Please Let the 80s Never Return

I’m not quite sure why I decided to torture myself, but I decided to look up some videos of a few of my favorite songs from middle school. The music is, of course, uber-cheesey, although I will argue that the voices are good. But dear Glod, the fashion. How did we get through the hairspray and pancake makeup and hideous clothes in order to engage in intimate activities? How did we ever find this crap attractive? Aaaagh.

Image is a cat wearing a yellow and blue striped polo shirt with the collar up. Caption says, "80s cat lives wif his collar up."

Before you go on, I must warn you… it’s not pretty.

[Read more…]

Emmylou Harris is a Feminist. Huzzah!

So, remember that conversation about country music we had a while back? It got me to recalling my country music days, which began with my parents and lasted until I got introduced to heavy metal. I don’t listen to much anymore, but after that post and the discussion around it, I began trying to recall the names of female country singers I’d loved. And Emmylou Harris came to mind. [Read more…]

Bro Country

Did I ever tell you that the first karaoke song I ever sang was a country song? It was. My friends and I went to a karaoke bar, where I was like, “I don’t sing karaoke but I’ll drink alcohol and cheer for you,” but then they were like, “Let’s do Dixie Chicks!” and they dragged me out to their car so we could listen to “Goodbye, Earl” ten thousand times so I would know the words. So my first karaoke experience was all about misandry*, possibly foreshadowing my current life as a feminist. I figured this event would not kill my metal cred because the Dixie Chicks had said mean things about George Warmonger Bush, and also I could say my friends made me do it.

I actually used to be a country music fan before I started doing the gateway drugs of Petshop Boys, Aerosmith, and Bon Jovi. Back in the day, I owned a lot of Juice Newton and George Strait albums, and loved Alabama and the Oak Ridge Boys, and thanks to David Allan Coe and my own research, I knew that a country song was not perfect unless it included mama, trains, trucks, prison, or getting drunk. I first learned about tequila from Shelly West, although I couldn’t figure out who Jose Cuervo was. I ended up thinking he must be the cowboy she woke up next to, and she just forgot his name. Yes, I was a somewhat sheltered child. Or possibly my parents were too busy laughing to explain… [Read more…]

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…]