Shaaz Nasir

Archive for 2011|Yearly archive page

We All Dream

In Advice on March 14, 2011 at 12:09 am

We all dream, just some more than others. Many dream in the night but those who dream while awake can steer their destiny with open eyes. You are your only limit. Facing reality does not mean submitting to it. When people accepts reality they take one step towards controlling it, understanding it.

Mind The Gap is a philosophy that links economics to fashion to world issues and much much more.

MTG was a dream I had while awake.  Soon enough and thanks to the Vice President of Communications (William), MTG will morph into something beyond my dreams and beyond me.

It is most definitely a risk to put my dream on the line. But as I said earlier, accepting reality is one step closer  to understanding it.

The world is moving at a rate I cannot keep up with and thus I have to accept that sometimes we have to let go of things when we love the most. It may mean less of me and more of MTG.

It will all make sense when the real MTG is launched when the dream is finally realized.

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Breaking News: Japanese Earthquake Disaster

In Globalization, Japan on March 11, 2011 at 10:08 am

BBC CBC CNN Fox News and more all rolled up into 1 MTG article

The most powerful earthquake to hit Japan since records began has struck the country’s north-east and triggered a devastating tsunami.

History: The offshore quake at 2:46 p.m. local time had a magnitude of 8.9, making it the biggest earthquake to hit Japan since officials began keeping records in the late 1800s, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The quake struck at a depth of 10 kilometres, about 125 kilometres off the eastern coast.

Basic Facts : Infrastructure

  • A state of emergency was declared at the Fukushima power plant after the cooling system failed in one of its reactors when it shut down automatically because of the earthquake.
  • The earthquake also triggered a massive blaze at an oil refinery in Ichihara city in Chiba prefecture near Tokyo, engulfing storage tanks.
  • About four million homes in and around Tokyo suffered power outages.

Basic Facts : People

  • There were no reports of any injuries to Canadians living or travelling in Japan, the Department of Foreign Affairs said at about 7 a.m. ET.
  • Some reports quote Japanese police as saying 200 to 300 bodies have been found in the port city of Sendai…with the death toll expected to rise rapidly
  • The Japanese Red Cross has already deployed a team to the affected areas to assess the damage and provide assistance.
  • The Japanese Red Cross is focusing on medical emergencies and is not yet requesting international assistance.
  • U.S. President Barack Obama sent his condolences to the people affected by the quake and the tsunami, saying the U.S. “stands ready to help” the Japanese.
  • Japan’s worst previous quake occurred in 1923 in Kanto, an 8.3 magnitude temblor that killed 143,000 people.

World Wide Impact

Take a look at this picture as they it explains everything words simply cannot.

  • The 1st wave of a tsunami is never the strongest as more countries brace for havoc.

Boys are just Not Good Enough

In Business, Canada, Economics, Experience, Globalization, Uncategorized on March 9, 2011 at 5:56 pm

A unfortunate gap between females and males continues to grow. It’s great that females are improving their skills in general, but the males are falling behind which means half the world is struggling.

I was reading the PISA 2009 assessments and below are some major points to be noted (the entire document is over 20 pages)

Introduction

Throughout much of the 20th century, concern about gender differences in education focused on girls’ underachievement. More recently, however, the scrutiny has shifted to boys’ underachievement in reading. In the PISA 2009 reading assessment, girls outperform boys in every participating country by an average, among OECD countries, of 39 PISA score points – equivalent to more than half a proficiency level or one year of schooling.

  • On average across OECD countries, boys outperform girls in mathematics by 12 score points while gender differences in science performance tend to be small, both in absolute terms and when compared with the large gender gap in reading performance and the more moderate gender gap in mathematics.

The ranks of top-performing students are filled nearly equally with girls and boys. On average across OECD countries, 4.4% of girls and 3.8% of boys are top performers in all three subjects, and 15.6% of girls and 17.0% of boys are top performers in at least one subject area. While the gender gap among top-performing students is small in science (1% of girls and 1.5% of boys), it is significant in reading (2.8% of girls and 0.5% of boys) and in mathematics (3.4% of girls and 6.6% of boys).

Similar prosperity…different educational results

  • Countries of similar prosperity can produce very different educational results. The balance of proficiency in some of the richer countries in PISA looks very different from that of some of the poorer countries. In reading, for example, the ten countries in which the majority of students are at Level 1 or below, all in poorer parts of the world, contrast starkly in profile with the 34 OECD countries, where on average a majority attains at least Level 3. However, the fact that the best-performing country or economy in the 2009 assessment is Shanghai-China, with a GDP per capita well below the OECD average, underlines that low national income is not incompatible with strong educational performance. Korea, which is the best-performing OECD country, also has a GDP per capita below the OECD average.
  • Indeed, while there is a correlation between GDP per capita and educational performance, this predicts only 6% of the differences in average student performance across countries. The other 94% of differences reflect the fact that two countries of similar prosperity can produce very different educational results. Results also vary when substituting spending per student, relative poverty or the share of students with an immigrant background for GDP per capita.

Enjoying the Learning: NO

In all countries, boys are not only less likely than girls to say that they read for enjoyment, they also have different readinghabits when they do read for pleasure. Most boys and girls in the countries that took part in PISA 2009 sit side by side in the same classrooms and work with similar teachers. Yet, PISA reveals that in OECD countries, boys are on average 39 points behind girls in reading, the equivalent of one year of schooling.

Why?

PISA suggests that differences in how boys and girls approach learning and how engaged they are in reading account for most of the gap in reading performance between boys and girls, so much so that this gap could be predicted to shrink by 14 points if boys approached learning as positively as girls, and by over 20 points if they were as engaged in reading as girls. This does not mean that if boys’ engagement and awareness of learning strategies rose by this amount the increase would automatically translate into respective performance gains, since PISA does not measure causation.

But since most of the gender gap can be explained by boys being less engaged, and less engaged students show lower performance, then policy makers should look for more effective ways of increasing boys’ interest in reading at school or at home.

PISA reveals that, although girls have higher mean reading performance, enjoy reading more and are more aware of effective strategies to summarise information than boys, the differences within genders are far greater than those between the genders. Moreover, the size of the gender gap varies considerably across countries, suggesting that boys and girls do not have inherently different interests and academic strengths, but that these are mostly acquired and socially induced. The large gender gap in reading is not a mystery: it can be attributed to differences that have been identified in the attitudes and behaviours of boys and girls. Girls are more likely than boys to be frequent readers of fiction, and are also more likely than boys to read magazines.

However, over 65% of boys regularly read newspapers for enjoyment and only 59% of girls do so. Although relatively few students say that they read comic books regularly, on average across OECD countries, 27% of boys read comic books several times a month or several times a week, while only 18% of girls do so.

Many issues will arise as females become more capable in contrast to their male counter parts. Although International Women’s day has just past…let us not forget the other half.

Our Generation

In Business, Canada, Economics, Globalization, World on March 4, 2011 at 9:03 am

Dear Readers,

We have the momentum.

We have the audacity.

We have the skills.

We all have what is needed to reach level of personal and professional development never thought possible before but our generation needs to understand its true potential. From fashion, to economics, to lifestyle, we must mind the gap from being just okay. We must achieve greatness. In the coming weeks everything is going to change for MTG.

Just wait and see.

Shaaz and Will

WAKE UP EVERYONE

In Globalization on February 21, 2011 at 11:24 am

MTG has been silent

behind the scenes

MTG has been loud

The world is changing at astronomical rates

from Canada’s international image being tarnished by the UN

to Egypt’s revolution

MTG was there but not speaking…a silent observer

well

everything you know about MTG is about the change

mind it

mind this

mind what

mind the gap

soon

Steve Jobs is a Joke

In Uncategorized on February 19, 2011 at 9:46 am

….and Tim  is laughing

Tim Cook is the man behind not only Steve Jobs’ shadow, but also Apple itself.

For more than a decade Tim Cook has been the Chief Operating Officer at Apple in which disagreements with Steve on vital strategies have been noted among many.  Tim Cook is anything but apart of the plan or another piece; Tim is the one placing the pieces to generate the image and structure of Apple.

BBC states, “his expertise in logistics and operations has been credited as one of the crucial elements that has allowed the company to soar on the back of the iPhone and iPod”. BBC further adds “notorious for being a hard worker who sleeps little, Mr. Cook oversees day-to-day operations with a focus and dedication that insiders say is almost unparalleled”.

Unparalleled

When Apple was completely decomposing, Steve Jobs turned to the 10 year industry veteran for desperately needed help.

Help, HELP? The man took charge and changed the fundamentals; you could say the cook took charge of the kitchen.

Cook Changes

  • Apple closed down most of its manufacturing operations and recast itself as a lean and flexible operation.
  • He forged close links with Asian companies who build the hardware, cutting costs and pushing technical boundaries.
  • Supported the move to concentrate sales efforts on a string of high-end retail outlets (which Steve Jobs initially opposed).

The third time that Mr. Cook has taken over from Mr. Jobs.

Pay Break down SBS (last year)

  • salary of $800,000
  • bonus of $5m
  • stock options worth more than $50m

Background (BBC)

Born to a working class family in Alabama. His father was employed around the local shipyards and after graduating high school, Mr. Cook headed for an industrial engineering degree at Alabama’s Auburn University. Mr. Cook continued his studies with an MBA at Duke in North Carolina.

After graduating he spent more than a decade working his way up the ladder at IBM before changing and eventually being lured by Mr. Jobs to join Apple in 1998.

BBC concludes best by declaring – “But as the man credited with turning Steve Jobs’s vision into hit products, he is certainly more than just a safe pair of hands”.

So what does is all mean, where is the gap to mind?

The whole notion of the charismatic born to lead jargon actually may be false. Sometimes the loudest in the room are the most empty. Their value is derived from the fact that people must feel a human connection; a important but empty figurehead that deep down understands their weakness.

Find the Balance

Do not strive to be the arrogant type A douche that everyone loves in exchange for a brain; nor follow in Cook’s steps of doing everything in the company but no one has ever heard of you. When moving up the ladder of business success, you must understand that it is both a combination of who you know and what you know.  MBA graduates have a choice: conform and settle for that 500 000 pay check, or risk everything  to gain multi-billion fortune.

WRONG.

MBA or not.

Loud or not.

Your true self must be strong, confident, compassionate…

You see it is a knowledge based economy where your degree does indeed matter, sure there are bound to be outliers like Bill Gates who dropped out of Harvard, but the importance of education and the rare trait of being an actually thoughtful and kind person from within will help your cause.

Not some bullshit about being a closer; drinking cold coffee; yelling at everything you see and cutting peoples throats. From my experiences of traveling to over a dozen countries, living in Oxford and a real analysis of the people who actually run the show, you will find that those rough tough tycoons have more reasons than just money; they actually have a heart.

That is the joke. They put on this huge show because the big bosses understand the little guys will eat this up but the little guys fail to understand that this is all a show.

So get real and get with the program backstabbing ways do not result in actual success. A heart of coal will get you coal.

I wish Steve Jobs (the actual man and not the image) a speedy recovery and applaud him in assembling a world class team of people.

 

 

Ohhhh Those Eyes

In Advice, Canada, Experience, Globalization on January 12, 2011 at 7:54 pm

Your eyes are one of the most important ways to  communicate. When words fail your eyes will pick up the slack and transmit messages beyond comprehension. Eye contact in any scenario from work to friends, heightens the connection at least  two fold. One can determine lies, nervousness, confidence, and truth through the eyes. There have been many times when people would be saying one thing but their eyes another.  Eyes also have tendency to break down barriers of language and culture as through my travels I have been able to understand people simply by the eyes. Physical distance can be destroyed when engaged in eye contact, while people could literally be standing in front of each other, but without eye contact they feel a cold distance.

So I end this post with a quote

“Those eyes will be your saviour as her voice whispers closer but her eyes scream run.”

Are you a Douchebag?

In Advice, Attire, Blog, Business, Culture, Exercise, Experience, Failure, Faith, Fashion, Uncategorized on January 10, 2011 at 4:47 pm

Are you really insecure about your identity?

Base your life on what people think of you?

Well at Gucci we understand your psychological problems and dedicate ourselves to manipulating them  in order to make money.

3D GUCCI GLASSES

No, not sunglasses or eyeglasses.

3D GUCCI GLASSES YOU CAN ONLY WEAR TO A THEATRE!

Stand out in a pitch black room full of strangers as you watch Avatar 2 or make a statement about your disposable income  to compensate for certain areas you lack in while enjoying Harry Potter.

Inspired by douchebags for the insecure.

BUY THEM NOW

 

Purchasing brands for yourself is great but this is a clear indication of serious personality defects. Mind the Gap is about to unleash a feature on why people wear brands. In this feature, it will be all about douchebags and what it means for our western society. Motives behind douchebags from the clubs and yuppie douchebags will  be assessed through the lenses of consumer behaviour, international marketing strategies, and psychology.

Mind the Douchebag.

How to lose 5 pounds without Exercise

In Advice, Blog, Business, Canada, Culture, Exercise, Experience, Failure, Faith, Fashion, Fasting, Fat, Food, Friends on January 3, 2011 at 11:01 am


Dream of dropping 5 pounds without intense exercise,
or maybe you are already fit and are struggling with the last five. Fret no more and GTF…what!?

WAIT and read

I will begin a new series based on sharing some of the tips and tricks that helped me shed the 52 pounds. Alongside with international economics, the latest fashion movement, and other important topics will come short bursts of advice on dropping  weight. Soon a cultural study on what it means to be attractive in various societies and why the western concept of  “hotness” has prevailed  will be released.

For now something a tad lighter …

Shaaz’s Green Tea Flood (GTF)…

Step 1 – Drink 4 cups of green tea a day

Step 2 -Drink 5 to 6 glasses of water a day

Step 3 – Reduce your salt intake

Green tea has a trillion benefits from  externalities such as lush extravagant hair to flushing out those bad toxins in your body. If you do not classify yourself as a very active person chances are you have a good amount toxins in you. These toxins slow your body down and prevent your natural hair, nails, and  skin from reaching their true potential. The biggest impact is how green tea speeds up your metabolism. When combining green tea with the increase in water consumption, your body at first will..logically… want to pee a lot. However, give yourself three days and your body should regulate itself accordingly. When your body lacks water it tends to keep your fat from leaving since it truly believes you are going to die.

Lacks water..how do I know?

The moment you become remotely thirsty…you are dehydrated. Sounds weird and wasteful, but it’s the truth. You should never feel thirsty which means keeping a healthy surplus of water in your body.

Wait…can I just keep GTF’ing and lose 5 pounds all the time?!

No. Your body will experience diseconomies of scale as the impact of green tea will diminish as you consume more over time.

Problems with GTF

I am a 6 foot 2 inch Indian man that weighs 200 pounds. If you are a 5 foot 1 blonde cheerleader from spain or a 70 year old man living in China…well first thank you for reading MTG… but…. I cannot say this will work for you. However, as a general guideline anything less than 4 cups a day will not have much impact. Plus if you eat like a pig no amount of GTF will help you.

Let this be your first step to a healthier you not just your only step.

Within 10-14 days you should feel the difference through your nails, hair, skin, and weighing machine  (please get one)

Alright now I am off to find the meaning of beauty around various cultures to report on the gaps and reasons behind them.

Before you try anything please talk to your doctor as MTG is not your doctor.

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