the law of the excluded middle


lets face it. i was once a pseudointellectual type.

at one point in time it was considered cool to have an air of iconoclastic existentialist angst about oneself, a perpetually wrinkled brow and a tendency to speak about the world with an affected air of superiority. to complete the image you had to listen to european classical music, watch spanish movies without english subtitles and know how to correctly pronounce the names of karl jung and soren kierkegaard. 

i survived for about a week and a half and than i gave it up – largely because it turned out that the girl didn’t look very good close up (she bleached where she should’ve electrolysed) and had a himesh reshammiya type of nasal voice to boot – but also because the rainbow centre guys gave me wierd looks every time i showed up for another boring spanish movie. however, the brief sojourn introduced me to the beautifully named law of excluded middle, which, like everything philiosophical, is just a grand way of saying there is no gray area (you are either an idiot or you are not an idiot – you cannot be anything in between – hence, and this is my own addition, you are an idiot).

in recent years the law has acquired a new meaning. it means that the middle area has to be excluded from decision making. you do not, actually cannot,  indulge its whimsies which often border on the absolutely unreasonable – like mandi followed by chocolate cake. or prawn biryani and fried pomphret. or paaya until you drop. you get the picture. as wodehouse said, the lunches of several years have caused my chest to slip to the mezzanine floor. so i’m more or less off cake these days. however, this is not what keeps me away from birthday parties. especially kids’ birthday parties.

i am not normally a party animal. sure, i’ll come for the poondi (and the shrimp) if you invite me and eighteen etihad stewardesses on your yacht for the weekend but i probably won’t regale them with my rendition of the macarena. i will not be your first choice for emcee-ing at your sister’s mehndi. the last couple you will run into at the 400 at fairmont on a thursday night is the iceman and his girlfriend, iman ali. and yet i would more willingly be in that position than in that of ronald mcdonald with eighteen unruly kids pulling his hair and nose in eighteen different directions at a birthday party where the cumulative age of those eighteen is probably less than eighteen. but the angel in charge of my destiny has a sense of humour which is more liaquat soldier than anwar maqsood. and so it is that i have been conned, blackmailed and coaxed into attending parties for more people under the age of two (offspring of relatives and friends who, alarmingly, are all my age) this summer than i have attended for myself in nearly 28 years of existence.

lewis carrol – now there was a philosopher! – has written the book on good parenting. and he’s done it in four lines. if more parents followed this creed there would be fewer problems in modern society and, probably, there would be no sheikh rasheed at all. he says,

speak roughly to your little boy,
and beat him when he sneezes.
he only does it to annoy,
because he knows it teases.

this is pure genius. if only the unfortunate mother of the little twerp who spilt his mirinda on my jeans this weekend had the common sense to subscribe to this practice, she would not have had to watch the horrible spectacle of an almost black man turning slowly red with anger and giving her son a glare that would have impressed medusa herself. and she would not have had to watch history repeat itself with more urgency than might be considered proper when the idiot managed to drop a second glass on my foot four minutes later despite having been stationed at a table half way across the room. however, modern mothering is all about raising pansies and the creed en vogue these days is that rods are more important than children and should be spared, any potential risk of spoilage among offspring notwithstanding. and modern fathering, apparently, is about slapping me on my back with a wide grin on your face, saying “ah well, kids will be kids”. in more reckless, carefree days i would have punished the child suitably – probably tying his shoelaces together or accidentally bumping his head into the cake – but a civil servant has to show more restraint and bearing in these trying times or the whole fabric of society will collapse.

i did, however, manage to slide a plate of half eaten ice cream cake on to a chair a second before his father sat on it. accidentally of course. revenge is mine, says the lord, magar waseela to insaan hee bantay hein.

aur banao defective maal. uloo ke pathey.


9 Responses to “the law of the excluded middle”

  1. tell you man, kids belong best in glass cages in zoos.

  2. 2 Mystic

    i’m assuming the ice cream cake wasn’t all that good for you to use it for that purpose! 😛

    or u were truly really pissed off..

  3. hahahah totally dig your attitude bro, dont hate the player, hate the dumbasses that mated to produce him! 😛

    and the spanish movies have some supremely hot spanish women in them! (which is not very surprising unless youre a parent to one of those kids youre destined to keep running into, or vice versa) 😀

  4. 4 Specs

    “modern mothering is all about raising pansies and the creed en vogue these days is that rods are more important than children and should be spared,”


    On a level it scares me. How all of us lot identify with the same stuff… Thinking we were better kids than these idiots. I think any time now we’ll start saying ‘humaray zamany mey tu’ … OMG I was 12 just a decade ago. I’m not that old. Noooooooo *puts hands on her ears*

    I’d never be a pseudo intellectual. The pseudo part is the only thing I can do. ‘Intellectual’ part of it escapes me.

  5. 5 skzworldofdreams

    O_o You did WHAT with the ice-cream cake? :O I don’t think it’s the kid that’s defective (if by defective maal you mean the kid 😀 ) I think it’s more defective practices in raising the child that’s the problem. Meaning…..when parents don’t act like parents and don’t discipline the kid (and noooo that does not include beating a child..that gets you nowhere in the end) , the kid is usually blamed, jabke whose raising the kid? To a sentence liek “Kids will be kids” I would usually go “Yep! That’s true. Now I’m just wondering when you’ll be a parent.’ Well I’d think it anyway. 😛 One of course needs to take into account the fact that parenting is easier said than done. And none of us …moms and dads… are perfect. And we make mistakes. It’s a day to day trial and error job. the idea is to not make the same error repeatedly.

    Oops! Sorry for taking all this space. :/

  6. @ hemlock: yes. i think we have a viable business idea in that one. tell owl to find some investors in the us of a and we can start the project here in arabistan.

    @ mystic: you got that right. never was a fan of strawberries any way.

    @ farooqk: how is the cast of the spanish movies (and i’ll grant you that the women were the saving grace) related to fathering or not fathering an idiot? i am, how you say, confused, senor.

    @ specs: just a decade ago? 🙂 you’re old, woman. 😛

    @ sk: well maybe the kid wasn’t really the antichrist. but i will ensure the caking of any idiot whose child will insist on mirindaing me.

    • 7 Specs

      Please don’t make me cry. My kids will throw me in a retirement home if I bawl too much.

  7. as you all know pakistani cricket team is very great but world cup 2011 live watch Cricket Match in Internet

  1. 1 medusa story

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