It’s payday. Time to splash out, you owe it to yourself after the week you’ve had eking out the last paycheque. If this sounds familiar, you’re nowhere near ready to become a homebuyer. It’s time for a new way of thinking.
The first rule of saving: every penny counts. If you look at it that way, the obvious solution is to spend only on essentials like bills and food, but no one can live that way. It’s human nature to want the little luxuries, but we also have the capacity for willpower. Continue reading “Budget Your Way to a New Home”→
There’s no such thing as the British Dream, of course. Once you’ve ruled the world only to lose the lot, there’s not really anywhere to go from there, is there? The humiliation has left liberal Brits politely mumbling apologies and the not so liberal to wail over how the country has gone to the dogs, neither ever really expecting to win anything.
Which means the British Dream belongs to the immigrant. The immigrant doesn’t moan about the weather, or worry that foreigners are ruining job prospects. Unlike the Grumpy Old Brit, the immigrant thinks Britain is really rather great as it goes.
So farewell Silk Road. To those of you who’ve only just heard about it since its shutdown, well, it clearly hasn’t been causing you any bother. Just a bunch of wasters who got to stay off the mean streets for a while and got some good shit on the net, like you do on Amazon and eBay, right down to the part where no one worried about paying any tax.
The debate about whether Silk Road was actually a rather good thing or pure evil has thrown up that age-old question: why the heck do you people take drugs? It’s illegal! It’s bad for you! It makes you rape grannies!
See the problem with talking about drugs is that people who don’t take it don’t get it, and those that do sound like imbeciles when they try to explain it. Well, I’m fairly comfortable with sounding like an imbecile, so here goes… Continue reading “Why Do People Take Drugs?”→
The gunmetal silver Lotus Roadster thunders into the car park of the 12th largest shopping centre in the world, the Bashundhara City Mall. The boys and girls smoking and flirting in the more commonplace GT-Rs and Toyotas nod in respect, in time to the new Prodigy album that comes screeching in its wake. It’s just the kind of thing to get everyone in the mood for Mad Max: Fury Roadshowing upstairs at the giant StarCineplex.
The young girl behind the wheel raises her Maui Jim shades and tuts impatiently. He’s not here. The boy with the Jonny Bravo Redux haircut beside her swipes his Droid Razr and is in the process of leaving a curt message when a longhaired biker rocks up next to them, flashing them his 24-carat gold studded smile.
The yaba he has for them is fresh from Myanmar, even if the scent of chicken bhuna in the tiffin box they’re concealed in makes the girl scrunch up her nose. The wild-eyed dealer and the beautiful young things in the Lotus may come from wholly different backgrounds, but they agree on a few fundamental issues. Money is good, the way Crystal Meth is portrayed in Breaking Bad isn’t quite like how they experience it, and that the long bearded man in the Islamic galabiyya dress in the corner creeps the hell out of them. Continue reading “Muslamic Reagans: Why the Boom in Bangladesh is About Money Not Bombs”→
These words form the basis of Islam, and any Muslim, good or bad, will treat it with the utmost of respect (even if the bad ones might fail to give you the exact literal translation): There is absolutely no deity worthy of worship other than Allah, and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.
I’m not here to argue the validity of this statement. Maybe it’s because I was raised and indoctrinated in Bangladesh, a Muslim country that’s pretty tame on the fundamentalist scale but still devout all over, that I give this kalimat its devotional dues. Or it could be that the time I’ve spent behind the peace pipe has left me thinking anyone can believe whatever the hell they want, as long as they don’t hurt me or bore me. Hell, maybe I’m just shit-scared some dickhead might take offence and put a fatwa on me. Whatever my motivation, these words are sacred to me. So much so, in fact, I pray these will be the last words I breathe in this life.
As recent events show, you don’t have to be a bit of an idiot child to completely misunderstand the Qur’an. Like millions of other Muslim children for whom Arabic isn’t their mother tongue, I learned to read and recite the Qur’an in Arabic. Translations are something you read when you’re older, if you want to, that is (and we wonder why there are so many cretins out there laying down lives in the name of a book they don’t have a clue about). Continue reading “Passing the Al-Shabaab Test Brings Me No Peace”→
“Whenever I listen to her, underneath that softness, I get the feeling the emotional topography of her life is all jagged, do you know what I mean?”
This sentence, believe it or not, got me laid. I was online dating, the keyboard banter was smooth but by no means sure, when she mentioned she liked Shawn Colvin and that was my fairly instant response. From thereon, a date was inevitable. She’d just found someone who not only knew Shawn Colvin, I actually felt her.
Except up until that minute, I’d never heard of Shawn Colvin. A quick scan on the Internet had given me all I needed to show I was in the know, baby.