Sat on the cosy sofa, under dark lights impersonating a tarot card reader’s place, three children of age 14 were causing a ruckus to sit next to granddad Ans Khurram. It was 8pm, the grand dad story telling time. After 15 minutes, the little conflict was resorted, and Ans Khurram sighed with relief. Just before Ans Khurram narrated a story, his eyes narrowed- this expression was called as Ans Khurram’s wise expression, and his face turned towards the celestial bodies in the sky. Ans Khurram wanted to look wise, just so that his grand kids could take him seriously. Since Ans Khurram’s grandkids were hitting puberty, Ans Khurram had a new story in mind. Instead of a general stupid fable, he wanted to narrate his own story, but he was sure that he was not going to use his name. Ans Khurram perceived that his grand kids thought of him as superman, perfect and a man with an intellect to match that of Einstein; a perfectly moral person incapable of taking a wrong decision. It was almost like he was born a grandfather. Also, the conviction with which he asserted facts made even the wrong facts look like the right ones. Ans Khurram was the complete grandfather.

Ans Khurram took his usual spot, and his glasses were perched on his nose half-way. He needed a typical grandfather look and did not really understand the significance of the glasses hung mid way on the nose. Nevertheless, in real life and movies, that is how grandfathers were portrayed. This was a successful impersonation on Ans Khurram’s part.

The story began after all of these usual ventures.

All the hyped up expectations were dwindling. The failure of Umair- to have gotten a girl friend in 2 months since his arrival in the UK- made him attain new lows in life. Raybans, slim fit jeans and Armani belts were really not the ingredient to entice girls into becoming girl friends, thought Umair. Life had never been so unfair. Just a few months ago, life had reached new highs when Umair learnt that he had gotten into one of the best medical schools in the world. With a girl friend, his life would be complete. Visions and day dreams often captivated Umair during banter with friends. Umair would feel depressed after failing an exam, and his to be girl friend would embrace her with all her might, squeezing all the air out of Umair’s toned chest. However, one unfortunate bit about these visions was that Umair was only allowed the view of the backside of the girl. Since the girl’s hair was long, he was not able to view the satisfactory fair complexion of the girl; however, the Hollister model like physique from the back side was satisfying enough. In all honesty, Umair was vain and was unaware of whether this trait ever existed within him or not. He was just like a Hitler or General Zia Ul Haq type dictator or a little baby boy demanding a little toy; he wouldn’t give up until he was given the toy. Ironically, he had read the autobiography of Nelson Mandela, called the Long Walk to Freedom, and for a moment, he did raise the banners for Black people in his mind. Sometimes, an educated man could not be educated sufficiently.

Before these new visions, Umair would often scratch his perfect, spherical round buttocks; buttocks like he was 16. However, these visions were making question things. His erectile dysfunction needed to be killed. For this reason, he was often found Googling sexual healing, and finally, he found his sexual healer; techniques which cannot be revealed over here. However, other times he watched porn, aware of the fact that porn was detrimental to sexual healing. A brilliant author by the name of Zohaib Amjad had written an article called “The price of pleasure”, and Umair had read it. The price of pleasure came at a descent bargain.

But apart from that, he tried to take solace in a few explanations. First of all, Asian parents frowned upon relationships generally, even if the girl was a doctor. Often, Umair’s parents warned, “Listen you tiny numpty head, you better not get into a relationship before marriage. Get into a relationship after marriage, and only then will you be allowed to love her”. However, the hormonal bit within him made him long for a girl friend. Google was the answer to all questions. It was sad to see Google fail its duty in this aspect. Umair often Googled, “Getting Hot girl friend”. None of the websites offered effective advice, and Umair was often stranded alone in the midst of all this piling frustration. “Websites spoke bullshit”, Umair thought, with the temptation to hurl the laptop against the wall. “Just be yourself”, said a girl on Youtube, but how the fuck was he supposed to get a girl friend being himself, after all being himself was the one factor that repulsed girls away. “Seriously, what the fuck”, Umair exasperated, with his hands held out in frustration.

Situations were getting more frustrated than ever. It is for these reasons that Umair stopped attending classes. Often looking in the mirror, he would muse, “my thin waist, broad shoulders, waxed chest hair, chiselled face and seductive eyes deserves me something more than these lonely days”. During these days, Umair started to get increasingly philosophical. Girls are more complex than what they appear, but above all, beauty has no reason. Beauty is more scrupulous than intellect since beauty does not need reasons whereas intellect does. What did the girls fail to understand about this simple and elegant phenomenon? His philosophies were sophisticated, and the philosophies of the people on the other side were dim-witted. At the moment in time, girls were the enemies. Once again, Umair was behaving like a dictator or a little wailing boy demanding a toy.

Umair’s hope began to disintegrate into despair, and there was a point, he gave up on trying understanding girls. Later, Umair happily died without getting married due to him getting used to lives.

At this point, Ans Khurram paused. The lesson of life was coming up next and he had to structure his speech. He was a little Barrack Obama within his world, often imagining himself winning the noble prize and giving people a speech.

“Listen up kids, Umair was upset but then he was not upset about stupid things like this anymore. Understanding human nature is of utmost importance. A malnourished kid thrives for pampered food, and on the other hand, a pampered, 14-year old American teenager craves for a handsome boyfriend. Both of those situations have one thing in common. Both of those situations cause heart aches for both of these very different people. It is just to conclude this then. Problems do not exist within our world, but they exist within our minds, and it in turn is dependent on whatever we experience in life and whatever we have had in life.  Therefore, a bonafide issue is that we don’t understand what a problem is really. However, we humans have a tendency to be greed, and nothing can please us enough”.

A trance like state had been induced in Ans Khurram, and he snapped back to the world, only to notice that the kids were giving waywardly expressions. He was going to lose his story telling respect. Just a few days ago, he had read a story called “Attaining the lost happiness”, , by Zohaib Amjad, and the last few lines were quite heavy. He told himself that these kids were never going to grow up even though they had hit puberty and had grown pubic hair around their armpits. It is as a consequence of this that he decided to include a fable within this tale.

“And hence, understanding contentment is as vital as understanding a problem. Hence, I am going to narrate yet another story.

Once an insecure mouse crawled up to a wizard, and begged that wizard for him to fulfil his wish. The wizard, anxious to get rid of the mouse, asked for the mouse’s wish. The mouse wished that he should instantly be turned into a cat, just so that a cat could not gobble him up. Later, apprehensions started to catch on with the cat, and the cat wished to be a dog. And therefore, this cat ran up to the wizard, stating his need to turn into a dog. The wizard granted this wish. But, the dog still did not feel powerful enough. Lion, the king of the jungle, was the most powerful. Once again, the dog ran up to the generous wizard, and with a sigh, the wizard turned him into a lion. However, the lion feared of being hunted by hunters, and he found himself on a familiar path to the wizard, and the lion shamelessly wished for being turned into a hunter. The wizard decided to turn the lion back into a mouse. The mouse gestured and said, “is this a joke?”, and the wizard told him, “You can never attain contentment, no matter what you have!””

The inclusion of a fable made the kids applaud for their grand dad, and the grand dad was pleased. He felt euphoric, even though he knew that the kids did not understand his little story.


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