Saturday, April 29, 2006

Bollywood Goes Ghetto...

Okay, I just had to share this quote because it made me laugh. Even in the land of glamour, people gotta handle they bidness:


What is this, the R. Kelly Save the Children tour? It's all good and well that Mr. Khan is fraternizing among the free but who's idea was it to put him in front of John Abraham on the promo poster? Come on! He's blocking my view!

On the other hand, I'm glad to know you don't actually have to be in a band or anything to be a rock star in Bollywood. That means there's hope for me to slide in under the radar. My lipsynching and dancing skills are killer!

Friday, April 28, 2006

The best pickup line I've ever heard...

Okay, while I'm almost(?) positive using the following paragraph as a pickup line wasn't his intent, once again I fell into the rabbit hole that is Sepia Mutiny and somehow discovered this jewel by Manish Vij on bridging the virtually impassible chasm between the sexes:

Real men do not need to dominate women. Real men can be friends and lovers with strong, free-thinking, independent women.
The beauty of his words thoroughly astound me however, minus 10 sexy points for the use of the word androgyny so I'll skip that part and go on to:
We cannot afford to relapse into our insecurities and pull our practiced gender roles around us like a filthy old blanket.
If that doesn't want to make you whisper, "Tell me more," while making your most sincerely interested face, what in the world does?!? No worries, he goes on:
I'm willing to cook sometimes. I'm willing to help around the house, to raise my own children, to share decision-making rather than claiming authority by virtue of gender. This is called weakening the family? I think not. I think it's being considerate of your spouse. I think it's strengthening your marriage.
Word? I'm buying what he's selling.
Fellas, try that on for size. Claim ignorance no more. You have been schooled.

[Knowing that you, Manish are a rather technophilic fellow, who might perchance, as time and Technorati allows, read this post, may I say to you personally, "Please do not ignore your true life's calling. Men worldwide need your knowledge and perspective. Write the book. Oprah's calling your name."]

Thursday, April 27, 2006


One of the most serendipitous experiences during my blog-fast was stumbling onto a once in a lifetime opportunity. [No, I did not meet Hrithik Roshan at my local shopping mall, shake his hand, pass out, and wake up to the sight of him making his most sincere and concerned face while cradling my head in his hands asking if I was alright. Be realistic!]

My once in a lifetime event went more like this:

Remarkably loyal yet bored female employee stares at computer monitor with glazed over eyes as midday sun beams heavily on screen from oversized window behind her. Her desk radio is set to a local grown and sexy (G&S) jazz station owned by local HBU. "In just a moment I'll be interviewing instructors from the upcoming Film Boot Camp that will be held as part of the Nashville International Black Film Festival," a non-chalant G&S dj states.

Her glazed over eyes shift to radio in disbelief. [Am I the only person that didn't know Nashville had an black film festival?!? I think not. This is MAJOR news! And a film boot camp?! Come on!]

Several tense, anticaptory minutes of failure to answer calls and refusal to leave for the restroom later, she hears the voice of her future instructors. The dj swoons over their resumes, "You worked with Spielberg, Debby Allen, etc." chattering frivilously until the words "our website N-I-B-F-F dot com...the phone number..." break into the air and hang like a cloud formation. The employee, now completely disinterested in work, immediately scribbles the address then pecks away at her keyboard.

As she is scanning the website, the words "boot camp...began yesterday..." tap quickly through the radio to the chalkboard of her mind like Morse code. The words, "come today...begins at 12 noon...$100," cause a spark of adrenaline electricity to pulse through her very being. She looks at the clock. It reads 11:45. Perfect timing for an extended lunch...
The fact that I was listening to the radio and not a cd is pure divine providence as I am far more cd prone. The fact that the campus is less than 10 minutes from my office allowed me to make the midday workshops fairly easily as far as midday excursions are concerned.

All that is to say that I spent three weeks learning [more] about film production and actually being on crew for a short film project. The process was not nearly as painful as it could have been for a number of reasons I won't bother to list here. The end result was a moderately ghetto fabulous piece that will later be posted when I am able to upload it.

All in all, I'm one step closer to making movies, a dream I've had since I was a kid. I haven't won any awards yet but First and foremost, I want to give thanks to God...

Monday, April 24, 2006

Water and Other Important Things

During my blog-fast I watched Water, a fabulous Indian film by Deepa Mehta. In the course of watching this film, several concepts converged at once which I am compelled to share.

The first references back to a post by Anna on Sepia Mutiny. I really wanted to post in response to “Whoever you are, you are not alone” but I restrained myself and left three or so comments on the Mutiny’s blog instead. ;0) Basically, in a narrative style post, Anna shared her story about being sexually assaulted. Naturally, this led to an outpouring of emotional comments (200+) of various sentiments. Having also survived assault, I was totally floored by her willingness to share but even more appreciative of the open dialogue her admission initiated.

So back to Water, if you haven’t seen it, Suraj Imports in Nashville has a bootleg that says “For Screening Purposes Only” across the screen every 10 minutes that they’ll let you rent for $3...Basically, the story is about a colony of widows during the late ‘30s when the teachings of Gandhi were beginning to stir the undercurrents of Indian culture. At the time, the religious practice was that widowed women were to leave their families, live in the colony, keep their hair in a G.I. Jane cut, always wear white (the color of mourning), never wear jewelry. They were not permitted to work and had to beg. If that wasn’t bad enough, the oldest widow and her eunuch friend would pimp out the youngest widow. No big deal until it turned out the youngest widow was 7-years-old. [Child marriage produces child widows.]

“Dang! This is depressing,” thinks Current Reader. No worries. I’m getting to the point.

After watching Water and thinking about the general disenfranchisement of women as it pertains to me personally and in the worldwide sphere, I couldn’t help but think of Jesus. Seriously. In the very last scene of Water, one of the middle-aged widows takes the 7-year-old girl who was assaulted to hear Gandhi speak at the local train station. She presses through a crowd of people all while carrying this fairly large child. Gandhi speaks very briefly then boards the train. In a palpable convergence of fear, hope and desperation, the widow begins to press toward the train as the whistle blows. She runs toward the train crying out, “Please take her with you. Give her to Gandhi. Please!”

I was reminded of the bleeding woman who pushed through a crowd just to touch the edge of Jesus' clothing because she believed that if she touched him, she would be healed. Her faith, her desperation propelled her.
[Lk 8:43-48]

I am both the child--wounded and helpless--and the woman, desperate and reaching to get to the only thing that could possibly offer deliverance from the immobilizing weight of life.

One of my absolute favorite verses in the Bible says, "No one who trusts in you [God] will ever be put to shame, but they will be put to shame who are treacherous without excuse." [Ps. 25:3] Jesus was "a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering," [Isa 53:3] I mentioned in a previous post how in Christ's first public message on earth he stated he came "to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom." [Isa 61:1-2] Later in that same chapter it says, "Instead of their shame my people will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace, they will rejoice in their inheritance...and everlasting joy will be there." [v.7]

Life heaps so many things on us and leaves behind a residue of disappointment, frustration and shame but Jesus made a way for us to be free of every oppression life can bring--every shame, every frustration, every mistreatment has no place in His love. The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. [Ps 9:9]

4/28 Update: The folks over at Reel Spirituality [Fuller U.] have posted a discussion guide for the film here.

Friday, April 21, 2006

On the Road Again...

Man, after all the fuss about not posting, I'm still not posting.

I'm in Boston, staying with my Aunt who doesn't have an internet hook up at her house (senior citizens!) while visiting my mom, sister and niece who's been getting cancer treatments at Massachusetts General Hospital.

[Side note: Nonetheless, a very nice "Auntie" who is here at Mass General with her grandaughter gave me sweets after I asked her if she knew where I could get some ladoos so all is not lost.]

That said, a real post is on the way...

Monday, April 17, 2006

Bigger & Blacker!!!

No this post is not about Chris Rock...I'M BACK and amped to be in blog land once again!

That said, I've decided to backblog my 5 1/2 week hiatus. It almost seemed like not blogging made my life more interesting. Rather than start at the very beginning [a very good place to start], I'll start at the end and work my way back.

Which brings me to Kehinde Wiley...

Lateness is not always a bad thing. Had my physical therapist not been late to my appointment, I would not have picked up an outdated issue of DECOR magazine that was featuring Mr. Wiley. There are few things in life that take my breath away but this painting, The Chancellor Seguier on Horseback, may now join the list. (You can view the inspiration for Kehinde's version here.) The funny thing is, as my closest friends know, I'm quite a bit anti-museum so the fact that his art moves me to a reaction is impressive. If I could afford the painting, I would have bought it the minute I saw it. It is an amalgamation of contradictions. Breathtaking!

This one though, Passing/Posing, is my favorite. It's magical.