Monday, March 31, 2008

I Love Little Girls...

... they make me feel so good!

Video Find of the Day

We had a Real Change board meeting tonight, and Director Tim's twin girls were kept entertained in the front office. He told us they are into vampires now, for some reason I missed. That is as good a cue as any to trot out Oingo Boingo videos. This first is only as suggestive as the little sirens deserve. And, it features vampire action!

Oingo Boingo - Little Girls

My favorite Oingo Boingo album is Nothing to Fear. Here are two videos of songs from that album. I looked for "Wild Sex (in the Working Class)" but sadly could not find it. Maybe someone would post that later? Hmm?

Oingo Boingo - Nothing To Fear (But Fear Itself)

Oingo Boingo: Insects (Nothing To Fear)

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Getting Stuff Done

Video Find of the Day

Today, which is really Monday, I had to be ready for the annual Seattle Housing Authority inspection of my room (not to be confused with the monthly management inspection, or the monthly bug spray, which invasions are never scheduled at the same times). Knowing that the SHA inspection was very important (I failed last year, to great stress) I wanted yesterday, Sunday, to be the day I got the room clean. That didn't exactly happen. I looked for a video that might explain how the non-happening happened. This one, which looks to be part of a series I may check out, when I get around to it, is what I found. As always, this will be dated Sunday, to placate the OCD god(s).

Tales Of Mere Existence "Procrastination"

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Rock of Ages

Video Find of the Day

This group was on a Graham Norton repeat tonight. The average age appears to over 80. There's some live ones here.

The Zimmers "My Generation" Released: 28/05/07

Friday, March 28, 2008

The Alphabet Song

Video Find of the Day

Time for another scene from my all-time favorite movie, Forbidden Zone. First, a colorized version of the seminal source. The ur-spring of alphabet song.

3 Stooges - Swingin the Alphabet

Now, what the Elfmans did to that in Forbidden Zone.

abc alphabet song from the forbidden zone

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Ilya Kuryakin

Video Find of the Day

While my friends wanted to wear bell-bottoms and emulate Beatles, I wanted to be Ilya Kuryakin, Russian agent for U.N.C.L.E., the United Network Command for Law and Enforcement. First a video to explain what that is, if you were born too late.

The Man From U.N.C.L.E. Trailer

Then, a video to show why Ilya Kuryakin (David McCallum) stole the show. The girls wanted him. I wanted to be him. Duh.

The Man from U.N.C.L.E ...everyone's favourite russian...

Major Magician

[Reminder: Some of my posts, including this one, are memoirs of my abusive childhood. In this post I'm relating events that happened February or March, 1958. The links to the right can be used to follow backward through the memoirs, or to restrict viewing to other kinds of posts.]

After my Father returned from the Mountain we had a new friend visit. I have always thought of him as Major Magician. I can't remember his name. I called him that because he was an amateur magician, always ready to impress me with some trick. He carried cards and pieces of rope and handkerchiefs around. My favorites were the rope tricks. I think it was another hint of a nascent interest in topology. I cared less about the tricks themselves than the different kinds of knots he could show me.

We had another dog-related incident that showed the interesting consequences of living in a country where dog is on the menu. While entertaining Major Magician a Chinese man dropped by to deliver a package. Ordinarily we would take the package at the gate, but because we had a guest we just buzzed the delivery man in. The dog, Koko, went berserk.

Koko was the most laid back dog you ever saw. Until then. We couldn't figure out why he went nuts until Major Magician mentioned that Koko might have a good idea what our visitor has been eating lately.

Mind you, I have no problem with eating dog. I'd be willing to try it. I'm just saying, if you live in a country where it's customary, keep an eye on Fido. He could take it personally.

Major Magician was the first regular friend that my Father had in Taiwan that interacted with the rest of us. He and his wife lived on the opposite side of Taipei in a middle-class neighborhood dominated by walled pre-war Japanese-style housing.

We went to visit them one evening. It was a beautiful house. The adults gathered around a table in what looked like a meditating room. It was a bare room with a long sliding paper wall that separated it from the main living room, and had glass doors opening to a walled garden. Major & Mrs. Magician used it for a dining room, usually. This night they used it to play four-way strip poker with my parents.

I was supposed to nap on a couch in the other room, but somehow when your Mother is playing strip poker in the next room it's hard to sleep. Especially with all the giggling. I had to get up and ask for a glass of water. Sure enough, by the time I got there Mom had lost. She always lost. Which was weird, because I'm sure she was the best poker player.

We loved the Japanese-style house, and hated the Chinese-style house that we had been living in, that we didn't renew our 6 month lease on the latter, and moved into one of the houses in Major Magician's neighborhood.

Our new house was a one-story house on a narrow dirt road. We were one block North from a large expanse of rice paddies. I learned what rice paddies smell like up close. They smell just like water buffaloes, which smell like a cross between an outhouse and old gym shoes. Fortunately, the prevailing winds favored us.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

What Tibet Is?

Video Find of the Day

With the Dalai Lama scheduled to come to Seattle in a few weeks, people are starting to tell me what Tibet is. So I figure I should ramp up the videos I can find having to do with Tibet. What the hell, I might learn something. Here's one. It's about an hour.

Tibet's Hidden Kingdom - National Geographic.avi

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

More Dhol

Video Find of the Day

You don't have to like the drumming, you can just look into the eyes and share the joy.

Look out, this flu is almost over, so I'm coming back.

Raju Johal

Monday, March 24, 2008

History of the Wave

Video Find of the Day

The Onion has a habit of taking a great idea and spending it all on the title. This piece has some nice detail, though. I enjoyed the information about Edmund I. It inspired me to look him up on Wikipedia, where I learned that he died in 946 AD during a fracas that arose when he was partying in Pucklechurch.

Pucklechurch is a village in South Gloucestershire, England. It sits on an elevated plateau about 8 miles to the northeast of Bristol, 8 miles to the northwest of Bath and just south of the Cotswolds. Pucklechurch has its own website, which it calls PuckleWeb.

The Onion: Queen Will Leave Behind Long Legacy Of Waving

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Non-Tuesday Free Lunch

Video Find of the Day

It's not true that there's no such thing as a free lunch.

Here at the subsidized haven known as the Union Hotel (not a real hotel) we have a free lunch every Tuesday. But today, because it was Easter, we got an extra free lunch, in spite of it not being Tuesday. So there's even such a thing as a non-Tuesday free lunch.

This miracle was made possible by volunteers from the UW chapter of Sigma Beta Rho, a "national multicultural Fraternity based upon the principles of Society, Brotherhood, and Remembrance." It was founded in 1996 at the University of Pennsylvania as "a vehicle to instill unity amongst its members, promote South Asian culture, and aid the greater community at large."

Lunch was brunch. We had scrambled eggs and bacon, biscuits, waffles, and ham. And oranges and grapes.

I showed my appreciation by wearing the one shirt I have from India. Anitra found out that one of the guys serving us does bhangra.

So, here I am, recovering from the flu, and wanting a vid. What am I going to celebrate Easter with?


Saturday, March 22, 2008

Stepped On, Upwards

Video Find of the Day

A Charlie Chaplin movie I've never seen before!

The dialog on screen is the best part. "What is that dog's breed and habits?" "Spitz."

By the way, the provider, TVNETWORKS,has an enormous archive of old film that keeps growing.

Try not to get too caught up in the plot.


Friday, March 21, 2008

I Am Also Sorry

Video Find of the Day

Another classic. Peter Sellers as President Merkin Muffley explaining to a drunk Soviet premier Dmitri Kissoff that one of our generals had gone a little funny in the head and ordered an attack on his country. "I am as sorry as you are, Dmitri."

Dr. Strangelove - President & Russian President.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Stay the Course

Video Find of the Day

I'm sick; probably from something I caught at the camp out. So I'm just going for the all time classics here. Nice pictures.

Please Mr. Custer - Larry Verne

Game Experiment

When I am moderately bored, I play online video games. And one of my favorite sites for mind-wasting video games is Kontraband. Kontraband also has stupid mind-wasting videos and mind-wasting pictures, many of which are rude. It's basically the website you want to turn to when you want your brains to turn to mush and you don't have any good drugs handy.

I used to play this tetris-like game for hours at a time. I thought it would be fun to try to embed it here. If it doesn't work, I can always delete the post.

Hints to playing: The space bar rotates the pieces. You're trying to rack up points by connecting top to bottom or right to left. The corner tabs have to meet before the bonus runs out.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Jewish Rap

Video Find of the Day

YouTube was half down until just a few minutes ago so I was forced to wander. I looked back at GodTube, and STILL there is no video condemning masturbation! So I looked beyond GodTube. I thought, wait a minute, Purim is coming up. Is there a Jewish equivalent of GodTube? Yes there is. It's called JewTube of all things, and the number one featured video today is a rap video!

Kosha Dillz rocks Jewlicious with Y-Love

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Now -- Just the Girls

Video Find of the Day

I'm finding more Bhangra by women. This is a good one. I don't know what CSUN means. California State University, Northridge? I guess.

CSUN bhangra girls (exhibition)

Proud Drunk

My rice wine gets better all the time. A week ago I made the best yet. New tricks: Give it more time. Five days is better than three, because I can't take all that much sweet. When heating it to kill the yeast, be sure to wait till it froths before stopping. I failed to do that the previous batch and had rice wine all over the kitchen upon opening a bottle. It had been continuing to ferment and when I cracked the lid it became a geyser.

I finally tried some store-bought. The kind I make is closest to what they call Nigori (cloudy) in Japanese. I had a bottle of it. It tasted just like mine but the alcohol content was way higher.

[Below, an actual picture of actual Nigorizake the way you're supposed to drink it. Don't drink it out of a jar like I do.]

But mine is definitely alcoholic. And I am slowly picking up ideas for improving it. Some things to try in the future include a kind of rice-starter used to make Japanese rice wine (as opposed to the Chinese yeast cakes I've been using), adding small amounts of lactic acid (easily done and said to boost alcohol production), and a multiple step process (adding new rice to the pot after the fermentation has got under way.)

According to this Wikipedia article on sake, making it at home has been illegal in Japan since 1905! Apparently this is one of those laws that nobody enforces anymore. They say the Encyclopedia Britannica is banned in Texas because it has information on home beer making.

Monday, March 17, 2008

New Yorker Cartoons

Video Find of the Day

I was naturally looking for something Irish-related to post today. So I did a YouTube search on "irish." What I got was an animated New Yorker cartoon.

I guess it's been a while since I checked the New Yorker website, because I hadn't noticed that they had replaced the continual slideshow of archived cartoons with animations of a select few. I think I prefer the old way, but this is a nice change. If only we could have both. (I think the print archives are still at their Cartoonbank, but I can't tell for sure.)

The animations are done by RingTales. They have a YouTube account, also called RingTales, which features them in a two-for-one format.

Luck of the Irish and Single Malt Mutt

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Latin Swing

Video Find of the Day

About 1:20 into this a girl goes flying. Also, as the description says, the footwork is amazing.

Colombian Salsa Swing Latino

Me Bad

Above is a scan of a certificate signed and mailed to me by Seattle Minister Rick Reynolds, director of Operation Nightwatch, pictured at left wearing what is undoubtedly an imported stole made by Central Americans willing to work all day for one US dime so they can eat meat once a week and eventually send their kids to school wearing shoes, instead of naked. If you can't read what the arrow is pointing to, clicking on the image will get you a larger more legible version.

Having never actually used a shelter during any of the times I've been homeless, owing to the PTSD and all, I had no idea of the protocol involved. I thought if I didn't show up to Rick Reynold's tent on time he would just wedge someone else into it in my place.

I've already attempted to excuse myself on Rick Reynold's blog. Here's what happened: Anitra, not I, asked if we could sleep in Pastor Rick's tent at the City Hall camp out on Thursday. He said OK. We had no agreed-upon ETA. After the dinner though, I wanted to go home and nap in a real bed and watch the Daily Show and the Colbert Report before camping. After all, I'm too old to lie on concrete for a whole 15 hours. I thought 8 or 9 hours would be sufficient. Besides, I had to go home to get my stuffed skunk and change into my ninja-homeless-camper costume.

Here's the very bad thing Anitra and I did. We forgot to tell Pastor Rick we'd be back after midnight. Then, when we got back and were ready to crash, we were sorry, because we didn't know if Pastor Rick and the other clergy in his tent were asleep or not.

Oh, the moral dilemma! On the one hand, I desperately wanted to wake a bunch of clergy up and loudly set myself and my woman down amongst them, and prattle on for an hour or two about anything that crossed my mind. That is JUST the sort of thing I like to do to people! On the other hand, it's wrong to wake a sleeping minister. So we asked around and got into a tent with some other night people like ourselves.

I know now that my excuse is unacceptable and I earned the one-night bar that I have received. I will never violate shelter protocol ever again.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Weird Disney

Video Find of the Day

Some of the images in this old Disney cartoon from 1929 are a shade disturbing. I think of all the school kids who get sent to counselors or reported to the police when the drawings they do in class are discovered.

Disney Silly Symphony - The Skeleton Dance

Friday, March 14, 2008

Train Hula

Video Find of the Day

Hula in honor of Queen Lili'uokalani, Hawai'i's last monarch. It's specifically about a train ride she enjoyed. I like that we get a view of the singer for once. Most of these videos focus exclusively on the dancers. Colonial period hula about colonial period life, from a time of cultural revival.

Included is "Lanakila Ke Ka Ahi Ali'i" = "Lanakila, The Royal Train." The video title gives the name of the group performing, who are led by singer Ray Fonseca.

Halau Hula 'O Kahikilaulani Kahiko

Stoles, Tents, Lasagna

Last night was the second camp out at City Hall to protest Seattle's inhumane and unconstitutional sweeps of homeless encampments. I had passed on the first one back in December in the interest of my own emotional stability. It was too soon after my daughter's death and I wasn't up for any more stress.

This time Anitra and I were there. I still wasn't up for a full 15 hour camp out. So we did it in two shifts. We came for the dinner and rally, went home and chilled, then came back around midnight and stayed until after 8 AM.

For me, the high point of the event was discovering clerical stoles. I'd never really paid attention to clerical stoles before. Most of my life whenever there has been a priest or minister with a stole, he or she was alone and I felt no compulsion to make comparisons. But during the course of the dinner and rally I ran into 7 members of the clergy and several of them were wearing stoles.

The first one was David Bloom, who happens to be on the Real Change Board. He had a beautiful stole with gold embroidery. I begged to feel it. As I did he told me the stole was from Assisi. Wow, I thought. "Are all stoles from Assisi?" I asked. No, they're from all over.

Or are they? I conducted a survey throughout those clergy there that I was able to spot and corner. The results: Assisi, 1. Thailand, 1. USA, 1. Guatemala 3. Unknown Central American country (possibly also Guatemala), 1.

Apparently our US clergy are supporting the importation of foreign-made clerical stoles at a rate of 6 to 1. The United States is tied in last place for a share in the clerical stole market with such backwaters as Thailand and Assisi, while a Guatemalan stole cartel has taken over.

[Below: Mayan stoles! They're here; they're bold; they're taking over!]

I heard from more than one of the clergy that whenever they got together in their little clergy groups they bragged up their stoles and showed them off like peacocks.

It represents what Real Change and the Real Change Organizing project is all about. We're bringing classes together and finding common ground. After the clergy strutted around in their stoles, I was able to show off my stuffed skunk plush-toy, which I proudly purchased from the Goodwill Outlet Store at $1.79 per pound.

We all ate lasagna, slept in wet tents, and shared three porta-potties and a disgust for the Nickel's administration's homeless sweeps.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Pete Seeger on War

Video Find of the Day

In recognition of the coming 5th anniversary of George Bush Jr's illegal invasion of a country, let's see Pete Seeger sing about the stupid following the stupid. The Big Muddy song is the last 3 minutes of this 7 minute video, but the first 4 minutes aren't irrelevant.

Pete Seeger-Waist Deep In The Big Muddy

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Dogs of War

Video Find of the Day

Synchro-damn-nistically, this video was offered up by a channel I subscribe to for the swing music. I was just now talking about doggies! What do I get? Pretty doggies!

military dogs tribute

While you're at it, check out the Wikipedia article on War dogs. It covers the subject from the ancient Egyptians to Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo.

The Stray

[Reminder: Some of my posts, including this one, are memoirs of my abusive childhood. In this post I'm relating events that happened February or March, 1958. The links to the right can be used to follow backward through the memoirs, or to restrict viewing to other kinds of posts.]

A big stray dog was wandering outside in the street one day. He was thin but even though his ribs were showing he looked strong. He stood as high as my chest.

Being used to goofy, jolly, American dogs, I reached out to pet him, and he snapped. He just missed my fingers; I could feel the breeze made by his jaws. I said, "What a bad dog! Bad dog!"

About fifteen minutes later I had wandered up by the main highway. I heard the screech of tires and a loud thud. I turned in the direction of the sound and saw a crowd forming.

It occurred to me that I shouldn't look. It might be one of the neighbors. But I was drawn irresistibly. I forced my way through the crowd and found myself staring at the face of the stray dog that had snapped at me.

There was something wrong with the sight. It took me a second or two to register what was wrong. Finally I got it. It wasn't that the head was detached from the body, which was lying 6 feet away. It was that I could see pavement through the dog's mouth. And out of the corner of my eye I could see Taiwanese cutting up the body for distribution to the bystanders.

I wanted to scream but couldn't. I was too dazed. I walked away slowly until I reached the dirt road leading to our house. I passed an old American woman going toward the accident. She couldn't know what had happened. She probably thought the victim was human. But, still, she smiled ear to ear when she saw me and she said, "Not a very pretty sight, eh?" And she laughed.

That got me screaming. I screamed, "GET AWAY FROM ME!" and ran to the house.

I believed that my saying, "Bad dog!" had killed him. Now it dawned on me that he had snapped at me because he was afraid of me. I had known that the locals ate dogs, but it hadn't occurred to me that it would give the dogs the right to fear people.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Not Enough Rumba

Video Find of the Day

A documentary about Rumba with no title or credits included. Frustrating in that, and in the way it ends too soon, but I was caught by the dancing.

¡ Afro-Cuban Rumba !

Monday, March 10, 2008

David Sedaris

Video Find of the Day

David Sedaris is great and here's three videos of a great monologue by him that I just noticed on YouTube less than one year after they were posted.

Six to eight black men - part 1 of 3

Six to eight black men - part 2 of 3

Six to eight black men - part 3 of 3

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Proper Dancing

Video Find of the Day

When I was dishing up the links to vast quantities of Gypsy music last time I forgot about RomNet. RomNet is a straight video blog of all Rom videos all the time from anywhere. [To find their main page click on "HÍREK" at the far left of the menu.] This one is from India and is reminiscent of the one I posted to begin daily Video Finds, only it's a duo.

I think this is just the way dancing should be. Short bursts of movement interrupted by opportunities to rest and decide what to do the next burst. I also think that if one dancer twirls clockwise, the next one should twirl counterclockwise. Otherwise the Universe will be twisted too far one way, and it will be hell unraveling it.

Indian Gypsy Dance(Duo)

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Romica Puceanu

Video Finds of the Day

I'm still exploring tillydean's channel (see Romanian Gypsy Gold, below). Romica Puceanu is featured in some of his earlier posts, and the videos are fantastic.

I have an ulterior motive for posting these here. It gives me a chance to point out that tillydean has provided a link to a page that has many more recordings of Puceanu, and some biographical information. That page is part of a site presenting other Romanian music. The links:

Romica Puceanu/ Romanian Gypsy Singer

Romanian Music/ MP3 files

These pages are the work of Robert Garfias, Department of Anthropology, UCI (University of California, Irvine), who has done field work in Romania in the 70s. They're the motherload of Romanian Folk Mp3s. I've died and gone to heaven. Thank you Robert Garfias, and thank you tillydean for the link!

Romica Puceanu - As munci la plug si coasa

Romica Puceanu - Ce frumoase-s fetele

Friday, March 7, 2008

Chuck Berry

Video Find of the Day

Last night, various of us Real Changers were at a show benefiting RC produced by local weekly The Stranger (Seattle's Only Newspaper) called The Young Ones, featuring a big bunch of up-and-coming bands. They turned out to be great, and I was induced to dance throughout, in spite of my arthritis and my introversion and my terminal whiteness and my Seattleness. Down in the Green Room, drinking beer after beer, one of the musicians remarked that he'd noticed me acting crazy over there at the Real Change booth. Since no one else in the club was doing so, yet (that changed later when a Hip Hop act came out, but this was before), I felt I had to justify myself, so I said, "Well, I grew up in the Fifties, that was how I was taught."

This video, which dates to the Sixties and the release of Chuck Berry from prison, captures the sense of what I was getting at. If I could dance like Chuck Berry, I'd be insufferably arrogant about it.

Chuck Berry - Johnny B. Goode

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Paris of the East

Video Find of the Day

A 1934 Klezmer recording accompanied by fantastic stills of pre-war Bucharest. The description says the title translates as "Ah, those Romanian Girls!"

Henryk Gold Orchestra - Ach te Rumunki!, 1934

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Romanian Gypsy Gold

Video Find of the Day

I thought I'd never find anything like this.

tillydean on YouTube: "This channel is dedicated to the romanian lautari musicians," loaded with this sort of thing and more. He calls this sort "Drops of oil for burning hearts."

Dona Dumitru Siminica

Very Bad Night, Part II

[Reminder: Some of my posts, including this one, are memoirs of my abusive childhood. In this post I'm relating events that happened the night of my Mother's birthday in February, 1958. The links to the right can be used to follow backward through the memoirs, or to restrict viewing to other kinds of posts.]

The house was quiet for about half an hour. I was still upset from all the screaming, and was lying awake in bed with the lights off, when I heard my Mother coming up the stairs, and then she opened the door to my room and asked me if I was awake. I tried pretending I was asleep, but she knew I wasn't and told me to get up and come to her bedroom.

On the way I could look over the railing and see my Father passed out on the floor of the living room.

In the bedroom my Mother first had me help her out of the dress she fought so hard to get into hours earlier. Then she told me she wanted me to lie down with her to keep her company. For a few minutes we just lay there, hugging each other, nothing else happening. I was still in my pajamas, she was in her underwear.

Then she insisted that it would be better if we both took our clothes off. I didn't see how it would be better at all, but she insisted she needed to be closer, to help her get over what she'd been through that night. I still resisted; she got me to agree finally by offering to turn the lights out right away.

So we got naked, she turned out the lights, and for a few minutes we were in bed hugging in the dark. Then she began fondling me and telling me she wanted me.

That was totally absurd. I was 8 and a half. Sure, I had been over-sexed following the first major head injury, but that effect had run its course at least three years before. Not to mention that I didn't know what intercourse was.

When she realized that I wasn't going to be physically able to have intercourse with her she acted as though it were a tragedy for me. her attitude was "You poor thing, I'll have to do something for you." It didn't make any sense to me. Just seconds before she was the one with the sexual need. Now I was supposed to be in need. It was so confusing I didn't know what to say.

She got out of bed, grabbed a swirled tapered candle off her dresser, and said, "I'll take care of you in the bathroom."

In the bathroom she pushed me down on my hands and knees and raped me with the candle.

It hurt and I begged her to stop. She laughed and kept at it. When I continued to cry and beg, she eventually became angry. "I know it doesn't hurt. Stop being a crybaby"

Finally she let me go and I ran to my bedroom and the imagined security of my own bed. She let me lie there in the dark by myself long enough for her to smoke a cigarette. Then she popped her head in and said, angrily, "I know it didn't hurt, you filthy liar." And she left, slamming the door.

It had hurt. It still hurt then. I didn't lie.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Attack of the Clarinets

Video Find of the Day

Watch this clarinetist attack an innocent bystander with his musical weapon. I'm not sure where this is. Karaahmet is the name of more than one place in Turkey. But the poster is Bulgarian, and the word girnata, according to a cached Wiktionary entry, means Crimean Tatar! Good thing I don't need to know!

karaahmet kiuchek

That was too short, so here's another from the same poster, n0sferatubg.

gırnatacı selman aga

Monday, March 3, 2008

Mediterranean Dance, Almost

Video Find of the Day

I found this by accident. I was looking for Bulgarian bellydance music. Instead I found a Bulgarian woman dancing to Egyptian bellydance on Bulgarian TV. Well, close. 1000 miles, maybe. Black Sea, Mediterranean, what's the difference?

In case you're as confused as possible, her name is наталия дачева, the music is by Mokhtar Al-Said.

Bulgarian girl dancing bellydance (MOKHTAR AL SAID)

Sunday, March 2, 2008


Before I get to the Video Find of the Day, I want to talk about how much I love Richka. Richka is a website I discovered years ago which features a ton of music of the former Soviet Republics and links to a Renaissance period music site and an Andes music site. Most of the music is in the Real Audio format, so it stays on the site, but with an internet connection you can access it on demand.

Here are some of my favorite RAM files on Richka and sister sites:

From Richka itself:
Kalinka (Red Army Chorus)
Polyushka Polye(Song of the Plains)
Song of the Volga Boatmen
Unharness the Horses, Lads

From the Andean music site:
El Condor Pasa
Bayon de Madrid (not really Andean -- from Paraguay!)

From the Renaissance music site:
E La Don Don
Vésame y abràcame
An Italian Rant

My favorite of all:
J'ai vu le loup (I Saw the Wolf)

Which brings us to the Daily Video Find. You start with a beautiful devotional, pious, Renaissance Christian song, and this is what happens when you release a German metal band on it. "I Saw Da Wolf" Mittelalter-Rockischer style.

In Extremo -07- Ai Vis A Lo Lop (Live)

Tarzan Notes

OK, the 1918 film Tarzan of the Apes (see preceding post) differed from the book in a bunch of ways.

Tarzan didn't have to wait for a sequel to get the girl. He didn't have to learn French.

The movie spares us the ape conversations. Who wants to know that tarzan is ape for white skin?

No ape language means less ape politics. Who needs to know KA-GODA is ape for "Do you surrender?"

It was only 6 years from the time Edgar Rice Burrough's novel was first printed in serial form to the time the movie came out, but it was a very momentous 6 years that included WW I, so it isn't surprising that there is a huge change right at the beginning in the fundamental setup.

The book says John Clayton, Lord Greystoke, was commissioned to go to Africa to investigate charges that another European power is recruiting natives as soldiers to raid and plunder the black subjects of a West African Coast British Colony. In other words, the fundamental context is that of colonials against colonials. The Europeans are fighting for control of Africa, colonialism is a neutral fact of life, The Good Guys are the ones who use guns as a last resort instead of right off the bat. The Bad Guys commit the racial crime of betrayal (of the White Race): arming Black natives.

In the movie, the villains are Arab slave traders. The Arabs are mainly dealing in Black slaves, but a new White character, the defender Binns, is introduced, to put a sympathetic White face on the victims of bad "Arab" slavery. The context is White colonialists to the rescue, saving mostly a weak non-white race, but also a few of their own, from enslavement by a less weak non-white race.

In the book Alice Rutherford-Clayton comes along simply to be by her man's side during what may be a long assignment. In the movie we see Lady Alice anxious to go and getting all feminist up in the suggestion that she stay behind. "Is courage only for men, then?"

In fact throughout the movie, even later with Jane being carried around and protected by Tarzan like a favorite rag doll, there is a constant effort to show the women as being at least as courageous as the men, and not being, in principle, chattel. In contrast to the way the natives are generally depicted.

One way the film exactly matches the book is in the romanticized Darwinianism. I've always been amazed by the silly White fantasy that imagines that White people came from the jungle just like Blacks, but, being White and so having a natural Darwinian advantage, triumphed over the jungle and escaped its clutches, leaving the inferior others behind as they clawed their way to Bonn, London, Oslo, and Peoria.

Edgar R put it like this (John speaking to Alice as they begin life stranded in the jungle): "Hundreds of thousands of years ago our ancestors of the dim and distant past faced the same problems which we must face, possibly in these same primeval forests. That we are here today evidences their victory."

[I suppose any Tarzan movie made today that addressed the origins of White People would have to allow leeway for the Creationist view.]

There being no Mr. Binns, the book Tarzan has to perform the improbable task of learning to read and write from looking at the books alone. That's reason enough to introduce him, in my opinion, without all the slave trade business.

The silliness about Tarzan's "little English heart" and "little English head" is in the book! "At the bottom of his little English heart beat the great desire to cover his nakedness with CLOTHES for he had learned from his picture books that all MEN were so covered, while MONKEYS and APES and every other living thing went naked." Funny.

Tarzan's killing of the native who killed Kala was an occasion in the book for Tarzan to learn about fire for the first time, and also for Edgar R to insert this bit of genetic fantasy: "Did men eat men? Alas, he did not know. Why, then, this hesitancy! Once more he essayed the effort, but a qualm of nausea overwhelmed him. He did not understand... All he knew was that he could not eat the flesh of this black man, and thus hereditary instinct, ages old, usurped the functions of his untaught mind and saved him from transgressing a worldwide law of whose very existence he was ignorant."

The movie doesn't show Tarzan committing gratuitous acts of violence. In the book, Tarzan doesn't steal clothes from the natives until the onset of puberty, and when he does, he gets it off a native he kills for that sole purpose. It's not a kid's prank. He really wants those clothes. It's like, "Let me borrow that top, Betch."

The movie and the book agree on the contents of the note Tarzan places on the door of the cabin. For the book, however, it represents an inconsistency, since supposedly book Tarzan doesn't know the phonetic values of letters, so he can only read the meanings of words and not sound them out. So how does he know how to spell "Tarzan?"

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Tarzan of the Apes

Video Find of the Day

I've always wanted to see this movie. It's the 1918 silent with Elmo Lincoln as Tarzan, the Tarzan film that's been said to stay closest to the source. There are six parts of about ten minutes each posted by hwbanger on YouTube. I've arranged them in a single playlist.