Sunday, January 22, 2006

"Modern Women" of Pop-Culture

WARNING: Only for grown-ups and non-hypocritical people, for I have called a spade, 'a spade' here.

When I began the Anita Blake Vampire Hunter series, I was happy in a very liberated small woman way. Here is a hero (to call her heroine, would be to say that she was merely meant to have romance scenes with the hero) who was only 5' 3" and could inspire terror in the heart or equivalent component of vampires, zombies, were-animals and your common garden variety man (yawn).

You also had these delicious guys who are dangerous on their own, yet moony when it comes to our no-nonsense Anita, who wears her devil may care attitude like a constant pair of Nikes.
Here I digress a little, by casting actors to each of these parts (yeah we are talking multiple guys here) just to illustrate the point I will make later on:

  • Jean-Claude - Smooth Talking Master Vampire - Brad Pitt (very smoldery)
  • Jason - Jean-Claude's pet werewolf - Hayden Christenson (naughty/dimples)
  • Richard Zeeman - King of the werewolves - matt Damon on steroids (major nice guy)
  • Asher - Jean-Claude's ex-boyfriend, also Vampire - Jude Law (mysterious and beautiful)
  • Micah - King of the were leopards, shortie - Tom Cruise (likeable)

Yep, so one can infer the "Yawza!!" factor here...
To have one of these around would be romance-novel fodder, but here we have all of them and just our little heroine (now she starts to be one).
Before long, our lady is embroiled in various affairs in all possible combinations with the men/monsters mentioned above and my liberated spirit retched heavily, and I stopped reading.

I have the same complaint of Ayn 'Bloody'
. Her female characters may be strong, independent and intelligent women but they sleep around too much without any qualms.

Why can't the modern woman be represented in a more decent way?

Belonging to the afore mentioned category I can confidently state the common profile of the members: (Refer the cartoon)

  • Well Educated
  • Earning salary
  • Independent
  • Decision making ability
  • Career minded
  • More of brains rather than beauty

    From my perusal of literature and movies on central woman character, I have jotted down points "Top ten things about the heroine of a trashy script..."

    1] The attractive new entrant into our Girl's [that is how the heroine will be referred to] life moves, smells, behaves like utter trouble.
    (international terrorist, stealth assassin, vampire, werewolf, amnesiac...)

    2] There is more than one major wonderful guy around, who is out to get our Girl; a sitch we know will give rise to moral dilemmas resulting in the most grossly outrageous solution.
    (A vampire and his buddies, two mortal best friends, one mortal and his enemy/boss, Her childhood sweetie+highschool boyfriend+cute boss+fiancee, The guy who hates [but secretly pines for] her + her dependable boyfriend...commonly Husband vs. Ex)

    3] our Girl has this best friend who has a wonderful and steady guy who just happens to be the buddy of one pouty Greek god of a male character. So, each central characters will run into the other while in the turf of the common friends.
    When she has misunderstood him, the common friends enlighten her about to his "mother Teresa" side.

    4] And each time our Girl "runs into" the Boy (one of the boys, atleast) she thinks "oh how my heart beats to be around this guy...I should avoid seeing him" but never gets around to doing just that.

    5] When he meets our Girl, the boy has been doing one of the following activities:

    • flexing muscles while lifting heavy things (helping old people is a plus),
    • firing some reptilian individual who we know is coming back to bite buddy boy,
    • making nasty or sarcastic quips about/to her,
    • reading to the blind/taking care of children/any social service work,
    • Working out in the gym or fighting a giant in the dojo.

    So he is mostly angry, sweaty, busy (and or) dripping in blood.

    4] There is one arch nemesis girl:

    • who hates our Girl from high school
    • is the competitor in office/Boss
    • The pouty Greek god's ex...Etc.

    Who is never given a good makeup person or/and wardrobe selector. This person is always in the throes of PMS and is obviously slutty (although by the end of the script the line between her sluttiness and our Girl's "giving in to her emotions" blurs considerably)

    5] our Girl is never actually seen working. Only seen going to or coming from office, or the usual running into good-looking men at office.

    6] Everyone loves her at office/in the neighborhood/in the family.
    Our Girl has co-worker friends, neighbor friends and family that will lie down in front of traffic for her. Yet she is alone and longs for the Boy.

    7] Our Girl never:

    • oversleeps
    • overeats
    • throws tantrums (only has arguments with the hero(es) ending in sparks)
    • is wrong
    • yawns
    • dresses shabbily (looks sharp even while sleeping/after getting up)
    • hits people (except the nemesis-which is an all out cat-fight)

    8] No matter how little she makes, or in which crampy apartment she lives, our Girl never repeats an outfit at all and all her clothes are named after illustrious people-Gucci, Versace .etc.

    9] Girl is surprised to find out that the stinky rich pouty Greek god is nuts about her. [I say, when you and he are the only super-good looking people among everyone you know, it’s quite obvious that he will secretly pine away for you.]

    10] She cries when he proposes. He is only slightly less emotional. Our Girl pulls out all stops from then on.

    This ladies and germs, is everything pop-culture has to offer as facets of the modern woman Pray, don't be fooled into accepting these as being based on facts.

    Truth is out there,

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Laughing Stock

Having come to a stage when the sound of laughing seems to be an alien sensory experience, I wonder, in my almost clinical detachment, if the way we laugh and what/who we laugh for/at, tells you a lot about the laugher.

There is a really cute petite lady who meets with me everyday by way of work. She is not very verbose, in fact she is what you call “strong and silent” if you could ignore the “strong” part. She smiles very often but it’s her rare laugh that made me write this post.
I have only read of tinkling laughter, hers actually reminds you of silvery bells and an utter joy without strings, akin to that of a baby’s, when it finds some fuzzy yet brightly colored object at its span.
Also, it is such a feminine sound, that the air suddenly charges up with the auras of all the alpha males in the vicinity, who turn around to what their instinct says is a girl they can potentially protect in the warmth of their caves.

Yes, all that can be packaged in a laugh. I see the effects. I report.
There is this air of cordiality and innate genial conversation sparks off or continues after the amiable sound is emitted.

I laugh too. It may seem like fiction, considering the trend of my posts, but I assure you. I do laugh. But my laughter is as similar to my colleagues as day is to night. And of the appeal I shall refrain from speaking about, but will let you guess by referring the statement made by a certain boy in 2004, when he said, “My God, you laugh like the Devil”.
The true context to understand the gravity of this comment can be set, when I tell you that this boy spent his extra time looking up the “Apocalypse” and “End of the world”etc. in Google. Also, he had quite a bit of extra time.
So it would be safe to say, I barely escaped being doused in Holy Water for exercising my laughter muscles.

There is a dish of a boy (Yes, women objectify men too) who once told me that laughter should come from the heart and not from the throat. See what you can get away with when you are buff and trim enough to steal focus from your words? Had a normal dude even tried that very quotable quote, he definitely would have had to deal with my “Devil” laughter ringing in his ears for what we’ll call an extended period of time.

But we will try to not digress from the topic too much. Yeah, so my laughter is not the gentle sound that one would associate from a tender vocal cord situated in a suitably appealing throat. I have more of the “Belly” laugh, even deeper than the “Heart” suggested by the Softie-with-muscles. If I find anything funny, which seemed more frequent in the past, I laugh without restraint, without poise, grace and good manners.
And almost all of the time, there is someone to “Shush” me immediately. That pisses me to no end.

From experience, let me tell you this; listening to a person’s genuine laugh is probably the most positively therapeutic experience next to you laughing genuinely yourself. And if you feel that you cannot bear to hear another’s joy or amusement, then maybe you have gone a little too much into the dark side.

You know who is worse than a laugher-stifler a.k.a Shusher? A Fake laugher.
There is something horribly evil about people who act their laugh out.
Those are the people who are likely to rent a couple of cherubic children and an elderly grandmother to accompany them during “Family Day” at office. Nothing they say or do can be considered original.

My having become a grownup, a point of intense disagreement from my mother’s perspective, is illustrated by the fact that I smile “coldly” now. Apparently I have learnt the art of varying the degree of warmth in my smile like a good cook can control his oven temperature…and I am told that of late, the cook is dishing out sub-zero meals. A cold smile is much worse than a no smile, it seems. And it is usually the precursor to a “harsh” laugh- a sound that is a remote cousin of our nearly extinct genuine laugh. A harsh laugh is to show anger or contempt. A more evolved version of a low growl and a bite in the jugular. Needless to say I am pretty good at that too.

Finally there is the point of why the laugh? Is the laugh “with” or “at” the audience?
I am told, by the same experts who’s opinions I have been generously sprinkling all over this post, that it is quite rude to laugh at someone, especially under the circumstance where that someone is in a laughable state. Hmmm….so all those thousands of years of slapstick comedy- when a guy (preferably rotound and not attractive) lands on his backside with the maximum pain inflicted on his person as a result of his unfortunate encounter with the strategically placed banana peel, is actually indicative of mankind’s very malevolent nature.
As far as I am concerned, it is only indicative of a less than evolved instinct of amusement. War and violence is evil.

Laughing with people, most often than not, is a white lie way of saying a that you are laughing at some unfortunate but you have the company of your equally dastardly mates.
So no amount of spit and polish will make that phrase shine.

They say it takes more muscles to frown than to smile and laughter clubs propagate the rabidly hysterical version of a belly laugh (which makes it quite creepy) to keep the heart and mind young (here we go again).

So just laugh when you can and while you can.

There is enough in the world to put you down and when a laugh is sounded, it is the defiant call that one may be down but not out. It is very simply the sound of life.

Your funny valentine,

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

The Neo Non-believer

I have decided not to believe in god anymore.
In fact, I refuse to believe in anything good and am going for a doctorate in Professional Skepticism, majoring in Pessimism.
2006 is a crappy new year and its hardly begun… :)
Keep visiting folks, to know the latest on what has gone horribly wrong as usual and all the gruesome details.

If anyone wants me, I will be right here, even after 20 odd years, doing the same things. No forward motion for me, looks like. A trilogy of consecutive failure- that is right up my alley though. :)

Anyone know the address of the nearest Satanic Cult?

Cheerfully yours,

Monday, January 02, 2006

New Beginnings


I have chosen a very wonderful one for myself, which is full of fun and cheer. Will be more than happy to share the same with you all.
God Bless,