Friday, June 29, 2007


After asking me how I would feel about relocating to Chicago ("For an engineer, of course!"), expressing her total disappointment in my priorities ("Work, independence...these things are silly. Life begins only after one gets married!"), and her confusion about how I could've missed the marriage boat that, according to her, most Pakistani girls my age boarded five years ago ("You're not getting any younger, you know!"), my cousin recently concluded that my biological urges must be out to lunch ("although, as I said before, the urge is much stronger in boys...").

Ah,'ve gotta love 'em.

Thursday, June 28, 2007


I've been craving beef jerky all morning.
I haven't craved beef in the 2.5 years I've been a vegetarian.
For the love of Ingrid Newkirk, what kind of a vegetarian am I!!!???

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Dear lady who is obsessed with my moves at the gym:

I hate you.

I don't know who you are but you seem to think that you can synchronize-stretch with me and that's just not cool. You don't even pretend to do your own thing, you freak. Instead, you roll out your yoga mat right next to mine and, staring right at me, you attempt to mimic my stretches and corrective exercises, move by every challening-yet-restorative move. This is just weird and has to stop. I'm happy to answer any questions you might have about my warmup routine but I will not be your synchronized-stretch partner.

Thanks in advance for your cooperation.

The Nerd

ps: If you are mentally handicapped, which on some days I suspect you may be, please accept my sincere apologies for putting you on the spot with this open letter on my blog. If you don't suffer from a mental impairment, you really ought to be ashamed of yourself, jerk, and let me work out in peace. Thanks again for understanding and best of luck with the stretching!

Monday, June 25, 2007


I was a wussy kid. I had problems socializing (I now realize that this was probably due to the fact that I hadn’t ever really spoken English prior to kindergarten so it still felt very foreign on my tongue. I should add, though, that while I couldn't speak the language, I tested at a sick reading level, which I still find very peculiar), I couldn’t keep up in gym class, and someone made me cry at school almost every single day.

I was as far from cool as one could get.

And yet, have you seen a more badass creature than the one in the pic above? I’m four or five in it and, sweet goodness, between the apathetic posture, the black with red-trimmed galoshes over red tights, the crazy attempt at cornrows, the puffy Victorian-meets-the-‘80s inspired rockin' dress, and the “I’ll-shiv-you-bitches-if-you-stare-too-long” gaze, I look like I could obliterate just about anyone. And, let’s not forget the turntable over my left shoulder (sure, it’s probably just a record player but badass-tot-Sabila demands that it be an EFFIN’ TURNTABLE so she can spin sick beats).

Goddamn, it feels good to be a gangsta…or look like one in a photograph.


The universe played a cosmic joke on me when I was diagnosed with allergies to cats, dogs, and horses four years ago. I still blame the allergies on my parents for 1) giving me the defective genes in the first place and 2) preventing any chances I had of training my malfunctioning, asshole immune system to realize that cats, dogs, and horses are NOT THE ENEMY by not giving into my kicking-screaming-I'll-hold-my-breath-until-I-have-a-goddamn-caaaaat!!! tantrums.

While I do have a cat now--the lovely Zanadune--I have to pop and snort medications on a daily basis just to keep her. And, what about my dream to someday have three dogs and four cats (all rescues and special needs, of course)? Sadly, the volume of dander in such a household would likely kill me (or just make me extremely itchy). I'm afraid that short of a miracle cure, it can never be.

What has made me so miserable and crestfallen, you ask? Sarah McLachlan's ad for the ASPCA. It had me sobbing in front of the television today. Not even those Kodak ads from back in the day--you know, the ones that aired during the summer Olympics back in the late '80s and featured "True Colors" by Cyndi Lauper--made me cry like I cried today.

Friday, June 22, 2007


Two winters ago on Pinel Island, my bff--pushing aside aside my spf 50 sunscreen with a look of utter disgust on her face-- declared "Asians don't get skin cancer! There, you've heard it from a goddamn nurse. Now, stop being paranoid, put on my spf 5 sunscreen and let's freakin' try to look like we actually spent 11 days in the freakin' Caribbean."

By the time we returned home to an arctic mainland, we were both a matching shade of eggplant.

Good times.

Thursday, June 21, 2007


It's time to quiz your knowledge of the Nerd again! Take the HOW WELL DO YOU KNOW OUR NERD NOW test and post your results in the comments section.

I strongly encourage the overachievers among my readers to take (or retake) the original test. You'll probably know me better than my shrink after you're done with both tests!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


This past weekend saw your nerd behind the wheel of a car after an exceedingly long hiatus from driving.

Rest assured, reader, it was good. Sure, sometimes it was bad (had Mike-the-instructor not stamped on the brake that one time, the chap who was jaywalking would surely have gotten up close and personal with the car's bumper) but it was mostly excellent.

The car from the driving school pulled into my building's parking lot, covered with bright yellow "WARNING! STUDENT DRIVER!" stickers and with a twitchy female student behind the wheel. The woman emerged from the car, noticeably relieved to hand the vehicle over to--gulp--me. Little did she know. As she took her seat next to a gentleman (the dude later informed me that he wasn't a student but had just tagged along with the chick. Who in the hell tags along on driving lessons? Weak, man. WEAK.) in the back. Mike-the-instructor, who was all belly with matching little stumps for arms and legs, also emerged from the car to help me get situated behind the wheel.

As I slipped into the driver's seat--already having developed a bit of a complex because of those damn friggin' warning stickers--I announced in my most responsible-driver voice, "I just want you three to know that it's been close to a decade since I've driven a car, so I'd wear my seat belt if I was you." They gulped in unison.

Other than that close call with the jaywalker, my tendency to go over the crawlingly slow speed limit of 25 miles per hour ("I'm sorry, I'm sorry," became a constant refrain of mine in the car), and Mike-the-instructor's flatulence (I kid you not. We were forced to roll up the windows because it had started to rain and, oh boy, with that most brutal assault on my olfactory organs, I could barely focus on the road. I'm even tempted to blame the near vehicular manslaughter of the reckless jaywalker on the silent-but-deadly bombs my corpulent instructor kept throwing at me but, alas, I can't. Reckless jaywalker and I share responsibility for that almost-tragedy. Thank goodness it was averted), I learned a lot. Really:

I (re)learned how to drive in a straight line (I'm still trying to get a hang of driving at 25 miles per hour. Between that and the bright yellow sticker, I felt myself return to a place I still hate: third grade gym class). I also learned that being able to drive would make me less dependent on my future husband than I would be otherwise ("Why would I ever depend on my husband for anything," I asked Mike-the-instructor defensively); that female drivers were always a nervous lot, who simply needed a couple of hours of instruction before they became confident enough to drive ("Now that statement, Mike-the-instructor, was among the most chauvinistic I've heard in quite some time. What, are men born clutching driver's licenses??" I demanded); and that Mike-the-instructor would reward me with a "You're a good girl," each and every time I came to a full stop before a stop sign. Shudder.

Anyway, next weekend will see the nerd parallel park, k-turn and drive on a highway. I won't lie: the thought of driving on a highway makes me wet my pants a little with fear. Perhaps I, too, will bring along a friend for the moral support.

Sunday, June 17, 2007


When a hot guy asks what you have planned for the weekend, "Lots of reading," is never the right answer.

Thursday, June 14, 2007


Dear guys,

A friend and I are planning a trip to an undetermined location in Maine at an undisclosed time this summer. As neither of us has ever visited the great state of Stephen King, Ron Currie, Jr., lobsters, lighthouses, toothpicks (Maine happens to be the number one exporter of toothpics), blueberries (Maine also happens to be the number one exporter of blueberries) and large print publishers, we'd be ever grateful to have travel tips from folks familiar with the area.


The Nerddd

ps: It was back in 1998 that I nearly ran over a family as I attempted to parallel park. The mother and a couple of the kids may have flashed obscene gestures at me but that was it. Nothing more critical transpired. The emotional trauma of the event, however, resulted in my almost decade-long absence from behind the wheel. Say a prayer for me (as well as for all of the poor souls who will be on the road with me) at 4PM this Sunday as I take a two hour driving refresher course!

Monday, June 11, 2007


Over the past two days, at least fifteen visitors--nine alone today--found my blog by running searches for "dirty MadLibs." I've always known that my blog has long been among the top search results for "dirty MadLibs," but to think that I might be the progenitor of a dirty MadLibs revolution is staggering and at times humbling. Some may argue that the uncensored director's cut of MadLibs has existed well before this Nerd started playing the game and perhaps it is safe to surmise that the dirty MadLib has been around since that very first time a MadLibs fell into the hands of a kid--or an adult...ahem--who found words like scrotum , crab, armpits, and loins inherently funny, in which case I'm not a trailblazer, after all, and all I've simply done is jumped onto a bandwagon that had always been in full swing...but maybe I'm wearing earplugs and don't hear the music and have deluded myself into believing that there isn't any music at all and I'm doing everyone a favor by bringing the music to them that I, at the end of the day, can't hear because of the ear plugs.

All that may very well be true but I am still proud to be a practitioner of the fine art of the dirty MadLib and am honored to maintain a top result in your Google and Yahoo searches for this most sophomoric and enjoyable of games.

*disclaimer: I'm very sleepy at the moment. I have a feeling that I will regret this post in the morning.


This was one of those rare weekends during which I find that I have absolutely nothing but hours and hours of free time on my hands. It was a rare blessing, indeed.
I had all the time in the world. I could've done anything I pleased...or nothing at all. Had I wanted to, I could've probably even finally sat down and watched those three Netflix movies that, a third of a year since they arrived, are still languishing on top of the DVD player.

Did I watch any one of the three?
You guessed it, reader: not a chance.

Instead of catching up with the ol' Netflix, I caught up on three hours' worth of DVR'd episodes of A Haunting, The Discovery Channel's series on haunted houses; I walked to the video store (walking to the video store happens to be precisely what I was hoping to eliminate from my life by signing up with NetFlix. Hell.) and rented Catch and Release and Because I Said So (so what if I was in the mood for romantic comedies? The Nerd happens to enjoy the occasional romantic comedy); I read Diane Setterfield's fantastic debut novel The Thirteenth Tale (not only did I read it on Saturday but I found myself rereading the last quarter of it on Sunday...why? Because I had the time to reread it); I (finally) read the first quarter of Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma ; I spent hours and hours loitering the old haunts and reminiscing with my bff; I washed the windows to a streakless clean; I cleaned the bathroom; I slept for hours in the afternoon.

I could've done anything with my free time but I DIDN'T WATCH THE NETFLIX MOVIES. I can't do it. I have some sort of mental block that's preventing me from picking up one of those godforsaken Netflix envelopes, removing the bloody DVD from the bloody envelope, inserting said DVD into the friggin' DVD player, sitting back and finally watching any one of the movies. And though I know that getting over this Netflix block seems rather impossible right now, I'm not quite ready to admit defeat. I'm not ready to relinquish that impressive queue I spent time thoughtfully putting together.

And, like a patient parent, Netflix--the queue!--waits for me, its prodigal daughter.

Friday, June 08, 2007


1) Anonymous asked: Would you be interested in a blind date?
Dear Anonymous, I'd probably prefer a sighted date...wacka wacka wacka......ahem. Seriously though, anonymous, I hate the blind date. As much as one tries to walk into the blind date with an open mind and a good attitude, the night inexorably heads in the direction of great misery and even greater awkwardness...well, at least it has when my mom and her cohorts have set me up. In any case, I avoid the blind date at all costs so, no, I wouldn't be interested in one at this or any other time.

2) Anonymous asked: Would you marry an Indian muslim?

Sure, why not?

3) Sikanderk asked: What are five things in your life for which you are thankful?
*my family (my Zanadune's included, dammit)
*my friends (you know who you are)
*my health
*my job (it's going to be six years with the bird next year and this working relationship still makes me feel downright giddy. I know, I know...I'm a boob)
*my conviviality and my books tie for fifth

4) Anonymous asked: If I put my head in oven and legs in ice, on an average am I ok?
Only if you are a statistician, dear anonymous. Now, if you're a poet, we've got problems...

5) Anonymous: Since your mom loves to play the role of matchmaker, and none of her kids are interested in getting married, would she mind hooking me up; I'm desperate :P

Anonymous, are you KIDDING me? I won't hear the end of how I should aspire to be as good, obedient, and desperate as you are. Thanks but no thanks!

6) Anonymous: How do you get spray paint out of your hand?
With Lava. Lava had a brief stint as the Khan family bathroom soap back in the day. I kinda loved it.

7) Anonymous: Would you marry a non Muslim is what I'm interested in?
Sure, why not?

Thursday, June 07, 2007


Folks, it's that time of the month again: I open the blog floor to your questions. Actually, the last time I did this was back in 2006 (check it out here and here)
and, sure, I've just now decided to make this a monthly feature because I'm exhausted, which makes me unable to type and think at the same time, rendering me as useless as wet matches, which I realize is a horrible similie but, wow, I'm tired.

So, ask me questions--the question can be about me, you, your in-laws, your neighbors, Brad Pitt, or freakin' Bhutan. I'll answer them tomorrow.

I'm going to bed.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007


I threw caution and my physical therapist's expert, $35 per-visit-copay advice to the wind yesterday. I ran.
It was terrific. Though the run was only 5 miles and on a treadmill, it managed to eradicate all of the day's shittiness (and, trust me, it was an EXTREMELY shitty day). I stretched like a maniac before the run and I stretched like a maniac after the run. The endorphins were still pumping through my system today, which made for sheer loveliness and inspired me to run another 5.5 miles after work. Endorphins are my friends.

Thank God the hip doesn't hurt but, for some reason, my right pointer finger is freakin' killing me. Wonder if it'll require therapy.

In other news, I dreamt last night that I was making out with Mekhi Pfeiffer. Bizarre? Yes. I've never found Mekhi Pfeiffer attractive and, really, I have absolutely no reason to be dreaming of him, let alone making out with him in my dream. How random is that, right? Not very, if you consider that, years ago, I dreamt of making out with another actor who played a doctor on ER, an actor who I didn't find attractive: Anthony Edwards. In that dream, Anthony Edwards was wearing a red and black flannel shirt--it looked like a farmer's shirt--and we were kissing in a red pickup truck.


Any dream interpreters out there?


I ran into an old family friend at the mall last week. As I fully expected, our conversation quickly segued from courteous greetings to the woman reassuring me that I need not fret about being single in my late 20s because even though I was old by South Asian marriage standards, at least I looked younger than my age.

I fought the urge to suplex her.

She proceeded to tell me that she might have one or two potential suitors for me and that I should have my mom be in touch with her. When I thanked her and told her that I wasn't interested in being setup at the time, she said [cue: Twilight Zone theme] that she'd prefer continuing this conversation with my mother and that I should know better than to meddle in the business of elders.

I disengaged myself from the conversation before I could triple-jump moonsault the idiot.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

My posts have been few and far between of late and while I'd love to ascribe my negligence to an overwhelming amount of fabulousness in my life, the truth of the matter is that I'm currently experiencing a spell of complete and utter (and--let's be honest here--somewhat self-inflicted) B-O-R-E-D-O-M. Since watching Spring Awakening, the most excitement I've experienced is a near-slip on spilled fava beans at ShopRite and the resultant stiffness (plus a feeling hovering uncomfortably close to pain) in the almost-healed bum right hip. Not to worry--the hip hasn't been re-strained and I should be up and running again in another couple of weeks barring additional close encounters with beans.

If we're going to count the fava beans incident as a not-so-boring moment in my current state of ennui, we shouldn't leave out the Mexican food I had for dinner last weekend. Given the contentious relationship my digestive system has with the cuisine from south of the border, the fiesta in my stomach that followed the meal was no surprise. That's what I call a change of pace.

And while we're on the subject of food, I recently discovered two heretofore never before sampled LightLife vegetarian deli meats. I've been eating the company's vegetarian bologna for years but I had the roast turkey and baked ham for the first time last week and, oh my goodness, both flavors are delectable. The latter was a revelation since I've never had pork in my life. It was a nice break from routine.

Still, my current state of existence is not unlike that of the amber-encased prehistoric mosquito fossil in Jurassic Park. Actually, it was because of that mosquito that scientists in the novel/film were able to genetically engineer dinosaurs (and goddamn it, am I jealous of that insect's legs? really?), so I guess I lose. Bloody hell.

Super. Back to watching the Yankees blow another lead. Sigh.

UPDATE: I'd like to add tonight's final game in the Yankees-Red Sox series as a greatly satisfying moment for me.