1. The smell of goats, blood and freshly slaughtered meat. It’s everywhere!
2. Call me an infidel, but I just can’t bring myself to make merry at the idea of mass murdering a few hundred thousand cute, furry, unsuspecting farm animals in a span of 72 hours … and that too publically, in front of a sadistically gleeful audience.
3. All the barbeque talk. Show some sensitivity people!
4. The questions: Are you slaughtering a goat or a cow? How much will you be spending this year? Only two days left, dude, where’s your animal? Seriously guys. I’ll get whatever I want, whenever I want — the fact that I’ll probably only be able to afford an undernourished midget cow is my business and my business alone!
5. How everyone, including some highly intelligent people, lose their marbles a week before Eid, spending everyday just staring at their animals. Poor thing’s bound to get the heebie-jeebies!
6. Eid morning — help me God if I have to leave the house and witness the genocide… which I always do, with unrealistic expectations of remaining all Zen at the sight of blood and gutted animals.
7. Becoming a vegetarian for a couple of weeks after freaking out at the sight of above-mentioned blood. Especially if you’re the kind of person who actually looks forward to his weekly steaks and hamburgers.
8. How the true essence of the tradition is lost on most of us — people would gladly spend bundles of cash on four goats and two cows at Bakra Eid so they can feed their own greed and gluttony by stuffing their deep-freezers to full capacity, but go berserk if a truly deserving person should ask them for a little meat to feed his/her hungry children some other time during the year.
9. How some parents think watching Jackie Chan act like a nincompoop in a movie is bad influence for their kids, but watching four blood-soaked men brutally attack, slaughter, skin and butcher an 800 pound cow — live — is healthy entertainment.
10. Post Bakra Eid dinner parties with red-meat dishes in great abandon. How very subtle!
Published in The Express Tribune, Sunday Magazine, November 6th, 2011.
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