Showing posts from 2008

The Plan

As we approach the end of 2008, I, like may others, am inevitably evaluating the year gone by.

2005 was inconsequential, hence my vow to make 2006 count.
2006 saw the publication of my first book as well as the unravelling of my first marriage.
2007 began with the death of my father but turned into a fantastic and crazy year at Asian Woman magazine.


I’ve been meaning to write about Rhys Jones and the sentencing of his killer for a few days now. For those of you unfamiliar with the case, Rhys was an 11-year-old boy who was shot in the neck and killed in Liverpool, UK, in August 2007.

Under Pressure

Firstly, why do I get lambasted any time I say I love Under Pressure by Bowie and Queen? I know it’s not their best work but it’s still a frickin’ good song. Yes, that beat is responsible for the travesty that is Ice Ice Baby* but it’s so infectious, it has to be genius.

Under a Woman's Skin

I bought The Writing’s on the Wall, I went to see Destiny’s Child at Wembley in 2001 and I marvelled at Beyoncé’s talent and ability. But, as her fame and ubiquity grew, I went off her because I got a little sick of hearing her name. It was only recently when I watched the video to If I Were a Boy that I was reminded of just how talented she is.

Now, the Backlash?

It took me a while to warm to Barack Obama. I hadn’t read either of his books and didn’t know enough about him to hail him as the Saviour of America and All That Is Beyond like everyone else around me.

Blind Faith?

A friend, writer Ariane Sherine, is launching the Atheist Bus Campaign on 21 October 2008.

The short explanation:

The campaign has the slogan 'There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life'. It is designed to reassure people that they won’t be consigned to eternal damnation should they renounce religion and God. The motivation behind the campaign is explained on the Facebook group page, and in Article 1 and Article 2, written by Ariane for the Guardian’s Comment is free section.

We Ain’t Got No Alibi

I wish John McCain’s Bangladeshi daughter was prettier. It may be an odd thing to lament but I have my reasons. You see, Indian women are renowned for their beauty; Italian, French, Spanish and Mediterranean women are exotic; Scandinavian women are leggy and blonde; Oriental women are mysterious and alluring; Latin Americans are seductive and sensual… the list goes on. But Bangladeshi women – well, no-one really knows or cares about us. And those who do, more often than not, think we’re all short, fat, ugly and downtrodden.

Good Catch

Meeting a partner’s colleagues is rarely a great experience. Everyone knows each other and can share conversation, and you end up being the one stuck in the corner or having to have everything explained to them. Luckily, when I met my partner’s colleagues, they were all warm, friendly and interesting (despite being a bunch of accountants…).

Azzurri Blues

I’m off to have some cake in a minute to console myself after Italy’s 3-0 loss to Holland. I can’t claim to be a football fan: I only ever watch it at international level and barely know my van de Sars from my van Nistelrooys (I guess you could call me a fair-weather football fan) but I have always supported Italy and do manage to get wrapped up in their matches. Hence, the cake. It’s okay though. Italy always start off slow. They *do* have a tough group but at least there’s no Zidane to contend with. So I’m hopeful...

And then a hero comes along…

I’ve spent so long in front of my computer today that I’m almost cross-eyed. I’ve given up trying to be productive and am writing here instead. Do forgive me if this entry is more disconnected than usual – it is almost 2am.

Silver Tongues

I cringe as iPlayer runs through the opening credits of Women in Black Episode 4 (aired Thursday on BBC2). Why? Because 10 minutes or so into the programme, I will appear in all my fatigued glory, full colour and extremely close up.

Older? Yes. Better? Erm…

I know I haven’t written for a while – I’m sorry. To get you started, I’ve written a piece for the comment section of the Guardian website. You can access that here.

Pieces of Me

Anniversaries. I’ve never really paid attention to anniversaries. Ask me when I got engaged and the only reason I’ll be able to tell you is because it was on Valentine’s Day (yes, I know it’s clichéd but that’s his doing). Ask me when our first date was and I’ll draw a blank. I’ve never organised a birthday party (for myself or anyone else) and don’t even bother asking me when any of my siblings or friends got married.

What doesn’t kill us is making us stronger

There are people among us who had fantastic childhoods; belong to loving families; and who have a well-adjusted outlook on life. These people have fathers that support them, mothers that comfort them and bosses that respect them. 

I used to envy these people, thinking that they were a lucky minority. I used to think that they led charmed lives, full of opportunities seldom afforded to people like me. I thought it would be great to have things so easy.

# I’m Gonna Live Forever #

So I was sitting on a Jubilee Line train on Thursday, travelling from Stratford to North Greenwich, when I noticed that the guy next to me was reading my column in The Docklands. I surreptitiously watched him and was pleased to see a smile spread on his lips. I was so tempted to take out my headphones, point to my picture and say, “That’s meeee,” but chances are, he would have looked at me and said, “Uh, oh-kay. So?” at which point I would have gone red with embarrassment and hung my head in shame.

// No Comment

Since starting this blog almost two years ago, I’ve been asked many a time to enable comments. I have chosen not to for a number of reasons: 

1. My entries are generally random musings and not really intended to draw feedback or comment (i.e. criticism!).
2. I don’t really have time to reply to comments (i.e. criticism) but generally have to have the last word so I don’t think I could resist doing so (hence allowing precious time to be eaten up).
3. I’m a little scared that no-one will comment, exposing the fact that no-one reads the blog (even though I know it is read judging by the numbers recorded by statcounter).

A Brick in the Wall?

This week I was given the formidable task of convincing kids in Tower Hamlets that reading actually is quite important. Those of you have read my Great Expectations entry will know that I genuinely hold reading in quite high regard. Now I’m not saying that I’m some sort of great authority on the path to success but I’m convinced that the advice I have to give (stay in school, don’t do drugs and read godamnit!) really can make a difference.

So how much do you earn?

I mentioned in my last entry that I would be talking a little more about how it isn’t easy making a living as a writer. This ties in quite well with a question I was asked today during the short school tour I’m doing this week: so how much so you earn?

The Second Coming

Right. I have decided that my next big aim in life is to finish editing my second book. Having loosely finished writing it in January 2007 (yes, 2007 – a whole year ago!), I kind of let it lay there. This was mainly due to my job at Asian Woman Magazine which, as I outlined in my previous post, took over my life, leaving little room for much else.