Saturday, May 31, 2014

My set for the make salaam and laugh comedy show

I didn't get to do a lot of the stuff I planned to last night (with a lot of the participatory skits bombing, which threw me off a bit), but that's ok. Here's the abridged material (with only the stuff I wrote this week and does not include my previous material on the Majlis/ Mufti Menk etc). Let me know what you think. (Context - Written for Durban Muslim audience and is written to be presented, not read)


Asalaam u alaikum. My name is MJ Khan. Some of you may know me from my twitter account, or MCing at various Islamic fairs and souks, although I imagine, most of you may confuse me for something that I am not, and that is, an Eastern Mosaic Presenter finalist. 

Have you noticed how many people introduce themselves as 'Eastern Mosaic Presenter Finalist'? Everyone knows at least one person who is an eastern mosaic finalist. they could be sitting next to you right now. It must be the only tv show in the world where you become a finalist just by submitting an entry form!

Durban, its good to be home. Its good to be home. The only problem with Durban is that it is full of people who remind you how much weight you’ve put on. I am convinced that ethekwini is the zulu phrase for ‘place with relatives who tell you that youre fat’. I keep telling everyone..i am twice the man I used to be. So Durban, whats happening, whats new? TookUmgeni Road today. What is happening on that road! As it is, we are still dealing with Highway Sheila. If the construction company building the flyover was any slower, they would work at caminettos! Love caminettos, but boy do they make you wait. You best be placing your Ramadan orders at sehri if you want to break your fast with more than just a kajoor and water.

Ramadan is around the corner. Man, I miss Ramadan in Durban. I miss calling Aunty Nadia on radio al ansaar to tell her that Ive kept all my fasts. Speaking of Aunty Nadia, have you noticed that a lot of female presenters on muslim radio stations all sound they are reciting something at a jalsa. (typical apa voice - 'Asalamu alaikum, today we will be talking about the evils of mxit'). I miss telling little children that half fasts don’t count. I have a friend whose kids do half fasts. He is always about positive I always hear him say, 'Masha Allah Fareed, well done Fareed'. Fareed is 14 years old. Give that boy thechampal.

Im from reservoir hills. By a round of applause, who else here is from reservoir hills? There is a Common lie that all muslims who move up to jhb from reservoir hills use – whether your surname is Moolla, coovadia, kadodia or khan, there is one lie we all tell, and that lie happens when our white colleagues ask us where we are from.

Happens to me all the time.
So MJ bru, where are you from tjomm?
I’m from Reservoir hills, know where that is?
Oh yeah yeah yeah…no.

and then the lie comes in – its five minutes from pavilion. Just down the road. My mom walks there for bread and milk. 

Lets  chat a bit about muslim weddings. My dad is Younus Azam Khan, so I’ve been to a lot of weddings. A good way to find out if youre at a muslim wedding is to look for a row of mats behind the stage. You can confirm this if the bathroom looks like a scene from titanic. After it hits the iceberg. Water everywhere. Its physics really, size 12 foot in a size six sink... and don't get me started on the men's bathrooms. 

None of my white friends carry a 2 l ice cream container to a wedding. Bob does not take gajar halwa home. Bob stops at Jonnies. 

Who came up with the rule that the girls family must wait for two weeks before giving an answer? Thats ridiculous. Are they waiting for a full moon to check that he isnt a werewolf or something? Why is it always two weeks?

Who decided that aunty firoza, with type 2 diabetes will be in charge of making the sarbat? half a glass of milk, 19 tablespoons of sugar and a drop of syrup. even coke is going 'thats too much sugar for one drink. 

Lets not forget about our koonchas. Durban people love their koonchas. Ive recently seen massive burfee structures in the shape of the taj mahal. Isnt that weird? What are trying to tell someone? 'Have this mausoleum as a token of my love. I’ve put a jelly baby in the middle to represent the people buried there'?

There is a tradition in muslim weddings called bidaagrie where the bride says 'goodbye' to her parents (well, until tomorrow when she sees them at the walima) and this tradition makes the groom very happy, and also rather kak. He is happy because he doesnt have to smile for 200 more photos for a photographer who thinks its cute when he poses like this for his wife (do a ridiculous wedding pose) but he is sad because everyone including his wife is crying and its all his fault! 

Durban, I’m getting old. Can’t jump around the stage at the souk anymore and act like im excited about Arif Subrati performing. Can’t do it anymore. Somewhere along the line, I got old, and I think it was when I started paying Eiddee instead of receiving it. That was the moment. You know you’re old when the highlight of going to the Hartley road fair is when you buy a new tea pot. Aunty in the front, you know what im talking about. Repeat after me…boiled tea zindabad! As muslim men grow older, we start developing a skill. A skill for finding a chair to sit on. I can find a chair anywhere! Any shop, any park, you name it. I am the lionel messi of finding chairs. As you get older, all you want to do is sit! Gentlemen, clap your hands if you agree. You weren’t going to come if you couldn’t sit.

Let’s talk about relatives. I believe that we all have these four relatives.

The first relative is what I’d like to call Conspiracy Mamoo. Now Conspiracy mammoo is so tuned in, he already has a conspiracy theory before the event took place. And its always ridiculous. I’m not talking about the kaka who still believes that Osama bin laden is alive. I’m talking about the uncle who thinks Jacob Zuma is part of the Illuminati. The one you avoid when you and your friends are at gateway. That one. I have an uncle like that. He comes up with ridiculous stories. Last week he told me that the americans kidnapped some girls in Nigeria and have blamed it on bokomo haram.  Bokomo Haram? What is this? Did he stand out outside the embassy with a Bring back our wheat bix sign?

Lets go to number two. I’ve just come down from jhb, so obviously I was given a parcel to bring down for gori kala. Gori Kalas are such a phenomenon. Every muslim family knows one. , but no 2 gorikalas are the same. At what point in a woman’s life does she realize she has become a gorikala? Is it like the pope, once one dies, another is anointed?

Arise Gorikala, and bring the world pre-made samosa, rotis and dressmaking.

Now Gorikala, is very different to cuzi kala.. Cuzi kala is the aunty that wants to know everything. She’s the one in all the family groups on whatsapp and BBM. Shes the one who makes rude jokes at bridal showers, Tupperware parties and even a mayyet house. Cuzzi-kala… come for the Yaseen, stay for the gossip.

Finally, we have Qurbani King. This is that uncle that looks like he came from the tv show, breaking bad. We all have that one uncle who is kitted out for bakri eid. And all these uncles had a convention because they all dress the same. Once a year – white lab coat, blue construction pants, gum boots and more knives than Zain Bhikha nasheeds on al ansaar.

So whats with this halaal cruise? The first time I heard of it, I thought Conspiracy mamoo was trying to convince the world that Tom Cruise converted. Nothing makes a muslim happier than when a celebrity converts to Islam. Its like fasting 29 days in Ramadan. Its like we need validation or something. Sometimes, you get a winner, like Yusuf Islam…but other times, you get busta rhymes. So ive been thinking a lot about the halaal cruise these days. And the problem is..we have different definitions of halaal. And within muslims, you have two extremes – one camp who says kulun halaal (everythings halaal). These are the chaps who are like ‘read bismillah and eat it’ and on the other extreme, you have theharaam police. Sailing without going on jihad – haram. Puppies and rainbows haram. Banks. Haraam. Cricket – haraam. Mufasa dying in lion king – haraam.

So what makes it a halaal cruise? The food? What is it? MJC, Sanha, ICSA, NIHT or maybe that new body that got the tender to certify burger king?

Do all the toilets have built in istinja facilities? Or do we have to use the small glass that non muslims use to gargle their mouth with?

I know they segregated the men and women in the movie titanic, but that’s when it was sinking, so how will they do that on the boat. I know teenagers, I used to be one a very long time ago. If they will make tawaaf around kingsmead, you can be sure they will do the same on a boat.

How do they choose a destination that isn’t part of ab dawjees middle east tour? Is there a tourism wing at sanha that gives cities halaal accredition? Maybe its like the water board and you get green flag status. I know isipingo, azaadville and ashervile got theirs last year.

Ladies and gentlemen, shukran for your time, my name is MJ Khan – As salaam u alaikum

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