Thursday Discussion Post: No Rules November! (and December) What Should I Write About While No One’s Reading?

This is something I discovered a year ago and am trying to make my peace with.  Goofing off on internet time goes down for people between Thanksgiving and Christmas.  And thus, my blog feels suddenly like a bit of a ghost town.  But this year, I am leaning into it!

You know how I obsessively study my stats?  I check them every ten minutes or so which gives me an idea of the activity on the blog on a minute by minute basis.  Normally when I put up a post, any post, there is a basic level of activity that starts as soon as it goes up and continues steadily.  That tells me all my regular readers are bored at work and slowly meandering over to check the blog for updates.  When that level goes down, that tells me that people have got STUFF, there is less time to meander around the internet reading things you are tepidly interested in.

On the other hand, there are still posts like my Stree Spoilers post that are doing fine.  Those aren’t the “hey, what new post did Margaret put up?” readers, those are the “hey, I am going to search the internet for this on particular thing and follow the link and get what I want and be efficient” readers.  Those people will always be with me, so long and humanity craves to know the ending before they watch the beginning.

But then there are the other people, the ones who struggle and carve time out of their day even during this busy season to read my new posts.  The 5 readers who read my most recent Mahabharat post in the first two hours after it went up.  So, this post is for YOU!

So long as my casual readers aren’t paying much attention, what should we try to get away with?  TGIF posts every day?  Posts on movies I hate and why?  Posts on people I hate and why?  Limericks?  Discussion posts?  Academic media theory discussions?  Gossip history posts?  Fanvids?  Reviews of your favorite movies?  What do you like?  What is the thing only you are interested in so you normally wouldn’t ask for a post on it but so long as no one else is reading I might as well do something just special for you?

(Pictures of Dog Hazel?)

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37 thoughts on “Thursday Discussion Post: No Rules November! (and December) What Should I Write About While No One’s Reading?

  1. `
    I always like pictures of Dog Hazel, but they don’t exactly fit with the title of the blog.

    I’m so old school, I’m a generation behind on the current stars. I would enjoy a “Who’s Who” column giving a short bio of the new kids (meaning everyone after the 3 Khans). Like, “X is the new guy with the funny hair who does action movies but is kind of short. You probably saw him in such-and-such” I can’t tell the players without a score card!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh, I like this idea! If nothing else, it will be fun for people to yell at me about the players I forgot to include.

      On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 8:28 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • I always want to do more fanfic! But besides you and me, I’m not sure who else enjoys it. I’ll wait for other loyal readers to chime in.

      On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 9:12 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. I would also love more about the character actors. There were two from Delhi 6 (GREAT pick, by the way) that I noticed: one played the sleezy photographer, and the other was the police officer, who was in Monsoon Wedding, but I know I have seen him eslewhere. The photographer ended up haunting my dreams last night as my brain went through my mental rolodex to figure out where else I had seen him.

    Maybe a series of “Open letter to _________” giving advice and constructive criticism to actors and directors from your point of view? You have such a nice constructive way of providing sound criticism, but your titles aren’t always descriptive. (Listicles work, for instance!)

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    • I am here to help! Photographer was the DJ friend in Rang De Basanti, the one who was always borrowing money and was their connection to the radio station at the end. And he was Fawad’s friend/sounding board in Khoobsurat.

      Vijay Raaz is the other one, he was a minor sensation after Monsoon Wedding, but now he pops up in random character roles. Not sure what his “day job” is. Most recently I saw him as the sleazy informer in Dishoom.

      Character actors are one of those things where I can’t come up with a list but I know them when I see them, you know? I’m trying to think of some now that I could use for a post and my mind is utterly blank except for the two you just mentioned.

      On the other hand, I could TOTALLY give career advice to, like, everyone. It would be my little Christmas gift to my family and friends, I can resist the urge to organize their lives by instead spending that energy organizing the lives of famous people I don’t know.

      On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 10:08 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Sorry, stupid phone sent the answer before I could finish. So post about mature actors and actresses who everybody should know, but I don’t know, who now play mostly mom and dads but had good, respectable carrier for years.

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        • that I might be able to do, people like Amrita Singh and Jackie Shroff and Anupam Kher and Kirron Kher. Although Anupam more or less always played Dads, he was blessed with early baldness which was a great boon to him as a character actor.

          On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 10:27 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Ratna Pathak and Tanvi Azmi. Ratna Pathak is part of the Pathak acting family, her sister is married to Pankuj Kapoor (father of Shahid, brilliant actor in his own right). And she is married to Nawazuddin Shah. Tanvi is part of the Azmi family, is married to Baba Azmi (Shabana Azmi’s brother). Both of them started out as stage actresses and respected in the art world, Tanvi had a few roles as a young woman playing “sisters” and stuff and then navigated to interesting older women roles. Tanvi was also in Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani as Ranbir Kapoor’s stepmother, which I found really interesting since she is one of the few famous stepmothers in Indian film, being married to Pankuj and therefore Shahid’s step.

            On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 10:51 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • I love Divya Dutta. She and Sheeba Chabbha are my consistent female screen stealers in Indian film, the female versions of Irrfan Khan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui. Oh, and also Shafali Shah.

          On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 10:37 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. All clarifications are helpful. When I first started watching Hindi film I thought Vidya Ballan and Divya Dutta were the same person and it was very confusing. Of course I also thought that Anupam was the only Hindi film actor they allowed to play fathers!! When I met him, I told him that and he really laughed.

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    • I just mixed up Vidya and Divya in Delhi 6! I did figure it out after about 5 minutes, but I wasn’t sure at first. Does not help that their names are anagrams for each other.

      On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 11:13 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • Oh yaaaay! I am so happy about seeing Akaash Vani. And this is the perfect time, it looks like a weird weird film that most people would not enjoy but I will still like talking about. I’m totally putting it on the schedule!

      On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 11:47 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • 96 might be almost too good to waste on December 🙂

          And yaay! Another person who will have watched Vaani!

          On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 12:52 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Your response to my other post made me think of this. First, I love princess Polychrome! Second, did you ever watch, Thoda Pyaar Thoda Magic? Rani in it reminds me of Princess Polychrome. Most people I know could care less about that movie, but I love it so much and watch it often. I would love to read your review on it.

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          • Thoda Pyaar Thoda Magic was the first movie I saw in theaters in India!!!! Because we wanted to see Jaane Tu…Ya Jaane Na and it was sold out. It bother’s me a bit because I feel like Saif doesn’t really really earn his redemption, but otherwise it is super cute. “Lazy Lamhe” is one of my favorite song sequences. Oh, and Amisha Patel is perfect in that role!

            Also, yaaaaay! Another Princess Polychrome lover!!!!! She really is the best, too bad she didn’t show up until book 3 or 4 so only Oz stalwarts even know she existed.

            On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 4:07 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • True, 96 maybe is too good, so I have other idea – PREM AGGAN. It’s so funny and silly, it will surely make you happy. Watch it for yourself, just to enjoy, and if you want to write the review, write it, I’ll be here, but if not, no problem.

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          • Oh, excellent recommendation! Very conducive to crafting and decorating.

            On Fri, Nov 30, 2018 at 5:42 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. I’ve always liked recommendation lists or favorite/best of lists of any kind (favorite songs, performances, films on a particular topic, etc). And though you have recommendations throughout your blog, are they centralized in a particular type of post? I also like joyomama’s idea about profiles of character actors or just walking through any actor/director/producer’s filmography is interesting to me.

    It’s going to be hard to please everyone, you know:( I’m definitely checking in less partly because of the holidays and work stuff, but also just not watching as many movies since I started reading more, plus these stupid new releases aren’t showing up in my streaming fast enough…I’m looking at you Manmarziyaan!. And you should first and foremost entertain yourself, since you may never be able to monetize the site in the way you want. I’ve always kind of thought that you should branch out and bring in other like-minded partners to your site (kind of like Smart Bitches Trashy Books does for romance novels). But these thoughts are more about your other post.

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    • I think there should still be a “starter kit” section in the Hindi Film 101 index, if you are looking for recommendations. It was the most fun to do them for genres, I think I’ve already done action and romance and comedy, is there some genre I am missing? Maybe just something like “70s classics”?

      I love going through filmography posts, they didn’t get many views, but whatever it’s November, views don’t count. So maybe I should finally round out the Khans (already done Shahrukh and Aamir) or go back to Amitabh. Or try something new and go through the new boys.

      This is a mean thing to say, but I have very very high standards of knowledge and writing for my blog, and I don’t know if I am willing to share it with someone else in the blogging world? I would happily give it up for a guest post from Priya Joshi or Ganti or one of my other heroes, but I don’t know if they would be interested 🙂

      On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 1:36 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Maybe I haven’t found those yet…I don’t necessarily need them since I have a pretty good lay of the land for at least the Hindi film history and the specific genre classics. I think I am thinking of lighter Buzzfeed type listicles.

        I know that this might seem like a request for “dumbing down” your content, but I just think there’s a way to balance the content more. Or at least recognize that there is a mix of tones throughout your posts…many are the serious “let me tell you all I know about the industry” and then there are silly fangirl posts like the TGIF posts. I like both and I’m not complaining. That’s why I like your reviews so much because they balance both the analysis and the snark so well.

        I know I’m responding to two different posts (the one about content requests and then the woe is me one) here but…

        I’d like to dig into your comment about very high standards of knowledge a bit more, but I’m afraid I would offend you unintentionally. So forgive me in advance. I know that you’re incredibly well versed in the Hindi film history, have a master’s degree in film studies, and have an amazing almost eidetic memory! But you’re not an industry insider or an established film critic or scholar like Anupama Chopra or Rachel Dwyer. Both have for better or worse conformed to the writing styles expected of them. I thought Alisa’s comment on this or the other post was especially helpful in outlining the issues here.

        And here’s a question for you that I don’t know if I’ve ever asked or if I’ve missed where you’ve explicitly stated it. Is this a fan blog/site or a critic’s blog/site? Or neither? How would you define it?

        I’ve mentioned it before but joining forces with Melanie/Pardesi and Kathy Gibson just sounds like the perfect business plan! Melanie can manage the video/podcast content, Kathy can monitor box office and release dates, and you could manage most of the written content. All three of you could do your reviews independently or jointly. I’ve never thought having multiple people review a film on the same site/channel was a bad thing. I just seems convenient since you’re all right there in Chicagoland:)

        Anyway, don’t take this the wrong way, because I know you just love to write and you’re a fast writer, but I’ve often wondered if the length of your posts is a deterrent to attracting new loyal readers. My favorites of your posts have always been your actual reviews both spoilers and non-spoilers, your news round-ups/trailer reactions, and the Monday and Wednesday discussion and sharing posts because I like reading comments from your readers as well. I guess I come here looking for the content of a standard fan blog and not necessarily to delve into the deep inner workings of your writer’s brain which are featured in your fanfic entries and your Hindi Film 101s. Of course I’ll still delve deeper into certain posts if the topic is of interest…I remember reading the Kapoors 101 closely because I was reading the Jain bio at the same time. I respect that writer’s brain of yours and your humor and passion very much, but I’m often coming here because I like that I’ve found “my people” in the community you’ve created here as well. So thank you and look for a small charitable donation sometime in the New Year:)

        Liked by 1 person

        • Check out the Hindi Film 101 posts index, I think right at the top I have some “top ten” lists that are very listicle-y.

          For the rest of your comment, I’m going to take it off the comments area and reply by email since it was so in depth and I want to give it full response without boring everyone else.

          On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 3:28 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I looked at the Starter Kit lists index again and yes more of them, please! Like the best masala policeman characters (I’m strangely looking forward to Ranveer’s turn in that character cliche!).

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          • Ooo, best Masala policeman is a good idea!

            On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 4:55 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  5. Hey Admin!
    I know, off topic, but this article has completely confused me. I mean is it even possible to fake THIS? It seems so perfect and at ease.
    Now I find myself seeing them with different eyes. And believe me I was verrry cynical about this relationship. But after reading this my heart just busted.

    But then there is still a little part of me that goes ha! – his father is a pastor the family is very religious and traditional, they started as a boy band, father seems controlling… more than one of the brothers has been dealing with homosexual rumors: Perfect Canvas for the theory of him being still in the closet and as a 26 year old still a scared of the authority of his father! But then again this Article is soo daamn convincing.!!
    PC, I wouldn’t even include because she is just Confusion personified and seems to feed of the Curiosity and Confusion of the Public in general.

    And Now I’m just Confused!! Link:

    https://www.vogue.com/article/priyanka-chopra-nick-jonas-interview?utm_campaign=likeshopme&client_service_id=31193&utm_social_type=owned&utm_brand=vogue&service_user_id=1.78e+16&utm_content=instagram-bio-link&utm_source=instagram&mbid=social_instagram&utm_medium=social&client_service_name=vogue&supported_service_name=instagram_publishing

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  6. ” TGIF posts every day? Posts on movies I hate and why? Posts on people I hate and why? Limericks? Discussion posts? Academic media theory discussions? Gossip history posts? Fanvids? Reviews of your favorite movies? What do you like? What is the thing only you are interested in so you normally wouldn’t ask for a post on it but so long as no one else is reading I might as well do something just special for you?

    (Pictures of Dog Hazel?)”

    After careful consideration, I have to say “yes,” to all of the above.

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    • Oh dear! I would end up writing so many more posts than usual!!!!! But I would also have so much fun. You are tempting me!

      On Thu, Nov 29, 2018 at 5:10 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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