Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sweet idle brain o’ mine

There goes a saying that “Everything is bigger in Texas”. Well maybe it’s not a saying but I saw it on a T-shirt in a Hillary Duff video many years ago. Don’t judge me, I was 15 OK! I say, forget Texas. In exams, everything is bigger, brighter, more colourful, entertaining and exciting than any other time of the year. The interesting thing is that it’s a concept everyone can relate to. Everyone ranging from age groups 7 to 25 years (or more if you think you haven’t had enough yet or due to the current insane amount of extended studies we all are compelled to do anyway) goes through this phase.

It is times like these that the human mind amazes me. I mean, why and how can it be that something we don’t give a crap about normally will become the center of our lives. I remember when I was studying last year, the nights were long and hot. All I had was the window displaying darkness. It was then that I started noticing this vehicle coming up to the office up front around three in the morning, VERY often during the week. Before I knew it the books were chucked away and I saw myself, binoculars in hand, lights off, trying to find the cause of such late night visits. My imagination went wild; drugs, smuggling, chucking away dead bodies, burglary, human trafficking, country wide socio-political conspiracy, you name it, I had already thought of it. Of course when I revealed my midnight adventures on the breakfast table they were welcomed with appalled faces, the mother adding “Haye Allah, what will people think of a girl hanging on the window with binoculars at 3 in the morning!” Well, my answer was, what would people be doing looking out of THEIR windows towards the girl’s window at 3 in the morning? No, why would they be awake anyway? (*Goes into investigatory mode. Again*) I mean, here I am playing responsible neighbourhood watch-type citizen and nobody cares! I was glad that at least THIS reaction was a bit toned down than when I confessed a possible UFO sighting (Again, do NOT judge me, I was around 10 when that happened :P). So yeah, when I say imagination gone wild, I’m so not kidding.

It is this time of the year, or month, or 6 months or semester that out neural configurations change a bit. I don’t know about you but I tend to get edgy, sensitive, emotional, totally creative and much to my bad luck hungry! Somehow the neighbours' grandkids start looking cuter, so much so that you just want to watch them take swings and live their problem-less life. Of course I snap out of that soon enough since at least I’m done with all THAT, you know school, O/A level. That kid still has to go through that. Ha! SCORE! Take that extremely cute kid with no worries! Then there is the house at 7 o’ clock. Like clockwork the girl who lives there will come to this swing set and keep swinging till sunset. She doesn’t follow the clock, but the sun. And once again, books forgotten I concoct up her life history, hopes and dreams. Also, the earlier mentioned grandkid’s grandma and ma have this whole Star Plus style thing going on. I can feel the vibes and the characteristic “gongs” at a bearing of 45 degrees north, about 50 feet away.

Speaking of Star Plus I develop an interest there too. Normally there is total remote snatching going on along with constantly cursing the poor characters and camera angles and blackmailing the mother but come exam season I find myself asking the mother how “Akshara” (HIGHLY annoying) is doing. Also, there will always be a notebook nearby, literary epiphanies come when the mind is too full of numbers, poetry evolves when the mind is blocked with too much information, outrageous status updates (yes, more outrageous than usual) will keep flitting when the self gets lonely and misses its constant ‘networking’ and much to everyone’s horror, waiiiiit for it…..singing! Not to mention sartorial ideas even, so much so that one is compelled to sketch some scrawny drawings. Yes, that is a big deal. Those who know me a bit know I usually wish for the miracle of going to bed one night, getting up the next morning and voila, all clothes, matched, designed, stitched lying somewhere in “the elves and the shoemaker” style.

The worst part is there is always some wedding, huge party or Eid round the corner that you have to miss more or less. Not that it’s too bad, I mean I look like hell anyway but yeah total self-pity moment. BUT the family always sends my share in plastic ice cream boxes so the food pity is covered I guess.

These are just a few examples. I guess everyone has a crazy exam creativity niche. My sister goes artistic and starts making stuff out of the kind of stuff people would throw away (to great effect I must add). My brother says his mind opens up for strategy video games and he gets better at them. Everyone I know will have some distractive exam life in store for them. Talha A. B. here coded a whole template (for the blog! Coming soon :D). Yes, coding a template, that’s a big deal. Not child’s play so children, don’t play. Note to Talha: Good work, now STUDY!

Anyway, here be that time again. Already here for some and for some (cough) not too far off. So yes, the time of distraction (that can lead to destruction) is here. Let’s hope we all consider it only an element that keeps us sane and it doesn’t prevail the mere reason it originated from. Let this be the time to reflect on the little “fun” things we take for granted. Like staring at the huge mango tree the 7 o’clock guys had WHICH they were stupid enough to cut down. Who DOES that to a mango tree? That’s fruity blasphemy! The only tree in the vicinity now is the “jaamun” (black currants) tree. I don’t even like jaamun. I hardly like “gulaab jamun” (come to think of, that’s sweetmeat blasphemy. Fine, I’m “selective” about them, stop judging my sweet tooth now :P).

With that highly unnecessary last detail I bid you all the very necessary good lucks and break a legs for upcoming and ongoing exams. Study hard, stay sane and remember the most important rule, one chip at a time :D

Sara (distracted) Q

P.S: At this point I feel awfully relieved that the good looking grand kid is 24 months and not 24 years. Just saying. Again, do NOT judge me! 


  1. An awesome post, especially considering that I'm going through the mentioned Study/Creative phase. I'd just like to point out that your use of my "One chip at a time line" without my consent leaves me no choice but to take legal action :P

    Jokes aside, I can't recall the number of things I've come up with during exam leaves. Sketches, model air planes made with nothing but normal paper, glue, tape and matchsticks, music, lyrics, stories, concepts for stories etc. Long list. I don't even remember what it was that I did during these leaves. I just know studying was fairly low on the list :D

  2. Interesting, very interesting indeed. I totally agree with
    you....The human mind is capable of extraordinary feats. The only question is
    of using it. According to a study, an average human being doesn't use his/her
    brain to half its capacity during their lifetime....


    During exam season we stimulate our brains (well some of us do, or
    perhaps try to) and that unleashes its creative part...we do things that we
    can't even imagine doing in our normal routine. Yes, that could be staring
    outside your bedroom window at 3 in the morning or making model air
    planes with nothing but normal paper, glue, tape and matchsticks!

    Different people come up with different things...depending on
    their personality that is...I, well started calligraphy when I was giving my
    first real exam (I am talking about the Pak Studies/Islamiat O level papers
    that we gave in 10th grade). I switched to poetry the next year…


    In A levels, I had this obsession with weights (not going into
    details here)….ACCA studies were a totally different level. I started watching ‘East
    Enders’ and ‘The weakest Link’ on telly…(no judging, please). And the funny thing
    is that as soon as the exams are over, these things go out of the window!


    Well, truth be told, exams bring along a lot of pressure. These ‘things’
    we do help us keep sane. In the end I would just add that we should keep
    indulging in these activities…but should not let them distract us from our main
    objective: Acing the exams!


    May all those sitting exams ace them!


    Mejor de las suertes!!  

  3. I know you asked not to be judged..... but...... East Enders? Wow. How was it? The weakest link is cool though, that lady really gives the contestants hell :P Reminds me of a teacher of mine. I hater her. And let me tell you, those models were actually pretty good, if I remember correctly I made a Dassault Mirage, NAA Saber, Sukhoi Su-35 and a General Dynamics F-16. The last one was tough, its shape looks easy but let me tell you, it isn't.

  4. Well East Enders was kinda addictive...once you start following it...and you are right Anne Robinson does give a tough time to the contestants. I was actually thinking of applying for the show as I got most of the answers right at home :P

  5. Arigato gozaimasu talha-chan! i hope i got it right this time :P
    Oh drat i totally meant to give you some credit for that i swear. I guess I'm too used to line stealing by now :D
    Fine, i hereby declare that this line was uttered by Mr. Talha A.B, about one year ago, some time in February, the 23rd if I may be correct when he was giving some studying advice.(No, I'm not mad I happen to have a killer memory) :P
    Soo, legal action? :D 
    The part about model airplanes intrigues me as btw. That's pretty cool! If only we could be this way normally as well.  Becomes too hard to prioritise! I totally know what you mean :P

  6. That be true. Like I said, we start indulging ourselves into stuff we wouldn't look twice at.
    I wouldnt comment on EastEnders though since i know some people here and there who are ardent fans. 
    The "Weakest Link" brings back summer memories too and yes I must say the fun was in watching the aunty lash at everyone :P
    The thing is, keeping sane is cool but addiction can get nasty sometimes. My family claims I become very difficult and child like during exams and without exaggeration they all work left and  right to make me sit at one spot and study. Embarrassing to admit but its true. The worst was when I started following "Grey's Anatomy" during one ACCA exams. I just HAD to watch it somehow. 
    I'm a net junkie these days I guess but sleep becomes me before I can put that to use, which sucks in a way because we need to be "junkie" on SOMEthing right? :P
    And yeah i get what you mean about calligraphy, i've seen your page. Very impressive! And about the poetry, most people like to keep it secret but if you're willing to share you're more than welcome to do so as a guest post :)