me tarzan, you jane

22Feb09

i don’t correct typos. this is an ego issue. and one of faith. what i mean to say is that checking for errors is the work of a lesser man than the iceman and, frankly, i just don’t believe in automated spellcheckers. plus that’s the only thing that keeps my works of art from being perfect and i know how jealous you all are of my achievements.

but – as usual – my first paragraph has nothing to do with the rest of the post. like the great grey giant who lived in the great grey castle on the great grey cliff over the great grey sea. nopes. this post is about confessions. yes i know that theoretically speaking you can see the tag but most of my readers are too myopic or distracted to notice these things so i had to put in print. also there is the fact that i have not yet framed the next sentence.

i should’ve been a spy. not just because i’m the dashing, debonair, bond type hunk but also because much as i pretend otherwise – especially when met in person – i’m addicted to profiling. those of you who have met me and have lame enough existences to remember our first meeting may have noticed my version of the karachi checkout head-feet-head searchlight glance. this, contrary to popular belief, is not a result of my astigmatism. it’s just a 15 year old habit of forming initial characterizations by choice of footwear. the eyes hover momentarily around the waist as well to take in the belt (if applicable) and finally refocus on the face to take in eyewear, headgear, jewelry, makeup, hairstyles and any other reference points available. by this time, 2.8 seconds into having made your acquaintance, the offices of hussain & co., professional profilers, have prepared a file detailing assumptions of ethnic origin, age, education (quality not quantity), family background, individual taste and estimated annual income. in the next phase, which lasts around a minute, data gathering is done through analysis of voice patterns and frequency of eyeball movement. this study corroborates or negates assumptions of ethnic origin and education and provides further insight into confidence levels, forcefulness of personality and personal integrity. in phase three we carry out a detailed study of body language including the way shoulders move when you walk, which hand you use to pull out your chair, which way you tilt your head, how you cross your legs and whether or not you fidget in any way. in stage four the analyst is given more leeway to exercise independent judgement in choosing reference points for analysis. and so on so forth. by the time an hour has passed we have a dossier on you that is thicker than the one interpol has on an old chap named osama something and its probably way more incriminating.

the problem with this is that other people do it too. and one knows this. so its virtually impossible to not be analysing oneself at the same time to try to get a glimpse of the file marked top secret in your head.

and this is where i always come short. consider. footwear: (sneakers, sandals or if you’re lucky, loafers = overly casual, laid back, potential to get too familiar too soon). thick glasses (granny’s favorite nerd – or gaming addict, whichever is worse), most probably sporting an unmaintained five o’clock shadow (slob), unkempt hair (slobbier) cut by the same stylist that cut waheed murad’s hair in the sixties  (old fashioned/conservative/liable to slap a coffee table announcing “maa, mein b.a. pass ho gaya“)… and so on so forth.

the problem is that this assessment is wrong on so many different levels. about the only thing correct in it is the fact that i am liable to claim success in b.a. exams while slapping coffee tables, largely due to the facts that i don’t believe in coffee and am enough of an artistic bachelor to be called a bachelor of the arts.

and this shatters my belief in the infallibility of the hussain profiling matrix. which means that the frowning ape in flannel shirts and timberland boots i keep running into on the corniche could possibly be a better man than the axe murderer i take him for. or that the  filipino waiter at my barber’s place who struts in his high heeled shoes in a manner reminiscent of 98,437 lebanese chicks that i can name (they’re all called either reem, oula, bana or haifa) and several that i can’t, is possibly not a snotty faggot. or that zardari is not, in fact, a donkey.

you see the dilemma.

so, like, i need another hobby. something i’m better at.

lebanese chicks, maybe.

speaking of which, zeenat has resurfaced. only she’s moroccan now – in the interests of realisticness (i’m about as likely to be a lebanese chick magnet as i am likely to be a, well, pakistani chick magnet) – and has achieved rebirth over a translation request. to cut a long story short, i asked for a translation of an endearment i overheard during my latest eavesdropping escapade and somehow it got attributed to my non-existent girlfriend who over the course of the conversation acquired moroccan nationality, french education and a liberal arts degree from the sorbonne, not to mention the  rather unimaginative name of leila, which is no small achievement considering it took about two and a half minutes for that rich history to come out. what’s funnier is that arab dudes who know me actually believe the story and have been dispensing advice on how to handle these “modern moroccan girls” which include offers for background checks and telling me to insist that she master the jordanian dialect as that is the only one i will ever pick up. i have also been familiarised with the golden rule that i should never date a moroccan girl who works for the airline industry as apparently, if you’re a girl, moroccan and work for emirates, it goes without saying that your morals are as loose as a fishwife’s tongue.

the things you learn in arabistan.

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11 Responses to “me tarzan, you jane”

  1. So, you are epic fail at profiling because when you look at the Iceman in the mirror, you see: overly casual, laid back, potential to get too familiar too soon, granny’s favorite nerd – or gaming addict, slob, old fashioned/conservative and liable to slap a coffee table announcing “maa, mein b.a. pass ho gaya.“

    In response I tell you this story:

    All my life I avoided cameras and if asked why, I would always moan that I was just so very unphotogenic. That ended the day my younger brother said: Uh, you may just be uglier than you realize. Oh.

  2. 2 skzworldofdreams

    not just because i’m the dashing, debonair, bond type hunk….hahahahahahahahahahahahahah
    ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaahahahahaaaha
    hahahahaha!!! DEFINATELY not coz of that. 😛

  3. And I thought I was the one with Imaginary boyfriends :p but that was high school boy!

    You know, since we are on the topic of profiling, let me give you an insight into my unusually thick dossier on Abbas Hussain aka popular-seventies-male-escort. :p *i know i know… you wish!*

    The Abbas I know, knows that his hair style doesnt exactly top the people magazine lists – or E Entertainment for tht matter – but keeps it anyway – that means he is either too cheap to go to a better stylist, or too busy.

    OR there is a third much more Freudian sounding possibility – That infact, he likes being the rebel without a cause. He wants that hair style cuz that hair style is him. The him he never wants us, nor himself to forget.

    Howz that for profiling 😛

  4. *by the way the post was written so well! Its literally a work of art :P*

  5. 5 skzworldofdreams

    Abstract art? 😉 😀

  6. indeed – very interesting

  7. 7 Gaia

    lol… very crisp and witty 🙂

    Reem, Oula, Bana or Haifa… so with you on that! Iraqis are pretty nice if you’re in search of a new hobby 😛

  8. 8 silentmantra

    ever profiled egyptian chicks?? 😛
    and btw….did i mention before that u soooo much resembled one of those indian idol season 4 top 12? i think he’s name was prosanjeet – and he sang well – and he was also a clown in the group 🙂 and all that is a compliment btw

  9. 9 UTP

    I was here… 😛

  10. 10 Laura

    I almost took you for a master “thin slicer”–that is till I read the entire post and realized the unfortunate truth: non-the-less it was a joy read.

  11. @ laura: pardon the ignorance, but precisely what is a thin slicer? :S


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