Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home


Welcome to Our World
The meaning of love in Dhaka

This guy I know, Salman, just breaks up with his girlfriend and meets a new girl online a few days later. The girl, Adeeba, and he chat all night long and decide that they just have to meet. Ok, so they fix up a date the very next day. He picks her up, they go out and have ice-cream and by the end of the evening they have made-out and everything. A week later, Salman tells me that he is in love. Don't ask me what happened after that, use your powers of deduction!

Now my question is, if there had'nt been any net, what exactly would he have done? Would he have gone back to his old girlfriend(God knows how they met!) and patch things up? Or would he have found someone else to date with the help of other sources? It doesnt take a person much intelligence to see what is really happening these days in our city. The dating scene has reached its peek...because it cant possibly get any worse! People meet and with a span of less than 24 hours and they officially declare that they are a couple. But its just not about fast hook ups. Its about the rate at which relationships accelerate and then end suddenly. Where does the so called "love" go?

Stuff like this happening around gets me to think, what do we teenagers of today consider the meaning of the word "love" or "relationship" as? Is it about a guy throwing his money around on his girl or is it about your boyfriend being in some really popular band? During my early teens, I imagined that this awefully cute guy would come into my life, walk me to my classes, listen to my problems and love me in my baggy-jeans, without any make-up. But I gradually woke up and so did all the other girls. The same goes for guys too. Girls would'nt fall for guys who didnt have a nice accent or a cool gelled up hair-do.

Ok, so a question may arise: Didn't people go out during our parents' time? Well, of course they did! But back then, things were done in a more subtle and decent way. There were love letters, exchanging of roses and holding hands was the farthest thing couples would do in public. But now? Oh, holding hands is what brothers and sisters do(not really), couples do "other" stuff infront of people. If you dont get my drift, go take a trip to all those lounges and cafe's. You really think they are there to serve food and refershments? What a joke!

Look, I'm not here to say that all the relationships of today's Dhaka city are complete crap and fake. Of course there are more than a few happy couples where both the guy and the girl really do love each other. But what about the rest? I'm not asking for a change, I just want everyone to think, think about what they are doing with their lives...and where it might lead them.

By Nayeema Reza

Welcome to Our World
Eating Out

Have you noticed how our food habits have been entirely revolutionized in the last few years? From being Machhe Bhate Bangali of early to being Fastfood junkie Dhakaiyas, wave finally becom Franchisee food hoppers. I remember when I was a young school going kid back in the mid nineties, the ultimate food hang out used to be places like La Bamba where we thought they made “the best burgers in the world at the cheapest price in the world”. I was part of the Fast food junkie generation and together with friends used to search for cheap but delicious fast food joints. Sure our parents used to warn us about health issues regarding eating out, but our deft answer was, if the food doesn't contain any outside pollution, chances are, its not tasty.

Back then, the only royal culinary pleasure which was good for the health came from the Chinese restaurants around the city. Even the health conscious parents took us once or twice a month to the Chinese restaurants to provide us with good healthy outside eat out options. But we kids liked our fast-food shop, it was the ultimate adda hang out. But a certain Magistrate Mr. Roknuzzaman changed all that, and for good.

The recent raids by the police on many of our 'favourite' fast food joints and restaurants have revealed the horrifying truth about fast food. We have been regularly feeding on food cooked in Mobil Oil and dead rotten meat for burgers. It entered our system like slow poisoning and we are simply lucky that we Bengalis are born with a special ability to adapt to any adverse condition, because if it were someone from some other country, he would just give one bite on these items, he would drop down and die instantly. These revelations have again contributed to changing our food habit. From being fast food junkie, it transformed us in to franchisee food shop hopper teenagers.

The recent boom in the franchisee business was due to the fact that people are looking forward to eating healthy now more than ever. But franchisees are damn expensive.

A teenager can easily expect to spend his entire month's pocket money in buying food for just two para. So a new trend which started with growing popularity is the Buffet Restaurants. They are also quite cash heavy, but it's worth the money as you can choose between hundreds of items and eat as much as you can. Food heaven for some people. Also noticeable is the establishments of many coffee shops and Hookah bars, which provides for hours of adda-fying with a cup of coffee in hand.

So there you go, I hope that it is not too late when we transform from becoming franchisee food hoppers to health eaters. Eat healthy, and stay wealthy.

By Monty Python

Welcome to Our World
Tinker-bell Cars

VVVVVRRRROOOMMMMM…. (Cough…hack…gag…sputter).


The car just doesn't seem to rev the way you've seen in movies now does it? You want that throaty roar not the current whiny wheeze. But then again you can't expect more from a burned out Corolla. And since tricking it out here in this fine marshland is quite impossible you'll have to do with you're ludicrous spoiler. And that's another thorn that keeps you awake at night doesn't it? The fact that the car looks like a chew toy and not at all like that neon green Eclipse in Fast and the Furious burns inside. Ah…sorrows.

Notice how teenagers these days seem to be handling more and more cars these days? Notice how there seem to be slightly more cars everyday with added accessories (accessories because those things that they stick on the sides are not side skirts, no matter how much one might pretend, same with that spoiler, the front and rear bumpers, those rusting exhaust pipes and the flashing, twinkling lights that you have substituted for neon ones and admit, all that I have mentioned only makes you're car more like a toy)? Even though the recent corruption drive have cleaned the streets of cool cars that others drooled over, there still seem to be a lot of those tinker bell toys. And most of the time there's a teenager sitting behind the wheel. So why are cars so important in us teens' so much these days?

Let's look at the way cars come into teenagers' hands. The parents, fearing that the world is becoming to dangerous to let their precious little wards out alone buy a car. The teen, finding a car to tinker with, tinkers with it adding the aforementioned useless car beauty products. And since we always have had Hollywood to fry our brains the teenager starts harboring dreams of drag racing in Dhaka. And if you we're to ask him what psi factors and drag ratios mean he'll just stare because this teenager's knowledge about cars and races end at spoilers and gloss paint. They are a whole new breed believe me.

With the hormones working havoc in the teenager's metabolism, there are only so many ways to deal with it. Foremost in the list is proving that one is macho. Of course, lugging out with fists is a feasible option, but the teenager, still being a kid at heart, decides against such drastic measures. He decides to put to use the car that the parents have provided. Turning the car into a tinker-bell is only the start. And then comes learning to drive the damn thing. Racing must also be done. It's the only way one can prove himself. I'm sure I don't need to wax prolific on this certain subject anymore.

Cars have become essential true, but to teenagers they have become a bench mark of coolness. If you have a tinker-bell car you are cool. It's has become a statement of ones tastes and lifestyle, booming music professing the teen's opinions of this mundane world. And the fact that bagging dates becomes so much easier with a car that flashes green and blue every now and then also adds to the allure of cars to the everyday teen.

There's no doubting it, cars have become vital. The average teen these days finds it hard to express himself without a car blaring music and without the car resembling a toy, what's the use?

By Tareq Adnan


home | Issues | The Daily Star Home

2007 The Daily Star