In lieu of the long absence, I thought one should begin with a bit of silliness. If you thought this Eid-e-Qurbaan was all about sober-khandani sacrifice, think again. There seems to be all sorts of kinkiness going on in the far corners of this great republic. Imagine my consternation at this heading in today's Dawn.
Yes, you got that right, you red-faced prudes!
"Sacrificial Cow Blows Landlord Fatally"
But adding (unintentional and funny) insult to (fatal) injury, Dawn's Sialkot correspondent reports this bizarre story as follows:
, Nov 30: A loose and careless hold on a sacrificial cow resulted in the loss of life of a landlord in Rasulpur Bhalliyaan village on Eid day. SIALKOT
Reports said the half-slaughtered cow got her freed from the clutches of the butcher and those holding her and hit her head fatally to landlord Muhammad Husain, 45.
The rejoicing house of the landlord immediately turned into a mourning place. Villagers later got hold of the injured cow and fully slaughtered the animal. The landlord was laid to rest in his native graveyard in the presence of hundreds of villagers.
Ok, so we know it's the first day after Eid holidays and obviously the sub-editors have had one less holiday than the rest of us. But if you must come to work, might as well do a little bit of what you're paid to do, i.e.
1) Make sure the cow gets "herself freed", not "her freed"
2) Ask the correspondent whether Muhammad Husain died from being gored by the cow, a cracked skull or simply from shock, since he doesn't really say.
3) Wonder why people (or the house!) were (was) "rejoicing" while the cow's throat was still in the process of being cut and blood was presumably gushing out in all directions.
4) Ask the correspondent how later is "later"... did the villagers first bury the victim or finish slaughtering the cow? And where did the butcher go? Was he paid?
5) Ensure that what was obviously a tragic event does not sound really bathetic.
But MOST OF ALL:
6) Learn what it means to "blow" someone. (Hint: It's different from "blowing off", which is what whoever checked that page did to his job.)