The conflict between Quaid Day, the birth anniversary of the Quaid-e-Azam, and Christmas, that of Jesus Christ, has been resolved by having a holiday on both. Its interesting that people tend to have birthdays on Christmas or New Years Day. Thats because there was a time, before the British Raj, when people didnt have birthdays at all, and only a rough idea of when they were born. Because the British retired people on their birthday, they wanted to know the date of birth, or rather of superannuation, in advance. Obviously, the people themselves didnt remember the exact date they were born, nor did the parents. After all, who could remember the dates of birth of a dozen children, half of them dead? And that was only one wife. So when the headmaster asked what date to put on the Matric form, the father, after carefully twirling his moustache (which was large and handlebar), named the first approximately correct date he could think of. And that was Christmas. That tradition persisted, and so Mian Nawaz Sharif has the same birthday as the Quaid, who had the same as Jesus, whose birthday has been proven to be false. So those moustache-twirling fathers, dictating the false dates of birth of their wards (from which they subtracted a year or two, to give them the advantage in government service), were unwittingly taking part in a layered falsehood, not a simple one. Anyway, weve got Christmas as a holiday, like the other countries on the American side in the War on Terror. Of course, other countries dont have blasts like the one we had in Bajaur, but then I dont suppose they have the population problems that we do, which is why the President doesnt mind collateral damage. Somehow, every Christmas, I am reminded of Simon Bolivar. Well, its perhaps appropriate, because after the USAs George Washington, he was the first Father of The Nation, and not just for one country, but several. In fact, the whole of South America excluding Brazil, and he even has a country named after him (Bolivia). He is known as the Liberator, because of how he liberated South America from Spain back at the start of the 19th century. After the UK lost its colonies in North America, Spains South American colonies were the first to win freedom, but Bolivar ended up a disappointed man, in exile after having ruled the huge land he had liberated, only for it to break up into various countries. It was because of this that US President John Munroe was able to announce his Doctrine, excluding every European power from South America. It was during his exile that he is reputed to have said Those who served the revolution have ploughed the sea. He is also supposed to have said something which links him to Christmas. While Bolivar and the Quaid were both Fathers of their respective Nations, Christ was not. Indeed, he was not even the founder of Christianity, which was founded by St Paul. Of course, Christianity would probably have been impossible without Christ, and Christianity has been a bigger thing than any nation, and being the religion of the West, is the most dominant religion of the modern world. That the West has changed it into a new paganism is another matter, but it is doing well in the USA, which is conducting a crusade under the guise of its War on Terror. Whether Quaid Day or Christmas, the funeral was held of Mahad Faisal, to cast a pall over the day. Mahad was a schoolboy killed at a party. He had not gone there to get killed, but to have fun. And at a leading school of the city, which was holding class parties on the last day of term before the winter vacations, a student was hit on the head with a brick, and ended up in a neurosurgery unit. How did this happen? Some students were on the roof kicking at the walls, and the child was downstairs. A brick got loosened, and kicked down. And there was an accident, another pair of parents who had sent off their child to have some fun, but who ended up plunging the entire family in crisis. Or is it just the general lawlessness that should be blamed? The wall-kicker reminded me of a friend whose first appointment as a lecturer was in an inter college in Gugera, where he said the students amused themselves by breaking up the furniture. Though during my friends tenure, no one was killed. But I saw the same spirit at work in the same sort of minds at both events. We should make sure that not so many guns are around the place, but when there are so many guns around, and there is an entire macho culture built around them, I suppose they will be around. Though I think its a little hard, sacrificing lives for machismo. Somehow, thats a little like ploughing the sea, which brings us to Bolivar, who was talking about a revolution for grown men, not dealing death or injury to children. Another sign of lawlessness is the amazing rise in robberies. Some think we have more robberies with growing unemployment and a worsening economy, but I agree with the wise man who talked about defeated expectations. But though defeated expectations may drive schoolboys to suicide, it wont cause anyone to bang himself with a brick.