The untimely death of Karima Baloch is shocking and deeply disturbing. She could have been my daughter for so many reasons: her age; she was only 37. She had been a student of psychology like me and her activism to fight for the human rights of Baloch students totally resonates with me.  

Karima had been missing for two days and her body was found on Monday 21 December in a canal in Toronto. Police said there did not believe there to be any suspicious circumstances. However, Ms. Baloch had recently received anonymous threats warning someone would send her a “Christmas gift” and “teach her a lesson”.  The Baloch Human Rights council of Canada rejects the findings of the Toronto police that Karima killed herself and demand an independent inquiry into her death

Who was Karima Baloch?

Karima had come to Canada as a refugee when her life became unbearable in Pakistan. Its reported that upon arrival in Canada, she had ripped off the hijab she had had to wear for ten years because being veiled helped her blend in with the crowds, and that she had declared: “I finally feel free, and safe.”

Karima was no ordinary person. She was the first female head of the Baloch Students Organization (BSO), a group that fights for the rights of the Baloch people. In 2016, the BBC listed her among the 100 most “influential and inspirational” women in the world.

Karima and her husband were actively involved in lobbying for the rights of the Baloch people. Balochistan is located in the south west of Pakistan. In the west it borders with Afghanistan and Iran and in the south, it has the Arabian Sea. It accounts for nearly half the land mass of Pakistan and only 3.6% of its total population. The province is immensely rich in natural resources, including oil, gas, copper and gold. Despite these huge deposits of mineral wealth, the area is one of the poorest regions of Pakistan. A vast majority of its population lives in deplorable housing conditions where they don’t have access to electricity or clean drinking water.

In 1948, Balochistan decided not to accede the rest of Pakistan. On March 26, 1948, the Pakistan Army was ordered to move into the Baloch coastal region of Pasni, Jiwani and Turbat and since then there has been turbulent unrest in the area. Many Baloch activists have been persecuted. Earlier this year, a Baloch journalist Sajid Hussain suspiciously died in Sweden.

It seems that the turf wars have now moved to the West.

When such proxy killings happen, where do we stand in Canada? Politicians have no idea the situation, not that they don’t want to know. Fact is they only know what the lobby tells them. We have very strong ISI (Pakistan Inter Service Intelligence) backed lobbies, along with Iranian regime lobbies right up the corridors of power. We recently saw the suspicious death of two Iranian activists in Canada who spoke out against the Iranian regime.

If you listen to the statements of some of Parliamentarians regarding these issues their words echo more as if they were from Islamabad or Tehran rather than Ottawa. One wonders????

Who will follow up on Karima’s death?

Because she was an activist, unfortunately the community wants to distance itself except the people who are passionate about human rights and other Baloch activists. Mainstream media also avoids such issues.

Since this is not the first or the last of these ghastly proxy murders, its time law enforcement and politicians get caught up on issues dealing with migrant communities by taking assistance from human rights activist of those areas.

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Few weeks ago, there was a horrific barbaric attack on a woman in Pakistan. The woman was driving from the city of Lahore to Gujranwala with her children when the incident took place. Her car ran out of fuel on a deserted highway and she called for help. While she was waiting, two men allegedly broke the windows as the doors were locked and raped the woman in front of her terrified children. They also stole cash and jewelry from the woman before fleeing the scene. A week later police said they had arrested the two men.
In the immediate aftermath of this horrific incident, Lahore police chief Umar Shaikh said the woman should not have been travelling alone at that time. This remark raised a huge uproar in civil society and many women’s groups came out on the streets demanding safety and justice for women. Shaan Taseer, an advocate for minority and women’s rights living in Toronto says “The police officer’s statement shocked everyone not just because he held the victim responsible but also because he demonstrated no awareness of any responsibility on part of the police to protect the public. This is an abrogation of the state’s social contract”.
According to Madadgaar National Helpline Pakistan is among those countries where 70% women and girls experience physical or sexual violence in their lifetime by their intimate partners and 93% women experience some form of sexual violence in public places in their lifetime.

Although gang rape is rare in Pakistan, sexual harassment and violence against women is frequently reported. Nearly 1,000 women are killed in Pakistan each year in so-called “honor killings” for allegedly violating conservative norms on love and marriage.
Other crimes against women are on the rise. Among them is Human trafficking. In 2018 Trafficking in Persons Report, Pakistan was upgraded in Tier 2 by the U.S. Department of State. This means that the government of Pakistan does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, but is still making significant efforts to do so.
Not long ago, Pakistani authorities arrested 12 suspects — eight Chinese nationals and four Pakistanis — in a case involving the sex trafficking of young Pakistani women to China. Many had been sent as so-called “brides.” Most of them, some as young as 13, belong to Pakistan’s Christian minority.

Women from minority communities are constantly targeted for forced conversions and underage marriage. Of the 159 cases reported between 2013 and 2019, some 16 girls and young women have gone before the Sindh High Court asking for support against their forced marriages. The most recent case is that of Huma, a 14-year-old Christian girl from Zia Colony in Karachi, Pakistan. Whilst her parents were out, she was abducted from her home and forced to convert and marry a Muslim man.
Adding insult to injury, the abductor has threatened both the parents and their lawyer that he will accuse them with blasphemy if they pursue the case. Huma’s case has been dragging through the courts for months with no solution in sight.
Prime Minister Imran Khan was quoted as saying in an AP report as saying, “such brutality and bestiality cannot be allowed in a civilised society.” He also said that the protection of women is the first priority and responsibility of the government.
The question that arises is how much of the problem can be resolved by the government in a society where men have been brought up with no respect for women?
Violence against women in any form is a kind of ‘extremism’ and the minds of young men have been ‘radicalized’ to think of women as sub-humans. Until that attitude changes, there will be no progress. Sure, the perpetrators are eventually caught and punished but their mindset remains the same – violent misogynist to the core.
This problem is not limited to Pakistan. Violence against women takes place in many parts of South Asia and the Middle East where the laws are weak and where patriarchy and misogyny are instilled into male minds from a young age. In the aftermath of the brutal gang rape of Jyoti Singh, an Indian medical student in Delhi in 2012 (who later died), the rapists were arrested and given a death sentence. One of the convicted rapists, Mukesh Singh, was interviewed for the documentary India’s Daughter. He said in the interview “When being raped, she shouldn’t fight back. She should just be silent and allow the rape.” He later added, “A girl is far more responsible for rape than a boy … A decent girl won’t roam around at nine o’clock at night … Housework and housekeeping is for girls, not roaming in discos and bars at night doing indecent things, wearing indecent clothes.”
The Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE) program was created by Clarion to help reach young men before they are radicalized. There need to be similar educational programs in countries where honor-based violence and rape is common, to educate boys at a young age about how to respect and treat women.
Until this happens, the pattern will repeat itself time and again.

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(Renovations in the time of Corona..)
Yup its me again. I tried to be kind and stay away from ratting on Senor OCD since his birthday but you know there’s only so much one can take.
So, I have to tell you the new Senor OCD story. Now a combination of being OCD and a Cancerian is lethal…yes like “lethal weapon” 420. Apparently, Cancerians are instant problem solvers like instant soup. So, if you say or even suggest something/anything, they feel compelled to add luke warm water offer a solution. In my 40+ plus years with Senor OCD/Cancerian, I learned not to say anything unless I needed instant resolving of the issue/non-issue.
However, getting senile in my old age and being a sucker for sweet smiles, I slipped. A few months ago, I just mentioned casually in passing that the mattress on my side of the bed was getting a bit lumpy. Truly it was just a passing remark…but hey there was instant reaction. OCD said “let’s get a new mattress”. Okay that seemed fair since the bed was oldish. But here’s the catch that I did not catch. Few days later I spied OCD stashing Leon’s, Brick and IKEA fliers and he got his daughter-in-law into the game as well where she was sending him links. He then decided that we will change the entire bed…I can deal with that as well. Then I saw fliers for carpet shops and red lights started flashing in my head that something is going OCD. Sure enough, before I could say No way, never ever…he had decided that we are changing the carpet in the bedroom and the hall. The justification for this was that since the room will be empty, this is a good time to make the change. I gently and politely (maybe not so politely and gently) suggested (maybe not suggested) that we could get the carpet shampooed but OCD had already gone and spoken to an old friend in a carpet shop and chosen a carpet. In the spirit of trying to show that he is egalitarian and gender friendly (especially to the shop owner), he then took me to the carpet shop to show me what he had chosen. There was no place on the form to tick NO!
I had just resigned myself to the idea that the bedroom will be uprooted when BOOM – the side tables and table lamps were also gone. During this time, I was informed that my side of the bedside table is too untidy (I only have 6 books, a tissue box, a framed photo of my parents, my eyeglasses, a glass of water and basket full of knick knacks) so I really don’t know what the fuss was about. Just because he keeps his side minimal does not take away from the fact that he is a hoarder…its just that my hoarding is visible.
Many arguments and dragging visits to furniture stores later (By the way my idea of shopping is to go to one store and get what I want. His idea of shopping is to go to at least a dozen places, haggle embarrassingly and then go back to place one! Exhausting to say the least.) And I can’t let him go alone because he would then buy five extra things so I have to be the policeman (oops did I say the wrong gender thing? Never mind. It seems you can’t say “woman” anymore either so I don’t really care). At Sleep Country I was the guinea pig and had to lie on the mattresses to check firmness (because I was the one who had complained). At one point the salesman decided to lie down next to me to show how two people can comfortably sleep on one mattress…you should have seen OCD’s face!
After much tooing and froing, backing and frothing, kicking and screaming, the bedroom shopping was done and I breathed a sigh of relief that life would go on. But NO! Senor OCD started eyeballing the perfectly decent sofa in the living room. The security guy in our building had said he was looking for furniture so one day I was sent off on an innocent errand and when I returned, sofa was gone. Along with my thinking chair in the solarium.
In his defense I will say that he found someone needy to take the stuff but here we were sleeping on the kid’s mattress waiting for the new bed because of course due to COVID everything is delayed.
Then all hell broke loose because he saw the dust on the mantel piece (so far hidden by decorations) and did detective type rounds of the rooms checking all details of dust, rust and anything that looked like it might need cleaning. Now you have to picture rooms with lots of artifacts which he could never throw away. So just to get even I started a discussion about hoarding and how about throwing out some of his precious collections and half broken things? No that never flies. He is as attached to his broken/torn memorabilia as a mouse to cheese.
Now OCD turned his attention to the kitchen at which point I threatened to leave. He just smiled and said for the twelfth time “wait till you see it all done” and started singing “Abhi naa jao chor kar..” (don’t leave me just yet). But I literally twisted his arm and said “Save something for later when I’m not here”. He agreed (too quickly) and has a couple of blue marks on his arms to prove the point.
The kids meanwhile (knowing their dad) conveniently decided to keep social distance to the maximum using the excuse that their kids are going back to school so for ‘our’ safety (as in you are oldies) better to stay away. Humph! So nowhere for me to run and hide.
I’m here, still here surrounded by stuff from the bedroom in the living room plus cleaning equipment all over. So, I did what any good housewife (that’s him) would do. I called the famous ‘cleaning lady’ and begged for help and offered a huge bribe. I can now breathe as she’s coming over but my ordeal is not over. As soon as I sit down to take a rest and maybe watch one episode on TV, OCD arrives with paper and pen to make endless lists of what we have to do next.
Motto of the story: never, ever, ever, ever start to complain unless you can solve the problem yourself. There’s an OCD at every corner but I love mine regardless!

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In some circles its already politically incorrect to commemorate 9/11 and COVID 19 has put it on the back burner.
However 9/11 is the single deadliest terrorist attack in human history. A series of four coordinated terrorist attacks took place by the Islamist terrorist group al-Qaeda against the United States on the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001. The attacks resulted in 2,977 fatalities, over 25,000 injuries, and substantial long-term health consequences, in addition to at least $10 billion in infrastructure and property damage. It remains the single deadliest incident for firefighters and law enforcement officers in the history of the United States, with 343 and 72 killed, respectively.
How did we react as Muslims? Some justified the terror; others resorted to a victim-hood ideology for fear of backlash and most just remained confused.
But the perpetrators of the 9/11 attack did it in the name of Islam and wanted their brand of Islam to be recognized globally. Eventually the West pandered to the Muslim psyche and the so-called war on terror completely confused the masses when from the beginning we should have targeted the ideology as this was ideological warfare.
Today Muslims are waking up to the misplaced Islamist ideology but is it too late? An entire generation has been fed on a warped ideology that holds violence as its tool of change.
So, in order to reframe the message to show that Islam is free from violence, terror, divisions, sectarianism, gender divides and a victim ideology, we MUST remember the horrors of 9/11 and commemorate it with reflection and moral guidance.

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Senor OCD is being promoted to Senior OCD tomorrow (it’s his 65th birthday) and I want to try and be nice to him. To be fair, he needs to be vindicated from all the gossip against him. I mean, if not now when he’s ageing (not so gracefully), then when?
He has decided that he is done with adults and wants to spend his birthday only with his four grandchildren so guess who’s coming for a sleepover? The excitement is palpable (for Senor OCD) and he’s been busy planning a camp in the living room, a pillow fight, movie, popcorn, ice-cream, games, prizes and unlimited snacks – I hope their parents are not reading this. This is one time he’s not thinking of keeping the condo clean as he already has cleaning lady lined up for next week so he’s letting go (a bit).
To give him his full due, Senor OCD is a total charmer. After all, 43 years together has proven this. However, he is a charmer not just to me but to most people around him (as those of you who know him, will vouch). Especially if he wants to get some work out of you, he can work those baby brown eyes and chubby cheeky smile to full advantage and you’ll find yourself hard pushed to say no.
This is a strategy I never learned which remains much to my disadvantage.
Today the handyman came to do some work. Robert is in his seventies (but still a sharp cookie) and from old Italian stock. I guess the times he grew up in were largely patriarchal (and I mean this in a totally factual, non-offensive way). As I opened the door, he asked “where is your husband?” I said “he’s gone to the bank but I can show you where the work needs to be done”. Fifteen minutes later Robert asked me again “so where’s your husband?” I said “he’ll be back soon”. Then Robert asked me if he could have a bowl and added “your husband knew where it is”. When I produced the bowl, Robert said “Ha this is one your husband gave me”.
Seriously? Is Senor OCD giving off vibes that the wife does not know where anything is in the house?
By the way, while Robert was looking for him Senor OCD had gone to see if he can get a head oil massage. The owner of the beauty parlor he goes to said they are not allowed to give head massages but the two young ladies said “No – this uncle is special” so they took him into a side room and gave him a 20 minutes head massage. Uncle indeed! Lucy, his regular haircutter will drop all clients for him as well. Oh the perks of having a fan club made up mostly of women.
Then I go to the dry-cleaning store which is run by a lovely Vietnamese girl called Kim. As soon as she sees me Kim says “where he?” I explain that ‘he’ is busy. She takes the clothes from me with not much of a smile. As I leave, she smiles a big smile and says “say hello to him and tell him next time he come – okay?”. Okee dokee. I get the message.
The lady who does the laundry doesn’t even want to see me. She calls Senor OCD “honey bunch” and actually folds his underwear (something I refuse to do as a dutiful wife) so he ensures that she gets presents on Christmas and any other occasion. So, when I go to Pakistan, Senor OCD’s shopping list is full of women’s presents which is embarrassing to explain to my family for whom this whole fan club phenomenon is an anomaly.
Not to forget, there are the ladies from his airline stint. I still remember at least five of them telling me they were his “airport wives”….hai wish someone had told them he’s allowed only four and I get all the travel benefits!
Oh, did I mention Yu Yu the massage therapist who talks non-stop and he listens to her without comment! And the Mississauga ladies who cook for him which I use to my advantage.
Did I tell you that Senor OCD is a collector? I once saw a TV show about hoarders and seriously wanted to suggest OCD as a subject of interest. Like a chipmunk he collects and hoards every small thing – not being able to throw anything away. So, when he sees me (rarely) going to throw something out, he knows I’m hiding something I don’t want him to see. Actually, I wait for him to go out and then quickly clear the ages old stash. Today while tidying the kitchen cupboard (okay I actually DO sometimes so stop smirking) I found old Chinese fortune cookies, dried soy sauce and hot sauce packages, ages old sugar packets and teabags, dried up cookies and much more (to gross to mention) so I packed them in a bag but he actually checked the garbage (Senor OCD does that regularly) and saw them. I made sure he couldn’t retrieve the stuff by putting soggy veggie shavings on top. Two can play at the game of messy vs clean you know.
He’s still pouting.
But all in all, when he spends his birthday with his beloved grandchildren, he will mellow (I hope)

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This week was our 43rd. wedding anniversary..tau blog tau banta hai na? (have to write a blog, right?) because we still haven’t killed each other.
Since the last few episodes, a lot of time has passed but global events had become so serious that even thinking of writing anything humorous felt like ‘cancel culture’ – I mean I don’t really hold an elite position in any organization, but if I did, I felt I would be silenced. So, I prudently remained silent. But not for long as you know.
There were murmurings last time about my use of the term OCD (mostly from his friends and relatives) so out of respect for 43 years, I have decided to be sensitive and will use the term Senor OCD from now on. Okay with everyone?
Where to start? You all know about the cleaning fetish but the house has been spiffy, disgustingly clean. So, Senor OCD now moved his attention to the cars – mine in particular. Clean the car, get the interior vacuumed blah blah blah. But every time I get the car cleaned, it rains so I figure no point. Yes, I have wrappers of food I munch, and a few tissues and yes, an empty coffee cup – but its my sanctuary. Oh yes there is an empty bottle and the back seat has scuff marks from when my grandkids rode in it and no one can say anything about my grandkids! However things sort of came to a head when the whole family (in different cars) was going for dinner and before I got there, I got a phone call from Senor OCD saying in a stern voice “ no dinner unless you get the car cleaned and there’s a car wash at the corner”. I was about to retort when I realized my grandkids were in the car with me, so to set a good example I obediently went and got the car washed (and yes, I got dinner)
But now that things have opened up (sort of) in Toronto, the first visitor to our house was the cleaning lady. Now I’m a very broad-minded person but the smile on Senor OCD’s face on the day cleaning lady comes, is a bit much to digest. He sings (off key of course), cracks jokes and has a kick in his step. Cleaning lady is no Lady Gaga, but her cleaning – OMG its as though she trained at a home economics institute.
Now who leaves the kitchen towel rolled up into an animal shape on the stove (see photo); or decorates one of the stuffed toys on the pillow (Aha you now know that Senor OCD has a ‘stuffie’ collection and I didn’t tell you this); or folds the edge of the toilet paper in a triangle (you know like they do in hotels); or cleans the inside of the fridge and under my cabinets without being asked or mentioning what a mess they are in? I mean I don’t even see the messes and I’m fine doing superficial dusting, but the cleaning pressure is too much because he feels like he’s died and gone to heaven and I’m a messy Maina. The pressure is too much so usually I leave and go have coffee with my friend till she’s done. Then cleaning lady texts “you like?”. What’s not to like?

Incidentally last week cleaning lady accidentally broke a plate – now if this was me, I would have heard no end of how clumsy I am but when I pointed it out, Senor OCD just smiled and said “its okay, accidents happen”. Sheesh.
There is no way I could ever compete with Cleaning Lady who by the way speaks not a word of English (as she’s a recent arrival from Brazil) so the sign language is worth seeing (all done by you know who).
The other hobby Senor OCD has acquired during COVID forced to stay-at-home, is to become obsessed with WhatsApp. Now we all are, but this is a man who hardly ever used social media. Now he’s on more WhatsApp groups then a teenager and even when I’m trying to do serious work (like now) he’s listening loudly to old Hindi songs, inane jokes, conspiracy theories and chatter etc.
But I had my revenge. Senor OCD has no stomach for movies that deal with superstitions, science fiction or magic. I told him that an old Hindi movie Om Shanti Om (which I had seen) is worth seeing and an award winner. Only half way through he realized its about the hero being reborn but his pride wouldn’t let him walk away. Ahem.
Of course, the biggest message is on the T-shirt with meaningful slogans like the one above which he wears with pride.

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Ohkay, there was a bit of a lull as things looked like they were getting serious and I didn’t want to be the one to be labelled silly or frivolous. But it was also getting dull and frivolous is fun so I’m back because there is stuff to report and people are wondering if OCD is still alive and kicking. Cleaning I mean.
Yes, he is! And cleaning has gone to a new level. I mean how much can you clean something that is already clean? Those of you who are OCD will know what I mean. This time if was the big shelves with very small artifacts. Now this gives a whole new meaning to cleaning. I immediately called in sick from my home work place faking a few sneezes and coughs which was enough to absolve me from this onerous task.
From my hiding place, I observed that every small artifact (and there are dozens collected over decades from various countries) was carefully taken out, washed and dusted. This of course gave me the perfect excuse to stay away from the kitchen as well. This cleaning process took the whole day, done to the loud sound of old Indian songs (not him God forbid – can’t carry a tune, but on Google music play).
At the end of all this, OCD was quite exhausted so it was the perfect time to challenge him to a game of Scrabble. Now all OCD supporters can come out in force for the rescue because OCD came to the game saying “get ready to lose bigtime” and “I’m a scrabble champion”. Well, well, well. Guess who lost three times in a row? First time he said it was because he was tired. Second time he said he was not concentrating because the floor looked messy. Third time he came to the game full of bounce – until he lost. All this while holding a Q, U, Z and a J! Hai hai – such pouting and resistance. So now I am a cheater, cheater, curry eater. He checked and rechecked the score (which I was keeping) on the calculator. All the time I had to check his ridiculous words on scrabble check and promise I did not cheat.
Since then he has tried to get his revenge by asking me to do mundane, inane stuff like untie the ties of the dining table chairs, and re-tie them. Hello? Are you listening to the madness here? I have learnt that the most used word in these times of Corona is NO. You can always evilly add “and which part of NO do you not understand?’ So, NO is my mantra and savior.
This is how it goes from the morning.
OCD – “lets clean the store today” ME: No
OCD: “It’s raining outside so let’s put on music and clean the kitchen shelves’ ME: No
OCD: “Good morning. Which part of the house do you want to clean?” ME: None
And No – I have no sympathy with OCD’s. I swear I sometimes have the urge to strew bits of paper and clutter around the house. Just like I see him resisting the urge to spray me with Lysol. It would be the ultimate partnership revenge.

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Ohkay….things are settling down, but not OCD. After his below-the-belt remark about the ‘broom’, I tried to ‘socially distance’ myself and pout. Neither worked. Because I need his brain for my writing and his brawn for the housework. Besides pouting is not my thing. It only suits people with rosy chubby cheeks who have mastered the art of.
I decided to find a way to wreak revenge. So, I challenged him either to a board game or cards. He chose Scrabble (which is good because he’s undefeatable in cards) announcing “I only play to win!” He must have been referring to the games he plays with his grandchildren. He also accused me of cheating. So, the Scrabble board was set up. But wait. First it was sanitized, then the board had to be placed at a particular angle. He watched me like a hawk and vice-versa and irritated me by constantly re-arranging the tiles so they were perfectly synched. Plus, he made me draw straight lines for the score keeping which was also checked and rechecked. Sheesh. But I beat him with a huge margin. So, he’s not really speaking to me and pouting again with mumbles about how he got no vowels. He’s calling up all his cronies for support. Sad OCD. Well that’s that – so he will have to heat his own dinner tonight.
On the more human side, yesterday on the radio, while the newscaster was reading serious news (obviously from her home) a kid started crying and she burst out laughing saying it was her three-year old daughter. Same thing happened during a serious webinar I was part of. The facilitator’s two-year old son ran into the room so he had to excuse himself to take him to another room. All this puts such a warm, humane face to things we take for granted. I love it!
Lots of phone calls. Interesting one was from a Toronto family where the husband went to Pakistan (his friend gave him a fully furnished house there) while the family is still here. He was calling desperately to find ways to come back so I called the wife. She said “please please let him be there as he’s a problem and would have driven us crazy because he will not stay at home”. So, I shut up and immediately assumed the ‘social distance’ pose. I am not telling on her.
I confess that with the isolation and reflection, I’ve become a bit quieter. Reminds me of my school reports which were always Grade A but each one had a remark that said “Talks too much”. If only they could see me now.
Winning is a high. We shall live to play another day. Signing off for now.
On a serious note, Happy Passover and a Blessed Easter.

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(Full Disclosure: produced exactly as directed and dictated by OCD)
People are dying & the world in in a crisis. COVID 19, 5G (Haanhji) or Deep State Conspiracy – whatever it is, its here and we have to dutifully follow the directives (easy for me as I’m used to following directions).
We have two choices: either to get consumed by the misery laid out by media and social media and die being spooked before the virus even gets to us or build the ability to laugh at ourselves and have a smile on our face even if the virus hits us. We choose the latter.
To be honest, there’s no one I’d rather be with in quarantine or isolation than my wife of 43 years (on 25 June if we live till then). I have many names for her and they keep changing according to the circumstances. These days (and for the sake of this piece) I call her either Googles (because she knows everything) or Goodzilla (when she breaks everything).
These three weeks have actually been more intense than our 43 years together because (a) I always preferred to do shift work so the crossover was pleasant and (b) I had an escape plan every three months with friends. This entailed going to a Caribbean Island with clubbing, consumption, cigars, cuisine and eventually getting accosted by some form of authority (If you’ve seen Hangover 1, 2 and 3, you’ll get the picture).
Coming to the point: a lot has been said without my permission depicting me as some kind of clean freak, a nut-job who’s obsessed with house cleaning and an OCD – all of which is true.
I wake up every morning thinking it’s all over and I can go back to regular life. But when I turn around and see who’s sleeping beside me, I realize God wants to test me some more.
Now if I had taken advantage of sharia allowance, I would have had four wives. Then I could ‘socially distance’ them and give a new meaning to the term ‘self-isolation’ just like our beloved Prime Minister who refuses to come out of isolation.
Now that I’ve been labelled OCD by Goodzilla, let me say that somebody has to do the housework. After all I’ve been doing it for 42 years anyway. The first year she tinkered around pretending to clean the house to make a good impression and because her mother was still alive and she knew I would complain. She still pretends because we’re in isolation and just the other day she said “I’m sore from using the broom” and I replied “Next time take the car instead!”
Bottom line is that I truly love my wife and when all this is all over, I want us to renew our vows and take her to Wuhan for our honeymoon where I’ll treat her to the now world-famous Wuhan bat wedding soup.
If I live to tell another tale, I will. Otherwise be safe and healthy.

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Every evening for the past two weeks OCD announces, “we have a LOT to do tomorrow so let’s make a To-Do List”. Like a good submissive wife (yeah right – in your dreams baby) I grab a pad and paper (remember we have these all over the house in case of emergency) and sit down. I jot down whatever he says and do not remind him that the last five lists, mentioned most of the same items. That would be just mean 😊 All I do is put the paper on the side of the desk knowing that he’ll only look if I remind him – which I don’t. Survival mode.
My To-do list is simple – write a book and write a script. I am doing these as diligently as I can given the constant interruptions to pick my clothes, clear the sink, provide a snack, check the fridge and other banal stuff which gets mostly ignored. Everyday I have to do a check on the fridge to see what’s running low. This is something I’ve never done before so I find it quite irritating. I mean the fridge always has so much stuff that I can manage for two weeks but if something is low, it has to be replenished right away in case (God Forbid) we run out.
I got yelled at for walking around barefoot after reading in one meme that this is good for reflexology. Apparently, it leaves marks on the floor! I am a sucker for these things and will follow almost all suggestions for natural health cures. In this regard I suggested to OCD that he drink Apple Cider vinegar and his response was “only if you leave it out for me”. So, like a good submissive wife, every night I pour the vinegar in a shot glass (just so he thinks he’s taking a regular shot) and put Vitamin C and Echinacea out for him.
Today I was given an ‘Executive Order’ to fix the cigars i.e. humidify them. That’s been my job for years. I have to first clean the boxes with antiseptic wipes and then gently add the special humidity liquid because OCD does not want to use distilled water since its needed for hospitals. He took a special trip to get the special liquid. I’m not allowed to touch the cigars – not that I want to since I suspect they must have been rolled on Cuban maiden thighs – yuck. Although he’s well stocked with lovely Cuban cigars, I’m gently suggesting that once this fracas is over, he take another trip to Cuba with his friends (Aaaahhh soon)
This is to prove that I’m not completely useless and do a few things that he can’t. I do all the computer and technology work because OCD never learned to do banking online. I want to teach him in case I am no longer around but he is resistant to old-age learning.
He’s quite chirpy for all the attention and sympathy he’s getting. I’m ready for him to dictate a rebuttal which I will happily type up and post but that’s a challenge I’m waiting for him to take up when he’s done cleaning, mopping and wiping.

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