Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 1, Issue 12, Tuesday August 19, 2003







Ah these... Ads!

"Oo la la la la Oolei O!! Oolalalala ei o!!" entered my boss humming the tune of the Kingfisher Ad. We were all laughs and giggles. One of my colleagues started to sing the melodious tune of the Bacardi Blast, just to let him know that we heard him, support him and are with him. We started to converse about the different advertisements we get to see nowadays. From drinks our discussion drifted on to food. The advertisements that directly target our tummy. Like the commercials of McDonalds, Mmmmmmm! Are they not absolutely mouth watering? It makes you wish that you could take the pleasure of all the Mc dishes in our country as well.

With the continuation of our conversation we exchanged our views and opinions on the commercials of today. Some opined that we are forced to see them in between our favourite serials and thrilling matches. A cricket fan was quite disgusted with the commercial breaks as he missed the first ball of almost all the overs because of them. Another one said she knew all the ads by heart especially when any tournament was going on.

Well, the topic was over and we went back to our work. But it left me pondering, do TV commercials really influence us and I started to think about the commercials we get to witness in our channels.

What is an advertisement? In literal terms, it means turning the attention of the target group towards oneself. Advertisements are meant to convince the consumers to buy the products. It is important to know the psychology of the consumers to increase the sales. Now I was thinking even harder. Majority of the commercials made in our country fail to fulfil even one of the points just mentioned. With all due respect to the ad makers of our country I have to admit that most of the ads they make are to put it simply PATHETIC! While surfing channels the other day, I happened to see some advertisements, which lacked decency and standard. Some were even quite hilarious!

My aim is not to rebuke the ads made in our country but to know the reason as to why they are in such an appalling state. I mean a lot of money and labour is being spent in making these , right? I also fail to understand the motive behind the presence of a girl in each and every ad, be it moisturizing cream, hair tonic, tooth paste, tea, cigarettes, or even men's after shave. I can live with the fact when there is a girl in the moisturizing cream advertisement but how on earth can I accept the concept of a girl going 'ga ga' over men with cigarettes in their hands or a girl drooling over a clean shaved man. Spare me will you! The attraction of the ad should be the product not the girl. And the sound system of the - I mean the thunderous voices informing you about the reduction in prices of products or the gift items they are offering are almost deafening. I call them the ear drum vibrators!

Where has all those Bengali creativeness and artistic power gone? We need innovations and imaginative ideas! Ad gurus wake up!

We Bangladeshis are a talented lot and I firmly believe we can improve ourselves a lot especially after seeing the charming ads with those cute jingles of RC Cola and Euro Cola.

By Syeda Shamin Mortada


Here are a few interesting yet helpful tips to change the way you look. These little tips will help when you are in a rush, and also save you from the little mistakes that we usually make regarding our clothing and make up kits.

Eye/lip pencil care
Before sharpening your eyeliner or lip pencil, place them in the freezer for 10 minutes. They will harden slightly and not break when sharpened.

Nail polish know-how
Is your nail polish from last season too thick? Chances are the polish has begun to thicken at the bottom of the bottle. Add a bit of nail polish thinner to the bottle to get the maximum use of your nail polish.

Foundation tester
When picking out a concealer or foundation, always test the color on the inside of your wrist. The skin there is the most unblemished and will give you a good idea of how it will look on your face.

Keep clothes fresh
Before you put your clothes away for the winter, insert a fabric softener sheet, lavender sachet to keep them smelling fresh for next season.

Sweater storage
Sweaters should be stored for the winter either laying flat or folded up in a closet. Always stack sweaters with the lighter ones on the top and the heavier ones on the bottom. This eliminates the sweaters losing their shape.

Sensible shopping
Before you buy an item of clothing, always apply this rule: Try to think of at least four things in your wardrobe that you will be able to match with the new purchase. This eliminates impulse buying and ensures that your wardrobe separates mix and match.

Hair styling fact
Hair sets best as it is cooling, not when it is heated up from blow-drying. Whether using hot rollers or a blow dryer, apply hair spray after hair has cooled to maximize the style.

Fix tired feet
Pamper your tired feet with a luxurious foot bath. Fill a basin with warm water and add a few drops of essential oils. Next place marbles or small stones (found at your local garden center) into the basin. Run your toes and soles of your feet over the marbles, and relax for 15 minutes.

Minute manicure
Need a fast fix for unpolished nails? File nails into a square shape, buff them to create a bit of shine and apply a clear coat of polish. Next rub in cuticle oil around the edges of the nail and moisturize your whole hand. It takes less than 15 minutes and will give your appearance a polished look.

Eyeliner hint
Women with deep-set eyes should use liquid liner instead of regular pencil eyeliner, to prevent smudging in the crease of the lid. Liquid liner does not smudge as easily.

Curl your lashes
Before curling your eyelashes; heat the curler with a hair dryer for a few seconds. Test to make sure it is not too hot, then apply to eyelashes. The heat will lock in the curl on extra long eyelashes.

By Wara Karim

A true taste of Asia

Tommy Miah

Lamb Biryani
Serves 4
1 kg mutton or lamb
2 cups basmati rice
1 tblspn of whole garam masala
2 cups yogurt
2 cups of sliced onions
5 tblspns of ghee or oil
2 green chillies
2 tblspns of ginger paste
2 tblspns of garlic paste
2 cups of chopped tomatoes
Salt to taste
1 tspn of turmeric powder
2 tblspns of coriander powder
1 tblspn of cumin powder
1 tspn of red chilli powder
2 tspns of garam masala powder
a generous pinch of saffron
½ cup of warm milk
1 two inch piece of ginger
½ cup of fresh coriander leaves
½ cup of fresh mint leaves
50 gms of butter

For garnishing
Fried sliced onions

Clean mutton or lamb and cut into one and half inch sized pieces. Pick, clean and wash rice. Soak rice in water. Chop green chillies. Peel ginger and cut into julienne (thin strips). Wash coriander and mint leaves and roughly chop them separately.

Soak saffron in warm milk and keep aside. Marinade meat pieces with yogurt, salt, turmeric powder and one tablespoon each of ginger and garlic pastes. Marinade for about four hours in a cool place.

Cook rice in salted boiling water along with whole garam masala till rice is almost cooked. Strain and keep the rice warm.

Heat ghee or oil in a thick-bottomed pan or pressure cooker. Add sliced onion and chopped green chillies. Cook till onion is light golden brown. Make sure to stir continuously.

Add remaining ginger and garlic pastes and mix well. Add marinated meat and cook on high flame for seven to eight minutes. Now, add coriander powder, cumin powder and red chilli powder. Mix thoroughly.

Stir in three cups of water, bring it to a boil, reduce heat and cook covered till meat pieces are almost cooked. Add chopped tomatoes, salt, one teaspoon garam masala powder and chopped fresh coriander leaves. Cook for fifteen minutes on medium heat, stirring occasionally.

In case you are cooking meat in the pressure cooker, add chopped tomatoes, salt, garam masala powder, two cups of water and chopped fresh coriander leaves after adding dry spices. Pressure cook till meat pieces are almost cooked. It normally takes two or three whistles to cook the meat.

Ensure that the cooked meat does not have too runny a gravy. If that is the case, cook on high flame to reduce water content.

Arrange half the quantity of cooked meat in an oven proof dish and spread half the quantity of cooked rice on top of the meat. Sprinkle a little garam masala powder, half amount each of ginger julienne, saffron dissolved in warm milk and mint leaves. Dot the rice with half the quantity of butter. Place a layer of remaining meat on top of the rice, followed by cooked rice and repeat the earlier process with the remaining quantities of ginger julienne, saffron milk, garm masala powder, mint leaves and butter.

Cover it with aluminium foil and cook in a pre-heated oven for fifteen to twenty minutes.

Hanging Out

Topkapi Restaurant

With the scarcity of finding a place to hang out in the city, Topkapi can definitely be a nice place to visit during afternoons. Situated in Gulshan II, just beside Wonderland, this restaurant is famous for its exclusive Turkish delights. With a laudable interior and beautiful atmosphere, Topkapi definitely fulfils the requirements of a great place for an adda.

The main attraction for a lot of guests during the afternoons is Sheesha or more popularly known as the Hookkah.

The Sheesha, which is available in different flavours can be enjoyed at a special room assigned for it, in the first floor. One can order side dishes and drinks and the restaurant has quite a good menu to choose from. The first floor in Topkapi is definitely the most happening place in the building, with the tables usually never being vacant. The only drawback is that the price of a sheesha is fairly high with each costing Tk.200 and further refills costing Tk.150. The best way to enjoy the place is visiting in a group, and really letting all the sorrows of the day out, or the typical Bangladeshi adda. The service is fairly good but can be slow at times. However this time can be enjoyable if one is in a group, but if you are just spending time alone it may be agonising.

Sitting in cosy chairs, sipping on the sheesha and chatting away in a group is definitely a pleasant way to spend weekends. The sheesha is not as harmful as cigarettes- the smoke is filtered with the water and it is said that even non-smokers try them out.

The sheesha section is open from 6:30p.m onwards and one can also visit the restaurant during lunch hours for a business meeting or just an informal lunch. Topkapi serves buffet lunches for all the days of the week apart from Fridays. The buffet costs Tk.250 per head. However, sheesha is not available during lunch hours.

Topkapi may seem to be just a restaurant but it also can be a great place to catch up with friends and relatives, and serves as a great place for an adda. So if you don't have plans in the near future, Topkapi could be the best place to visit during the afternoons.

By Mishel Ali Khan



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