praka… prama… pra-methyl-chloro-butile-oxy-benzidene


being your average uncouth karachiite, my only experience of islamabad has been a couple of stopovers on the way to murree. and being your average uncouth karachiite, i’ve kind of grown up with the perception that isloo is the city is where the ladies walk in low riders on the streets and nobody glances around to check their rears and foreigners are more local than the locals themselves and the strangest thing you might see is a guy wearing a shalwar kameez on a day that is not friday. exaggeration, karachi style, admittedly – but when your limited experience only includes a dinner at that papa something or the other pizza place – it kind of makes sense.

however, these mental images undergo major transformations when you see the antics of a bunch of isloo-ites at a conference that is destined to be drab and boring – an accountants’ convention. three guys flocked around the presenter from sri lanka and started talking to him, pretending that they, in the words of stevenson, “had no english”. it kind of culminated with them writing some choice punjabi curses, including one which involved a charpaee, osama bin laden, the world trade center and female family members of the addressee – very creative mind you – in roman urdu and asking him to read it. meanwhile another bunch of jerks surrounded the nepali delegate and started telling her how they would love to take her to hyderabad and buy her glass bangles and the like. this is not to mention the idiots who were passing comments like “aye haye aminul!” and “oye hoye habibul!” behind the ladies from bangladesh.

small wonder then that sheikh rasheed manages to get elected from a a nearby constituency.

anyways the organizers managed to control things before they got out of hand and for the duration of the lunch break i was detailed to an unobtrusive patrol of prakriti and pramitha. and it is way harder to pronounce these names than it is to type them, believe me. don’t even get me started on the surnames. its even harder to gush about how great their presentations were when you don’t even know what they were about as you spent the time listening to sean paul on your ipod. the hardest thing, however, is deciphering what the two are trying to say when they have such unbelievably different accents. apparently, according to the srilankan delegates, who claim they know a bunch of abbases back home, i mispronounce my name. its supposed to be ab-bas. not the free flowing abbas that i use. now i’ve heard it all.

the good thing about it was that for me the bubble of indian beauty has definitely burst. paki babes rules the world, second only to iranis and the selected olive-skinned brunette chicks from israel.

however, i have to admit, that if managed properly a woman cannot look more graceful than she can in a saree. and that definitely applies to a certain woman who didn’t even make it to the two day convention. the one who hardly ever responds to my messages any more. the one i lost in an attempt to find. life is beginning to feel wierdly distant. like i’m watching from somewhere far away. like a movie where the hero sets out in search of the babe who doesn’t exist and you know it but still watch, hoping for a twist. maybe its just the flu and the associated paracetamol hangover. or maybe its the restless depression that comes when a not-so-subtle rejection is followed by an obvious distancing exercise. you can’t do anything but sigh and curse yourself. when someone asks you why you’re off colour you can blame it on the irish defeat and the tragic end of inzamam’s career. its effective.

but you’re left wondering if you’re the only one who regrets the end of a relationship. of shared laughter and confidences and being able to look into eyes and knowing what’s going on behind them.

“why?”, she said. why indeed?


25 Responses to “praka… prama… pra-methyl-chloro-butile-oxy-benzidene”

  1. 1 Saadat

    Your description of Isloo-ites just made my day. I, however, do wear shalwar kameez on days other than Friday. Not sure about what to do if I ever came across a Sri Lankan presenter.

    And maybe that certain woman does miss all that. Defence mechanisms do this to people.

    By the way, did I tell you that I love how your words just flow from one topic to another?

  2. isloo changes ur perception everytime u go there :S

    but for us.. there is nothing better than karachi 😀

    the ending sucks man! if only questions were forgotten, and the past restored, things would’ve been so easy…

  3. 🙂 islamabad

    but Karachi is best…. there is no enertgy in life… no nothing…

  4. @ saadat: coming from someone who writes like you, thats high praise 🙂 . thanks!

    @ manolo: hazaron khwahishein aisee…

    @ essjee: karachi rocks, girl! it most definitely does. 🙂

  5. Your title is hilarious.

    I’m afraid I lack your nuanced insight into various Pakistani cities, but this merits an A+. Fascinating, really.

  6. ohhhh… there’s nothing more wonderful than
    “shared laughter and confidences and being able to look into eyes and knowing what’s going on behind them”
    and being able to finish each others sentences, to hear them say things you were about to say urself..
    many people experience it but for a lucky few it lasts forever… its most amazing when it does:)
    ask the happily married ppl !!!

  7. ROFLOL!
    reading your post made my day. or night (since im reading it in bed, and having had a good laugh, im sure ill get a good night’s sleep)
    but umm… well written.
    and yes, i completely agree with you, desi chicks rox das haus (im one myself)…
    but umm you failed to mention Moroccan and Lebanese beauties. where do they come on the list? because from what my dude friends tell me, the list is like this:

  8. @ sabrina: thanks. and the title just echoes my despair at being unable to spell or pronounce whatever it was the poor people were called. 🙂

    @ mahwash: sooooo…. tell me. 🙂

    @ hemlock: desi wouldn’t figure so low on your list if you restricted “desi” to paki babes. and lebanese wouldn’t feature so high if you had seen my arabic teacher when i was a kid in abu dhabi. moroccans are too arab, french too european. the persian speaking belt is probably directly under heaven… 🙂

  9. 9 No One

    ‘but you’re left wondering if you’re the only one who regrets the end of a relationship.’—> yeah…I guess I wonder about that too…I guess if your the only one whose always trying to make it work…and the other person is always about…letting go…then yeah…you do wonder if they have any regrets or would ever have any regrets….interesting to note that the post started off about isb…funny description indeed…and it ended with a sad note…going through a rough time I guess??…well …you will get through it :)…laters.

  10. ROFLOL @ persian belt being under heaven. dude, i would disagree with you tehre, unless heaven pertained singularly to women… because iranian men are SO NOT hot. except the president.
    i wish it was that easy to classify dudes though… i wouldve begun with israelis, moved on to greeks, and then desis, i suppose… magar greeks are too indian, italians too pakistani, desis too weird and goras are outta the question.
    being a chick is SO hard. hmmm. i love karzai though. he’s afghan… houston, do we have touchdown?

  11. 11 mE

    there is an interesting thingy , this box here i telling mE to type here 😀

    So like, isloo is great when you know the right company to be in, Karachi i feel too chaotic. Lahore is good.

    and lets not confuse arabic with Labnese, nor should we consider morrocons too arab, they dont even speak the same arabic,

    and yes hemlock, since abbas here is a guy so i to believe he is talking about iranian girls ( i hope :P)

    and a loss of connection is bidirectional always…

  12. 12 PsycheD

    “ur left wondering if you’re the only one who regrets the end of a relationshop” —-> we shall never know then huh!

    and i also asked why….still havent gotten any concrete answer….and ppl tell me im being bitchy and explecit of late.

    khair….u’l get over it dude…all lessons of life i guess. hum bhi to hai uss mordh par! (did i get my urdu right there?)

  13. Okay maybe the previous relationship was a dummy stint. That was supposed to teach you the rules. Except there are no rules. But Scrubs is a balm, and works like charm. All the dysfunctional relationship walas Zack Braff- drool-

  14. 14 aggressive

    oh..u were at that conference/convention too? one of my close friends was there..representing icap..and he said the exact same thing abt indian beauty being overrated and Paki babes being the best (atleast better than em) haha :p

  15. So…how r u going to pronounce ur name now Ab-bas? 😛

  16. @ no one: i sure hope so.

    @ hemlock: ahmedinejad? karzai? i see someone’s got something for asian presidents… 😛

    @ mE: most definitely. i seldom talk about anything else.

    @ psyched: i’d y give you a 4 on 10. 🙂

    @ henna: the only tv show i follow is wwe smackdown. when you say “dysfunctional” in that context you’re talking abount an ugle 300 pound 6’10” giant who’s bent upon killing you. you were drooling? i mean saying?

    @ agressive: i’m a man of popular tastes 🙂

    @ fariha: i’d sooner call myself saleem. 🙂 its still very much abbas.

  17. small wonder then that sheikh rasheed manages to get elected from a a nearby constituency.


  18. now that you mention it, our banker isnt too bad either… and we have lots in common 😀

  19. you are seriously wierd 🙂 .

    in common with whom? el prime ministerio or yours truly?

  20. an auditors’ convention? Sounds more like a witchs’ convention. God those guys were really mean to the bangladishi women……i tell my mom that it’s bcz of this high and mighty attitude of ours that we were kicked out of bangladesh.

  21. 21 PsycheD

    damn!!! only 4 ?? :S
    n i was hoping it was safe to mouth punjabi!

  22. what? what is isloo? i’m from karachi and i know not of these places… also, i have no friends who upon my visit to the home land acquaint me of these wonders…

  23. isloo is what islamabadis lovingly and the rest of pakistan mockingly call islamabad, our venerable capital city.

    the best thing about the place is that its a safe distance from karachi 😉

  24. i think bill solis is a spammer. lol.

  25. i see someone’s been reading my archives…

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