I’ve listened to this video several times since I first heard it earlier last month. It is in Spanish (Spain) by the group La Oreja De Van Gogh (Van Gogh’s Ear). It is simply called Jueves which means Thursday.
What follows is the lyrics with basically a translation of what is happening. Then, I will explain why today for me was different than any other day when I watched/heard this song.
It tells the love story of a woman that takes the commuter train daily, seeing the same guy on the opposite side of the train car. The woman is singing to him (in her mind).
Si fuera más guapa y un poco más lista
Si fuera especial, si fuera de revista
Tendría el valor de cruzar el vagón
Y preguntarte quién eres.
The first verse talks about how she wishes she were prettier, like from a magazine, and smarter. How she wishes she were bold enough to cross the train car and ask him his name.
Te sientas en frente y ni te imaginas
Que llevo por ti mi falda más bonita.
Y al verte lanzar un bostezo al cristal
Se inundan mis pupilas.
She talks about how she dresses up in her best skirt as he sits in front of her and doesn’t even realizes this. Seeing him yawn through a reflection (on some crystal) her eyes tear up.
De pronto me miras, te miro y suspiras
Yo cierro los ojos, tú apartas la vista
Apenas respiro me hago pequeñita
Y me pongo a temblar
He suddenly looks at her, she looks back and he sighs. She closes her eyes and he looks away. She can barely breathe and she makes herself tiny and she begins to tremble.
Y así pasan los días, de lunes a viernes
Como las golondrinas del poema de Bécquer
De estación a estación enfrente tú y yo
Va y viene el silencio.
So the days go by, Monday through Friday, like the swallows in Beckquer’s poem, from station to station him and her, Comes and goes (the days) in silence.
This verse repeats: He suddenly looks at her, she looks back and he sighs. She closes her eyes and he looks away. She can barely breathe and she makes herself tiny and she begins to tremble.
Y entonces ocurre, despiertan mis labios
Pronuncian tu nombre tartamudeando.
Supongo que piensas que chica más tonta
Y me quiero morir.
Pero el tiempo se para y te acercas diciendo
Yo no te conozco y ya te echaba de menos.
Cada mañana rechazo el directo
Y elijo este tren.
Then suddenly this happens, her lips wake up and begin to pronounce his name as a stutter. She bets he thinks “what a crazy chick!” and she want to die.
But time stops still, and he nears her saying “I don’t know you and yet I missed you. Every morning I take the long way and choose this train.”
Y ya estamos llegando, mi vida ha cambiado
Un día especial este once de marzo.
Me tomas la mano, llegamos a un túnel
Que apaga la luz.
Te encuentro la cara, gracias a mis manos.
Me vuelvo valiente y te beso en los labios.
Dices que me quieres y yo te regalo
El último soplo de mi corazón.
And they’re almost there, her life’s changed. This date, March 11th is now a special day. He grabs her hand as they enter a tunnel which turns off the lights.
She finds his face with her hands, gets bold and kisses him on the lips. He tells her he loves her and she gives him the last breath of her heart.
So there you have it, for those English speakers here, lovely tale of finding love. Except I found out that this song was a tribute. See, March 11, 2004 was the day of the Madrid train bombings. I was listening to this song when I went down and started reading the comments. Someone made mention of the date but nothing really was elaborated so I searched the date online. I nearly teared up, I couldn’t I was still at work getting ready to go home, but man, that was tough realizing that what she meant by giving him her last breath of her heart.
It is a beautiful song, and now sad, and I imagine if something like this did happen, then they’re still together for eternity somewhere. Choking up again…
Also, notice the guy sporting the “Life is too short for bad music” tshirt.
Something happened earlier tonight which caused some interesting debates to fire off. Before I get into it, full disclosure, I am friends with Michele Boyd and have briefly gamed with Milynn Sarley. Furthermore, I may come off possibly as a jerk or at least a hypocrite, and you could be right. I’m ok with that. These are my opinions and could quite possible be wrong.
Here are their names linked to their twitter feeds:
After watching the music video, I want to quote the description provided by Break, I believe:
This music video parody proves Geek and Gamer Girls really do exist. Extra geek cred for appearances by a rapping Seth Green, Battlestar Galactica’s Katee Sackhoff and Stan Lee.
Lyrics and mp3 available here: http://brk.to/gamergirlsong
Team Unicorn – http://www.facebook.com/TeamUnicornFTW
From what I can see, most people loved this parody. There were a few people that did not like the direction this video took. I wanted to address these issues, I will not name names, I just want to discuss some points I saw brought up and give my take on the video and why I believe it should not be dismissed the way some have. I will also say that I do not at all harbor any negative feelings towards anyone, everyone is entitled to their opinions and I respect that. Don’t hate me!
The main issue that was brought up was that the women in the video are all beautiful and do not represent gamer girls because they come in all shapes and sizes.
Someone brought up a good video that discusses sexualizing women in the gaming culture. Watch it here.
Admittedly, it’s a bit unfair to point fingers. A lot of these girls may be legit gamers who just enjoy flaunting what they got, and it would be really unfair for me to demand that they set a good example.
From the video linked right above. He goes on to say:
but at the same time we have so few other types of female presences in gaming and this can’t be helping either gender feel more comfortable with one another in the game space. And women feel alienated, men feel manipulated, I’m just saying…
Felicia Day recently posted a blog post on her well maintained website [self reference har har] titled Women in Tech. Within it she links several articles that are very good reads on the gender subject.
Team Unicorn is a group of women who are friends, geeks, gamers, actresses and all happen to be beautiful women. Also, they’re a group. Like a troupe.
Comments like “they’re all beautiful” and “they don’t represent all geek and gamer girls” would be factual statements. They’re not saying they represent all geek and gamer girls. They’re not even saying they’re beautiful. Sure, they’re showing it and practically saying it on their video, but the video itself is a parody. Parodies are done over the top. The song is basically California Gurls by Katy Parry feat Snoop, only with their own lyrics.
The thing that made me blog tonight were the comments that basically suggested adding “variety” because the girls are all beautiful. That really sounds to me like they’re saying “Add some ugly girls” which just sounds absurd. Team Unicorn has four members. They all appeared in this parody. If other people joined them, they’ll appear in future things they work on, I am sure. What is this need to say geek and gamer girls have to be frumpy? If they want to wear makeup or heels or whatever “girly” thing they want, it is their prerogative.
As part of the parody, they had what has normally been the “norm” of geekdom, the nerdy guys. You don’t see male models, like myself I might add, complaining that buff guys were not represented. Yes, this is a weak argument, I will move on, I just wanted to call myself a buff model type.
The origin of their troup/group name, Team Unicorn, is in their press release – “Geek girls are like unicorns: technically they don’t exist – except in this awesome musical parody by Team Unicorn!” again lampooning the fact that the “norm” is that girl geek/gamers are a myth.
Another issue that was brought up was using Seth Green, Katee Sackhoff, and Stan Lee. Seth is married to one of these women, but he himself is considered in the realm of the Geek due to his various projects and because he himself is a geek. Katee, of BSG fame, well, BSG. Stan, good old Stan represents the comics, a staple of Geekery. A parody tends to be much more parodier with celebs.
Something else that kinda grinds my gears is if it were a voluptuous woman or a “plainer” woman playing the sexy in a video, she would be cheered as a geek champion, but oh no, these four beautiful women can’t represent geeks or gamers because they… what? They’re too beautiful? This is what I see. This is my main gripe with the people that were complaining about this video. This is the same issue as me not being a male lead in a movie or an tv show because I am fat and wear glasses… well, also because I haven’t tried auditioning for one, but you know what I mean… why can’t they be what they claim they are?
A friend asked a very good question, something like “What if it were a bunch of male models representing geeks, would you be ok with it?” Yes. Yes I would. Are they geeks? Because, Michele, Milynn, Clare, and Rileah are. If four six-packed male model-types had their own little parody music video, I would be ok with it. Mainstream has had a fun time of telling us that real life is about mostly good looking people while the rest are delegated to the side-kick or comedic relief, but does that mean that we should quickly attack people because they aren’t “ugly” enough?
The last point I will focus on is a comment that basically said, “I admire people who don’t feel they have to sexualize themselves to get fans”. To the person that actually said it, I am not trying to single you out here, it is just that you made a very good point and I felt it was worth exploring here. We’re dealing with four rather intelligent women, in this Team Unicorn. Personally, I know Michele has a Science degree in Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior. I am sure they knew there was a pot and it would be stirred. They are actresses. They live off fans. Fact of life. More people will know of them now. Yes, other people either don’t or keep “the sexy” to a minimum. Someone was mentioned in this comment specifically who has done what the commenter suggested she hadn’t. It was argued by others privately that one instance was a character, and the other was purely a parody and also used a variety of “types” of people, but the fact remains that sometimes sexy is a device used in comedy. I am sorry for the vagueness but I want to keep the focus here and not really make comparisons even though I kinda am.
Controversy is a good thing sometimes, especially to garner a base of fans. Sure, it could be viewed as a negative thing, but again, I personally think their video was expertly done, their lyrics were on par, and they definitely flaunted their beauty, and their geekness. In this parody music video, they were representing themselves. Ladies, maybe you want to make your own parody video in which you’ll represent your own self. I promise I won’t complain about there not being “beautiful girls” in it. Odds are, you are beautiful and you just don’t know it.
Yes, Michele is my friend, and I do support her, and her friends, in everything they do. I may be biased because of this, or because I myself am a male and may not understand what it really means to be a geek girl or a gamer girl or both. I am a geek. I am a gamer. I have scoffed in the past because of similar attempts of getting my attention with the beautiful women doing the geek things, but when I know they are the real deal, and they are doing a parody music video to boot, what’s the harm in that? They are proud of being healthy. They are proud of being girls. They are proud of being geeks. They are proud of being gamers.
And I am proud of them.