Tagged with " cyber space"
Mar 9, 2010 - rant, sarcasm    39 Comments

Twitter, Imran Khan and Aafia

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Twitter is amazing, not only it brings together people from all across the world, but any two or three people can randomly jump in to a conversation and can have a whale of a time together. If you are lucky, you can annoy other people to hell and have fun at their expense (some may call it trolling, but if you do not tag them, I would not call it that). It all gets funnier if the people you make fun of are Z list celebrities who probably google their names every 15 minutes (or more often).

Another friend on twitter and I have had doubts about a Jemima Khan profile on twitter (that was way before she got the blue tick) and we were not sure if it was a genuine account or not. So in a conversation last night we wondered if it was a fake Jemima Khan account or a genuine one. Apparently she saw that, got pissed and in order to prove that she is the real McCoy she scanned her passport with all the details and put it up on twitter! I mean I know she is a blonde and not particularly bright (she married Imran Khan for heaven’s sake) but who puts up their passport on a public twitter account which is open for all?

As if that was not enough drama, some desi men with fantasies of skinny blonde British women falling for them jumped in acting like knights in shining armor advising Jemima to remove her passport details. She then put up another photo of her passport – minus the details – on twitter (she has later removed them both but a pal from across the border saved that passport photo & emailed it to me). I mean what were those gentlemen thinking, she has had her fill of Desi men, she is not gonna fall for another one. One desi dude in one lifetime was enough, dontcha think?

Anyways, that got me started along with two other tweeters, Naheed and Mirza on all things Jemima and her erstwhile husband. Mirza shared that in another century, Liz Hurley and Imran Khan had dated. The made me recall that in the same century, Liz Hurley and Hugh grant also dated and then Imran Khan got married to Jemima and then Jemima dated Hugh Grant and now perhaps Imran Khan is dating the whole Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan which makes it kinda really kinky circle. Mirza then suggested that maybe it’s time Imran Khan and Hugh Grant should get up close and personal. In any case, Jemima has beaten Mr. Khan when it comes to getting intimate with famous people of the same sex – remember the lip lock between Kate Moss and Jemima (it generates 183,000 links if you google it – in case anyone wanted to know that).

By that time, Jemima Khan got really angry and gave me two names; twalker (that’s twitter stalker) and tweak (twitter freak). Now I am all game for name calling but they have to be smart and inventive. If only Ms Goldsmith had actually spent some time in college in her younger days instead of playing house with an aging Lothario, she would have known that tweak is actually a proper English word found in all major English language dictionaries. Her exact tweet was something like this: “What a relief to discover you can block the tweaks (twitter freaks). I’m banishing dissidents like a despot.” Even the statement was kind of a let down. After writing ‘expert’ articles on democracy in Pakistan in esteemed publications like Vogue and Harper’s, I never expected such naked despotic glee from Ms Goldsmith.

We decided to let go of Ms Goldsmith and stick to her former and far juicier half. Naheed asked us if Imran Khan has remarried and then started listing the names of all the women Imran Khan has ever been with but I suggested that we need to leave that alone. After all, if one starts listing all of Imran Khan’s conquests, 140 characters wouldn’t be able to do him any justice. That man has been very very busy for most of his adult life and he is in now in his late 50s.

As far as Imran’s second round at nuptials is concerned, I have a feeling he will do a complete turnaround. In the past, much to chagrin of all the aunties (who were not really aunties back then) he had almost exclusively dated foreigners. Now, in his new Maseeha-e-Islam avatar, he will only take the plunge when ‘Qaum ki Beti’ Aafia Siddiqui returns. Imagine a wedding invite that says ‘Imran Khan weds Aafia Siddiqui’, would it not be a Jamat-e-Islami and Talibaan wet dream? If Ms Siddiqui agrees to marry Imran Khan, then nothing can stop him from becoming the most powerful man in Pakistan.

Naheed disagreed with me. She believes that Aafia Siddiqui will sell Imran Khan at the juma bazaar for a bucketful of ammonium nitrate, which got me thinking. Ms. Siddiqui is a paak baaz Muslim woman, she will probably not agree to a union with a former play boy who has been with MTV VJs (tauba tauba haram). In any case, if the choice of her last husband, Ammar al-Baluchi, a nephew of the 9/11 mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and ten years her junior, is any indication of her taste, she is into young Jihadist boy toys, not old Romeos like Imran Khan.

PS: I still have Jemima’s passport shot with me but I chose not to publish it, for obvious reasons.

Jan 1, 2010 - rant    31 Comments

New Year Facebook status updates from hell

As soon as we are done with Christmas, emails, text messages and general announcements regarding the impending end of the year start appearing on social networking sites, wishing no one in particular. 


There are those who want to sound philosophical and super intellectual and they would use words like existentialism and nihilism in their facebook status updates. One such update goes something like this:

This whole New Year business is just another reaffirmation of the inherent nihilism of our existence. Suddenly whats important is the launch of a new set of an arbitrary number of days, at an arbitrary moment in time initially chosen by an arbitrary group of people, an arbitrary number of years ago. Great going mankind.

WTF? Does anyone even bother reading stuff like this after the first line?

Then there are those who want the rest of us to know that they live in cooler places and actually have a life. Their status updates would be something like:

Having the time of my life at Sydney Harbour Bridge, yeayyyy!!!!

Or

Happy new year to you all from snowy NYC!!!

Notice that such messages are followed by multiple exclamation marks, as if living in New York is exclamation worthy or a snowy NYC in December is a sign of wonder. 


There are some who just want to sound enigmatic or contradictory or both and they would write something along the lines of:

Happy New Year. We live in shitty times.


Or

Looking back with gratitude, looking forward with hope.


I find such statuses most annoying. Gratitude for what? Hope for what? The sooner we lose hope and come to terms with the fact that life is gallactically fucked up, the better it is for the sanity of the society in general and for the cyber dwelling facebooking cynics like me in particular.


Apart from the dreamy or intellectual ones, there are some practical types. They don’t wish for world peace — they know it is unattainable — they only want prosperity and opportunity for their loved ones. One such message that I saw last night goes something like:

Happy new year to all my friends and family members. May this year bring us lots of wealth, prosperity and opportunities in our life (Aameen)

And last but not the least is the super cheery ones. They are so happy, they can make you go blind with optimism and turn anyone normal into a homicidal maniac with their glee. Check this one out:

— is wishing everyone an Extremely Happy New Year 2010! May we all lose our belly fat and unsightly pimples, get gorgeous hair and hefty pay-raises and may the wrath of the Almighty fall upon anyone who looks prettier than us in group photographs. Amen! xXx


What is wrong with this person? Why is she so happy over a bloody new year? Did she win a Pulitzer Prize, or an Oscar? Has she spoken with Kurt Cobain’s ghost who told her about a huge stash of heroine that he had hidden back in 1990 and is now worth millions? Did she sign a million dollar book deal? Has she shacked up with Prince William or did she win a fucking lottery? 
We are finally here, in 2010 and we shall be here for another 12 months. Can we get it done and over with New Year messages please?

Update: The number of people ended up on my post looking for best new year facebook status updates is astounding. Facebook apparently rules.

Oct 18, 2009 - sarcasm    10 Comments

Happily ever after … in 140 characters

Love is when you tweet your feelings … in 140 characters …
Pakistanis and those who are living in Pakistan – even those who are here for a few short months – treat twitter like MIRC of the bygone era. They may not ask you A/S/L but they do use it as a place to practice romance and/or pick up prospective partners.

I have been witnessing an exchange between two people who, for the lack of better word, seem quite interested in each other on twitter. She regularly tweets to him about what’s on the telly, the food she cooked, her yoga classes and her writing progress. He tweets about his work, life and the booty his bootlegger has brought for him in Islamabad (In case you are wondering, we do not live in prohibition era USA but in Pakistan, you cant just go to a pub and order a pint of lager or hop over to you the off license near you and get that six pack of Heineken, alcohol is illegal and you gotta get it through a bootlegger).

I am not sure how this love story is gonna wok out but here is to sincerely hoping that they live happily ever after … in 140 characters.

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Sep 8, 2009 - sarcasm    43 Comments

…and the halalness saga continues …

Honestly, I never thought that my blog posts would be taken seriously by anyone, let alone makers of a halal search engine.
A few weeks back, PTI reviewed one of my previous posts about a halal browser and commented that although the post was in good humour, it was taken very seriously by the more pious readers. That report was carried by Pune Mirror, Yahoo India and The American Conservative to name a few.

A Dutch company came up with a halal search engine (If there exists a Halal browser, please enlighten me about it) with help of which Muslims will be able to surf the internet without the fear of accidentally encountering sinful material. The site is called www.iamhalal.com and comes with the tagline; I search halal, I am halal (wonder what does that make a bonafide google worshiper like me).

Now, I am not a narcissist nutcase who believes that the whole world is copying her but these guys totally stole my idea of three levels of halalness – or rather haramness.

If you type a word that is deemed inappropriate by the search engine, you will be warned in 3 levels of haram.
A query for the term “Suicide bombings” is considered level 1 haram and came with this warning.
Oops! Your search inquiry has a Haram level of 1 out of 3. This means that the results fetched by ImHalal.com could be haram!


The word “Sex” was deemed level 2 Haram. The warning for it goes something like this:

Oops! Your search inquiry has a Haram level of 2 out of 3. This means that the results fetched by ImHalal.com could be haram!


Searching a word like “Fornication” would put the search engine on red alert (literally) and the warning would come in red letters.

Oops! Your search inquiry has a Haram level of 3 out of 3! I would like to advise you to change your search terms and try again

Honestly, this search engine is in a bad taste. Words like love, kissing and Nazi are level 1 haram and words like gay, lesbian and sexy are level 3 haram but words like fascism, nigger, molester, murder and torture are totally halal.

What kind of weird world we live in where adult Muslims would actively seek an internet nanny to filter stuff for them!

Aug 13, 2009 - Uncategorized    11 Comments

Links for the long weekend

Foreign Policy ran a couple of lists of sons and daughters of world leaders with exceptionally bad behaviour. The list included Isa, son of Shiekh Zayed, the notorious torturer of humans & animals and daughters of Islam Karimov and Saddam Hussien, but the name that caught my eye was that of Moammar Gaddafi’s son. His son’s name is Hannibal and if the profile on FP is to be believed, he is cut from the same cloth as Hannibal Lecter – the cannibalistic serial killer.


A lot of people must have tried to rattle the Catholic Church but very few actually proved to be successful at it. Hardly anyone would have been as cavalierly successful about it as the Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi. Apparently Catholic Church is ‘mortified’ by the private life of Silvio Berlusconi. What is absolutely amazing is that Italy seems to be totally out of the grips of the Catholic Church because Berlusconi still enjoys a 49% approval rating and a majority in both the houses of parliament.

Here, Maureen Dowd discusses what she calls the conjugal psychodrama (I absolutely adore this term) of the Clintons.


Khaled Diab writes about the Muslim Gay character in Eastenders who ended up marrying a woman for sake of propriety.


A word of caution for those who yawn. You can end up in jail for yawning ‘boisterously’ inside a court.


Mar 24, 2008 - Uncategorized    No Comments

Facebook is mean

Facebook is mean, yes, I mean it. Every other day, I get an email saying something like this: 2 per cent of my friends think I am smart and 90 per cent think I am the best potential mother. I mean what the &(*$%)^$#@!?

Honestly, if I were taking it critically, I would have fought with all my friends (I think I am damn smart and do take my smartness and smart ass attitude very seriously) by now.

100 percent of my friends (actually its just three who have voted for me) think that I am most likely to win in a fight but none think I have a better profile picture!

An overwhelming 100 percent think I am more confident and well-mannered (thank you all 11 of you) but only 2.5 percent think I am hot.

This is the last email I got from Facebook.

Social News for March 24, 2008

Here is what your friends think about…

… your strengths:

best companion on a desert island
Funnier

… your weaknesses:

person with the best profile picture
smartest

Like I said, facebook is mean.

Mar 18, 2008 - Uncategorized    1 Comment

Cyber death

Somebody I know (in the cyberspace) recently committed an online suicide from one of the social networking websites. She was there with a fake profile and I am sure will resurrect with another fake one, but it got me thinking: is it possible to complete erase your online identity?

Deleting your blog, friendster, hi5 and orkut accounts is one thing, but if you use your real name in other online discussions, or have some material published; is it possible to erase all reference to you in cyber space and be web dead? What if whatever you have written gets quoted by others and stays on record there? Is it impossible to be web dead once you have been alive in cyber world? Is it possible to delete every reference to yourself online – simply disappear from the Web and restart your digital reputation afresh? Can one do that?

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