Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Missing Woman

A long time childhood crush of mine just had a baby daughter, leading me to experience a probably inappropriate twinge of regret that yes - she is well and truly gone. Indeed, it was the sight of her cavorting around on a rainy rooftop in a yellow sari that has probably fueled the testosterone-laden attraction of many a guy towards voluptuous full figured Indian women - now immortalized by Youtube.

However, as I lately purvey the tripe that now masquerades as 'Indian' movies - I see that this sari-clad beauty is now an endangered species. For example, in a song that brings the Canadian-Pakistani talent of Adnan Sami along with Kareena Kapoor, the scion of the famous Bollywood clan, you have this.

It seems more and more Bollywood songs now have our hero dancing with a backup crew that consists of people fitting one job description - you have to be a foreign, blonde female with an attractive figure that you will barely adorn with clothes. For example, the main attraction of the song Kiss Me Baby (yikes, English!) in the movie Garam Masala was this.

A rating of PG-13 on this blog prohibits me from placing some more pictures as example (also because I have a disk quota from Blogger) but you get the idea.

In affectionate remembrance of the truly desi woman, who died an untimely death circa 1990s. Deeply lamented by a large circle of admirers, Bollywood watchers and horny teenagers.

As an aside, I wonder if the large number of foreign women dancing to the tunes of brown men (literally) feeds some hidden desire of us desi men to control the exotic Other Woman. Go to the Facebook album of any of the resident desi "Studs", and you will see one typical picture.

In the club. Beer in hand. Foreign (usually White) Woman on arm.

I have seen even black men who have white girlfriends subconsciously introduce them around as if they are some kind of trophy. I wonder why.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Mine Is Big

I uncovered and showed mine to her.

"Wow, that's big." She exclaimed. She slowly touched it.

"Feels nice too. But my, it's big! May I ask," she continued to stare, "how big is it?"

"Well..." I told her. I didn't exaggerate, I was modest - but she could see it.

"Wow." She exclaimed. "I recently noticed guys are having bigger ones nowadays."

"Hmm." Somewhat deflated at news of other guys with big ones, I replied, "Well, size matters you know."

She laughed. "I think you guys are obsessed more with size. If you ask girls it doesn't matter so much."

"Really? Ya, right."

"Haha ooh yes." She continued. "I mean as far as ... utility goes, size is really nothing, It's what you can do with it. Power, performance ..."


She slowly came nearer, and then started to pull down a zipper.

"What I have ... is one size fits all, you know."

The zipper was now fully open.

Delicately, she took my 17 inch laptop and placed it into her generic laptop bag. Yup, it fit all right.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Observations of a Desi BBQ - 2

Q: How to tell a BBQ is a desi BBQ?

A: Tea. We HAVE to have tea. No matter what the challenge, tea must be made.

Tea being made over charcoal left from cooking the chicken.

Note also the big pot (called patil in Bengali) used to keep left over chicken warm.

(Pictures are sourced from Facebook, so if you can't see the pictures, Facebook is probably banned from where you are now)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Canadian Desis Returning To The Gulf

Khaleej Times recently published a very interesting article on Canadian desis returning to the Gulf.
SUCCESSFUL Gulf-based Asians often have a tax-free lifestyle second to none. BMWs, fancy condos, five star travel, household help, minimum one month long paid vacation time and a hectic party/club scene are a normal way of life. The only thing lacking perhaps is a sense of belonging and the premonition that all this is ephemeral.
I wish when I was there in the Gulf, someone had told me how to enjoy this five star travel lifestyle (not to forget the 'hectic party/club scene'). The BMW wouldn't have been bad either!

The truth is in the first word of that sentence - 'Successful'. Now you have to define success, but on the whole I would not argue that an average South Asian family in the Gulf probably enjoys a lot of comforts that they would not enjoy back in Canada. The company usually pays rent, tickets to go back to desiland during the month long summer vacations, tax free income, eating out whenever you feel like it (without worrying about halal / haram or your burger being real meat instead of what is called a 'byproduct'). The trade off is of course living under the constant subjugation of Arabs (called 'Rafeek', 'miskeen') or being in trouble with the law (life is good as long as it's good - any trouble, you're fucked).

To me the writing appears mostly as a fluff piece (even though it raises some interesting issues). I, for one, would have liked the writer to interview more families who had returned to the Gulf and been there for a while now. Do they still like it? Do their Canadian-born kids like it?

There is no doubt that Canada has a problem hiring the immigrants it allows in. The first generation always struggles. As for the second generation? Even I now sometimes think it may not be a bad idea to move back for a bit, make some money and come back, even though last year I was of the opinion I would never move back. After some time, the long winters start to get at you.
"Going back was not an option, none of that one foot here and one foot there business," says Jasmine candidly.

"However, initially, we did have our share of adversity. The usual things - no jobs, no recognition of our credentials (she was a teacher in Saudi), savings rapidly going down the drain, having to pay rent for 12 months up front, post-9/11 retrenchment."

The Sawants, with their two sons, Aniruddh, and Siddhant, now 19 and 16 respectively, bit the bullet and consciously made a decision to adopt the Canadian way of life.
And this last part is where I agree - many of the 'successful' immigrant families I see - where the couple has "made it" - usually stems when both the husband and wife immerse themselves into the system. Rather than fight it or accept the bad bumps, they get involved and try to work their way through it. Sucks if you are a doctor, but most other professions find some vocation within three years.

This is a very interesting article - as I said - when I consider places I wouldn't mind working for a few years other than Canada - the UAE, with a suitable job, is very high on that list. But would you live in a place where nothing is as it seems and you have no future, for (very) high bucks?

Monday, August 20, 2007

Talking About Someone's Wife

Dear Diary,

Does any one still read this blog? No? Oh, I guess it'll just be me and you then. You liked it that way, didn't you?

I went to a wedding last week. Apparently, there are some rules about praising another man's wife that I breached.

My friend, with whom I go way back (hello A.) and his wife also arrived for the wedding. As you know, I am a very, er, observant person. So as soon as I saw her, I told her, "Wow P, you look very good! Those highlights in your hair make you look striking!"

Of course she flushed and replied, "Oh thank you, tell your friend A, he didn't even notice!"

And true to nature A could hardly be bothered and we were soon discussing the dismal nature of the Bangladesh cricket team and the looming Ontario election. We soon split up and I was working the room, when suddenly, half an hour or so later, my friend A again showed up.

"Man, why did you have to praise my wife so much? Now she's bugging me that I don't notice stuff about her."


"Listen, next time you praise ANOTHER MAN'S WIFE, keep it general ok? Don't get SPECIFIC."


WTF man how can you not notice your wife has ORANGE HAIR.

And it didn't help when I told him "oh well your wife is very pretty so I guess you can tell her you got used to her beauty."

Well ... I thought it was a very good excuse.

There are times I feel sorry for married people.

Oh don't worry about my friend and I - we are good.