Pakistan has been kissed ( or perhaps French kissed) by the American culture. We have all those eateries like Mcdonald, KFC, Dunkins, Burger King, Hardees etc.
One peculiar thing I have seen in all three of my recent offices, is that men frown on being called a " Bhai" ( Brother, Hermano). Probably they are ticked off by the complete impossibility of a romance with a so-called
sister. Strange thing is that they don't mind being called brother by their own sex.
Now, of course I don't call people my own age " brother". But the seniors,married and aged, won't like being called uncles. Should I call them by their first name? In the west, people either call you by your first name or last- never attach a relationship. There is also no age digression- a 50 year old John is like the 18 year old John you know- you won't call one uncle and the other son. But thats not us. We don't call our elders from their first name. This doesn't mean we respect them more- its just culture.
Secondly, in the west, same sex physical contact is not acceptable. The only time you touch or hug your same-sex friend is when you are both gays. And there is a romance blooming. This again isn't part of our culture. Here, casually walking hand in hand, hugging on meeting, touching while talking is acceptable and not homosexual. But this again is changing. It is a common joke on many college campuses, that some two friends are so touchy touchy. Most part of it has been caused by movies like " Kal Hu na Hu" and " Dostana".
Most of us need to pause on these lines. Do we want the age -digression , commonly known as " umar ka lehaaz" to be removed and go down to calling people by their first names? Secondly, casual touching between two friends is gay? Watch any cricket match audience and you will notice how common it is. Even inter-personal space is very limited in Pakistan. Do we want to be so rigid in our body language that all same-sex bodily touch is homosexual?