I don't generally watch Dutch TV, because it so often completely sucks. (We have so few good actors, waaah!) So the only way I get into new/old Dutch series is if someone recommends them/I find out a particular actor is in it. So I have now discovered Dunya & Desie, just a couple of years late, and I kinda love
Maryam Hassouni it.
( Thoughts after the first episode )
Okaaay. So today's Exp Diff (why yes I am that lazy) class was about Dutch citizenship. I was clearly being silly when I expected this to be, in some variation, about citizenship and the often failtastic way we handle it. (I mean, really, what could possibly have given me that impression?!)
For what it's worth, we did watch part of the pre-immigration film then-minister of Integration Verdonk had made, and... it's horrid. Not just in its offensiveness, but in its stupidity and inaccuracy. The English-language Wikipedia entry is better, I swear. I can't believe someone got paid for that piece of suck, nor that anyone would make it in the first place. (Also, it's titled Naar Nederland, "To the Netherlands", which I think is clumsy and maybe even slightly incorrect: I'd say Naar Nederland toe is far better.)
But the guest lecture was, honestly, about "Diversity Politics of Amsterdam", except mostly it was statistics showing just how drastically wrong we're handling this entire thing. Not that the guest lecturer really mentioned that, nor really any "Diversity Politics" in general, although when asked what they actually did to actually help and reach immigrant and ethnic minority communities, her answer was that the city of Amsterdam was doing a damn good job standing around at the airport and yanking schoolkids out of the queue those weeks just before and after vacations, which we all know are just disastrous to their education. (Destinations these horrible parents were taking their children were: Morocco, Turkey, Surinam, "wherever", and "skiing", though that last one was suggested to her. Uh-huh.)
Btw, I managed to give myself a cold. Yes, in this weather. No, really. I'm all sniffly and cotton-headed and tired. (This never happened when I was in long sleeves until it got over thirty degrees! Stupid decision to try to get rid of some of that deathly, deathly pallor.)
Of course, I also generally start out not expecting much, because that won't lead to disappointment when (in this case) certain teams do not do what they're supposed to do when they're supposed to do it. (Oh Ajax your timing sucks so much!) Yay, pessimism, though it can be annoying you've been prepared to go "See? That sucked!" and 'that' turns out not to suck at all. (The ~deep psychological trauma~ that led to Cass following this advice in life was that once, in high school, I had a really good feeling about some test for Greek and turned out to have gotten a 3. So clearly, my intuition cannot be trusted in these matters.)
As for the Grand Prix, it... rained a lot. That was slightly inconvenient because a lot of the time I was seeing sheets of water instead of, y'know, cars. So, in short: heh Vettel, Adrian :(, and [insert not-that-funny joke about British people being used to rainy weather and Hamilton's not-always-optimal performance]. (And boo, rain.)
I hate it because I never see anyone ask 'why het?' (or 'why femmeslash'), as if they were entirely different genres, with no possible overlap, and that one (because I kind of think femmeslash is so small it doesn't get too much attention) is 'natural' to write and the other needs some kind of explanation.
Just for the record, I ship1 het, femmeslash and slash, although not equally, and a lot of it just doesn't get written down. (In one of my completely unwritten original universes, though, where I cunningly flipped my human counterpart2's sexuality (90% mostly bi; 10% mostly straight/gay)--there
I don't see why anyone of those should need any more explanation or justification than others, because I ship: a) because the people/characters have great chemistry; b) because they're pretty together; c) for the lulz, regardless of whether the pairing is f/f, f/m or m/m.
Of course, I also tend to write ficlets, where it'd make sense to have just the characters shipped in the story; a certain crack!fic which is currently eating my brain stars an ensemble cast and will be
Conclusionish: Cass dislikes "why slash?" questions, ships (femme)slash/het, ships for a variety of reasons and doesn't think slash and het are so different one needs explanations and the other doesn't.
1 Also, I think up noticeably less het because a) sports rpf lends itself more to slash and b) I find (femme)slash more aesthetically pleasing.
2 They're not Earth humans, but they're still what we'd instantly recognize as humans. The biggest difference is tolerance to magical radiation: 'my' humans would die without it, we'd die from exposure to it. Another is sexuality, as well as some more things influenced by different physical circumstances (different type of sun, larger planet with several moons, different kind of solar system, magic, etc).
Let me sum up Wilders: 1. he hates Muslims, 2. he hates the EU (but not as much as he hates Muslims).
Perhaps as many as one fifth of the Dutch electorate would vote for a party whose entire platform is Islamophobia. *Cass's head goes BOOM*
Excuse me. I'LL HAVE TO JUMP OFF A BRIDGE BECAUSE THE PEOPLE IN MY COUNTRY ARE THIS STUPID. DON'T WORRY, I WOULD JUMP OFF THE BRIDGE NEAR MY DAD'S HOUSE, IT'S REALLY NOT THAT HIGH I'D BE FINE. I totally had more planned but I'm (still) too surprised/disappointed/apalled/angry to be coherent. What the fuck, fellow Dutch people, what. the. fuck.
I find myself in the unpleasant situation that I want the current coalition to stay in power because the combined idiocy of CDA/PvdA/CU, even led by Balk, cannot possibly be anywhere near the fucking disaster it would be to have the PVV this large. If Balk IV sits it out, maybe Wilders will have lost a lot of those voters again. DDD:
Scherven van smaragd is een
boek met een flauwe titel autobiografische roman/verzameling korte verhalen over opgroeien in Nederland als tweede generatie Indische Nederlander. Ik weet het, da's een hele verrassing met zo'n titel. Aan de andere kant, hoe (héél) flauw ook, de titel geeft het fragmentarische karakter van de Indische gemeenschap (in Nederland en wereldwijd) en van de Indische identiteit van de kinderen en kleinkinderen van de eerste generatie goed weer. (Scherven, stukjes en beetjes, splinters van identiteit.) Daarnaast is het ook een goede beschrijving voor de opbouw van het boek: korte flarden van herinnering of verhalen die langere tijd beslaan, soms gescheiden door korte tussenstukken in het 'nu'.
Alle karakters in dit boek zijn fictief, iedere gelijkenis met personen berust op toeval, wordt ons meegedeeld, hoewel de hoofdpersoon toch zeker "Jill Stollûk" heet (overigens geen goede naam voor een beroemdheid volgens de muziekleraar op de basisschool) en er een tikkeltje te Japans uitziet voor een vader met een oorlogstrauma. Hoeveel echt autobiografisch is en hoeveel verzonnen of een beetje dichterlijk aangedikt is natuurlijk verder moeilijk te zeggen
En, omdat ik me erover heb moeten zitten opwinden dring ik het jullie ook op. De samenvatting (als je ze zo mag noemen...) die de Stadsbieb Haarlem op het binnenkaartje geeft: de dochter van een Indisch echtpaar groeit na de Tweede Wereldoorlog in Nederland op te midden van de frustraties van haar ouders over hun half-bloed zijn. Eh, pardon? Oké, oké, het is niet dat het níet klopt maar voor ons specifieke 'half-bloed zijn' (blèch) hebben we al een naam, Indisch. Dûh. Stomme bibliotheek.
Shorter review in English here at 50books_poc.
- No more getting up past noon, especially not on weekdays. I should be out of bed by 9 o'clock, really. (I used to get up at 6 in high school no problem. I miss those days, I really do.)
- Watching entire seasons of old TV shows in almost a single go is no good reason to stay up till, say, 5 in the morning. I should therefore probably not do it?
- Breakfast is Good For Me. That means: breakfast before noon. Lunch around noon. (Two slices of bread each meal are more than enough.)
- I do not actually have to try to make more than a panful of dinner! This is cheap and healthier.
- Two pieces of fruit a day means... not more than two apples/oranges a day. Duh.
- Milk is also Good For Me. I should drink more of it.
- Thursday is the day I do my homework for Tuesday. Monday is the day I do my homework for Wednesday. Friday I work on my thesis. These will no longer be negotiable.
- Class is for learning things, not world building or fiction writing. Public transport is for world building and fiction writing.
- I should try to write something every day. Good for my writing skillz as well as effective against boredom.
- I should really read more.
- Clean room. Keep it clean.
- Find job. I need money.
- Probably some other stuff I can't think of right now.
In the 1950s, Indos were inassimilable and could never get used to the Dutch climate (too cold). Also the country was full. So it would be best, really, if they didn’t come over here, and tried to make the best of life as Indonesians. However, that obviously didn’t work out, and those strange, strange people came here. (In true Dutch fashion, if at all possible on their own costs. They were still greedy colonials who were coming to get money off the backs of hardworking Dutch people, though, never mind the fact that most of the people concerned were Dutch citizens. That was sort of the point.)
When I was little, we were so much the model minority we weren’t even really considered a minority, since we’re so well-assimilated and everything. (It helps that we’re all mixed-race and some-part white, of course.) For me (third generation), the culture, and the food, and the language, and the stories my grandparents grew up with are faraway and out-of-reach, except for some bits and pieces here and there. I want to chase them, and find out more about my heritage, but it feels like I would be appropriating something that’s not ‘mine’. In my family, we Didn’t Talk About any of that.
A 1984 study (it was the first of its kind and it’s probably still pretty lonely) questions—with Science—this perfect and seamless assimilation. Its authors say it was mostly white people claiming this years after the fact, with no facts or figures to back them up, nor ever hearing the other side of the story (I can hear your gasps of surprise from over here!). Obviously the seamlessness of it was entirely due to Dutch tolerance.
I have no problem saying I’m multiracial. Indo I’m good with, too, even if I still occasionally wonder about that one because my grandfather’s family came over from Surinam to the Indies. I can just about handle ‘non-white’, even though I feel compelled to append that my mom is white and you’d have a hard time telling me apart from the whitest person in town. ‘Person of color’? I can’t do it. It’s really stupid and probably me exercising the privilege I have of passing.
On the other hand, I feel like some White Chick playing at being Other. I mean, here I am: I look pretty damn white, my mom is white, my main ethnic identity is considered to be perfectly assimilated and by definition a mix of Asian and white, and my dad’s side of the family has been mixed going back generations. Oh, sure, my grandfather was black; my grandmother was Asian, but still. It’s stupid. I know. I still can’t help feeling it.
My immediate reaction to seeing the words Indo Diaspora is still ‘I’m part of a Diaspora? Whaaa…?’.
It’s highly unlikely someone would say discriminatory shit to my face, and the first time I heard (read in a book) about discrimination against people like me, back in the sixties, I balked. Surely not? I was probably sixteen when I read that book and realize now I did everything in my power not to take that book and its perfect clarity seriously. (I reread it and it made me cry. There were tears in my eyes after the prologue.)
Of course, that was until I read an interview with a ‘hurt’ white director who got upset the Indo community didn’t like his representation of them and said things made of fail. In the nineties. (Me: GRRR.)
Or when in 2009 someone made a slur against Geert Wilders based on his ethnicity. (Me: *shocked, speechless silence* ;__;) It felt like a punch in the gut but I still feel I have no real reason to feel upset about it because comparatively? We have it pretty good here.
And then I started thinking about representation. Because, while most of the people on TV do look like me, they don’t share my heritage and background. (Or most of them don’t anyway.) I said that wasn’t a problem for me but more and more I think that was a rationalization I started making by the time it got through my thick, thick skull that my cultural default ≠ Dutch cultural default and that the people in my books and on my TV weren’t exactly me, just like me in some ways.
Because, you know, honestly? Where the hell am I? I’ll even leave out the black granddad thing! Can you point me to the third generation Indos? No? Okay, how about the second, then? Challenge: when not written by Indo writers? That leaves the first generation, where I get to see my grandmother as some white guy’s second (doting, devoted, beautiful, etc) wife who has no children of her own and not much of a personal life, either. (Possibly I get to see my grandfather on the street or on the train?) Honestly, why don’t I get to see my grandmother do anything else other than cook and take care of the family?
How about she tells the stepkids stories about how she joined the Red Cross after the war to find her lost fiancé? Maybe in that book, she simply couldn’t find him and met this awesome white dude years later and happily married him. Can that be arranged at least?
(I mean, I can always still pretend any white kid in your stories is just really light like and takes after the white side of the family, after all! Just give me some of my family too?)
And the lovely thing is, I’m still wondering if I have any business saying/posting this. Isn’t that awesome?
(Written for the Asian Women Carnival, organized by ciderpress.)
PS — No, Random Stranger, seeing a mother with two very different looking children does not give you the right to ask the mom if they have the same father. (Yes and fuck you.)
PS -- The fail was Sunday's. McLaren being dumb is faily but not actually what I'm pissed about.
NOT JUST ONE SET BUT THREE. AWESOMESAUCE.
*dies of OMG and SQUEE
Also cool 'cause I've never been to North America before. :D
So then, of course, there are complaints. (As you know, flist, I intensly dislike this kind of stuff, even when it benefits people I like.)
And for some reason, because fail never occurs by itself, that crash is now totally Vettel's fault? Why?
By the way, no, in cases like these I think "the spirit of the match/race/sport/whatever" is actually what should count, not The Rules. And by that I mean that excitement and sportsmanship and whatnot > following the rules to the letter. If you think I'm less CAPSLOCK-y and ranty about this episode of Rules > You, it's because I have to admit this case is slightly (but not all that much) less faily than the line-stepping. But only because those rules themselves still make me go oO.