Can Someone With Bollywood Knowledge Please Tell Me WTF’s Going On Here?

I miss Nami and Janhavi. They used to drag me to their houses to watch Bollywood films. I’d sit there watching people in very colorful costumes swirl around, and I’d listen to some very energetic songs, and be thoroughly mystified as to what was happening and why my friends were laughing their asses off. But then they’d pause the video and explain. For a few minutes, at least, I’d be able to vaguely follow the action, until it all got away from me again and I was left sitting like an ignorant lump until next they paused to enlighten me. One thing was for sure: anything I ever wanted or needed to know about Bollywood movies, I only needed to ask them.

But we’ve lost touch. And I haven’t many friends now who are in to Bollywood. And I haven’t been able to catch my friend R, who is a fan, outside of work for a while. So this video has thoroughly flummoxed me.

I know this must be several scenes from a film, but I haven’t the foggiest which film. I know there was a battle, and that was obviously Kali collecting blood in a bowl (hi, Kali! You’ll always be one of my favorite goddesses). I think the young dude looking on like a derp might be Krishna. And I know whoever the big brute at the end is got subjected to a mighty lecture before being finished off by the main goddess there. Outside of that, I can’t puzzle it out. I don’t know what events led to this, or what the lecture was about, or who everybody was. I have no idea if the song at all matches the clip. And I’m not sure why I’m intrigued, but I am.

So if any of you are Bollywood fans and can step in to take up Nami and Janhavi’s movie-‘splaining role, I’d love that very much. Also, you could, if you like, educate me as to your favorite films. Especially really good musicals.

Thank you, my darlings!


Goddess going after a god with a trident. I don't know who she is, but I bloody love her style.

Goddess going after a god with a trident. I don’t know who she is, but I bloody love her style.

Sunday Song: Assholes

So last week saw us treated to Elan Gale’s made-up saga, in which a woman annoyed people and he, Bwave Hewo, descended from the dizzying heights of being responsible for shit-sandwich television such as The Bachelor and proceeded to demonstrate how he believes that bullying sick women will make our social ills go away. Also, he seemed to have some idea he was doing the staff being bawled out by his imaginary woman a favor.

This is wrong on so very many levels.

Firstly: The fact he did this as a little light entertainment/publicity stunt on a holiday weekend shows he’s a first-rate shithead – as if we couldn’t already guess that from his teevee programs.

Secondly, as a thought problem, it sends the message that in these situations, asshole behavior + even more asshole behavior = harmony. This math does not work in the world outside Mr. Gale’s head.

Thirdly, Mr. Gale has set a terrible example for his followers, who now believe it’s heroic to be a misogynistic asshole to random women in unflattering pants and medical masks. His situation may be fiction, but life often imitates art (or piss-poor versions thereof), and we humans do take lessons and morals from stories. So do expect an uptick in asshole behavior from onlookers in all sorts of tense situations, plus much tweeting about what Bwave, Bwave Hewoes they are. Thanks to you, Mr. Gale, the world has just become that much more measurably worse.

Fourthly, even his stated objective fails: he claims to want to make things better by punishing a woman for being an asshole to staff. And I’m sure most of us agree that it would be nice not to reward assholes. However, as a person who has worked in all manner of retail, customer service, and technical support fields, I can tell you that having one asshole customer poked and prodded and annoyed by another asshole customer only makes the situation far worse for the poor staff member caught in the shit-flinging. More shit is sailing, and the original asshole now has a hemorrhoid. How happy is your asshole when it’s got one of those? How much more miserable does it make you? Yeah.


Image is of a cat smacking a small dog in the face. Caption says, "Good day, sir. I said GOOD DAY!"

The Elan Gale school of politeness.

Put it like this: if I were a zookeeper being harassed by a rather irritated tiger at feeding time, the last damn thing I need is some dumbshit in the audience deciding that what would really help the situation is to start pelting it with rocks. One or both of us is likely to get mauled, the poor tiger will feel completely justified as well as infinitely put out, and there’s no way the situation’s going to end happily for anyone except those who like their visits to the zoo to include bloody chunks of flesh being flung every which way.

So, fans of the Elan Gale method of making service people’s lives better: don’t. Just don’t. Sit down, shut the fuck up, and let the professional (helpful hint: this is not you) handle the situation. If this isn’t exciting enough for you, please go find a therapist who can explore the reasons why you may be such a terrible person and help you modify your behavior to become less of one.

And if you really want to help? Try gently defusing the original asshole. Or wait until that asshole has departed, and give the staff member some sympathy.

Now let us have some songs that rather perfectly describe Mr. Gale and his ilk.

Sunday Song: Very

According to my cat, it is very very cold. Tis the season wherein she stops disdaining my lap and begins to demand it, except when I’m in a room that’s less well-heated than another, in which case she’s curled up as tight as she can get in a nice warm bed.

We’ve been spending a lot more time together lately. It began whilst I was sick, and spending more time than usual in bed reading and dozing. She saw this as a prime opportunity to have her lap and her warm cozy room, too, and would plop down atop me for a long session of purring and snuggles. She looks smug about it, too. She knows all about feline paralysis and the causing thereof. [Read more…]

Vote for One of Our Own!

Begin super-sekrit communiqué from our own RQ:

I just need your vote, via Twitter or Facebook.

As I may or may not have mentioned previously, my choir is planning a trip to Canada in the summer of next year, for the Canadian Latvian Song and Dance Festival (program here, that’s us on July 4th). So, one of the local breweries here (Cēsu alus, no comments) is running a competition for local groups of singers/dancers to win a rather large sum of money, which we, the choir, would put towards our trip next year – either for plane tickets, or for sight-seeing in Canada (since that costs money, too, and for the vast majority of choir members, this is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to get to North America).

So, please, if you have a Twitter or Facebook account, go here and vote (Click ja to say you’re over 18, then click on ‘Balsot’ at the top, then look for Jauniešu kora SONORE dalība XIV Latviešu Dziesmu svētkos Kanādā, Hamiltonā and click Balsot again), from each account, every day (I’ll be putting out reminders until you’re all sick of me). Please. This would mean a lot to me and my fellow choir members, as it would reduce a lot of the stress and financial worry currently causing doubts in some members.
If anyone doubts our skill, I can re-post some of our music – and I’ll (hopefully) have new music/video after this weekend (amateur choir finals on the 29th).

Anyway, if you can help out, muchas gracias! *hugs*

End super-sekrit communiqué.

Right, simple enough. Let’s get ready to vote! First, a song for motivational purposes:

[Read more…]

Sunday Song: I’m Alive

Here’s another one for you bagpipe aficionados. I actually found it a long time ago, then forgot which it was, then didn’t listen to that part of my playlist for ages, then got a pleasant surprise when I finally did that bit. And I was all like, “Oh, hai, I’d better do that as the Sunday Song for my bagpipe loving peeps.” So here ’tis:

In keeping with our “alive” theme, here’s a lovely song by Katra with alive in the chorus.

I love Katra. They make me a deeply happy human.

Sunday Song: Something That May Leave You Traumatized for Life

But the geology in the background is spectacular in this one.

I stumbled across that accidentally, and stared in disbelief for a moment (YouTube had recommended it as similar to some symphonic metal thing, and I was wondering what crack machine intelligence smokes). Then the geology got to me, and there’s just something about that song that makes it not bad. Actually kinda good.

I’ve had a day much like that video: fun, but bizarre. I’ll tell you one thing: assembling a desk chair with a gay man can be one hell of an exercise in innuendo. Which reminds me of another song: [Read more…]

Sunday Song: Love, Fate, Fertility, and Bagpipes

So as some folks celebrate a pagan holiday stuffed uncomfortably in a Christian suit, and some of us resist (or fail to resist) the urge to eat horrid hollow chocolate animals for old time’s sake, and the more adventurous among us wait for the Peeps to go half price so we can find ever more interesting things to do with them, I figure it’s time to get back to the real reason for the season: fertility! Well, spring and new life and sowing crops and such. I would encourage all of you with enthusiastic partners to (safely!) make like bunnies in honor of this season. Or, if you prefer and you live somewhere that’s experiencing the first flush of spring, get out and admire the new life springing (ha) up everywhere. In other words, if you have a chance to haz a happy, go seize it. I certainly intend to, once I’m done being extraordinarily lazy.

But first, let’s remember a Norse goddess of love, fertility, and fate, mostly because this song has got bagpipes in it and I know you lot love bagpipes.

Right. Now you’ve had your bagpipage, go play.

Sunday Song: Out of the Dark

Now that I’ve gone and gotten treatment, I’ll tell you the story of the Dark.

I’ve always been subject to black moods. Getting raped at 18 didn’t help, I’m sure. But those moods were always transient, usually correlated to known issues like severe stress, and predictable. They didn’t affect my day-to-day functioning all that much, and I could always find my way out. I just joined up with the part of my brain that was laughing into the darkness and walked out on it. I’d change up my routine, do whatever altered my mood toward happy, and the Dark would go.

So I wasn’t overly concerned when I began to slide in January. Vaguely and pervasively sad in Seattle in the middle of winter, during a time of high stress at work and home? Whee, SAD! Yay, environmental triggers! Time to take a break, then, watch some Agatha Christie, do busy work, wait for the Dark to go away.

But it started getting darker. [Read more…]

That Feeling of Tension Released in Victory

So you know those times when you’re sitting there restless for no damn reason, and you’re messing about trying to find something that will hold your attention, and suddenly you remember there was this one song you used to listen to years ago that you really liked, but you couldn’t remember the title? And so you go haring off after it, hoping you remembered the artist right but after the first three not-it songs you’re not sure. And then you remember the title, but it turns out that whoever did your mix album put the wrong title, so that song that you thought is it ain’t it. And you’d give up, except by now hearing that song again is the most important thing ever, so you slog on, becoming tense and despairing and desperate. And then, victory!

Yes? No? Well, even if you’ve never experienced that particular sequence of events, you may enjoy this song anyway. It’s Octavia Sperati, and the song turns out to be called “Guilty Am I.”

At least now I’ll remember it always. Also, the cover art for the album is awesome.

Grace Submerged album cover.

Grace Submerged album cover.

And then – and then, as a special bonus, linked from another Octavia Sperati video, what do I find but a video I’ve been trying to find for at least a year now, ever since it vanished from my playlist. Huzzah!

Well played, YouTube. Well played indeed.