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  • Weekend open thread

    by Sunny
    22nd April, 2006 at 4:49 am    

    Unbuckle that belt and let it all hang out.

                  Post to

    Filed in: Uncategorized

    44 Comments below   |  

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs

    1. douglas — on 22nd April, 2006 at 6:48 am  


      It has been an interesting week in blogland. I had no idea how attached to the US the ‘decent left’ (trade marked by the ‘decent left’) were. When I commented, on the willingness of most Americans to accept pre-digested crap from their media as fact, I was told to f off.

      Maybe it’s just the way I tell them, but I thought my comment, particularily in the light of George Clooneys’ view that nowadays you go to the news channel that has predigested the news for you and tells you what to think about it, was a valid criticism of the way the US is going.

      We seem to be entering an era when we don’t think for ourselves, and allow others to do it for us. Media as the new God?

      Ho, hum.

    2. neha — on 22nd April, 2006 at 7:40 am  

      And apparently blogs aren’t a big deal anyway if this is anything to go by. Almost amusing. I wonder how they did this study. Sit in a room without an internet connection and just get someone to come up with a number and calculate Total No. Of Blogs/ Total No. of People etc.

    3. Vikrant — on 22nd April, 2006 at 8:59 am  

      blah di blah folks… i’m off wont be here fer a long time. Sunster keep in touch….

    4. El Cid — on 22nd April, 2006 at 9:44 am  

      Vik, missing you already (not) ;)

    5. Refresh — on 22nd April, 2006 at 9:50 am  

      Sunny, What is fisking? What does it mean to you?

    6. Col. Mustafa — on 22nd April, 2006 at 11:56 am  

      People will laugh if i let it all hang out.

    7. Jai — on 22nd April, 2006 at 12:09 pm  

      Syed, who I will now refer to as “Our Man on The Apprentice”, needs to STOP TALKING during the boardroom session at the end of each show, otherwise he’s going to accidentally talk himself out of a job.

      I’m sure ours wasn’t the only Asian house with multiple family members looking at the TV from behind their hands raised in front of their faces (like an old scary episode of Dr Who) and shouting “Syed ! For the love of God, stop talking, goddammit !!!”

    8. al — on 22nd April, 2006 at 12:32 pm  

      worth noting Gautam Malkani’s piece about Desi’s in his article “What’s right with Asian boys”

    9. Sunny — on 22nd April, 2006 at 1:52 pm  

      Neha - exactly. I was a bit annoyed when that study came out but its not exactly surprising I’d say. After all that hype, the media is bound to pick up something that is on the other end of the spectrum. In fact I’m planning an article on this issue…

      Douglas - that is one thing that annoys me about commenting at Harry’s Place. Any criticism of America is akin to anti-semitism almost. I was in America for a month and I’m such a news junkie… but the news there was so bad I ended up watching regular tv! All the local stations were full of ‘man rescues cat from tree’ stories, while the nationals were obsessed with posturing over the US administration. Nothing actually interesting to watch.

      Vik - good luck with the exams mate!

      Refresh - Fisking is when you take someone’s article apart, argument by argument.
      So you list a line or a paragraph and respond to it underneath, and then another argument and a response, and so on… If I get time to fisk Wakkas Khan’s article on HuT then I’ll show you ;)

      al - thanks!
      GM told me the piece was coming out today and I have seen it before. I think it makes excellent reading - so go check it out folks. Lots of stuff there to think about.

    10. raz — on 22nd April, 2006 at 2:42 pm  

      Punjabi rap LOLZ

    11. al — on 22nd April, 2006 at 2:45 pm  

      Desi News

      Desi arrested for threatening Bush
      “An Indian graduate student in the US who posted inflammatory messages on an internet bulletin board has been arrested and charged with threatening to kill President Bush, First Lady Laura Bush, Vice-president Dick Cheney and top Republican leaders” .

      Desi Gay Love story
      NRI filmmaker Soman Chainani is to make a Hinglish feature called Love Marriage, “It’s a gay love story. But it’s completely suitable for the mainstream. Though the idea of a gay Indian wedding happening in the world, let alone on screen, must terrify a lot of people, I feel we’re ready for a desi gay love story. “

    12. Steve M — on 22nd April, 2006 at 2:46 pm  

      Jai, it wasn’t just in Asian houses. I like Sayed but ffs, all he had to do was shut up. You had to laugh at his incident with the keys and ‘Wandsworth’ Bridge, though. I reckon it was his worse showing since ‘The A Team’.

      Mind you, it’s got to be Ruth for the job, hasn’t it? I don’t especially like her but wow, she can sell.

      Actually, Sayed wouldn’t be ‘my Asian’ on The Apprentice. That would be Saira. Haven’t heard so much from her recently, though. Do you think it’s one Asian, one black and one Jew per series?

    13. Jay Singh — on 22nd April, 2006 at 2:51 pm  

      Who was the Jew in this series? Saira does my head in. I like Syed because he is an archetypal Bengali wide boy and is too endearingly stupid to realise that people dont fall for his bullshits and yes, his wandsworth bridge fiasco was hilarious. I reckon it is Ruth too - you can see that Sir Alan rates her and she is good.

    14. Steve M — on 22nd April, 2006 at 3:01 pm  

      You mean apart from Sir Alan, Jay? :-)

      I thought from his name that Samuel Judah must be Jewish but he looks Asian too.

      I notice that they’ve given Saira a column on the web site -

      Jay, did I ever mention that I was once offered a partnership in a Sikh-run clothing business on Camden Market? ;-)

    15. Jay Singh — on 22nd April, 2006 at 3:04 pm  


      yeah obviously Sir Alan is Jewish but I thought you were referring to the contestants. I think Samuel Judah is an Indian Jew because they interviewed his sister and she was definitely Indian. Be careful of Sikh market traders Steve they are good businessmen.

    16. Steve M — on 22nd April, 2006 at 3:18 pm  

      These boys were very good, and if they didn’t have such an eye for the ladies they would have been even better. I probably should have taken them up on their offer.

      They also did a fair job with my own sales pitch when I had to take a falafel break without cover. I could have lived without the one cassette that was repeated endlessly, however. ‘Gambling Man’ was it (about 1995)?

    17. Sunny — on 22nd April, 2006 at 3:39 pm  

      I’m yet to see one episode of the apparentice. Maybe I should watch them online… hmmm.

      A desi gay love story hmm? I’m sure there was a bollywood film that has been here already? Or was that the lesbian one, just so they could sell more tickets? :D

    18. Zak — on 22nd April, 2006 at 3:40 pm  

      Jai: Haha that line of yours about Syed had me in stitches..yeah the man is quite a character. Ruth is ahead because of this last episode but..I was initially impressed by Ansell but he doesn’t seem to fit the apprentice mould. I am sure Syed unless he screws up again will be in the last 3..the guy as SAS said has these moments of absolute brilliance which he counter balances with twice as many of absolute idiocy. Paul-Ruth-Syed are for my final three..Ansell could knock Paul if he implodes again though.

    19. El Cid — on 22nd April, 2006 at 4:04 pm  

      Missed it. Judging by your comments it will be good to catch up with the repeat.

    20. Steve M — on 22nd April, 2006 at 4:48 pm  

      Sunny, some of us teach or work for the government or council. Others are in the professions or computing. Still others are perhaps skilled manual labourers. One or two of us swan about all day giving TV interviews and making the odd scribble.

      The rest of us work for a living. We’re the ones that would find The Apprentice the most interesting. It’s not for the likes of you. ;-)

    21. Jai — on 22nd April, 2006 at 5:17 pm  

      I’ve grown to really like Saira (no not in the Biblical sense) in recent times — did anyone see her on Desi DNA a couple of weeks ago ? — although I don’t agree with some of her views on “Our Man” in her weekly column on the Apprentice website (I don’t think it would have been appropriate to fire him just for being late last week, considering the huge sale he’d just made — it would have been a case of “cutting off one’s nose to spite one’s face”, and a clear case of lack of strategic thinking, ie. looking at the big picture). But yes, apart from that, Saira is great.

      =>”Do you think it’s one Asian, one black and one Jew per series?”

      No, not at all. Don’t forget Mani (Sikh, I believe) and Nargis earlier in the present series.

      By the way, one of my friends is an ex-colleague of Mani from his consulting days, and apparently Mani is actually normally very good indeed at giving presentations ;)

      Apart from his occasionally-erratic behaviour (which I attribute to over-exuberance and insufficiently-controlled attempts at damage-limitation on his part), I think that Our Man is actually quite a good cultural fit for SAS’s team. He’d also be very good in some kind of front-office role in an investment bank — his personality and “manner” is typical for many of those guys.

      I agree that Ruth has been performing brilliantly recently — and doesn’t she know it, eh ;) — although she lacks leadership skills and, to some extent, also has a lack of respect for peer-members in positions of authority. Having said that, SAS himself might think she’s a good fit for his firm — he can be quite erratic in his choices sometimes.

      I also see Paul-Ruth-Syed as the final three.

    22. Jai — on 22nd April, 2006 at 5:24 pm  

      PS The part at the end of this week’s episode where Syed stays in his chair and starts trying another damage-limition exercise with SAS after the firing’s occured and everyone’s been dismissed was also a heart-stopping moment. Cue screams in houses all over the country of “NO NO NO — Syed, drop it and get the hell out of there !!!”

    23. al — on 22nd April, 2006 at 5:43 pm  

      Did anyone read the Time’s Health section today:

      Agony and ecstacy: sex advice
      Too much of a good thing?
      Q. My traditional Asian parents have told me that masturbation is bad for me. Is this true? And can you masturbate too much? I’m 25, male, and very worried

      Some devious desi’s probably sent it in, expecting his mates name to be published alongside the question.

    24. Steve M — on 22nd April, 2006 at 5:50 pm  

      When he does eventually go, how do you think he’ll go?

    25. StrangelyPsychedelique/Kesara — on 22nd April, 2006 at 6:03 pm  

      I quite like the US Print media ie: Boston Globe, NYTimes, Washington Post - in fact most of the scathing (and rational) criticisms of the US Govt I’ve come across are from the US.

      I find the Brit press a bit too sensational in its approach to news. I picked the Times for a uni project and Im kinda regretting the choice - so much bloomin hype.
      I find the Indie a bit stale - the Guardian too left wing, the Telegraph too Rightwing and the bloody FT is great but too pricey for poor estudiante.

      …then again Im pretty cynical about every media outlet so *shrugs*

      We seem to be entering an era when we don’t think for ourselves, and allow others to do it for us. Media as the new God?

      I think we’re pretty much well into it. Especially in the UK where the tabloids control the print market. 4 million Sun buyers a day…..blech…..

    26. El Cid — on 22nd April, 2006 at 6:18 pm  

      Yeah, but 80% of Brits read a daily newspaper compared to, say, France, where the figure is 30%, or the United States, where it is less than 60%..
      A tabloid like The Sun can sometimes also tell a story much more effectively than a broadsheet. True, it does deal predominantly with tittle-tattle — mainly smut, celebrity gossip and footy spec — but then people prefer to get their hard news off the TV. Remember that TV news in the US is much more partisan, so it’s just as well that their papers are a good read.
      Beware of getting too snobbish about these things. It’s good to read.

    27. Don — on 22nd April, 2006 at 7:14 pm  

      Despite my grumpy response to a week-end open thread turning into a footy row recently, may I just say;

      You’ll neeeever walk aloooone.

    28. El Cid — on 22nd April, 2006 at 7:24 pm  

      hypocrite (I, on the other hand, am biting my tongue)

    29. Sunny — on 22nd April, 2006 at 9:27 pm  

      What’s more worrying is that his parents are telling him staright off that too much masturbation is bad for him.

      Now given that Asian parents and sex advice go together like polar bears and the sahara desert, this young man has a problem if his parents are being that open. They probably have had enough :|

    30. Sunny — on 22nd April, 2006 at 9:59 pm  

      The rest of us work for a living. We’re the ones that would find The Apprentice the most interesting. It’s not for the likes of you.

      How dare you… that was a low blow. Pimping and writing articles is hard work. :|

      Some of the time :|

    31. Refresh — on 23rd April, 2006 at 12:48 am  

      Sunny thanks for the explanation. Elsewhere I understood it to (mis)use Robert Fisk’s name.

      I have high regard for his journalism and wasn’t sure where we stood when anyone used the term ‘fisk’.

    32. Sunny — on 23rd April, 2006 at 1:17 am  

      Well, it is derived from Robert Fisk since the practice came from many rightwing bloggers “Fisking” him.

    33. raz — on 23rd April, 2006 at 2:19 pm  

      Ossie boy just came out with another tape. Must be starved of attention.

    34. Sunny — on 23rd April, 2006 at 5:58 pm  

      Maybe he wants to influence the British local elections.
      “You infidels must vote for the Tories if you want peace in our time…”

    35. Jai — on 23rd April, 2006 at 6:13 pm  

      Steve M,

      =>”When he does eventually go, how do you think he’ll go?”

      1. He may not “go” at all — he could still win.
      2. He’ll make some unforgivably-major blunder either during a task or in the boardroom, and SAS will just run out of patience (or find an excuse to fire him, depending on whatever his “real” opinion of Syed is).
      3. He’ll go “by default” — not because of any major failing on his part, but because the other candidate(s) may just perform better than him in a certain task and, as someone has to be fired every week, it ends up being him.

    36. Jay Singh — on 23rd April, 2006 at 6:22 pm  

      Imagine Osama on The Apprentice in the boardroom.

      Sir Alan:

      Osama, you messed up the task, you’re an amateur, I’m Sir Alan Sugar, you won’t fit into my organisation, I’m afraid to say, you’re fired.

      Osama Bin Laden:

      I’m fired? No you stinking Jew Zionist Pig, soon you shall be fired, fired at by martyrs of Al-Quds, fired at by the fires of the Ummah, who shall smite you as Ibn Al -Arabi smited the crusaders in Damascus in 1297, we shall regain Spain you stinking east end Zionist dog and you shall all be our slaves and apprentices.

    37. Jai — on 23rd April, 2006 at 7:20 pm  

      It could get even worse…..

      *Flashback to the beginning of the episode*

      SAS: Osama, I’m reshuffling the teams today and you’ll be with Mani, Syed, Nargis and Ruth. Ruth will be the project manager this week.

      Osama: Syed, I condemn you as an apostate. You have no beard and you wear the clothes of the infidel.

      Syed: Wait a minute. I’ve worked hard all my life, I come from the East End too, and I have what it takes to succeed here if I’m given the opportunity.

      Osama: You will die at the hands of our martyrs alongside the rest of the kaffirs who all desire our destruction. This boardroom is yet more evidence of the oppression of my brothers and sisters by the heathen hordes.

      SAS (rubbing his forehead repeatedly): Osama, I’m losing patience with you. You do this every week.

      Syed: Sir Alan…..

      Osama: Nargis, I cannot look at you while you are unveiled like the shameless harlots of the West. Begone from my presence.

      Syed: Sir Alan…..

      Nargis: Osama, did you know how many cats were bought in London last year ?

      Syed: Sir Alan….

      Osama: Nargis, at least you have not fallen into the ways of the infidels by going on about dogs. There is hope for you yet. Ruth, I cannot work under you as you are a woman and therefore it is haraam for me to look at you too.

      Ruth frowns (doing bulldog face): Don’t point at me. And what do you mean by “haraam” ?

      Mani: Look it up in a dictionary. I don’t have time for this.

      Osama: In the name of Allah Almighty, I claim Amstrad as my property. As my minion Anjem Choudhary said on Newsnight, this country belongs to Allah, and therefore I proclaim that it also belongs to His dearest worshipper, namely me.

      SAS: Well I’m a Jew and I don’t care. There’s only one Almight in this room as far as you’re concerned, and that’s me.

      Mani: I’m a world-class presenter and I resent being referred to as a heathen.

      Syed: Sir Alan, can I just say…..

      Osama: I can’t believe I came all the way from the my cave just for this. I felt less under fire during the Battle of Tora Bora.

    38. Don — on 23rd April, 2006 at 8:16 pm  

      Perfect. The twin scourges of civilisation - terrorism and reality TV. How did we not see this sooner?

    39. Jai — on 25th April, 2006 at 11:40 am  

      Speaking of the reality show menace, something else occurred to me : Osama on Big Brother.

      Imagine the line-up…..

      Osama bin Laden.
      A Hare Krishna from the famous Hindu temple in Watford.
      Anjem Choudhary.
      A nun.
      An Amritdhari (baptised) Sikh, wearing the full 5Ks (including a full-length sword).
      A rabbi.
      And either Sunny Leone or Mallika Sherawat.*

      *For the non-Asians on PP, Ms Sherawat is a current Bollywood actress famous for her defiantly-racy on-screen behaviour.

      (Geordie accent): “It’s 8.52pm. Osama has been in the diary room for 94 minutes.”

    40. Rohin — on 25th April, 2006 at 11:54 am  

      I like how you explain Mallika Sherawat to people but assume we all know who Sunny Leone because we all watch porn!

      Having said all that, I know her entire bio, date of birth and vitals. And none of those lot deserve to be locked up with her.

      Didn’t the Nazis invent Big Brother? Locked up in bunker, leaving/dying one by one. I’d love Osama and Hitler in the BB House together.

      “Who goorz, who steeez, you desaide.”

    41. Jay Singh — on 25th April, 2006 at 12:22 pm  

      I’m sure your interest in Sunny Leone is on a purely medical and anatomical basis Rohin :-)

    42. sonia — on 25th April, 2006 at 1:03 pm  

      douglas up there - you’ve hit the nail bang on the head. Media the new God is definitely it.

    43. sonia — on 25th April, 2006 at 1:47 pm  

      Hmm Steve M up there…i work for a living - pretty hard! - and i don’t find the Apprentice the least bit interesting. I

      think its crap, awful, i don’t know why those people let themselves in for the thrashing they know they’re going to get and that that this Alan fellow wants to give, and that the public wants to watch gleefully ( cos its not them)…

      it seems to me all forms of ‘reality tv’ just panders to ‘schadenfreude’ wonder its so bloody successful!

    44. Jai — on 25th April, 2006 at 3:11 pm  


      =>”I’d love Osama and Hitler in the BB House together.
      “Who goorz, who steeez, you desaide.” ”

      “For this week’s task, Osama and Adolf, you have to learn the words of the Hindus’ Gayatri Mantra (in Sanskrit) and its English translation, and build a model of a synagogue from the materials supplied in the diary room.

      You also have to give a 20-minute presentation on the unity of the human race and why fascism and religious hypocrisy are incompatible with any genuine notion of spirituality.

      Failure to do so will result in a penalty, which in your case will involve being locked in the diary room for 2 hours with Gurbani kirtan continuously playing until the message finally gets through to you. Osama, you will suffer the additional penalty of being made to listen to some of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s best and most uplifting qawaalis, as further punishment for the mess you have made of the image of Muslims (and bearded & turbaned types everywhere) worldwide and for your nefarious influence on impressionable Asian Muslims here in the UK.”

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