A friend of mine with whom I used to carpool with every morning has flown back to his country, and I was all whiny about the fact that I had to board some public transport early in the morning. For a moment I didn’t realize that had it been in my native land, where public transportation is worse than deplorable, things could have just swung out of control and I would have landed at the office at least an hour late.

The things that happened to me this morning aren’t really novel to me. Each one of us has experienced this at least once in our lives. But then, it’s human nature to recalibrate. But maybe it’s worth fighting that off, for an hour or even a day. We live in a world that’s hetero, uneven, and worst of all, unfair.

For some good bunch of reasons it’s okay that way. Embrace it. You don’t get creative once everything is okay. In fact, we are creative because everything isn’t okay.

If today isn’t the way it was supposed to be, what else could it have possibly been? Recalibrate and you’ll discover a universe of possibilities.


Storytelling in Marketing

Over the years, I have seen multiple brand getting stumped for the sole reason that they took up an ongoing convention as part of the “story” that they benign to tell to their audience. The truth is that your consumer isn’t just good enough to make rational decisions. Most brands would usually succumb to an emotional idea of trying to resonate it with a fad that may have little to do with their true brand identity. If you truly want your idea to resonate, you need to reach out both intellectually and emotionally. Most of us are aware of the story of the Classic Coke. The disaster only occurred as a consequence of the irrelevance of the dichotomy that marketers assumed to be an issue for the audience at that point in time. So how do you build up a story for your audience? How do you learn to create better? How do you innovate a story when every individual on earth is unique to help him find a space between your story? The answer doesn’t lie in the innovation alone. It lies in the collective confidence in the possibility of innovation. It lies in deriving the possibilities of what and how your plot is being delivered and how your customers can derive their own story out of it. Find that unique spot in your brand identity. Help your consumer identify here he lies amidst all the content that he is being hammered with each day. That’s because your consumer’s brain is wired that way. You write memos, to-do lists, shopping lists and what not: And when you don’t remember what you ought to do, you go back to your list, because apparently our brains don’t process number that very well. We tell our peers stories, because we love to share our experiences. That’s the same things with your brands: when you tell people a great story, they can relate themselves in the same situation – just because great experiences are memorable.

Movie Review: Moor

Abnegation: Self sacrifice – usually done for a greater good (cause of humanity, self, nation etc.)

Imagine yourself on the crossroads of three pivotal life choices: choosing your future prospects; making an abnegation for your own morals and principles; or becoming a philanthropic nationalist that could change the lives of your fellow countrymen for good.

What would you choose?

Tough choice, right?

This is precisely what Jami’s new movie Moor is all about. Shot in an epic picturesque local railway station in Baluchistan, the flick is all about how Wahid Lala (Waheed Sheikh) grapples with the accidental (read: melodramatic) death of his wife (Palwasha, played by Samiya Mumtaz) and his childhood, as well as his chastised morals and principles in the face of his son (Shaz Khan), who is benign to moral sodomy in the cosmopolitan life of Karachi.

As for Wahid, the challenges don’t just end up here. He has his ongoing tussle with his moral turpitude for the sake of his brother who seems promising in delivering a covetous livelihood, yet obliges him to abnegate his nationalistic integrity and love for his railway station.

While the storyline and punch lines are crafted immaculately to give you goosebumps and question your (self proclaimed) righteousness, the nexus is thoroughly complex, and at times too esoteric (for the local audience). There is little doubt that this is something only Jami could pull off within a couple of hours of screening.

On the other hand, as the movie is set to showcase on the big screen at major cinemas across Pakistan on the Independence Day, you can certainly expect your nationalism to kick in, even if you have an iota of patriotism to linger on.

What you should look for?

The movie is an epic example of flawless direction, script, dialogue delivery, cinematography and cast selection. You would hardly find a local film production that meets such high standards. Bolstered by decades of experience of both the cast and its crew, the epic saga of Waleed’s chimera has been depicted in the primmest fashion.

While Waheed, Samiya and Abdul Qadir have done an amazing job with their roles, we could have expected much out of the protagonist Shaz Khan, who is stumped by his dwarf experience on his movie debut.

Truth be told, the movie possesses a strong potential to turn you teary-eyed at the most cataclysmic moments, and also condemn you to scrutinize your nationalism before making any decision that lies on the nexus of personal and national interests.

What you shouldn’t expect?

If you are someone who is a fan of gloss, glamour and “entertainment”, back off right now. This movie is certainly NOT for you!

Though it’s undeniable that Jami’s picturization of our railway demise is slick, but with a few insequential blows, peppered with a couple of thrills in the action sequences, it ultimately comes up short. The audience is left to fill up the gaps in the storyline, which if deliberated, could have accentuated the plot of the movie.

As with most desi movies, the plot appears dragged, and one could predict moments where the producers could have edited the sections that do little justice to the movie – apart from making it a little soporific.

In as much as you can leave a movie saying “man, this cast, music and direction were terrific,” you might just not end up calling Moor something of a blockbuster success.

Overall Movie Rating: 8 out of 10.

Humiliating Ourselves

On May 17, 2015, some innuendos about an indigenous incorporation in an American newspaper invoked havoc over the digital media. Instrumented by an American investigative journalist, the article incriminated the organisation of issuing illicit degrees and certificates. Ignited by the impasse, the FIA officials raided the organisation and impeached it for impiety, ignobility and irreverence of international litigations. The implausible implication took the whole nation by storm. Backed by some incorrigible and incredulous history, the incognito ‘I.T’ Company was found out to be an iniquitous incubation center for harbouring illegitimate business affairs.

For others, it invigorated an invidious importune to insult, impeach and cast an irrevocable damage on the so-called, iconoclastic “World’s Leading Information Technology” company. At at the same time, it iced the culture of yellow journalism and bolstered the inscrutable insularity of media houses in the country. The speculators, on the other hand, had imbibed the incense of the inadvertent incident of the impeachment of the parent company of the “Pakistan’s Largest Media Group”, Bol.

In the recent realm of affairs, imbibed by Axact’s impresario, the infiltrate inflicted yet another damage: this time, the wife of an indiscreet political infigurement, Imran Khan for her insidious involvement in having her issue degree issued from an illicit organisation.

Amidst this imbroglio, my intention is not to overwhelm you with my rather esoteric ‘I’ riddled grandiloquent verbiage, but to identify the missing impache – the ever immune, and forever insolent – “I”.

Had we been particular about identifying and indemnifying the our social and moral architecture; had we been anticipative of our moral impeachment before we pointed out fingers at other “corrupt” souls, we could have avoided this arduous ignominy and backlash.

So the next time you make some harrowing allegations, make sure you have scrutinised your moral self: your ill-judged, ill-disposed “I” before humiliating this nation.

Food Panda Launches its iDonate Campaign

In the wake of shortage of food supplies during the month of Ramadan, FoodPanda has come up with a philanthropic campaign whereby it would distribute food to the needy via Edhi/Saylani Welfare Centres. However, the discretion to distribute to either of these platforms depends on the public appeal.

All one needs to do is to interact with FoodPanda on its social media platforms and raise their consent for their donation of the staple food items. These social media platforms principally involve its Facebook and Twitter page where people can submit their feedback by duly submitting their feedback in the comments section of the post. Contributors can also participate via the hashtag #monthofblessings and #foodpandacares.

Provided the fact that FoodPanda would be involved throughout the process, the contributors won’t be obliged to pay a single penny, whatsoever. Throughout the span of two weeks, FoodPanda would be dedicating a considerable amount of budget by distributing staple food amongst the needy.

I would pledge you to support this cause by spreading the word to as many people as you can. It would certainly help to make a great difference.


Habitt Launches its Wedding Collection

The wedding bells are churning up and it’s probably the right time to make the final arrangements for your D-day. But the month of Ramadan looming up, making the right arrangements for your big day can be overwhelming. This is precisely some of the most prolific brands are tuning in to help you out with the management of your wedding.

Most recently, Habitt launched their ‘wedding collection’ 2015 on May 16th 2015. Habitt is known as a one stop home store and its Building Center branch in one of a kind in Karachi. They launched their wedding collection with the specific aim to help those customers who are planning a wedding and are searching for furniture, bedding textile and home and kitchen accessories for the new bride and groom.

While planning a wedding the amount of things on ones ‘to do’s’ list seems never ending and overwhelming. Habitt has introduced a completely new range for all those planning a wedding in the coming months. There are six plans, or ‘packages’ as they are called, and each is a combination of bedroom furniture (from beds, mattresses, and side tables to sofa sets, dining table, chairs) to accessories like bed sheets, bedcovers, cushions, lamps and dining and cooking ware sets. All packages include a deen set as well, providing a copy of the Quran and janamaz and tasbees. These packages are a solution to all those checklists and to do lists for people.

With packages starting from Rs. 99,000/- and with gift vouchers with which customers can purchase any additional stuff, customers have a variety of choices from which to choose from. What more? If book before August 31st 2015, you get extra gift vouchers too! Sounds tempting, doesn’t it?

For their launch event on the 16th of May, they had an open house for their customers and Faysal Qureshi hosted a game show in which one lucky customer won a complete bed set

This is the biggest launch of wedding collection for Habitt and it was met with great success on the evening of May 16th 2015. A great crowd had turned up for the celebration. Habitt stores in Lahore and Karachi had decked up to the nines for this launch – Especially their IBL Building Center store where the launch even took place.

All packages were displayed elegantly amongst the beautiful setting of the shop and customers and visitors were all very pleased to see such a world-class store in their city. So if you’re in the market for bedroom, furniture and home items for a new bride and groom, check out Habitt today.

From my side, visiting your nearest Habitt store is highly recommended. I wish you best of luck with your wedding arrangements, and hope that this day becomes as big as much as you had always dreamt of!

Habitt_Wedding Collection_Bedroom Set

Obstreperously maverick vagabond