Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Good V-Morning

(Me = me, Fib = Friend In Bangladesh)

Step 1: Kill the joke.

Fib: "What's up?"

Me: "Eito, just got to work. Snowing here."

Fib: "Oh, don't be grumpy, today is Valentine's Day!"

[me gets more grumpy]

Me: "So?"

Fib: "HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!!!!!!!"

[me decides guys in Bangladesh are getting gayer by the second]

Me: "Actually I am celebrating Single Awareness Day today."

[cyber pause as I realize Fib may not have got it]

Me: "So I am going to be in S.A.D. mode all day."

Fib: "Really? I never heard of that day! It's on the same day as Valentine's Day? Is it something Canadian?"

[he's serious]

Me: *sigh* "It's a JOKE! S.A.D. = sad = no valentine = anti-valentine."

Fib: "oh, LOL!!"

[five minutes of Fib typing various combinations of LOL, LMAO and ROFL]

Step 2: Reinforce Desiness

Fib: "Are there no pretty Bengali girls in Canada?"

Me: "Sure, lots."

Fib: "So, pick a proper beauty."

Me: "Is beauty the only factor? Beauty is subjective."

Fib: "Screw that. Beautiful is fixed. Slim, and fair skin."

[me inserts Fair and Lovely commercial here]

Step 3: Destroy Ignorance which was Bliss

Me: "For marriage you need to go beyond beauty."

Fib: "Who the hell is talking about marriage? Just get a girl friend. Have fun. Do furti (masti)."

Me: "Does everyone in Bangladesh do furti then?"

Fib: "Sure. Well, all try. Some cannot do it."

[Fib sniggers]

Me: "You mean, girls in Bangladesh are so ... modern ... now?"

Fib: "Hell, ya. Lol you didn't think that? You've been out of the country for too long."

39 comments:

Maliha said...

Salamaat,
What's furti?

You have the most hilarious conversations :)

mezba said...

Maliha, walaiks. Thanx.

Furti = Wild Fun = Enjoyment = Merriment.

Can be used in all types of connotations.

'liya said...

Hehe.. funny conversation... but kinda sad too, sometimes we forget that "back home" wherever that is, is often more 'corrupt' I guess you could say, than we like to think.

:S

Nowal said...

yea, and boys like you still prefer to go back home to get girls while good girls with high morals like us in the West remain single and depressed.

way to go mezb.

Nowal said...

oh, and your friend is an idiot. but then again, most of your friends are. hehe!

mezba said...

Liya: It does make one pause for a moment eh, all those guys going back home and everyone fooling everyone.

Nowal 1: When did I say I am going back? If you *ahem* read my "famous" rant, you will see a LIST of points of why one should stay here.

Nowal 2:
oh, and your friend is an idiot. but then again, most of your friends are. hehe!

Aren't you my friend? hehe....

Nowal said...

well, the idea that you even MADE a list shows that you're a few neuronal connections short up there.

and i meant Guy Friends! the only girls you know are through this blog (heheee!) and we all know WE rock. so there.

mezba said...

Nowal
the only girls you know are through this blog (heheee!)

It is to my advantage that you continue to perpetuate this idea.

btw who reviewed my list and made annotated comments?

ABCDlaw said...

Singles Awareness Day-that's so classic, I love it ;)

It's sad that the image we hold of "back home" is never a reality. 'liya said it perfectly about how it's often more corrupt. I often wonder about the "purity" of people back home too, plus girls there are usually way more coached in "proper society behaviour" than we western desis.

sabrina said...

HEHEHE! I love you Nowal!
"good girls with high morals like us in the West remain single and depressed."

I disagree sweetie. You just have to make the best out of your life. Why on earth do we limit ourselves to brown guys who have the potential to go back home. If they want, let them go, while we should busy ourselves with AWESOME mainstream Americans/Canadians what have you! (of course, convertible: I meant, with a potential to become Muslim). I am pretty sure that would be better for the whole problem, a population balance:
1) brown guys get their dream girls from back home. These girls get greencard or canadian PR, and then she will bring her whole family over, a HUGE gain to Bangladesh. THis poor country can't support so many of us.

2) brown girls get their dream boys who are loving, giving and caring and respectful of women (and people in general), which would be hard to find in brown population (c.p.)
=P

3) a possible solution to the race problem. the next generation will be mixed: no pure white, no pure black, no pure brown.. all the forms will have to change or eliminate the question of race... WONDERFUL!

If only we could really do what we want so easily!

On another note, Mezba, I had the exact same experience over the MSN conversation with a friend (in Dhaka) of mine who recently broke up with her boyfriend. But of course since she is single, she is pissed at this day, where I had totally forgotten (thanks to my never ending schooling) about this day. Her status said,
"kisher eto theka, ajaira."

in any case, why would we really care about this St. Valentine anyway? If I got a day off, i would understand. But otherwise, heck.. it has no significance to me, and that would be the case, even if I was not single!

Em said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Haleem said...

Hmm... so I guess going back to Bangladesh is not an option then.

I disagree that part about Sabrina's analysis about white guys being better for brown girls. Don't know if it's meant in jest or not, but white dudes like brown girls because they think they are submissive. When they find Canadian brown girls not such, they will move on.

Haleem said...

I have to add unless he really loves her. When I was on dorm, I saw lot of these white-brown romances. Most failed. Only a couple of instances I know has survived.

But white-Korean romances on the other hand ...

mezba said...

AbcdLaw: lol.. Single Awareness Day... please spread the S.A.D.ness around.

plus girls there are usually way more coached in "proper society behavior" than we western desis

true, and they also know how to fool non resident desis like us when we go back.

Sabrina: I am with Haleem - can't decide if you are kidding or not. In any case that's an interesting analysis.

In any case, there is one distinct DISadvantage of white guys marrying brown girls, especially if that white guy happens to be your professor.

Back in university, a Hindu friend went to ask his prof for an extension to some assignment, claiming it was some Hindu festival (made up). Poor sod didn't know this Greek prof's wife was called Sunita and knew everything about Hindu festivals.

Em: Why did you delete your comment? it was a good direction to take!

Haleem: I have reservations about Bangladeshi girls, let's just leave it at that.

As for white guy/brown girl, like you I am usually apprehensive about cross-culture marriages (too many challenges, too tough) but as you say if the couple is sincere why not. Hard to judge nowadays who's sincere, who's not, ANY culture.

sabrina said...

you KIDS!
Where did you see me say "WHITE"! I said, :mainstream American: Does that necessarily mean, "white"? I just checked the demographics of the united states and that state 74% of our population is white, and under white, falls white hispanic Arab Americans, North Africans, europians.. Now define white!!!
I was partly being unrealistic of course. But I believe if people can really come out of that "cultural box" and start making room for different cultures in their lives, I think, the overall effect will be positive.
Given so much problems we have in the west as far as minorities are concerned and a subtle White supremacy, wouldn't that be nice to abolish it all at the grassroot level by having majority of the population being "mixed"? In that way, we will deal with "humans" and not any particular race.

So, overall (of course, big picture) it will be a win win situation. The south asian lands are overpopulated, and most brown guys (be honest with yourself) want a wife (who would be saying "Potidev" and put her husband up on a pedastal , just kidding) from back home. They tend to be thinner/slimmer (face it, overweight and obesity is a national problem for America). So, brown guys will be happier with them than the American-desis (exceptions are always there), who may not be as thin... or may not worry too much about her dark skin, lol... on the other hand, those women back home are really wasting their lives and talent away in doing almost nothing. THe country doesn't give them support or opportunity to do anything. So, we have an overall gain... win win situation. NO?

What happens to brown girls here?
Well, let's face it! Since in our brown culture, a man's lives and his offsprings are valued, who really cares about what happens to brown girls? But, again, we can create a win win situation here: get involved with the mainstream people of the country, convert these men, have more people in Islam, and hey, all of a sudden, this place is so much nicer for Muslims! :)

my hypothesis will never be tested, because i dont think we are at that point of having cross cultural marriages.

And and what happened to brown boys back home... don't worry.. we have a very large population, there will always be enough people there. And as Em mentioned,some brown guys will meet good brown women and stay there and help that country, too.

What a wonderful life!!
That is of course my idealized fairy tale!

and haleem: to assuage your apprehension, I am talking about tolerant, nice guys. I am talking about hypothetical true love, which probably doesn't exist... in which case you are right!

Em said...

Salaam.
Sorry Mez - maybe I'll bring it up another time... But now I'm curious, let's NOT leave it at you saying you have reservations about Deshi girls. I want to know why!

For me, I think I love Bangladesh enough to actually want to settle there, but how many Deshi emigrant girls have you met who are willing to go back there to live? Even those who love Bangla and kotbel and the thought of hearing the adhan out loud and getting Fridays off frown at the thought... I can't then not pick a real Deshi woman, can I?

Em said...

Salaam.
Nowal and Sabrina, I sense a tone of slight resentment and self-pity when it comes to "boys like Mezba" (read: good brown boy in the West) look for their partners back home... I'm curious as to why emigrant "good girls with high morals" (quoting Nowal) can't do exactly the same and consider Deshi men as well? Is it that they're poorer, less educated, have terrible accents, no style? What is it? I'm just really curious.

Anonymous said...

self-pity? i think you got that wrong.
I truly believe in cross cultural marriages. They are wonderful. And I also truly believe that when it comes down to marriage, no one should feel like they are settling or compromising... and from various blog posts, and also real life people, it feels like brown men have this "kaash" to marry from back home. If you wish, why not? I don't think there is anything wrong with that. I used to, though, but i think i learned that marriage is something where you must give the "other" due respect and it wouldn't come if you are just "settling".

and marrying from back home: it is just that i would be wary of a person's moral and ethical value when he was all grown up in Bangladesh. Sorry, my trust has been shaken!

mezba said...

haha.. ok can we NOT post about "mezba going back to bdesh" coz I am not lol.

Sabrina: so Arabs are under "whites" eh? I do remember some sheikhs being extremely popular amongst some girls for some reason lol.

Can't fault your idealized theory.

I think Em's question, about why girls here cannot go back, can only be answered by some girl bloggers. Alas Nowal is now out of commission and Sabrina is hidden.

Nowal said...

em, not sure how I got drawn into this "meeting of minds" but I personally don't see why a man from abroad should be any different from a man from here. as long as we click, in beliefs, styles, goals - that's all that matters.

and now if you take logic and practicality into consideration, chances are that the click is going to be more possible with a man who you already have the basics in common with.

we're afraid to venture out into the unknown to look for that click, which by all means is def. out there too. but desperation (when one's single and old) overrides the fear and off we are booking flights to dhaka.

That being said, inshAllah, I have a long time to go before i have to take that step, if ever.

Mezb - i don't remember making points or debating your list. i do remember being enraged at the draft you sent to me, however.

Em said...

Salaam.
Nowal, I meant no offense :)! I made that observation in response to your first comment on this post... I wholeheartedly agree with your reply, especially liking the use of the diplomatic phrase "basics in common" ;P.

Anon and/or Sabrina, apologies. When I read "What happens to brown girls here?...who really cares about what happens to brown girls?", I sensed self-pity: my fault; I take it back... As for being wary of a 'purebred' Deshi, I nod in approval... After all, 52% of unmarried Bangladeshi men apparently engage in premarital sex - for a country that's 87% Muslim, that's pretty scary.

Suroor said...

I see you Deshi friends are having so much fun with this post! :)

I don't like your FIB, Mezba!

Nowal said...

aww, did it seem like I was affronted? because I wasn't. you just got me thinking. and so did the current book I am reading. It's called "An A-Z Guide to Arranged Marriages" - Rekha Waheed's. The protagonist is a "good girl with high morals", bengali and all. funny how we're all in the same boat, just little tweaks here and there.

And NO, I am not desperate to get married mezb. do NOT judge the book by its title and think that I am resorting to guide books for this now. :P

saqi namah said...

I henceforth proclaim that from this day onwards February 14 will be celebrated as Single Awareness Day and I further proclaim that Sheikh Mezba will be made its patron saint.

sabrina said...

"What happens to brown girls here?...who really cares about what happens to brown girls?"

Well...maybe you should get inside my head. I am talking about a culture (India, Bangladesh, Pakistan) where
girl fetus is aborted if the parents get to know it's a girl; a culture in which raped women get punished instead of justice, a culture women get burnt for dehez (reversed dowry), a culture where in low income families' girls are not sent to school but boys are, or in middle class, girls are sent to cheaper Bengali medium school and boys are sent to more expensive elite english medium schools, in a culture, girls are malnourished because their brothers are believed to deserve the better half of any good food, in a culture where parents feel burdended as soon as their daughter turn 12 and want to marry her off to any Dick, Harry or John...or when some parents do treat their boys and girls equally, other people will let them know that 'you are spoiling your daughter', or my personal favorite 'who knows where she will end up when she gets married, so prepare from now on.' yeah like at the age of 7, by discriminating against her... subhanAllah! And of course I can't about Shonar Bangladesh like that, but I try to be honest instead of sugeer coating things. I may not have had those experience except that some aunties really told my mom that she was spoiling us three girls by giving us an AC in our room (???). However, I have mingled/worked with low income people enough to know what those girls go through, though I can't empathize with them, because I have not been in their shoes.

That's for the precious girls residing in the region. Do people have time to worry/care about the precious lucky ones who got out of that piece of hell?

I think not.

So, it should not have suggested self-pity... more like a peek into reality.

And as an aside, why do people have such reservation (that includes some folks in my family) about marrying from different culture/race/ethnicity?
There are various ahadith about picking your mate, does any hadith says "should only marry who speaks your forefathers language (given that everyone speaks english anyway)"?
I love this verse:

O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise (each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things)

sabrina said...

oh and Suroor, most men in Bangladesh are exactly like FIB!
Now you know why I almost despise those people or never even consider marrying anyone from there. I know not all are alike, but, that would be like collateral damage.

I think something is wrong with those parents in Bangladesh. Do they not teach their sons anything?

sabrina said...

oh, and about public blogging. I might be writing stuff here:
http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/randomlychosen/

So you can check back ( I will notify you, how about that?) there when/if i write why women are less likely to go back home to marry!

Anonymous said...

I think many guys were "relieved" to have the storm/blizzard?? yesterday. :)
"[me inserts Fair and Lovely commercial here]",k, what's up with that commercial??I remember when I used to watch these hindi movies and that commercial would be shown,it's so sad and some pple really do believe that "fairness" is achieved by using some products. I find that girls now here are more in touch with their traditions than those back home (most of them), those back at home what to be so westernized that it's so scary!!! sf

Anonymous said...

hahaa....fib sounds like Joey (from friends)

-Behbood

Sonia said...

Ha ha - good one. Gosh you're behind the times Mezba! ;-) no offence meant, but girls in Bangladesh have been 'modern' for years now! *grin* in fact, didn't you know, when expat bangali parents take their teenage kids back - in about a year they're like 'oh my god! what have we brought our kids into'..

i learnt to do all the naughty things in the world in my 2 years of living in dhaka. it was a good experience - once you look down the abyss, it helps you stay focused on not doing stuff just cos you're not meant to, but because you know what happens and where things can go.

*plus it got rid of the naivete about 'innocent homeland' so many diasporic types seem to have!*

Sonia said...

I'm pretty suprised at the kind of comments im seeing here - e.g. Haleem's 'most brown-white romances' failed.. Gosh mezba you do have quite a lot of conservative readers - particularly given ( i imagine) a lot of them are quite young!

now maybe some insight into social background would be useful to evaluate haleem's statement- like some of them will have broken up because brown person knew parents would give them a hard time? so go out with them at uni and then later marry someone 'suitable'.

as what is 'suitable' changes - naturally so will who goes out with whom. dunno about canada but in here in the UK the 'mixed' group is the one that's on the increase the most. yes i met people at uni who all said they'd break up with the people they were dating ( other race or not) and marry someone 'suitable' when the time came. At the same time, the no. of mixed marriages and dating is definitely on the increase. in london you see an increasing no. of indian -white couples, not just east asians - white couples, and afro-caribbean -white couples. and again, maybe it's the circles people move in, but a significant and growin no. of guys i have met have indian girlfriends, and all are serious about making the marriage step. granted there is a certain amount of trepidation about the families, but more and more people are confident that with time, the families will come around. i think this is all good news - kids are less restricted, parents will hopefully less worried about what the neighbours think..

Ruby said...

"Beauty is fixed..slim and fair"
AAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH!!! The white people left the Indian subcontinent decades ago! When will this damn notion die?????

BTW, Sabrina is my new favorite person whoever she is. She needs to be my best friend.

Hero said...

No necesito un día de Valentine expresar mi amor, mi encantador :)

I live in Karachi, I just came back from a week's trip to Bangladesh, our Host was boasting about the liberalism and as a proof of concept he even took us to a park made around lake (i am too bad at names).... Funny thing we saw there, as soon as a couple was about to do some Furti (hugging), the policemen on patrol sounded his whistle ... lol ... I could only jokingly remark that we have sent this "Morality Patrol" from Pakistan

mystic-soul said...

I spread SADness through my blog !!

Cheers

Sonia said...

heh heh Mezba your blog always makes me laugh - which is why i read it! :-) i told my other half ( what a term eh) last night about how asian girls are expected to be submissive he had a good laugh. he thought anyone who married an asian girl expecting submissiveness would be in for a big shock ! :-)

(i daresay the uncles would agree - as you pointed out in another humourous post mezba, about the aunties managing to browbeat the uncles later on in married life)

seems like the whole world wants asian women to be submissive! perhaps this why girls pretend that way when someone comes to 'see' them?

*chortle*

mezba said...

Nowal, Em, Sabrina, Anon: It does look like that 'getting the basics being common' is more important than anything, right? Different people now have different ideas of what is basics, for some its religion, for some it's culture, and then we have the whole parents thing thrown in. Quite complicated, this.

Suroor: My FIB was actually a Mollah guy back in high school!

Nowal: I want to borrow that book. Should provide lots of blog fodder.

Saqi: What will my weapon be? Cupid has arrows. Maybe I will have that cool phaser from Star Trek. And since cupid strikes singles, who should I hit?

Sabrina: the reason that people pick mates from their own culture is that there are less grounds for conflict later on down the road.

Now culture could be someone racially similar to you, or "on the same wavelength", and I have no doubt which is more important. This is why girls from here don't gel with guys from back home, they have a backwards mentality.

Sabrina: True, most men from back home are exactly like FIB, but you have to think, if they are shagging about, who are the girls they are shagging? They are also girls from back home. Which is why to anyone who is going back home, be VERY, VERY, VERY cautious.

Sf: true true true. Also, false false.. to some extent girls here are also westernized, but girls back home are just experts at hiding it.

Behbood: He wants to be Joey. Mostly turns out to be Ross.

Sonia: Nice profile pic!

I know, I used to think bd girls are this madhobi lota, boney...

As for brown/white romances, is it mostly Indian girls? Not too many Bengali girls I know are involved that way.

Ruby: You know I typed that sentance about white man leaving, then took it out because that's what I really felt but didn't know how to put it properly. Dusky is not automatically Ugly, people!

Hero: I got your spanish!

This was in Bd? Or karachi?

Mystic: thanx!!

Sonia: You are letting the secret out you know ;-)

sabrina said...

I hate to use the word "shag".. doesn't sound good but oh well, it's english!. ANd it's getting old, since you have already put up a new post. But just an FYI about our generation (yes, Sire Mezzo, you are old, j/k). If I stayed in Bangladesh to do calss 11 and 12, I would have gone to this college where all friends went. And in that college, except for a few boys, all the other boys got sexually involved with some prostitute... you know, Uttara is close to Tongi.. okay, you get the picture. And all these boys are no older than 19.
And I also discovered that it's pretty much the same story in almost all good colleges, or even bad colleges in Dhaka.
And that's why I think we got more bad boys than we have bad girls. Bad girls exist, but they are less in number (if you want to look at male and female "bad character" propotions).
So, there....

Karim said...

in BD man... Dhaka.. some park built around a lake.. our host profusely introduced it as a sign of BD's liberalism... ;)

Buddy give me a blank email on my address karim.jindani@gmail.com

sonia said...

Mezba - thanks for the compliment :-) yes i know the *secrets* are slowly coming out..

i guess when i said 'indian' i meant sub-continent in general - and actually bengali girls yes.. perhaps it's because im bengali and people are keen to let me know when they have a bengali girlfriend or wife..but it seems everyone has a bengali girlfriend these days, it's a la mode or something..!