Sunday, March 29, 2009

Mein Hindi Siikh Rahii Huun

"I am learning to speak Hindi"

We are all sick with this horrible flu now. Nobody wants to eat much of anything, we're all coughing like mad, and I'm running a low-grade fever with sweats. Whee! At least for once the kids and I are all sick at the same time instead of my getting it after they've recovered. So it could be worse.

I let Cheyenne watch a Hindi movie the other day, her first. It was a family filmi called "Bhoothnath." Starring Amitabh Bachchan. It was a really cute movie, very funny, and I was pleased to see that I can make out some of the things that are being said now, even without the subtitles. The thing about Bollywood is, though, that the films are all relatively long and so about 10 p.m. when my voice gave out from translating, I sent her to bed.

I simply just don't have the strength to write more at the moment, so I'm going back to the couch and my heating pad.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Say It Isn't So?

Today was certainly a mixed bag.

Cody was only a little weepy at school today, so he's on the mend. Cheyenne came home and informed me that she vomited throughout the afternoon. She doesn't have a fever, so I don't know what is going on there.

Basically I have two kids with two different viruses and I think I'm catching Cheyenne's because I was just in the bathroom talking to Ralph on the big white phone.

To add insult to injury, my neck went into spasm and I have an Icy-Hot patch on it that isn't doing much good. I feel about 80 years old today, everything hurts. C'est la vie.

Both kids went to bed at 6. So Cheyenne must be sick if she didn't beg to stay up. Looks like I'll have company tomorrow; I don't think I can take her to school. I doubt she'll be over whatever it is by then.

On a more positive note, I had my bi-yearly dermatologist checkup today and it turns out that the "fungal infection" on my hand that has kept me from working with polyclay for the past two months is actually stress-induced eczema. Is there no end to how much a body can fall apart? LMAO

I'll be filling the prescription for cortisone cream next week and once my hand stops itching, I may get to do some clay. W00t!

My 16g argentium wire came today. Too bad my neck is so stiff and painful I can't work on Masada.

Funny thing, in keeping with my Punjabi hobby ... the Arco at Grand and Market, well, I call it Ghetto Gas. Because it really is. The pumps are cranky, apparently not a single person attended kindergarten and mastered the art of waiting their turn, and there are always people getting hostile for money so they can booze it up another day. Not to mention the DVD bootleggers. Thanks, but no.

I go there because the gas is cheap. Cheapest around, and it's near my house and on the way to various places I frequently go. I've been known to wear my vampire fang caps and smile at people that were bugging me. On the other hand, I'm also learning to deflect the inevitable racism by just calling the people calling me "White B..." or whatever "racist" to their face. Usually they STFU pretty quick. I mean, what defense can you give against the truth?

Well, anyway, Ghetto Gas has had their pumps cordoned off and there's no gas available. I wanted ginger ale after I dropped my boy at school today so I stopped in. Got some chocolate and ginger ale, and the young clerk and I were chatting about why they weren't selling gas (upgrading the pumps). Can someone please tell me what it is about young Indian men that makes them so dishy? He was really beautiful, nice smile. Business was slow, so I asked him if he was from India.

He said yes. His dad, or uncle, some elder in a turban was nearby, so I asked if he was Punjabi. His eyes lit up. I guess not many Americans can guess their nationality, just assume turban = terrorist.

So we talked some about bhangra, and the Punjabi language and how it compares to Hindi. He seemed really suprised that I knew the name of the holy book of Sikhism, Guru Granth Sahib. Though I mistakenly said Singh. O gorgeous youth, the internet is an endless fount of knowledge for my ever-curious mind.

Too bad I'm old enough to be his mother.

Hack, Gasp, Wheez

Isn't it grand? Now I have what Cody has. My chest is full of junk. He was feeling a lot better yesterday morning. He woke up and told me, "I happy!" So I took him to school. When I got him back from his dad's he was crying and then about four hours after I put him to bed his fever came back and he had the sweats. I managed to force some cough medicine with tylenol down him and he slept better after that. But it looks like he gets to stay home today and probably until next week which means he gets to come to the dermatologist with me this morning. Oh, joy!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Amu

It's funny how things always fall in groups into my life. I'm on an India kick, Punjab in particular at the moment, and a movie about the massacre of Sikhs in 1984 happened to come to the top of my Netflix queue. I just got finished watching it.

It's called Amu.

I knew vaguely about the assassination of Indira Gandhi and that her Sikh bodyguards were blamed, but as this movie showed, there isn't a lot of information around on it, as the Indian government itself orchestrated the massacre of over 5,000 people over a three day period.

The movie was incredible. It was done as a mystery, and as it unfolded, I ended up in tears. I don't want to give any spoilers, but as a mother, the events that happened to one family made me go in and check on my kids.

I'll be doing a little bit of internet research to see what's out there about the subject now. But not tonight. I don't think I can take any more of this particularly brutal episode of history at the moment, especially in light of my newborn infatuation with Punjab and the Sikh culture. It's nearly bedtime and my subconscious rarely needs much convincing to bring on the zombie dreams.

There is a really good interview with the director of the film, Shonali Bose here.

I gave it 5 stars on Netflix, and I'm really picky. It's just that good a film.

Poor Little Guy. Poor Mom.

Cody's still not feeling well. His fever spiked Sunday, but he's still really whiny and won't eat, not even donuts or cheetos, and his sister said he refused ice cream at his dad's yesterday. You know that boy is sick if he won't eat his favorite treats. Poor kid.

Which means unless the tylenol makes him feel better so he wakes up before too long, we're going to miss art class today, which sucks. Especially considering it's right here in my building. And I can't work with the little guy calling me every 93.6 seconds.

Masada will have to wait.

Anyway, I've got this huge love affair going on with India right now. I started reading Indian literature a few years back and have been watching more and more Indian film. Now that I've discovered A.R. Rahman and bhangra I'm listening to Tamil and Punjabi music. I've decided it's time to try to learn some Hindi.

I tried to learn Esperanto through a mail course about 20 years ago and that was a PITA. I love that I can get Hindi lessons via podcast. I have a little kid's primer coming so I can learn to write the alphabet. I'm up to kha -- the second letter of the alphabet. LOL Cheyenne is very interested as well, so I printed out two copies of the worksheet for letter ka and we spent a few minutes this morning doing self-imposed "homework."

Aap se mil ke achcha laga

I am so happy to meet you.

One good thing about living in the Bay Area is that there are tons of people from India and I'm sure if I was to go to Berkeley I'd be able to find someone to laugh politely at my accent.

Monday, March 23, 2009

SPQR

Masada is still struggling. I only managed to make ten dangles and add them to their spots on the join pieces. I realized I can't really finish properly until my 16g argentium wire gets here, so I can make a sturdy clasp. This neckpiece is a bit heavier than anything I've done before.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Siege of Masada


I'm working on a piece that is putting up a helluva struggle. I have some "stuff" going on in my physical life and when that happens, my creativity gets clogged up. I've just put my head down and doggedly kept pushing, even if I only get one or two small elements done a day.

I've made a few mistakes here & there, but that's par for the course, considering I'm adapting two or three tutorials and twisting them to suit my purposes. Even with the glaring errors of mis-placed Swarovskis the central piece is finished. I think.

My investment in Traditional Jewelry of India is already paying off; the links connecting the neckpiece to the (currently un-added) chain and clasp are adapted from a necklace I saw from Himachal Pradesh. I want to make another set with a slightly different method to see if it works better, then I might have a tutorial for Jewelry Lessons.

Wibble Wibble Wibble

Everybody's blogging. So I guess I have to, as well. I decided to try something other than LiveJournal this time.

So ... welcome to the Junction.

There will be pictures of my jewelry, discussions of daily life occurrences, musings on the state of the universe -- who knows what-all will be here. I certainly don't.

All I know is, I have a brunch to go to today, and my poor little son has a fever. There will be no brunch but lots and lots of wibbling today.