - 1 (Kind of …)

OED 2 Volumes with Magnifying Glass
Contains the full OED Compacted.

Etymology is the study of the history of words, their origins, and how their form and meaning have changed over time … and I am in love with it. If I ever had the chance to choose a career for life, Etymologist would be it.


Of course, I never did choose a career for life.


I started wanteing to be a doctor, like my father (Abi) - but not because of his real influence. Born in 1940 to a doctor - who had been recruited in late 1943 to the British Military Service in WW2 - I travelled to several cities (in and outside India, and to parts that later became Pakistan) with him until the war ended. 

There were no children in camps but Abi insisted that Ummi (my mother) and I had to go along … and was granted permission to do so by the Army. So I was the only child around. The first trip I went to was when I was 4 years old.

With Abi I went fairly often to Hospitals where he treated several soldiers who were injured, some almost beyond belief. I saw nearly dead soldiers and even saw a soldier die before my eyes. I never seemed to fear death. In fact the oldest memory I have was that my Nani (maternal grandmother) died when I was 3 … and I remember that event so clearly. When she was gone, I was told that the angels had taken her to a place to cure her. That was what 'dead' meant to me for years.

In the middle of the war we went to Calcutta for a few days holiday with my Khala (Vaseem). It was there that sirens announced planes coming down (Japanese, I was told) to bomb us. We hid under tables. I was told not to pick up sweets that they may drop, because eating them would cause us to die. Don't know if that was to scare me or it was real.

There were two things I did remember from the camps: One was the day we were celebrating Victory. A young soldier climbed up a long set of stairs and jumped into a pool of water underneath. He missed. Fell flat a couple of feet away. And was dead. On the spot!

Before that death, I remember my father and his colleague discussing a man whose head been pierced by some bullet marks. His colleague, perhaps his senior, had said that they couldn't treat him as it was too close to the brain and there was no way that he would survive the surgery. I often thought of that. I even asked my father, who drew weird pictures on a piece of paper to show what a brain was. But I couldn't really understand.

Later on, just before the 1947 Partition, I was in Budge Budge where my Khalu (famous Indian hockey-player, Asad Ali) had been posted by the Customs.  I saw a few dead people floating down the river because of Hindu-Muslim riots. The river was just across the street. My childhood friend, Sattar, a servant 3 years older than me, was playing football with me and he kicked it so hard that it went across the street, right into a winding part of the Hooghly River. He rushed and bent down the floating bushes to pick up the ball and threw it right back after showing it to me. It was the head of a dead child he had picked up by mistake.

So I wanted to be a doctor as I grew up. A brain surgeon was what I wanted to be. Life at colleges were tough. I got thrown out of one; I walked off the exams in the second one. That'll be in another blogpost that I write. 

Abi was getting severe heart attacks during those days and I couldn't have lived off his money for long. Another year at college. Five years at Medical School. Two years of Internships. Several years of setting myself up as a Surgeon. No way!

I told Abi the only one of two lies I remember telling him: I had done well at my exams and was going to get a First Division. (The second lie I won't get into.) I then said I was going to sail away on a friend's father's ship to Chittagong and meet my cousin there … and come back. I wrote to him from Chittagong that I had actually joined a ship and was in the Merchant Navy now. He was most upset. Again, that'll be in another blogpost, too.

Abi died in 1963. Didn't even live to see me pass my exams and get a reward for having topped the International Navigation marks. Then they suddenly decided to stop giving the official awards, so my Merchant Navy College Head, Captain Safdar, gave me a TimePiece-cum-StopWatch as my gift.


Many of my loves and passions come to me from Abi: Classical Music, Eastern and Western; becoming a voracious reader in English and Urdu; love of and the writing of Urdu Poetry; watching Cricket & Tennis; being totally in love of Science; a passion for correct languages; fighting for Human Rights; loving the truth; even crying in movies :(

We were poor, too. My father had left the Army after Partition, had serious medical problems himself, had a few odd jobs but coudn't continue at his clinic so there was really no money in the house. Ummi was amazing at how she managed to make the loveliest dishes with what little we had - and kept not us but every visitor asking for more. She knew how to make the food we loved out of everything she could get. I used to always tease her about how she managed to put water into everything and make it expand into a lovely, large, edible dish.

Abi's love of books never died. On days when he did go to the clinic and made some money, he'd give most of it to Ummi … but he always bought another book. For himself; for Ummi; and for my birthday gifts. He said to me that if I were really hungry I could tighten my belt and survive another day when food would somehow arrive. But a book was a book. "It gives you pleasure whether your stomach is full or empty …".


One of his loves was Dictionaries. We had many of them. Farsi, Arabic, English, French, German, Italian, Spanish. Old and new. He loved words. … and that, too, came to me.


Which is why I really should have been an Etymologist. 


From the Merchant Navy, after 25 years of service, I came back to Karachi (Ummi's illness and the birth of my daughter, Ragni Marea, after 14 years of marriage) and set-up an educational computing company, Interface, the first of its kind in Pakistan. This arrangement, bad as it was, moved me (with a lot of difficulty) into opening Solutions Unlimited - a consultancy that now runs with my wife heading it. I founded Enabling Technologies, which produced the best Multimedia Software including CD-ROMs in Pakistan. As an Apple-only company we even produced our first CD-ROM for IBM! (That's going to be one of my blogpost, I promise.)

In the meanwhile I also joined Hamdard University and taught for three years until the first Masters came out. Jehan Ara and Sabeen assisted me at some lectures, too. My best student was Syed Ali Hasan, who is now one of our great animators and now also runs a 3D Printing company.

While this was on, I began drawing cartoons for The Friday Times. You can see them here. Do see the first few, anyway. I'll add more as soon as they become available.

My companies — when they started — had my wife Nuzhat, Sabeen, Jehan Ara, and myself … and none of us had taken Computer Studies in our lives, except Sabeen at school. And she had come to my company for further studies. Her KGS Computer Teacher hated her. From Sabeen's exam papers some pages removed when they were sent to UK … so she failed the subject. Efforts by her father, Tallat, proved that this had happened. An act on his part (probably bashing up the Principal!) was probably stopped by Sabeen's mother, Mahenaz, who was teaching at KGS Kindergarten.

The remaining three of us learnt computers on our own, using a BBC computer and then moving on to a 9" Mac. Nothing comes even close to these two systems.

Later on, Sabeen — who'd joined us when she was 14+ as a student and stayed on until she formed PeaceNiche-T2F — and I decided to open Beyond Information Technology Solutions (BITS), partly in association with the Kasuris. They soon left, dedicated as they were to Education, and I owned the company.

Jehan Ara - who had joined us when she had come back from Hong Kong - said she'd rather not be part of this. So we split half of the company: She continued Enabling Technologies and is now the head of Nest I/O and P@SHA.

Sabeen soon became a Director at BITS (as a gift for her years of service with me) and continued with me as a Consultant to some ventures that we occasionally took online (including our work at Tehelka/India and a leading paper in Afghanistan), despite running her new organisation extremely well. In fact T2F is now considered a standard here and elsewhere.


This ended with Sabeen's assassination on 24th April 2015.
Like me, Sabeen was never afraid of death.
Listen to a TV Program about her.


I am sorry I have bored you with this rather long drawn-out preamble. I promise I will move on to Etymology - 2 as soon as I have the time. If you like what I write, you'll find it enjoyable.

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Friday, October 14, 2016

14th October is your Birthday.


Sometimes you appear in family posts.
Most often you don't.
That is only because I never know what to write about you.
There is so much you gave me.
Love,
Peace,
Happiness,
but,
most of all,
the feeling of being aware of tragedies
and to never cry about them.

It was the day that Abi sang
"Hold your head up high",
after our dinner,
that you said,
"Zaheer, yeh baat sün lo!"
Ummi


I miss you.
A lot.

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Monday, September 19, 2016

19-09-2016


53 years is a long time.
I miss you every day.

Thank you for everything you did for me.
Going to work when you were so ill.
Putting me through a series of educational institutions
(and they all taught me a lot, however bad I may have been).

But more than all of that, it was your guidance and love
that made me understand books, poetry, music, art, and life!

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Monday, August 22, 2016

Read (and hear) this — and tell me what you think

I am not a believer in supernatural things
but I had to write this … and play two audios for you.



Perhaps you can tell me what you think is wrong.
Or right.



I had a maid that we employed.
Her name is Zahida.
She has a husband and several children.
The children include a married daughter … who has 5 children.
This daughter had terrible anaemia
and has been given blood several times.



But that did not cure her 'actual' problem …

A few months ago Zahida took leave to go to a Pir Sahab's Dargaah because her daughter was now speaking in a lisping voice and made strange noises. The girl said in a pseudo-masculine voice: "I am a 'Hindu' who has taken possession of this girl".

Every time there was a Qavvaali she'd listen for a bit and go into a Dhammal (a dance that happens at every Pir's grave) and would fall flat on her back by somersaulting really high. No hurt, though. She'd get up and do it again. And again. Until she fell asleep. Then the 'Hindu' would go away and she'd wake up and speak normally for a bit. Then the 'Hindu' would be back.

I told her, "Pir to mar gaé haéñ. Voh küchh naheeñ kar saktay. Doctor kay pass jaao." (The Pir is dead. He can't do anything. Go to a Doctor.)

My wife also set an appointment for her to visit a Psychiatrist. But Zahida said that Doctors can't help. "Yeh to 'andar' ki cheez haé." (This is an 'inside' problem.)

Zahida's husband had been well and used to drive a borrowed Motor Rickshaw. He had suddenly stopped eating - except for very small things - about 7 months ago. He was getting weaker. He left the Rickshaw and refused to work, lying in bed all the time. Made the family even poorer. That was another thing that the 'Pir Sahab' had to 'cure'.

Zahida left and came back.

A few days later she brought her daughter to my house. She spoke with a childish lisp. Often it was difficult to understand. I said at one point , "Tüm zameen par baéth jao, baytee". (Sit down on the floor, girl.) She yelled, saying "Maén 'Hindu' mard hooñ. Baytee kyooñ kah rahay ho?" (I am a Hindu Male. Why are you calling me a girl?)

An hour later Zahid came up and asked me to play Qavvaali music as the girl wanted it and was shouting in the kitchen. I went down and put on my iPod. Within minutes she started trembling and then started to jump. I saw her do this three or four times. She'd somersault really high and land on her back … and then would do it again.

I came up (also feeling a little scared that she'd damage hair back). After 20 minutes Zahida came and said I should shut off the music as she was asleep. I did. In a few minutes she woke up and held her mother and said "Chalo". (Let's go!)

A month later Zahida went back to the Pir with her daughter.

I am still sure that this is not really possible.

The beatings and the cruelty that the daughter received at Pir Sahab made her scream … but the Pir said (and Zahida thought) that it was the 'Hindu' that was screaming. Imagine being beaten with your hand twisted behind your back. Constant pushing and thumping on your head and back. Hitting.

The chimgaada∂ story is a figment of Zahida's imagination (as it was for the attending team). That's obvious. But was the girl putting all this on? Was the father putting all this on, now that he is well again and has got a job?

Sounds so strange.


As far as I am concerned, Zahida firmly believes everything that has happened … and says so. The Pirs are tricksters, there is no doubt. Nothing will help the girl in the long term, I am sure.


Unless she is somehow part of the trick.



FOUR MONTHS LATER UPDATE

Zahid says her husband is well.
So is her daughter.
The Pir Sahab's Chayla (Student!) has done his work.



I await your response!

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Thursday, August 11, 2016

One of our best!


Hanif.
81 years old.
Left us today.


I saw his 499 innings and also saw him in several test matches.


Met him a number of times
when I was in Marie Colaco School
with his brother
Mushtaq.

Hanif was an amazing man.
Gentle.
Sweet.



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Friday, July 08, 2016

Pakistan's Greatest Citizen Dies

Abdul Sattar Edhi

January 1, 1928 - July 8, 2016

It was in 1955 that I met Edhi, sitting on a Chaarpai outside Icky's (Iqbal Ismail) father's office. "He is a Leftist", said Icky's father, rather disparagingly, I thought.

Icky took me to hear Edhi speak to various young and old people gathered around him. 

Edhi was talking about why the mill owner's didn't get together and put up a hospital for their workers for they certainly had enough money … and it would help them, too. 

Years later I had several encounters with him, related sometime to his professional work and occasionally for his support for things my friends and I stood for. He was always available. Always smiling. Always wonderful. 

Thank you, Edhi Sahab, for all that you did. Pakistan will never have anyone like you. 




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Thursday, June 23, 2016

Assassinated!

Amjad Sabri
December 23, 1970 – June 22, 2016


Who will bell the cat?

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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

My Poem, Saif's Transliteration, Sophia's Translation

Here is my Original



Here is Saif Mahmood's "Roman" Transliteration



Here is poet Sophia Pandeya's Translation


I am so thankful for her to have done this herself
… out of her love for Sabeen.

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Thursday, May 12, 2016

Konfused




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Thursday, April 07, 2016

Adored Craig Thompson's "Habibi"

Can do no justice to it by writing about its graphics!

Here are some for you.





 



































Get it Now!!!

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Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Please stop these idiocies …

Please use the right pronunciation.

(Otherwise you'll be treated like Mumtaz Qadri fans!)


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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Imdad Hussain has left us!


Brilliant Sitarist.
Fantastic teacher.

A wonderful friend.

Thanks for all your affection … and that amazing sür you had!

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