Thursday, June 13, 2024


Dhaka Tribune

Avenue 20 – Kaarina Kaisar

Meet Kaarina Kaisar -- a comedian bursting with personality, and a lover of all things Bollywood, who rose to fame on Daekho through some hilarious video representations of everyday life and struggles in Dhaka. 

Update : 03 Oct 2019, 04:21 PM

Who/what is the first person/thing that truly inspired you to pursue what you have achieved now?

Bollywood! "Tu Cheez Badi Hai Mast Mast" (not the crappy remixed version, but the original, golden one with Raveena and Akshay) was one of the first music videos I watched, and I was absolutely fascinated by all the glitz and glamour! Since then, there’s been no looking back and I officially identify as a Bollysexual now, without any shame.

The music, the dance, the romance -- I am drawn to it all! Ever since I was little I knew I wanted to be involved in the entertainment industry, and yes, a very hairy Akshay Kumar shaking his hips with Raveena Tandan did budge me towards this path (much to my mother's annoyance, who still believes I might still become a doctor someday. May her hopes and dreams about me rest in peace).

Early bird or night owl?

Night owl, without a doubt. If I accidentally wake up before 12pm, I flaunt it with pride, because for me that's like waking up at dawn.

Funniest person you know?

Reza (Rezaur Rahman). He's one of my closest friends and basically directs our videos at Daekho. At first glance, you wouldn't perceive our serious-looking team leader (who constantly gives off extremely "Angry-Young-Man"-vibes)  to have the capability of making you laugh till you peed a little bit; but he has an amazingly sarcastic sense of humour, which can often be seen as a reflection on some of our best videos.

Dream travel destination?

Anywhere with a sea-beach! As long as I can see the waves crashing against the shore, with a beautiful mayhem of a sunset decorating the skyline, providing the perfect moment to pose a pretentious book in front of the camera and take a snap (for the jealous 'beaches' back home) - I am good!

Chikon jilapi or mota jilapi?

I don't discriminate against jilapis. All sizes are beautiful. 

What is your Dhaka traffic survival tactic?

When stuck in traffic, I often tend to make videos for my own FB page and Instagram feed, much to the confusion of the people in the surrounding cars to whom I am just a blob of human flesh screaming angrily in front of the camera.

Three things you always carry with you?

My charm, my beauty, and my confidence.

Hahhahahaa, I laughed so hard at my own answer - just wanted to type in a "Miss Universe" kind of a reply; but on a more serious note, yes, my charm, my beauty and my confidence.

(If I can't make you cringe even a little bit, do I even deserve to be prominent on social-media?)

A book you read which positively shaped you?

My mother, Lopa Kaisar's book- Neel Dohon. My mother has been publishing novels for a while now, and out of the 4 which she has written, this is my absolute favourite. You don't often find prominent Bangladeshi novels on female empowerment anymore, and this book covered so many issues in context with our own society, that I was absolutely spell-bound after finishing it. I am restraining myself from giving away any spoilers, but this book is based on 3 different women in different walks of life and each of their stories are enveloped with...magic. It's an absolute must-read for everyone.

Favourite thing to do to unwind after a long day?

Netflix and chill -- all alone, on my bed -- with absolutely no one near me to judge me as I plow down dozens of dumplings with soy sauce dripping down my chin. Ooohh, sexy!

Do you have any hidden talents?

This might be one of those beautiful traits I have inherited from my mother, but, I love writing short-stories. I don't know if that counts as a 'talent' or if I am any good at all, but I love to write! Putting something down in black-and-white is something that comes very naturally to me, and recently I have started working on some scripts for short films. I believe, if they won't cast an overweight girl as an actor, at least I would get to be on-set with the stars if I wrote the script for their movies.

Your most and least favourite things about Dhaka city?

Least favourite thing: Dhaka at 3pm

Most favourite thing: Dhaka at 3am

Describe the last aunty incident you were in, and how you tackled it.

Where do I even begin -- I am an open 'khazana' for  aunties, ready to be indulged by snide comments. I am overweight, I am turning 26, I am unmarried and I work in the media. Every time they look at me, I swear I don't think they even see a girl -- rather a fat, lazy, unmarried panda with a rotting reproductive system who moonlights as the Zoo's very own item-girl.

The best way to tackle them? Smile at them, don't blink and silently curse that they lose one of their gold bangles. I swear, it works.

3am comfort food?

The House Chef is one of my favourite online restaurants and our house is always stocked with their food - their brownies and sandwiches are to die for! 

(Please excuse me as I salivate for a few minutes)

Favourite social media app?

Instagram - it's still one of those protected platforms that hasn't been taken over by people who constantly comment "Mo2 appi nyc bobs" under all my pictures, like on Facebook.

What's your spirit animal and why?

Panda! I am unnecessarily joyous , I keep to myself and I am happy as long as I have food to munch on.

At what time of the day do you feel most creatively inspired?

As cliché as it sounds, but around 3-4am is when I am at my creative best. As the whole city sleeps (except those who are busy roaring their dads' expensive cars up and down the empty roads), you begin to feel a strange power over everything else. There is something that resides within the silence of this city during this time -- the window of peace just before the calamity would strike, and it's just so mesmerizingly beautiful.

How long does it take you to get ready every day?

I had suffered from acne for the longest time, and ever since I have stopped wearing make-up, my skin has drastically improved and, has helped me to get ready a lot faster.  I am really not trying to say "Oh my GOD, it literally only takes me 5 minutes to get ready" but yeah, it does take me 5 minutes to get ready. 

Funniest thing you last read/saw.

A video from Ishfaque Kamal's FB page: 'Faque My Life'. He has recently shifted to the UK and made a video about the lack of hand-showers there, which had me literally LOL-ing. Go and check it out after you are done reading this. It's absolutely hilarious!

Last person you texted?


What rating would you give yourself on a Yelp review?

5-stars, without a doubt. I am sorry, but I am extremely fond of myself and, in Kareena Kapoor's highly-esteemed words, "Main Apni Favourite Hoon!" 

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