If Your Life Was a Book, What Would You Call It?

All my life, I have read books that I found intriguing. I considered myself to be in those books, a character playing a part and not as just an audience. I have lived their lives, I have won battles and I have cried and felt joy along with them. These books have been a part of my life, a part that I have found rich and voluminous. But reading them was not enough.

I had to see if there was anyone who was me. A girl who saw the world just as I do, who sometimes danced when walking while no one watched, sometimes she talked so much she forgets where she had started. A girl who thought the world was unfair while she loved it at the same time, who held sparks in her eyes, enough to ablaze someone who looked too deep. I’ve searched through the books of Hardy, Shakespeare or Austen but never been able to find that one girl who resembled me. Perhaps, I am still to be written. I am yet to be described in those poetic gestures lovers use to describe their soul mate.

No, I am unwritten because I still have to choose what I would like to create for myself in any aspect of my life. It is so easy to get busy with everyday boring tasks, same old stuffs and slowly drift away from what your heart actually wants. What if tomorrow when you are sitting at a restaurant with your friends, watching Tom Hardy on that big screen TV getting comfy in his couch and they ask you “So, what have you been doing with your life?” and you realize you don’t have a story to tell. What if?

We all need a story of our life that we can tell people about. For that you need a pen and a paper. Well, lots of papers. I believe life isn’t about having a job and paying bills. Life is when you see yourself on the verge of making that dream come true. It’s about passion and courage – to reach the glory of success you have desired. If you don’t write that story yourself, no one else would. You are the author of your life and your life is the book you need to write. If you don’t have an idea what your story could be, just take a deep breath and let the story emerge slowly. Everything I do, I don’t have a certain intention or a conscious thought and most of the time I am stumbling upon things that I am doing. I am letting my own story emerge as it goes. But I don’t make it significant because if we did, it would become a pressure and we will lose hope from that.

So don’t see if your story is right, just see if you are taking it to where you want it to– that makes your heart sing. After all you are the author – you get to decide.

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– See more at: http://www.ourtimebd.com/beta/2016/03/15/if-your-life-was-a-book-what-would-you-call-it/#sthash.BHk1PfEp.dpuf

Celebrating Women’s day at the UNIC

Celebrating Women’s day at the UNIC

International Women’s Day- a day dedicated to all the women of the world. On March 8, I had the opportunity to celebrate this day with a wonderful experience. I had participated in a debate regarding gender equality. I was able to share my views with lots of other youths who also have their own views on women and gender equality.
As a member of Dhaka University Model United Nations, I got the opportunity to participate in this International Women’s Day debate that was arranged by United Nations Information Center to mark the Women’s Day this year. The opponents were 3 members from UNYSAB –all bright and hopeful men. But who rocks the world? Girls. To compete with them was not just an achievement because they were actually good but in the end, the girls had to win. The DUMUNA delegation team consisting of three female members that I was included in won in the final round of the debate.

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The final round of the debate was held between us and UNYSAB on the topic “Planet 50-50: Gender equality can be achieved by 2030”. The UNYSAB delegation spoke in favor of the topic and we took stand against it. The debate was aimed at raising awareness about the fifth goal of the 17 sustainable development goals which is achieving gender equality and empowers women and girls by 2030. The program was inaugurated by United Nations Residential Coordinator for Bangladesh Mr. Robert D Watkins at 10AM in the United Nations Bangladesh office at IDB Bhaban of the capital and the session was beautifully moderated by UNIC Dhaka Officer-in-Charge Md. Moniruzzaman.
Mr. Robert D Watkins was keen enough to discuss the issues that the women face in everyday life- from harassment in public bus transport to child marriage. According to him, the women has a vital role to play in the society and about time equality between men and women established. He let the young audiences share their own views on the situation of women in the society and gender equality. He urged to work both male and female together to achieve the gender equality by 2030 in all means.

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Head of UNIDO Operations in Bangladesh Mr. Zaki Uz Zaman, Head of UNODC Operations in Bangladesh Mr. Kamrul Islam, Communication Officer of UNFPA Bangladesh Ms. Asma Akhter, Communication Officer of UNESCO Bangladesh Ms. Nyma Nargis and Communication Officer of WFP Bangladesh Ms. Mahreen Ahmed were in the judges’ panel of the debate. One thing that they talked about was positive discrimination. Sometimes discrimination is needed when you are a girl, you need more attention than the male members in your family for your own security and privilege. The debate was followed by a slogan contest, where the youths from different universities of the country suggested slogans on women rights.
Lastly, what inspired me was a line that Mr. Zaki Uz Zaman said in his speech- “it’s not just the duty of a woman to raise voice against gender issues but it’s the duty of a man to make the people aware of the equality of men and women.”

– See more at: http://www.ourtimebd.com/beta/2016/03/10/celebrating-womens-day-at-the-unic/#sthash.Od4AlhzI.dpuf

Songs of Wingless Butterflies: Women in the Eyes of Hardy

Songs of Wingless Butterflies: Women in the Eyes of Hardy

“Happiness was but the occasional episode in a general drama of pain.”

― Thomas Hardy, The Mayor of Casterbridge.

In this patriarchal society where women has no voice, sometimes I feel like those female characters from the books portrayed by Thomas Hardy. Those females whose eyes are filled with dreams, to whom the world is a mystery and their heart is as pure as a full moon. All they want is their right in the society and a little love and affection. However, they are the ones who are unwanted to the society and are objective to the errors of the society. I am not only the victim to their injustice but also subjected to torture- oppression.
Just as they hide their little dreams in the corner of their mind, accept their fate and get down to face the struggle of life – I cannot do that. I have seen dreams and I have seen them getting fulfilled. Perhaps Hardy wanted to show the society that these soft-hearted girls can also dream. But he himself confined their lives with tragedy. They didn’t only see their dreams getting lost, they saw the chapters from their lives getting erased. To Hardy the moments of their lives were like those sand castles beside the ocean, which break easily with the surge of the ocean waves.
Thomas Hardy, an English novelist and poet who was born in Higher Bockhampton, Dorset on June 2, 1840, reflects a dark naturalistic realism in his works and his characters are haunted with tragic and self-destructive fate. His writings are frequently considered to represent the ache of modernism which is quite clear in Tess of the d’Urbervilles. Hardy contends to suggest the obscurity of time and change and human reason against divine power through family-betrayal, class perceptions, sex and material longing. He uses several naturalist references about Tess that represent earthly ideals through showing how she was abused by the representatives of both high culture and Christianity. Hardy reflects his pessimistic outlook towards civilization, religion and high society as fraudulent influence that eventually corrupts the good and earthy heroin.
Couldn’t Hardy organize their lives differently? Couldn’t he let those heroines see their dreams getting wings of reality? Perhaps, Hardy was dissatisfied and never got for himself what he had wanted. Perhaps, that was why he refrained his imaginary female characters from getting what they wanted. Or he had a dark soul which kept him from giving his characters what they deserved. He might have tried to explain through his works that there was a brutality in the society; a selfishness that echoed through civilization which Thomas Hardy portrayed through these characters. But they also portrayed a reflection of his own dissatisfied heart.
Hardy is the visualization of the thoughts of people of that period and his female characters are ever-present. Whether it is the impersonation of Hardy, or the grudge of his heart, or his realization, would our relinquishment be still now similar to his works of tragedies?

– See more at: http://www.ourtimebd.com/beta/2016/03/06/songs-of-wingless-butterflies-women-in-the-eyes-of-hardy/#sthash.KyhAngDi.dpuf

Brushing The Sorrows Aside

Brushing The Sorrows Aside

“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time” – a very famous quote by Thomas Merton says all about art. I think art is not just a creative skill or imagination, but it is what comes from your soul. What you can make other people see, is what we call the language of art.

Starry Night by Van Gogh is one of the famous piece of arts. One quote by him, “the emotions are sometimes so strong that I work without knowing it. The strokes come like speech” says so many things about Van Gogh. He was not just an artist, he knew how to put his emotions into words with the strokes of his brush.

Van Gogh came from an upper middle-class family and had the potentials to change his life but everyone knows how he had suffered with mental health issues throughout his life. In winter 1888 after a fight with a friend and mutilation of his ear Van Gogh gave up himself to Saint-Paul-de-Mausole lunatic asylum. This was the place where he came to see the scenic beauties we now see in Starry Night.

While the painters in the mid-nineteenth century painted mostly photographic and realistic landscapes and portraits, Van Gogh used more exaggerated, distinctive brushstroke and thick application of paint that was not appreciated in his time but was obviously far ahead of their time and paved the way for Expressionism.

Critics of that time thought that Van Gogh’s signature style- characterized by bright and heavy brushstrokes, was unkempt, rude and childish. These critics had decided that Van Gogh was crazy and his paintings, that were not photographic and realistic, were not as good as the other contemporaries. However, the vivid style chosen by him was unusual and to portray this night scene he used lines instead of silhouettes that was a more obvious choice. Even he himself called it “exaggerated” and was aware it to be somewhat surreal and stylized.

One might say that The Starry Night is so popular because stars make you dream. The reason I like Starry night is because Van Gogh visualized in this painting how he felt inside and revealed his personal impressions. The struggling feelings of isolation, insanity and depreciation are clear in Starry Night. Although the real reason is not the negative emotions that initially inspired the artwork, but the bright lights of the stars that conveys the strong feeling of hope.

Starry Night gives me hope that I am not alone and Van Gogh teaches me to dream through his art. Van Gogh struggled to maintain his agony and depicted that in his paintings because he had dreams in his eyes and hopes in his heart.

Till the end, he hoped to be appreciated; he hoped to be somewhere he wanted to be. He makes me hope to become appreciated too, and to be different from all others because in this world, if you want to leave a mark, you have to be unique.

– See more at: http://www.ourtimebd.com/beta/2016/02/28/brushing-the-sorrows-aside/#sthash.fYuhsBKa.dpuf

Gossip Girl

Gossip Girl
A new rhythm taken by high enthusiasm,
It’s like a wingless learning to fly for the first time-
And a horizon meeting the sky limit.
It’s all somehow like the summer rain;
Washing away every sorrowful pain.
There is a feeling unknown within-
Could it be for bewitching tendency
Endeavoring mighty will into thin dust;
And stealing glances like a fool in love.
As fresh like a lullaby of spring breeze,
Floating half on water and half on plain;
Or may be burning potato for the third time.
It all comes down like a flow of cascade-
Like rainbow forming under the castle of clouds,
A sudden puff and all will be gone,
Like scattered snowflakes and freezing cold.
As numb and thrilling like kissing the frog.
The enchanting autumn leaving in its awake-
Giving a chance to meet house halfway.
May be there would be a glass sneaker
Or a handsome knight in a shiny armour.
I wouldn’t be surprised to be sang by the birds
To catch my own wedding to a prince charmer.
A babidi bibadi boo or a mirror on the wall
Or even the diagonal ally  couldn’t stop me-
From being where I truly am after.
I have even flew with Peter Parker
And know exactly where I go from here.
I wouldn’t need the golden compass to know.
I even traveled worlds on the Black Pearl;
And I secretly wished I could dream like Ariel
Or share honey with Winnie-the-Pooh.
I am unwritten, I am powerpuff girls
I’m like those pretty little liars from next door.
There couldn’t be any Edward Cullen for me-
Ed Sheeran could sing a thousand song!
I’m a rhythm divine, Winchesters couldn’t say it for me.
I’m love drunk, flowing like Tom Hiddleston
221B couldn’t get me off the street of Buckingham.
I was once what was a game of thrones,
The prison break got me to breaking dawn part 2.
May be life was actually a blue tick of twitter
From Ashton Martin to fast as a superman.
Or a verbain locket being found in a supermarket.
All I know is as Summer of 69 passes through-
I am a voice of those every other gossip girl.

This Thing Called Friendship

Friendship is a blessing. Friendship is like those chapters that makes you think how lucky you are. Or it breaks you like those tiny shards of glass. It’s always that phase which makes our time count for every moment. It’s always that phase which runs in our veins like a bullet train. Or it’s that kind of mistake which makes your eyes bleed.

We find friendship when we are alone, we find friendship even when we are in a crowd. At some point, we all need a few people who would make us feel blessed and create a timeline of happiness, fun and craze. People who would throw punches at you when you make a mess and pull you in a hug when you are sad. Friendship has always been about sharing. It has always been about compromising. My life has been a blessing because I have met those few people who actually understand the meaning of friendship. They have been with me through my bad and good, through my craziness and depression, through my bunking classes to getting caught. They have been with me while standing outside of a classroom from a punishment; they have been with me while crying my eyes out over a heartbreak. In the short span of my life I have found those amazing four persons, I can truly call my friends. They have been loyal, supporting and it has always been an adventure with them.

They are the heroes of my life because they have shared their 12 years with me with loyalty and trust. Not only that, I know I can count on them when I need to, I know I can barge into their house at midnight and sleep on their couch. They are my persons, my partners-in-crime, and my inspiration. If I am stuck murdering a guy, they would come to hide the body. You have to be lucky to have been able to find those friends. As a matter of fact, anyone can wear a mask and smile, anyone can stab the stake right through your heart while holding you in their arms. They won’t stop at nothing, they would break you, and they would snatch all your trust and leave you in a dungeon of sadness. You might want to stand up and they will throw you in that dungeon again.

Nowadays, friendship is taking selfies and uploading them on Facebook, but the same people cannot even remember your birthday. They brag about how they met you, how lucky they are to find you; but they don’t show up when you are sick in your bed.

Friendship isn’t something to show off, it’s something you feel for the people you admire the most. It’s like a blooming tree, growing together; spreading its branches high and letting you sit under it- soothing you, making you happy through its selfless love. You just give all you have and flourish in return with the love you get back. Now, that is friendship.