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Quirks of the Bangladeshi traveller

They are right out there, going through from one endless Terminal to another. They are (almost) normal people like you and me, and walk unnoticed. However, as they drag their luggage (including that gluttonous body), tempers start running high, ultimatly paving way for certain “actions”. To such an extent that, everytime someone looks at them, it's that same expression “Bangalis!”. Let me prove my point:-

1. They care very much about the environment. In fact so much, that they would rather heave nearly torn boxes with God-knows-what under atleast a few dozens of tape rolls than buy a proper trolley case. Yet, we get blamed for global warming.

2. They can be quite the bookworms. Notice how, every time the guy next to you picks up a magazine from the rack in front of him, it never reappears there and his jacket suddenly gets heavier, and its inner pockets resemble long rectangles? Yes, we thought so too.

3. Lame disappearing acts don't end there. After every meal, the metal (and plastic) cutlery are never found with the empty food tray; tea bags and condiment sachets vanish, and the really talented guys even pull off tricks using pillows and blankets. Cool, but don't they realise the guy sitting next to them may in the future write about them?

4. Dressing sense, check. Middle-aged dudes appear in suits that would make Yves Saint Laurent turn in his grave or rather, kill Tim Gunn on the spot out of sheer shock.

5. Speaking of sense of fashion, you have to check out their shopping skills. At nearly every Airport Duty-Free Store selling fragrances, you will find them trying new perfumes, creating such a medley of fragrances that you'll find the smell of sweat far more preferable. This might explain the plastic smile of all those poor Store Attendants.

6. Food is food, no matter how plasticised it is. Microwave-heated, airline food is much tastier than anything, and to compliment the chef, extremely loud chewing and gnawing goes, followed by absolute disregard for the most basic of table manners. Hard alcoholic drinks for washing it all down is a must, even if it's actually just plain apple juice “on the rocks”.

7. Creative writing is a latent talent in all these individuals. Trouble is; it's expressed by filling incorrect information in Declaration Forms, until gullible people like yours truly are obliging enough to fill it out for them. I say gullible because, what next follows is filling Forms for another 50 talented passengers onboard. And that's just while still in-flight.

8. The Sylheti dialect of Bangladesh is an accepted language in airports worlwide. Unable to commuinicate to the Thai cab driver at JFK Airport, New York? Shout something randomly Sylheti in the air, and your unofficial Bengali Thai interpreter materialises out of thin air. So don't go complaining next time that Bangladesh needs to reach out to the world, 'cause it did.

9. Future parents should take a leaf out of their books. Moms and Dads, on arrival at the Departure Lounge, unleash the tykes- affectionately called “children”- causing them to literally set fire on anything in their paths. While unsuspecting people might just think they are being mischevious, we think it's a clever move by the parents to distract the queue at the Immigration Counter so that they can move ahead fast. This again, is just a theory.

10. Airlines should really reconsider replacing the “No Smoking” sign in the toilets onboard. See, people mistake it as a “Smoke until everyone onboard's reduced to skeletons” sign and out of humility, continue smoking recently purchased cigarettes from Duty-Free stores. What follows is helpful Cabin Crew having to HOLLER over the mike to request the smoker to kindly save everyone from his “vice”.

11. Trouble brews just when it's announced that the plane's about to land and everyone should be seated. Reverse psychology plays a role to make these “passengers” stand up and loudly shout at each other across aisles for unloading luggage. Even worse, the children start getting restless!

If you think this is all, think again. The tales at the conveyor belts are different; and by now you could probably picture it. Moral of the story; no matter how systematic and redundant airports and airlines are, these people consider it their duty to screw it all up!

By Wahid T. Khan

Writers wanted: A chip of the writer's block

Are you a starving writer? Do you stay up late at night writing in blogs about your neighbour's bullying dog? Do you care about inane causes like Stop-the-Light bulb-From-Destroying-the-Earth and want more people to know about it? Do you write in techie-forums to let people know you finally mastered the trick to installing antiviruses with update fixes? Well, read on.

We want people, who have the talent to rant, ramble and plagiarize Internet articles cunningly enough to not get sued!

Staff Writer for The Wimpy Weekly: This job is well suited to lethargic individuals who take staring at a wall to Olympic levels. The deadlines are non-existent mostly because we don't really expect you to deliver. Ever. In the event that you do deliver an article, our pay schemes are so attractive they would force a squirrel to stop hoarding nuts for the winter.

Feature Writer for The Midget Monthly: If you feel strongly for causes that include saving the rainforest and paving the deserts for shopping malls, this is the best job for you. We want individuals who are so caught up in community service that it has become somewhat of a disservice to the community because of the all services you have been doing the economy is suffering and you people have single-handedly destroyed labour unions by offering to do their work for free. Margaret Thatcher would have loved you. Pay schemes are attractive and promote corruption in Sub-Saharan countries.

Staff Correspondent for The New Dork Times: Do you like running around government buildings and clicking pictures of ministers with their cute secretaries and then causing a scandal that subsequently destabilises the government? Do you think the Watergate journalists are superheroes? Then this job is for you! If you bring your own camera and are willing to be those annoying paparazzi photographers who get beat up by female celebrities, we will take you on! The pay schemes are attractive enough to cause jealousy in drought victims.

Internet Plagiarist for Dormitory (Supplement of The Asteroid): Do you happen to be one of those bloggers who copy jokes of a site and paste them on theirs in the hope of a few comments? Are you proficient in editing and manipulating plagiarised articles for your own causes? Then boy do we want you. We have no integrity, we have no qualms in printing crap and we really want someone who just barely manages to adhere to grammar. Added to our fringe benefits (which, include an all-new, free-of-charge Facebook account) we remunerate our plagiarists so well they pay their rent twice monthly.

If you think you have what it takes to apply for these amazing, adventurous, and ultimately blasphemous jobs, then send you CVs and your sample “literary pieces” to us. We will call you after our relentlessly nepotistic and strenuous selection process for a token interview (which we just do to please the administration). Applicants' money wanted.

By Tareq Adnan

Birthdays over the years

Birthday parties! Don't you just love them? All these people come over with gifts, flowers and 'blessings' just to celebrate your date of arrival on mother earth. In return, to show your appreciation, you provide them with good food, a bag full of useless goodies, some more food and obviously 'the cake'.

That's what happens in most birthday parties but over the years if you noticed these parties have evolved.
Let's take a look.

The era of the staring egg yolk
Birthday parties were a huge thing back then, mainly because there weren't that many 'kids get together' other than school class parties and once a year sports day. Anyway, so in order to go to this birthday party a child would have to face many challenges such as getting full marks on a test, eating all the three meals without wasting any food and of course practicing some extra math (just one party might ruin their long division skills!).

When the day finally arrived, the child would want to be at the party as fast as possible because he/she wouldn't want to miss the cake cutting ceremony. After the cake, comes the 'the bag full of goodies' for the guests. The bag would contain a pen that would never work, a notebook with not more than 5 pages and some odd fruit flavoured candy. The child is happy. The perfect ending to this birthday would be the food, the noodles to be more precise. Children in general did not (still don't) like eggs BUT for some odd reason boiled egg cut into halves on top of the noodles would really get their attention (gullible they were!).

The era of fun, games and awkward lyrics
Birthday parties were common by then. Parents and children would try and come up with ideas to make their party different from the rest. There would be various games starting with the usual ones like pillow passing and musical chair followed by hitting the piñata. A new addition to this era was the music. Children would bring their CDs and play tracks by their favourite pop artists (most times being completely unaware of the meaning of the lyrics).

The children during this time also got a variety of food and were no longer falling for boiled eggs (smart they were!).

The era of 'COOLNESS'-
To have a normal party or a theme party? Pizza place or the chicken place? Oh wait those are too common; your friends had their parties there already. Maybe this year for a change you could probably reserve a proper restaurant and hire a DJ, only if you can convince mommy that is.

Even before hearing 'happy birthday' from a friend, the birthday boy/girl would want to hear 'hey your party is cool'.

Choosing the perfect cake and food also becomes an important task; they have to reflect the birthday boy/girl's personality. Hats off to the children of this era (Clever, good planners and to some extent demanding they are!)

Maybe we'll be having birthday parties somewhere in Hawai, who knows?
Get creative kids!

By Fariba Rakhsanda

The zipper messiah

O ye of little faith (in the Zipper),
See thou not the chain? See thou not the slider?
Is seeing not believing?

Indeed, it is not easier for a camel,
To go through the eye of a needle,
Than for a Zipper to be zipped.
Great men are not always wise,
For sometimes they prefer buttons- the twits.

A prudent man stops before a slip and zips again.
A fool shows his annoyance at once,
And to them Destruction cometh;
And they shall seek peace, and there shall be none,
(For a zip-slip is quite bloody painful).
Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.
When thou feeleth said joy, know that it is the gift of the Zipper.
This gift is (known as) endorphins.
And it shall come to pass, that inebriants should be poured.
(That too is quite bloody painful),
until there is no more inebriant.

He who has faith in the Zipper, and only in the Zipper,
Shall have no need to fear the Zipper,
For the Zipper doth help those who help themselves-
Prudence and caution goes a long way.
If any man among you prefer Zippers, and bridleth not his tongue,
But deceiveth his own heart, this man's zipping is vain.

And let it be known, that a time there shall come,
That the Zipper messiah come whence, and there will be time no longer.
Ye of the little faith (in the Zipper),
Know the Zipper, and the Zipper shall set you free.

By Emil





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