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The Evil Behind Mister Potato

Forget Occupy Wall Street. Seriously, completely forget Occupy Wall Street and the 99%. There is a much bigger problem that this world needs to address. This problem is simply known as the Potato. Confused? Well, you have every reason to be. Just when a man realises that he has reached the upper echelons of intelligence, someone throws a potato at him. Is it a fruit? A vegetable? A rock? Or an animal? You will never know, because no one will ever tell you. The Potato Chaos Confusion Syndrome, also known as PCCS is a bigger deal than the world lets on.

The case of a potato is an important one, easily told from the get-go. Wikipedia describes it as 'a starchy, tuberous crop from the perennial Solanum tuberosum of the Solanaceae family (also known as the nightshades).' Pay careful attention to the words in that description. As you suspected, those words do not really exist. They mean nothing but stand only as a method of confusing you. Never in the history of the universe have such words been used in such order to describe absolutely anything. We get nightshades. It probably has something to do with Cyclops. But what does a potato have to do with Cyclops? Nothing.

The first step of creating chaos is to confuse. By hearing the definition of a potato, we are left thoroughly perplexed. But then it just gets worse from there. Lovepotatoes.com (yes, there is a website as such) informs us that there are literally thousands of varieties of potatoes. There is Estima, King Edward, Desiree and Maris Peer to name a few. Some are Key Waxy Potatoes and some are Floury Potatoes. Any normal human being will tell you that he does not know what that really means. A potato is a potato, right? I mean, think about it, it's just a flaming potato. What in the world is a jacket potato anyway? They are basically nothing but just another way of fudging your mind. Potatoes are some real Criss Angel deals.

Now, comes the final blow to the brain *smirk*. Is a potato a fruit or a vegetable? Some people say it's neither but that in fact a potato is a tuber. What is a tuber? A potato's main purpose is to mystify hence it's called a tuber, which again means nothing. But wait for it. A potato plant does produce a fruit but that fruit is poisonous. So, we don't eat the fruit, meaning we eat the plant, right? Wrong. We do not eat the plant but rather the roots of the plant, in a manner of speaking. Except they aren't really roots. Potatoes are those mystery 'tubers' that grow underground so you really have no idea what their condition is until, you actually dig out and harvest them.

The mystery of the potato is a long and unrivalled one. Its tendency to confuse and create chaos is detailed in history. The Potato Blight of 1845, the woman who tried to kill her father over a potato salad and the car that was crushed by potatoes are all documented witnesses of the evils of Potato. Potatoes have only been with us for over a hundred years; a 100 years which saw most of the evils of the world. Because in the depths of evil, lurks demented designs of chaos. The Potato is their figurehead. The war has begun.

P.S.: It's always Potatoes. No one says Potaatos. That's plain stupid.

By Y-King

Book Review

The Plague
Author: Albert Camus

While Camus' 'The Myth of Sisyphus' is not everyone's cup of tea, his novels are for anyone who enjoys a good read. Why? Because he is an amazing story teller. And for those who tried and failed to understand what he wanted to say in 'The Myth of Sisyphus', 'The Plague' and 'The Outsider' are worth reading.

'The Plague' is the story of the city of Oran - distinguished for its dull and monotonous air - and its inhabitants as they are suddenly cut off from the rest of the world due to the plague. The story is set in the 1940s and is initially told from the point of view of an unknown narrator, who tries to be as objective of his description of the plague as possible. We find out what he saw of the plague and the town when it is forced to shut off all forms of communication with the outside world. The story takes one by surprise, as the tone gradually shifts from the impassionate nature of Oran to the gradual transition of the macabre - the appearance of dying rats on the streets - by the thousands.

The Plague is a description of the initial denial by the people that such bad fortune could befall them, to their descent into despondency. The main character of the story is Dr. Rieux, a man who, despite an overwhelming sense that he can only save a few, goes around doing whatever he can. He is one of the first to recognise the plague for what it is. Other interesting subplots include that of a runaway convict, Cottard, happy that the plague offers him a temporary refuge, that of a journalist who tries everything to get away from the quarantined town and a priest who finds it increasingly difficult to reconcile what he sees with his belief.

The Plague talks about human emotions as they deal with this epidemic. It shows how people optimistic that the plague couldn't last for more than a few weeks, become utterly abject and the way people deal with being shut off from the outside world for a long time. Their initial optimism, which evolves into anarchy and results in the eventual reconciliation that it is a burden for all to share, is described with fierce vividness and it keeps the reader glued to the book. The major themes of the book include reflections on exile and the different ways people deal with not being with whom they love.

The book is an excellent read, but the start of the book which deals with the insipid life of Oran requires a little effort to push through. But Camus, for anyone who likes Kafka, is a must read. His take on how we deal with the absurd is brilliant and even for anyone who just wants a good story, 'The Plague' should be quite interesting. After all they don't go around giving the Nobel Prize for literature to just anyone.

By Moyukh

Trials of the newly single

Being single is not the most fun thing in the world. Why, though? It gives you the leash to explore other fish in the sea and do whatever you want without having to consult your 'other half'. That may be true, and I certainly took advantage of that when I was abroad. But the dating scene in Bangladesh is a whole other ball game and honestly, I feel as lost as someone thrown into the Amazon jungle.

Being single wasn't a big deal at all during the last few months of college; I thought I was handling the fact that I had just broken up from a long-term, long-distance relationship pretty well. Exams, assignments and friends seemed to take up all my time. I find it ironic how being single bothers me more in Bangladesh than in the West, considering how some people still think Bangladeshi society is more conservative. It probably is but somehow unfairly, everyone has some sort of partner or the other. If you don't, you're seen as some sort of outcast and I'm sure they secretly wonder if you're that unattractive or undesirable that you don't have someone to talk all night with or hold hands secretly with in a rickshaw.

It's not to say I haven't tried. I have been keeping my eyes peeled; tired of being made to feel an outsider when my friends and I go out somewhere. After doing much secret research, I have determined that young Bangladeshi guys fall into the following categories:

1. Not single and totally committed - The title says it all. Under this category fall guys you desperately wish hadn't been snagged by some lucky girl. These guys are obviously off-limits unless you're the home breaking type.

2. Single but totally uncommitted - A summer romance is what you read about in novels and while one would be fine for yours truly, these guys are a bit too single. They seem to think they own the world and whether this is because of a superfluity of money, looks or just plain fantasy, they just love playing the field. I've been recently hearing horror love stories where a friend would talk to a guy for months before realising he's had a girlfriend on the side for five years. There are many more stories of guys juggling five or more girls at once, all living in preferably different areas of the country. And while I am not looking for anything serious, a little exclusivity would be nice, otherwise I'd be wondering all the time whether that last call was really from his mother or not.

3. Single and better off uncommitted - And then of course there are those guys who call you up in the middle of the night to check if a female picks up and get a rush of various chemicals in their bloodstream when they realise they have a direct hit. These men are just looking for someone to flirt with on the phone and its better not to take it anywhere further than to wish them hell for disturbing you all the time. Better yet, blocking their calls has proven more effective.

All in all, I have come across guys who are dateable but not single or single guys who are not dateable. There doesn't seem to be a ready pool of guys who haven't suffered some psychological damage from a previous relationship and is now ready to unleash his fury/depression/torment/ disrespect towards girls onto the next female who comes along. For my own sake, I hope I am proved wrong soon.

By Dark Brown Eyes



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