Friday, July 8, 2011

A Brief Note of Explanation, Kinda

I guess I should offer some explanation about why the blog has been dormant for so long. Frankly, I can only speak for myself and you can put it down to exhaustion and lack of motivation as far as I am concerned (the rest of the contributors can speak for themselves). Even though I returned from vacation a while ago, and there have been a number of topics I have thought of blogging about (Lord knows, there always are in Pakistan), the two main reasons for the absence are the power woes that KESC's dastardly staff has put all of Karachi through - and which have sapped my energy in more ways than one - and the feeling of futility that engulfs all of us living in Pakistan at some point or the other, which has been particularly marked over the last few months. After a while, unending tales of incompetence, brutality, corruption, dishonesty and cynical manipulation do tend to numb you. I am not at all implying that this is in any way only specific to Pakistan. But since I live here, I can only speak for life in this place. The tendency often is to try and find solace in other, lighter things.

At another level (and somewhat contradictory to the sense of futility), there is also a feeling that there is little point in spending hours constructing posts on matters that others have already addressed or are already addressing. When we began the blog, very, very few people were taking on the media as a subject. Thankfully, a lot more debate now occurs on the subject both online and in the print and electronic media and that is a good thing. A lot more people are also willing and vigilant enough to call out inconsistencies and issues in the media. One hopes we have played a small part in making that possible but, yes, it can lead to complacency.

I know these may be seen as just excuses for laziness and I am willing to concede that. But I thought I owed it to our readers to at least provide some explanations, even if they are mere excuses. Hopefully, we'll get over our blue funk and soon get our mojo back.


Idiaz said...

this sounds like an epilogue to the blog. Is it? because that would be seriously upsetting.

Anonymous said...

I can tell from twitter that you prefer to vent out there instead. You know 140 characters and you are done. Bad pyala.. I need you :(

Anonymous said...

I sure hope its not an epilogue! I come here often, anxiously checking to see if anything new's been posted. I find the posts entertaining and educational. They help me stay connected to Karachi and the rest of Pakistan, and let me, if for a few moments only, feel like I'm still there, which I value immensely! Please keep them coming.

Anonymous said...

From India...
Salams to all pyalas..
Godspeed - and I hope you & the pyala gang gets back your mojo soon. Heaven forbid, where will the right wing nutcases (read Hindus) go to vent out their angst? lol.
From a different perspective, I think the adage "Better late than never" seems optimal for the situation. Whining on a blog (be it about religion, like I usually do, or about media or TED or Imran Khan or Musharraf or Aliens or USA or Infidens, Kafirs, Jews, dogs, pigs, Ahmadiya, Salafi, Sufi, Wahabbi, Deobandi, Barelvi, Shia Muslims) isn't going to change the ground reality (which, in Pakistan is, Ahmadiyyas aren't muslims, lol).
I hope you spend some quality time reading the Sunnah of the Prophet & the various Hadiths - definitely refer to Maududi & his ilk (include Salafi perspectives) for any Tafseers you require. I know that Karachi is already bleeding due to ethic violence - and libtards such as yourself (hopefully emulating that sick fool named gandhi) can serve a wonderful purpose - follow gandhian principles and *make the ultimate sacrifice*.
Allah Hafiz
Vande Mataram

CK said...

XYZ missed you badly and glad that you are back. I keep reading your blog. I am from India and find your posts to be objective enough to spend time on them. Hope you and your pyala buddies are fine with all the madness going on in Karachi right now.

Yusaf Khan said...

I can completely understand the frustration. I am sitting in London and get really disillusioned about Pakistan so you in the eye of the storm have every right to feel as you have described. Still, you should know that your blog is read all over the world and is, in my opinion, one of the few places where objective analysis can be found. So I would hope that you can get the strength and hope to carry on.

Anonymous said...

Fasi Zaka, u never seize to amaze me.

Anonymous said...

Please do a post on the inside news of media. Like tell us why kamran shahid quits samaa tv and is back on express news?

Anonymous said...

blogging is a thankless job.
one that requires more effort that one imagines.
and all of your "excuses" are completely valid.

we feel your pain.

but please know that there are many out there that thank you immensely, and are very proud of you, and sort of depend on you because reading your blog makes it seem like theres still some hope for this country.

hope to see you up and blogging again soon.

-faithful reader

Anonymous said...

It's sad to see a rather dejected blog post at Cafe Pyala, though I understand the sentiment and numbness that goes with blogging on "issues" in Pakistan.
Although I took up blogging seriously quite late, in this short time even I feel the same way and thinking about forming a new blog feels more like confronting a living nightmare. I wish you guys luck and hope you find your zeal back to rise up like before to do what you can do best :)

Scare said...

So Rumi should I take your blog from my bookmarks.You are treating cafepyala stepmotherly.I am hardcore Indian but your blog was my daily routine.

140 Chars. said...

Dude. I blame twitter.

Anonymous said...

Hopefully, when the ISI & ISPR start aerial-refueling... you'll get over your blue funk and soon get your mojo back...!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jay Haque said...

May I suggest a slight change in strategy, whereby you allow submissions by external writers?

You'd still have control in what gets published, and pyala would still play a role in media critique.

Anonymous said...

what happened to hasho group?

uzairsdad said...

Welcome back! One is amazed that the small reference to the woes of the populace of Karachi at the hands of the K.E.S.C. is rare if not altogether absent from any blog. IT JUST PUTS YOU OFF! Power outages take place when there is a shortage of supply as compared to the demand. No one has pointed out that when the entire city is shut, as it was today, how could there possibly be a shortage? But 'load-shedding' continues even then and with Gospel ordained like punctuality. What is amazing is that the people are doing NOTHING!
Then we have the shameful and deplorable role of the media in fanning trouble at the drop of a hat. True media does not 'invent' incidents only reports them but does it have a duty to exaggerate events and repeat them ad nauseum? Why then does it not have the courage to identify the miscreants? Yes the media has to get 'hot' news to bolster its ratings but at what cost? Is this what freedom of expression means? Just imagine Geo had Mr. Ahsan Iqbal of the PML(N) to comment on Mr. Zulfiqar Mirza's statement! Does Geo think that people have such short memories? Did it not occur to Mr. Iqbal that when he rubbished Mr. Mirza he was in fact rubbishing the leader of the opposition in the National Assembly? Et tu Brutus! Really a shame for all of us. May ALLAH bless our beloved Pakistan.

Indians Ki Laina Achi Cheez Hai said...

In 1947, Pakistan created itself by ripping India into pieces. LOL

That is the root of the impotent Indian conservative anger.

Indians Ki Laina Achi Cheez Hai said...

Dear Indians,

Please invade, occupy and try to develop Afghanistan over the next decade. Send all your surplus humanity, with weapons into Afghanistan. We promise to even give your logistics a corridor through Pakistani Punjab and Khyber Pukhtunkhwa.

I am sure you guys will do really well at that job.

FloridaChristianForPakistan said...

To the blogger and commenters who love Cafe Pyala, though I'm probably not your target audience, all of you lift my heart, inspire me, even bring the occasional tears to my eyes, because you guys are so beautiful -- yes, beautiful, because you care, you grieve, you hope, you think, you converse, notwithstanding discouraging circumstances. In my little blue collar corner in Florida, I'm surrounded not by hopelessness or despair, but apathy, and even worse, willful ignorance to our own problems. The spirit I see in you guys is a noble thing, heroic. May you all be blessed.

Informer said...

Since XYZ and the team are taking a break, allow me to fill you in on the latest gossip.

Dr Shahid Masood's "Shahidnama" will be launching on Express News soon. Although Mr Sultan Lakhani has denied rumours that he wants to disband the channel, his acquisition of the witchdoctor contradicts this claim, whose reputation for ruining "achay khasay" news channels precedes him. However, before leaving the Hashoo group penniless, Dr Dumbsday managed to squander nearly a quarter of the funds allocated to the entire project even before the channel was ready to air. Apparently designer toupees don't come cheap.

Kamran Shahid and company, who were brought to SAMAA under much pomp and circumstance, were asked to leave without much ceremony. The alleged reason for this, if the Tweety birds in Lahore are to be believed, was that KS had recorded a piece of footage that SAMAA had refused to air. In a fit of rage, he threatened to give it to some other channel (probably Express or Geo, because he has been with both at different times in his career), something that did not go down too well with his SETH!

An alternate version of this tale tells of the (again, alleged) going-on at KS' first-floor office in SAMAA's Lahore bureau. Apparently (and I say this with the greatest degree of skepticism possible), KS would indulge his hedonistic tendencies behind closed (albeit glass) doors. Nuff said.

Also, Wajahat S Khan and Arif Nizami have made their debut on SAMAA too. Although Arif Nizami's "Zer-e-Behas" had been in the pipeline for quite some time, the decision to acquire Wajahat was probably a recent one. "Tajziya" (as his show is called) was left hanging when Mujibur Rehman Shami pulled out at the last minute.

That's all from the newsroom until Khabarnama at 9. Dekhtay rahiye Geo News :p

Wajahat S. Khan said...

Correction: Though I don't know about Shami's last-minute drop, a clarification of my own recruitment by Samaa is in order. I was approached, very cordially, by the management of Samaa in January '11. The recruitment process continued while I was in Cambridge, MA for a fellowship and then during subsequent visits back to Pakistan. I submitted my resignation to Aaj TV's Ahmad Zuberi after taking him on board regarding my decision, and decided to join Samaa in May '11.