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The headlines scream 'Present assembly can re-elect Musharraf'.
Knowing about my passion for Classical Music does reduce the risk of friends buying me shalvaar qameez suits that I wouldn't be caught dead in or ties that will only hang in racks to feed moths. But it still does not cover two risks adequately: (1) that I may already own that piece of music - not a big problem, because one can exchange it in shops or with friends; (2) that the reason I don't have it in the first place, maybe, is that I did not want it or, worse, I detest it.
1. He took an absolutely marvellous singer of Sufi and Folk Music from Pakistan, Abida Parveen, and has turned her into a drama-queen-cum-qavvaali-singer who has slowly lost all the authenticity she had and is now a bundle of well-rehearsed but not too convincing histrionics. I hope she soon recovers from this while she is still in voice. [Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan did not survive a similar situation at the hands of the West.](Incidentally, a similar form of carelessness has also - very sadly - marred the extremely valuable collections that the Dawn Group has published. For example, a collection of Tapu Javeri's lovely portraits, screwed beyond excusability by careless, thoughtless printing and insane binding. Also, a delightful, albeit idiotically named, Book+4CD boxed set of Faiz - with typos. Worth getting, nonetheless! What surprises me is how stuff like this gets past His Highness ...)
2. He has produced good looking boxed sets of the Khusrau Festival CDs/Videos, with booklets that are very useful and attractive. Until you start to read them and discover that, even ignoring the instances where legibility has been sacrificed for design, or form has trounced function, they are (for no understandable reason - since they are neither cheap nor produced or published by the illiterate) full of typos and textual mistakes. Annoying. Inexcusable.
Ibrat Khan dies and goes to Heaven (well, she has sung songs of Love and Peace and Harmony instead of martial themes ... and stuff like that counts up there!). She goes to the GateKeeper and says "Is there any way I can meet my father?". "What's his name?", asks the chap. "Vilayat Khan", says Ibrat. "A not uncommon name. Many Vilayat Khans. You'll have to be more specific." ... "He was a famous musician", says Ibrat, helpfully. "Several of those, too ...", says the GateKeeper. "How can I find him, then?", asks Ibrat. "Oh, well, there are other links in the databases. For example the last words he spoke." "Fantastic!", says Ibrat,"He blessed me and made me promise that I'd do nothing through my performance that would bring disgrace to the Gharana or he'd turn in his grave." .... "Ohhhh ...", beams the GateKeeper, "you mean Whirling Vilayat!"
Some questions are technically (in terms of language rules) correct. But they cannot be answered, since they are either meaningless or there is NO WAY that anyone can really, really answer them.
(On the midnight of 06-06-06, actually) there was a knocking and scraping on the door. Looking through the peephole I found this strange being.
IPS News Today:
Hundreds of worshippers watched in horror as the workers, mostly Muslims, brought down the roof, pushed down the walls and smashed the deities that immigrant Indian workers had brought with them from South India to provide solace in a strange new land.Having witnessed the government-backed stupid and disgusting acts of the demolishing of Babri Mosque by Hindus in secular India and of the Bamiyaan statues by Muslims in Talibanized Afghanistan it comes as no surprise that progressive Malaysia is heading the same way with its recent temple-breaking. Nothing, it seems, will stem the tide of fanaticism.
Let's be fair to the zealots. Their actions bear a certain surface similarity to the actions of the Prophet (pbuh) when he smashed the idols in the Kaaba upon his victorious return to Mecca. Of course, the context of the Prophet's actions were utterly, categorically different. For one thing, he was the divinely inspired Messenger of Allah. Then there's the fact that he was cleaning out the greatest of all shrines to God, a sanctuary built according to Islamic tradition by Abraham himself.I am afraid I don't quite follow that line of reasoning.
Chief of the ISI during the PPP rule, the present Federal Minister for education, Lt Gen (R) Javed Ashraf Qazi, has said that the current curriculum is being revised and will now aim to bring uniformity in the education system, harmony in the society and meet emerging challenges in the field of science and technology. Hmmmmm. Don't hold your breath.
Punjab University English Department has, in the past, moved to scrap great works of objectionable literature (including Gulliver's Travels, for its sexual connotations).However, blogger and friend sabizak has informed me, and I totally rely upon her statement, that the story is untrue and the reports in the press were skewed or concocted. Her remarks are more reliable because she has personal knowledge of the incident. You should read her clarification in the Comments section.
Interesting factoid from the linked article above, just to whet your appetite and ensure you read it: A review of the dangerous stuff that was being taught was "triggered by complaints made about the syllabus by the wife of a retired army general. She criticised the inclusion of two poems, including one by WH Auden, which she said promoted [sic] Jews..."
"In many of the more relaxed civilizations on the Outer Eastern Rim of the Galaxy, the Hitchhiker's Guide has already supplanted the great Encyclopedia Galactica as the standard repository of all knowledge and wisdom, for though it has many omissions and contains much that is apocryphal, or at least wildly inaccurate, it scores over the older, more pedestrian work in two important respects.And those words are precisely what my advice is to you when you receive a Fwd:Fwd:Fwd: Virus Warning! There are very frequent Virus Warnings that are nothing more than a hoax. In fact these are more common than the virus threats themselves. The panic actions they cause (people shutting down networks for fear of the virus and the ensuing loss of productivity and/or trade, or individuals not checking mail and missing out on something really important) are often almost as bad as getting infected by the virus.
First, it is slightly cheaper; and secondly it has the words Don't Panic inscribed in large friendly letters on its cover."
Douglas Adams: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Worst Virus Ever!However, unlike my earlier advice on other hoaxes and urban legends and chain letters, I would certainly not want you to ignore these warnings entirely! After all, one of them could be true. So, do not be complacent but do not help spread panic. DO NOT FORWARD THESE WARNINGS WITHOUT CHECKING THINGS OUT! Just follow the steps steps below:
Though it exhibits all the signs of a hoax, this warning is legitimate and may foretell the end of the Internet as we know it!
Subject: VIRUS WARNING
There's a new virus going around. It's extremely Disastrous and has been confirmed by Microsoft and Bundu Khan to be the worst ever. AOL and Okra's IT Department say there is no cure. If you see a message with the subject line "George W Bush is the Anti-Christ", delete it right away. It will destroy all your data and cause your computer to disable your bluetooth phone.
I would rather get a banana stuck in my ear than get infected with this virus. Please send this to all the paranoid people you know.
I hate to say it, but this chain makes perfect sense. I have checked it out with all my usual sources and we are all astounded at how legitimate it appears to be. To be honest, it has me downright frightened. I think I will sell my computer and move to a cave in Isloo just to be safe. Whatever you do, do not Break this Chain!