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The week in re(ar)view

Candle lit dinners on the rise

If only it meant romance was in the air, people would be much happier. With summer already roasting our brains, electricity outages are putting candles on the list of essential goods that we cannot have enough of.

Last week, two units of Ashuganj Power Station were shut down after a fiery explosion burned four people of the station. We not only suffer from lack of power stations, but now we are shutting down what we can't afford to lose. We would light up the darkness by burning timber but we already cut down all the trees.

A cracking tale of corruption
There is a saying that nothing lasts forever. That's probably why we never build anything to last in the first place. We have taken that philosophy a bit too far thought. This time around a structure started breaking down before we finished building it.

This is quite likely a record. City Centre, the tallest commercial tower-cum-car parking in the country at 37 storeys, developed cracks in a wall while still under construction.

An investigation by task forces into the tender process of the project revealed huge corruption benefiting Obaidul Karim while incurring a loss of at least Tk 50 crore to DCC.

The city mayor said companies having offices in the building have been asked to continue business as usual since “doing so does not involve any risk”. Ah yes, but what happens if someone sneezes a little too loud? We shudder at the consequences.

Bangladesh goes to Hollywood
Bangladesh due to its geographic location has a high risk of experiencing earthquakes. But the country does not have the capacity to combat such natural calamity. Unplanned urbanisation, over population, poorly constructed structures, lack of coordination between institutions concerned, inadequacy of recovery tools and lack of awareness are putting the nation at high risk. During the last 150 years seven major earthquakes took place in the country and two of them had their epicentres in Bangladesh.

An easy solution would be to sell off the country to Hollywood. They can use it as a backdrop for the current trend of disaster movies. They can drop buildings, flood roadways, get storms and blow up gas fields.

What to do with the people? Oh, they can be the nameless extras that scream loudly while falling, burning, melting, flattening and generally dying a horrible death.

Silent killer
Dismissing the claim by various quarters that a 'silent famine' is stalking through the country, Finance Adviser Dr Mirza Azizul Islam said the price of rice will come down after the harvest of Boro paddy.

“There is no famine in the country. The prices of essentials have gone up following the price-hike on the international market,” he said.

About the next budget, he said health, education and human resources development will get priority in the new budget. But shouldn't that be the priority always? Apparently, the last time around, health, education and development of the ministers was top priority.

Journey to the centre of the earth
Groundwater level drops 3 metres a year with fears that the surface may collapse as aquifers (these hold water) are not recharged adequately

In 1996 the groundwater table was only 26.6 metres bellow the surface. But it went 61.18 metres below in 2007.

Surface water cannot be used due to pollution so we go for deep tube wells. That sucks out too much water from below our feet. This gives the term “walking on water” a whole new meaning.

With Dhaka being the fifth largest city in the world with a population of over 12 million, there seems to be no way out.

By Gokhra and Mood Dude

English bloopers

Every year, English teachers from across the USA can submit their collections of actual analogies and metaphors found in high school essays in order to have them published and sent out for the amusement of other teachers across the country. Well, it came all the way over here so check them out:

He spoke with the kind of wisdom that can only come from experience, like a guy who goes blind because he looked at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now goes around the country speaking at high schools about the dangers of looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it.

She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like the sound a dog makes just before it throws up.

Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.

He was as tall as a six-foot, three-inch tree.

The revelation that his marriage of 30 years had disintegrated because of his wife's infidelity came as a rude shock, like a surcharge at a formerly surcharge-free ATM

The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn't.

Her hair glistened in the rain like a nose hair after a sneeze.

Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m. traveling west at 55 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. traveling east at a speed of 35 mph.

John and Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.

Even in his last years, Granddad had a mind like a steel trap, only one that had been left out so long, it had rusted shut.

The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while.

He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck, either, but a real duck that was actually lame, maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.

Laff Lines

Understanding women

A man was sitting alone in his office one night when a genie popped up out of his ashtray.
"And what will your third wish be?"
The man looked at the genie and said, "Huh? How can I be getting a third wish when I haven't had a first or second wish yet?"
"You have had two wishes already," the genie said, "but your second wish was for me to put everything back the way it was before you made your first wish. Thus, you remember nothing,
because everything is the way it was before you made any wishes. You now have one wish left."
"Okay," said the man, "I don't believe this, but what the heck. I've always wanted to understand women. I'd love to know what's going on inside their heads."
"Funny," said the genie as it granted his wish and disappeared forever, "That was your first wish, too!”

Leaving town
Apparently I tend to brag too much about my home state of Ohio. One day I told a long-suffering friend, "You know, the first man in powered flight was from Ohio. The first man to orbit the earth was from Ohio. And the first man on the moon was from Ohio."
"Sounds like a lot of people are trying to get out of Ohio," he observed.

Inside out

Greeting cards can be sweet, mushy and sometimes quite clever even. But these are things we bet you won't see on card store shelf any time soon.

OUTSIDE: As the days go by, I think of how lucky I am...
INSIDE: That you're not here to ruin it for me.
OUTSIDE: I've always wanted to have someone to hold, someone to love.
INSIDE: After having met you, I've changed my mind.
OUTSIDE: I must admit, you brought religion into my life.
INSIDE: I never believed in hell 'til I met you.
OUTSIDE: Looking back over the years that we've been together, I can't help but wonder...
INSIDE: What the heck was I thinking?
OUTSIDE: When we were together, you always said you'd die for me.
INSIDE: Now that we've broken up, I think it's time you kept your promise. _
OUTSIDE: I'm so miserable without you...
INSIDE: It's almost like you're here.
OUTSIDE: If you ever need a friend...
INSIDE: Buy a dog.

Broken dance by the sea

The meadows of tiled water
Flickering to your basking feet,
Supple soaked mud attending to your graces
As you dance by the nifty shore
Gifting you with tinted breeze.
Your feet painting kindly on water
The leaves rustling to your dazed beat,
While your anklet remains numb, drowned,
Silent on your lissome feet.
Sudden squalls gallop through the kashphuls by the shore
Like a lion's brazen mane
striding against the wind,
Your silken black hair bemused by this autumn sonata
As waves strengthen with the wind
Unwillingly rush to your dancing feet;
Yet your dance remains mesmerized
Enchanted by its own valor,
and the hasty waves bulges you not a bit.
Your baffled hair remains dry,
but your carefully long drawn
out kajol
As black water crawling from your eyes
Draws charcoal marks
Dripping onto the lucent motherly sea.
Your feet finally tire; you fall to your knees
The mirror now flowing silently and gracefully;
You glide your hair back, resting them behind your ears
and walk away,
Your feet barren with ease.

By Adnan M. S. Fakir


Semper Augustus

I made you Dear, let's not deny;
A tulip of white crepe lined by my blood
Though affection, darling
Is forgotten like I have been -
Once my prized flower, now extinct
It hurts to watch
This cracked tableau of my decay
(Hush now, you're all scrawled out)
So I scatter these shards of glass in madness
But they cut me back, and I'm forced to assemble
You, to your broken glory
Dearest, I'd like to think that
every recollection
Is an entendre or innuendo
To digging out what we've forsaken;
But more so, the lines at the corners of your lips
Are the strokes I'd cut and now pull out
Into the ghost of this late goodbye

Note: The rare Semper Augustus was a beautiful white and maroon Dutch tulip. Historically more expensive than precious metals and stones, it has since become extinct.
By Alaka Halder

Wacky Definitions

ADULT: A person who has stopped growing at both ends and is now growing in the middle.
BEAUTY PARLOR: A place where women curl up and dye.
CANNIBAL: Someone who is fed up with people
CHICKENS:The only animals you eat before they are born
and after they are dead.
COMMITTEE:A body that keeps minutes and wastes hours
DUST:Mud with the juice squeezed out.
EGOTIST:Someone who is usually me-deep in conversation.
INFLATION: Cutting money in half without damaging the paper
MOSQUITO: An insect that makes you like flies better.
RAISIN: Grape with a sunburn
SECRET: Something you tell to one person at a time.

Compiled by Windblown





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