Monday, March 04, 2013

Bollywood Did This to My Daughter

Okay, so Melissa and I have been getting this announcement about our first daughter up around Facebook and elsewhere, but I haven't put in on my blog yet. So, first of all, watch this:

Second, if you feel so inclined, go to the GoFundMe website which Melissa and Megan have set up, and help make her dream a reality.

Third, I'll answer some basic questions.

Q: Are you insane? Why will you allow your sixteen-year-old to spend a whole school year in India?!?

 A: Well, one, she'll be seventeen by the time she goes. Two, Rotary International's student exchange program is an excellent one, with a fine reputation for enuring the safety of those individuals they sponsor. And three, I don't see any good reason to stand in the way of a smart, focused, confident young woman who has found a way to pursue a truly wonderful goal. Will she get sick? No doubt. Will she sometimes she be uncomfortable, out-of-place, confused, maybe even scared? Certainly. Will it be worth it to her? Absolutely.

Q. Is this really going to happen? It's not a scam, is it?

A. It isn't a scam. I freely confess that I was a skeptic for a long time, primarily for financial reasons. I just thought that this was a pipe dream of Megan's, and that ultimately the other shoe would drop, Rotary would come to us and say "And now, cough up the $5000 donation," and we'd have to back out. But these people have been as good as their word. Megan has her passport, and this week she's going in for her TB and other shots, after which the paper work will be able to be filed with the appropriate agency in India, and she'll be able to be placed with a host family in Dehli. Yes, there are still any number of obstacles, not just financial ones, which may appear. But after two years of work, it really looks like Megan's plans are coming together. Melissa and I are very proud; she is being far more ambitious than either of us were at her age, and we want to pull as much together over the six months we have remaining to make sure her experience is a fantastic one.

Q. Just what's the appeal of Bollywood movies anyway?

You know, I actually can't really say; I'm not nearly as familiar with the cinema of India and South Asia as I am with the cinema of East Asia, and what Bollywood movies I've seen have struck me as kind of entertaining but in a rather narrow and predictable way. Still, maybe I just haven't been watching the right ones. And in any case, ripping off Hollywood conventions must be worth doing, if it can create awesome nonsense like this:

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