Social mission Bollywood/Pyt/Sketch pad for all media


Recomendo: issue no. 140

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Social mission Bollywood
Two notable Bollywood films give you that special dose of outlandish song, dance and rom-com drama that you expect with a Bollywood extravaganza, plus they advance a vital social cause. And they will give you deep insight into today’s India. Both films are about a maverick who takes it upon himself to undo an entrenched detrimental Indian custom. Interestingly, the same Bollywood super-star, Akshay Kumar, plays the protagonist in both films, which are based on true stories. Toilet: A Love Story is the movie version of a real guy who tried to put toilets in his home against the wishes of the village, and his wife is pressured to divorce him for this affront, and how this became a national campaign. Padman is the true story of a guy trying to get Indian village women to use sanitary pads instead of being quarantined outside during menstruation. He invents a way to make the pads cheaply, which he tests on himself. (!!!) His wife also divorces him. But all ends well in both films — it’s Bollywood! There is a third film, a straight documentary about the real Padman, called Period. End of Sentence. This won an Oscar this year for a documentary short. Quite inspirational. All three films can be streamed on Netflix with English subtitles. The first two are painless entryways into Bollywood. — KK

Danish word for stressful situations
“Pyt” is now in my vocabulary thanks to this Fast Company article. It doesn’t have an English translation, but Danes use it as an interjection to frustrations or mishaps. It means something like “Oh, well,” and is used as a reset button to accept the situation and refocus rather than react. I like it because it sounds like a cute short curse word. — CD

Sketch pad for all media
My art student daughter has been using these spiral-bound Canson Mix Media 7×10 drawing pads. I started buying them for myself, too. The heavy paper easily handles ink pens, watercolor, and Copic markers, and has a nice texture for pencils. A 60-sheet notebook is only $7. — MF

Use Dropbox within Gmail
If you use Dropbox, installing the Dropbox Chrome extension is a timesaver. I no longer have to search for files in subfolders to copy and paste share links. With the extension, I can access all my folders and recent files and attach them in a message without having to leave Gmail. If someone sends me a dropbox link, I can download it directly to my computer without being redirected to another window — all these saved clicks add up! — CD

Automatic product comparisons
When researching a product online, type in the item in Google and then add “vs”. Google will auto-complete with the most popular, and highly rated, alternatives, and the top link will educate you quickly. Then “vs” autocomplete the new item and you’ll have a good sense of the field. — KK

Another use for Starbucks cards
(This tip comes from Recomendo reader Andy Kegel, who saw my tip about converting leftover foreign currency to Starbucks credit.) “More and more rebates come as prepaid credit/debit cards. It’s hard to find something for exactly the face amount, so I feel like I’m always gifting back part of the rebate via unspent residuals. So now I put the whole amount on a Starbucks card or similar and I can spend the entire face value.” — MF

-- Kevin Kelly, Mark Frauenfelder, Claudia Dawson 03/31/19

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