Wednesday, November 29, 2006


You know how there's that one toilet in a public restroom (or more than one, depending on location of said public restroom) that someone's taken an uneartlhy dump in and has, for whatever reason, neglected to flush away? And, in a public restroom of ten toilets, you walk into the stall housing the nasty toilet because, like, that's your favorite one, right? What you see there in front of you shakes you to the core so, nearly drowning in wave after wave of nauseau, you save yourself from the undercurrent of crap and scurry out of stall, backwards, nearly falling down on your ass as you utter a loud expletive and curse the disgusting beast of a human being who doesn't know how to clean up after herself.

It takes you a while to calm yourself. You hold your breath because now everthing reeks of crap and, very cautiously, you tap open the door of a stall on the opposite end of the restroom, as far as you can possibly get from that feculent toilet. Upon catching sight of pristine porcelain perfection lapping with nothing but crisp water, you exhale with relief (no pun intended).

Now, if this toilet happens to be in a restroom at a place like, say, work, you'll have to venture to the restroom numerous times (the number of times can fluctuate according to what proper hydration means to you) and, if you're anything like me, you'll accidently walk into the stall of crap each and every time because that was your favorite stall, after all, until some heartless, inconsiderate fiend decided to go and spoil that. Each and every time, you will likely have the same reaction: nearly falling as you scurry out of stall backwards, uttering loud expletive (depending on how many times this happens, the one loud expletive can very quickly multiply into a string of loud expletives). This experience will very nearly spoil your day unless, of course, a braver soul than you decides its time to rescue dainty sensitivities, such as your own, from such ghastliness.

It doesn't take much thought on the part of this maverick. She simply walks into restroom, then walks into the stall of horrors and, without even having seen you cowered and jittery in a corner, she sighs exasperatedly (this might be accompanied by a roll of the eyes and/or a shake of the head), and, flushing the toilet with a foot, she closes the door of the stall behind her, like it's no thang to be in the same tiny space as crap-filled porcelain, in the process of emptying itself out. As young or old as she may be, the restroom maverick, very much, has the same air about her as a tired mother.

So, to maverick toilet flusher lady, I say thank you, for everything.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006


60 is the new 40 and cosmetic surgery is the new black. I don't know about you kids but I'm totally jumping on the lunchtime lipo bandwagon when I'm 40…or 30…ahem...

In other news, 10 is the new 15, 30 is the new 20(according to JayZ, anyway) and early is the new late (a 2005 Boston Globe article revealed that Americans are doing chores that they would have relegated to the late afternoon in the early AM…but it has been a year since the article and I wonder if late is, in fact, the new early).

Monday, November 27, 2006


The blister is the blight of pink skin, skin that is naïve and pathetically pretty in its newness.

But, upon closer examination, it is evident that the blister is a defense mechanism, built to protect guileless skin from repetitive friction and heat and heartache. It may hurt like hell by the end of the race, but that bloody blister will help your skin heal; it will be the cushioning your wounded derma needs to pick up the pieces.

This is how it happens: your feet caught in the embrace of your socks caught in the embrace of your sneakers run along on a high of endorphins and pheromones, a concoction of extravagant fantasy of feet that were meant to walk bare, not fly. The fragile layers of their skin separate and the emptiness that results isn't empty for very long: it swells to a tear-filled tautness until it bursts. But feet never do learn their lesson. They subject their skin to the same process of heat and friction and heartache until, eventually, the skin--too tired to hollow itself out, too tired of tears--becomes so hard and so calloused that it no longer needs blistering to survive. Under layers and layers of scar tissue, the skin is strong enough on its own and immune to bouts of long-distance fancies.

And runners keep on running.

Friday, November 24, 2006


Yesterday was Thanksgiving. It was good. There were much victuals for consumption. My brain cells are still hung over from the abundance of victuals; either that or they’ve been converted into fat cells. I suspect it might be the latter.

Must return to healthy eating today.

The following dishes adorned the Khan dinner table for seven:


Mushroom pizza
Pumpkin soup
Wheaten bread
European cheese and herb bread

Main Course

2 turkeys (18 lb and 16 lb)
2 stuffings
Yorkshire pudding
Sweet potato casserole
Brussel sprouts
Mashed potatoes


harvest pie
pumpkin cream pie
pancake cookies
apple pie

Food was abundant. So much so that it was rather absurd. The volume of leftovers makes this amongst our most absurd Thanksgivings ever.

Must return to healthy eating tomorrow (ahem).

Suffice it to say that Black Friday found me shopping at 6AM, not for clothes, but for accessories. Shopping was success.

Must return to healthy eating sooner rather than later.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


For those of you who ask, is blogging no longer exciting for the Nerddd and is she, in fact, over it, I give you a resounding NO. I've been uber-busier-than-usual in my real-life life. Three meetings in one day (9AM-11AM; 12:30PM-3:00PM; 4:00PM-5:30PM) do a good job in reminding me that, holy shit, I'm an adult...because most of the time, I still feel like a twelve-year-old.

In other news, in spite of the extreme busyness, the day was punctuated by things that made me downright giddy, like:

*Seeing a nerdddy teenager who reminded me of me at 15 lost in the pages of Hamlet in the elevator as I left for work at 7AM this morning;
*managing to leave for the office at 7AM, just as I'd planned;
*being the first person to get off the train at my station (I really think this was a first for me; just for the record, this dude, who was very clearly late, blasted right past me on the stairs, so, alas, I was but the second person to exit the station. Hope the guy made it to wherever he had to be on time);
*singing Christmas carols under my breath with a hot cup of coffee in my hand as I practically skipped to work in my flats (wearing flats when I have to walk long distances makes me ridiculously happy);
*business lunch that was less business than it was lunch (when are business lunches ever business-y, really?) at one of my favorite eateries in the city, which became my most favorite eatery within a span of the second that it took me to absorb the lovely, tasteful holiday decorations that adorned the capacious space;
*seeing Spencer and Abigail Breslin eating two tables down from ours (he's lost all the baby chub...and I'm not a fan of the child actors, it was just random and amusing to see them);
*fancy tea time meeting at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's very fancy Patron's Lounge;
*pretending (in my head) to be famous and absurdly wealthy patron of the arts during meeting in Patron's Lounge;
*fretting about the risque neckline of my dress in the fancy and rather proper Patron's Lounge;
*even navigating exasperatedly through the dense holiday tourist traffic through the streets of the city

I really love this time of the year. There's something about the combination of crisp fall-turning-into-winter air, the exhilarting speed of work, and the Met that makes one happy to be alive. Life is good.

Sunday, November 19, 2006


Apologies yet again for being a delinquent blogger once again. Following is long list of excuses for why I've been neglecting my vengeful blog:

1) The Penguin's being an especially horrid, slave-driving pimp this month;
2) EVERYONE (ie business associates) wants to meet for lunch before the holidays;
3) Amma was in the hospital but a couple of weeks ago;
4) I think I'm developing adult onset ADD (I used to have scary focus when I was but a babe and now, not so much...let's blame it on the kamikaze brain cells...aging dumbs one down);
5) I have a great friend visiting from a continent far, far away;
6) I had a great uncle visiting from a state far, far away this weekend;
7) the THOUGHT of Thanksgiving and cooking that lavishly overindulgent meal is making me slightly nauseous;
8) the THOUGHT of grocery shopping tomorrow night in preparation for said overindulgence is making me slightly nauseous;
9) the THOUGHT of cooking is reminding me that I'm mostly allergic to cooking;
10) being reminded that I dislike cooking/baking/spending excessive amounts of time prepping food is making me wonder why I subject myself to slaving away in the kitchen for days in preparation for Thanksgiving;
11) which is all reminding me of the horribly rigged results of Iron Chef Thanksgiving: Khan Family Edition last year, something that I'm still not fully over;
12) I was waking at ungodly hours in order to commute to Connecticut last week;
13) I got lost at the Stamford train station last week;
14) ...okay, stop laughing! Getting lost at the train station in a sleep-deprived state of delirium ISN'T funny!
15) I have two words for you: carpal tunnel;
16) I have another word for you: syndrome;
17) Oh shmack! My left hand just went numb yo! I'm like psychic or something! Righteous;
18) I slept for a very long time yesterday (see 12, 13, 14...and 1-3, 5-10...and 19...);
19) I'm way too stressed most of the time;
20) I'm saving my energy for Black Friday shopping!, which leaves very little time for blogging

So, whatever. I'm back. I'll post a more proper blog tomorrow, I swear! Love ya, byebye!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Apologies for being a most delinquent blogger. I've been extremely busy of late. Last night, for instance, Punty and I had a hot date during which I wooed him with free advance screening tickets to Happy Feet, chocolates from Jacques Torres, my unrivaled knowledge of all things pop culture, my doe eyes and that pouty thing I do with my lips.

Yah, so it didn't work.

This, however, readers, wasn't the most bizarre part of the night. Punty not falling for my downright nerdchanting ways was eclipsed in that category by my commute via subway train to the theater. There I was, straphanging and minding my own business along with my other straphangers (and silently cursing the person at work who's been pilfering my weekly issues of The New Yorker for damn well over a month now!) when we were lurched out of our collective reverie by a panhandler.

What's so bizarre about a panhandler panhandling on a city subway, you ask?

Nothing, really, right? This one announced that her name was Carlene, that she was a 36-year-old widowed mother of two boys who needed cash to feed, not a drug habit, but her children. And then I turned to look at her and, dear jeebus, I recognized the lady! We'd graduated from college together! The reason I remember her is because she was so odd. I'd see her wandering around between classes, mumbling to herself. During class, she'd sometimes, very dramatically, take out a syringe of what I assumed was insulin and stab herself in the thigh.

I don't remember her name but who's really named Carlene these days, anyway (I feel like most Carlenes died out in the '70s; no offense to any surviving Carlenes or younger Carlenes out there), so it must be an alias. She isn't 36. I doubt she has two children and that she's a widow (unless she got really busy after graduating from college five years ago, in which case apologies to you Carlene). Even though I don't want to belive it, perhaps the one denial Carlene uttered in her introduction of herself was the only truth and she, in fact, did want the money for drugs? Perhaps I'm overthinking it? But, wouldn't you be disturbed, reader, if you ran into a former classmate begging for money, regardless of how well you knew him or her?

I gave her a Sacagawea dollar, which Punty astutely noted can be a collectors' item in addition to feeding Carlene, her family, and whatever else she chooses to do with the money.

Monday, November 13, 2006


As many of you know, I'm a pesco-ovo-lacto vegetarian--while I don't eat meat and fowl, I do eat dairy products, eggs and fish. The thought of going vegan and omitting all animal products from my diet is, frankly, frightening at the moment. However, reading this on CNN recently and watching America's Funniest Home Videos last night (one of the clips up for $100,000 showed a group in a Japanese restaurant laughing and ewww'ing upon noticing that the (supposedly cooked?) whole fish on one of their plates was actually twitching and gasping desperately for air. I didn't think it was funny at all.) is making me reconsider the "pesco" in my diet. As much as I love to eat fish, I don't know how I can do it with a clear conscience now. Any words of wisdoms from vegetarians/vegans would be much appreciated...

Saturday, November 11, 2006


I've never had Nutella, alcohol, Taco Bell, illegal drugs or a Krispy Kreme donut. I hate picnics and barbecues (and any other form of eating out-of-doors, especially on or near grass). In spite of being a vegetarian and a Muslim, I LOVE (shudder) Jello.

Friday, November 10, 2006

MY MOM: A Follow-up

Thanks readers for your thoughts and prayers. My amma is fully recovered from what seemed to be a scary reaction to a drug prescribed to her by her inept, imbecile, asshole doctor (forget McDreamy, he's not even McCompetent…and I hate him). She was discharged from the hospital in the late afternoon on Wednesday but had to wear this heart monitor to track her heart rate during normal daily activities for 24-hours thereafter. That's come off as well now, so she's fine. Again, thanks so much for caring.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


My mom had a health emergency last night. She's still in the hospital this morning undergoing tests. Amma is vigilant about her health and more active than women half her age (she puts me to shame in that department). Accompanying her to the hospital in an ambulance last night was distressing, to say the least; she looked so frail in her hopsital bed and, for the first time, she looked old to me. I hate that my parents are getting older. I hate thinking about their mortality. I would have done anything to protect my mother last night but knowing that I was as helpless as she was made me pace around her bed until she told me to sit down, that the sound of my heels on the floor were driving her crazy.

I'd rather have her torture me with her matchmaking ways than not have her around at all.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


Even when my mom swore off trying to play matchmaker for me, I knew that it was only a matter of time before she'd return to her old ways. As I've said before, it's biologically impossible for Pakistanis of a certain age--this includes aunts, cousins, grandmothers, fathers, uncles, sisters, brothers, dentists, neighbors, friends' and/or neighbors' parents, friends' and/or neighbors' grandparents, extended relatives of friends and/or neighbors, drug store cashiers, bank tellers, great-aunts, cabbies and great-uncles--to leave a single Pakistani man or woman of a certain age, well, single.

So, after weeks of essentially having left me alone, my mother reclaimed her matchmaking role when she, in that subdued and measured voice that she assumes when she's trying to be all serious-like told me about (not one, not two, not three, but...) FOUR (yep, count 'em and weep!) potential matches for me. I didn't let the conversation get very far beyond "Well, your cousin receives a Muslim newspaper at her mosque in [please insert name of any random middle-of-nowhere America city HERE]and families take out ads in the back of the paper looking for rishtas for their children and, well--, although she did manage to speak over my exclamations of "Ugh, AMMMMMAAAA!" and communicate to me that there were four ads taken out by physicians (woohoo! ugh) who happened to fall into my age range (yah, I'm sure that's 27-60) and all of whom were born and raised in the states. Email addresses were supposedly included in the ads. I I'm hoping that the parents have listed their own email addresses and not the addresses of their sons, who I'm pretty sure don't even know that they're being pimped in personal marriage ads.

...and so it goes...

Monday, November 06, 2006


Earlier today, I was waiting outside one of my favorite Manhattan eateries for a business lunch date. Shielding my eyes from a vicious sun glare that seemed to be following me and cursing myself for not being more of a sunglasses-gal--I feel pretentious and phony whenever I don shades--I squinted in search of the person with whom I was to be meeting, sampling his voice against the different people who circulated past me when, suddenly, a gnarled, old man who looked as much like the dark and musty corner of a library as I've seen anyone look like a place before, rushed up to me and asked, "Estelle?" His voice was crackling leaves.

"Um, no. Sorry," I said. He looked at me for a moment longer, confused before sighing and rejoining the steady swells of people, he disappeared.

I wonder what his story was.

Saturday, November 04, 2006


Dear Everyone:

Thanks for the thoughtful comments and advice in response to the post below. It's nice knowing that not only are people concerned with the (dire) state of my (nonexistent, ahem) lovelife but so many others are also going through much of what I'm experiencing (we're buttonholes on a sweater that's lost all of its buttons...or something...this calls for another ahem).

Still, I find it very interesting that most everyone read my confession to loneliness as being a desire to get married. Yes, I'd like to get hitched someday but not without first taking the time to build a solid relationship (something that my mother simply can't understand). I'm lonely for companionship. I want someone to be as interested in getting to know me as I am in getting to know him.

I'm not sure I'm making sense since I have a headache and am very sleepy at the moment. Perhaps I'll try to further elucidate later tonight or tomorrow.

In the meantime, thanks again for your interest. Seriously.


Thursday, November 02, 2006


...I'm lonely.

Holy shit. Since when did this blog become so effin' confessional? Fuck.
To everyone out there who knows me in real life: pretend like you never read this and don't go all weird on me the next time I see you.
To everyone out there who knows me in real life: yeah, I'm a fool for not having an anonymous blog.

I had an enlightening lunch with half of the family (one brother, one parent) the other day, during which, I was informed, all in jest, of course, that:

1) I started dating way too late in life (VERY TRUE)
2) and so, I'm doing now what I should have been doing in college, ie, having mindless, directionless fun (VERY CLEARLY, THE FAMILY IS CONFUSING ME WITH SOMEONE ELSE...TO MY FRIENDS GIGGLING THEMSELVES SILLY BECAUSE THEY'RE ALL TOO AWARE OF THE SEDATE LIFE THAT I DO LEAD, SHUT UP)
3) I don't know what I'm looking for in a partner (FALSE)
5) Guys figure out I'm a geek/loser after about five minutes of conversing with me (WHAT A LIE! I'M A WONDERFUL CONVERSATIONALIST!)
6) Publishing isn't the most lucrative industry, especially for a girl like me, who could've breezed right through med school (I'D RATHER BE HAPPY)
7) My poor future husband is going to waste away on my vegetarian diet (PEOPLE ARE FREE TO EAT WHATEVER THE HELL THEY WANT TO)
9) My arch-nemeses (plus hubbies, of course) have mapped out fabulous and financially secure lives (I DON'T HOLD GRUDGES, OTHER PEOPLE DO AND I'M HAPPY FOR ANYONE WHO IS LIVING A FABULOUS LIFE)

All of my retorts eventually dissolved into countless huffy variations of "AMMMMMA! TELL HIM TO QUIT IT!!" or "Seriously, can we talk about something else? Seriously?"

And I suppose I would be lying if I didn't tell you that, yes, in spite of being goddamn annoying, the lunch was pretty goddamn funny and I often had to bite my lip to keep a stern face.

But, let's get back to my loneliness and all. All I really want is someone who likes me as much as I like him; everything else just falls into place when two people just like each other, doesn't it?

Oh, sigh. Someone shake some sense into me, please.
...and I'm working on that anonymous blog...because being an open book is boring, mystery is hot (another nugget of wisdom bestowed on me during lunch).