Thursday, July 29, 2010

In which the brat begins an allowance

The brat is now rapidly getting to that stage where his demands everyday involve a minimum of one Gems Surprise Ball and one Jelly Belly mobile and one Kurkure or one Lays Blue pack. And all stern deterrents to the contrary are met with howling and rolling on the floor tantrums.
Therefore wicked mamma hatched a plan. Seeing as his currency and counting skills also needed to be beefed up, it was decided that the brat would get pocket money.
"To keep in my pockid?"
Yes, mamma told him. Keep it in a wallet. A special velcro and zippered wallet with Ben 10 on the cover was called for. The specified amount kept within. Now on, brat, you will get X amount for the week. In this X amount you buy what you want, and you don't need need to ask mamma to get it for you. And you will not get anything from mamma or pappa.
He scrunched his face into deep thought. "I go tu d shop onmahown? Widaoud mamma?"
If S uncle (our trusty driver) is with you you can. Or mamma will come with you but you decide what you want and within your budget and buy it.
Okay. I will buy a Powerranger megazord.
Mamma laughed mirthlessly. For a Power Ranger Megazord you will need to save up for many weeks. Because, mamma showed him the math, your allowance is X and a Megazord is X x 10.
He scowled some more. "Okay, I won't buy things. I will buy only eating things. Things you buy."
What things, I asked.
"Toys."
Err, mamma, said, that seems fair enough.
"And you will buy for me medicines and hand sanitizer?" The obsession with hand sanitizer is recent, occasioned by the recent H1N1 scare.
Okay, Mamma agreed.
"An I will buy kurkure and lays and gems?"
Mamma nodded.
The brat marched upto a semi somnolent Pappa and announced loudly, "I don't want anything now. I have my pockid money. Okay? Okay?"

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

And the brat is a sullen teen

The brat stomped into the room. He was tantrumming over something. I cant remember what about since he goes through an average of ten tantrums every hour. He stomped out, went into his room, having delivered his speil and slammed the door. Hard. The door shuddered in the frame. I shuddered in my pyjamas. He stayed sullen behind the closed door for close on five minutes until he decided to come take a peek as to why his anger was not being assuaged by fervent pleas by mamma to make things right.

"Mamma. Mamma." he called from behind the door. "I am angry."

Mamma played deaf.

"I am very angry."

Mamma continued to play deaf.

"You have made my life hell."

Mamma rose and closed the door on him.

*******

The brat sat in front of the idiot box and shovelled his meal into his mouth. Power Rangers Mystic Force team members were busy decimating "Evils" hiding inside Papier Mache costumes.

Mamma, mamma, squeaked the brat.

Mamma raised a desultory eye from the book she was engrossed in.

Lookit it the megawarrior morpher, he squeaked. Judging from his expression, this was his equivalent of Mamma's drool on the floor for a pair of gold python Jimmy Choos.

Isnt it just OSSUMM!

Mamma dropped into a dead faint.

*********

The brat and mamma needed to travel by auto, the driver being sent off on some errand that could brook no waiting by Pappa. The brat draped himself, asparagus like on the side of another car, while Mamma attempted the valiant task of hailing an auto while on a crowded main road, while simultaneously balancing brat's school bag, her umbrella, handbag and other assorted bags which bore vegetables, and exciting items of domesticity like washing soap and tea powder.

The brat, bored, poked a hole into the thin plastic which contained around three combined kilos of onions and potatoes. The plastic, under such continued assault, gave way with an apologetic rip, and the mucky road was inundated with onions, potatoes and a squealing mamma as she rushed to scoop those that escaped oncoming traffic.

When the crisis had been dealt with, an auto found, and Mamma, brats, and bags safely in its confines, Mamma asked the brat, what necessitated such delinquent behavior.

I wuz boredt. He replied in sullen manner.

Mamma launched into her standard speech about how such things cost money, and how we should respect money, etc, and not waste or damage things. Or when we grew up we would not be blessed with the resources we currently took for granted.

Is okay. I don like onion. Is yuck.

And shrugged his shoulders to indicate the conversation was over.

********

The brat and mamma went down in the lift together to the park. The moment we stepped out into the lobby, the brat deliberately maintaining a ten foot distance between mamma and himself.

Wait for me, mamma yelled, acutely conscious of speeding cars which donot consider being in residential compounds as adequate reason to reduce speed levels.

No, yelled the brat back. I is going widaoud you.  Everyone will laffatme if I come holding my mamma's hand.

Monday, July 26, 2010

A weekend indoors..

Its been the kind of weekend that has kids who bounce off walls cooped up in the house thanks to the incessant rains, and consequently ensuring they do all they can to have their unsuspecting parents tear their hair out. The brat nearly had me bald this weekend. It began on Saturday morning, with a can I call my friends over or can I go to my fren's house. This before he'd done anything with toothbrush and toothpaste about the dogbreath. Or the child version of dogbreath.

Mamma naturally disagreed. She informed him that he had tasks at hand. Primary among which were ingesting his milk, attending to his daily personal hygeine, downing a healthy breakfast, and completing the sheafs of papers that came as homework. A piteous howl of protest ensued and he rolled around on the bed like one in the throes of a monster attack with an invisible monster. "No, no, no. I want to go tu my frens house. Mamma was firm. Mamma was Cruella de Ville. Mamma did not account for incessant whining which could even wear down more highly evolved souls. So bathing, feeding and part of homework was dispensed with at top speed and a pintsized was summoned over.

Much joy and happiness and playing of random fighting games happened. The room, one was shocked to see when one peeped in, was a carpet of scattered toys with little floor space visible beneath. One gasped, deposited the bowl of popcorn one was carrying and returned back to clean floor tiles.

After the playing was done and over, squabbles and fighting ensuring some tears and hurt egos, and calls to despatch pintsized back to his abode had happened, the brat came upto Mamma. "I am very angry. I am not going to go to pintsized house when he calls me."

"Why so, brat?" asked Mamma. All concerned that a massive row had broken out that no amount of pep talking would be able to solve.

"He's nod my fren now. He's only fighting wid me."

"But why is he fighting with you?" asked Mamma. Constant fighting didnt seem to be pintsized's modus operandi.

"He wants to be Dragon Warrior. I want to be Bruce. He's nod listening to me and being Joker. He dont know I am Bruce Ween?"

Friday, July 23, 2010

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

For every parent out there

Bullying has become endemic these days. It always existed, no doubt, but it starts younger, gets meaner and more vindictive now. And as a parent I cannot but help wondering if there are things I could do to make the brat more

resilient and able to stand up to those who bully him and not take out his anger and hurt on those younger and weaker than him.

Here's a nice article on the syndrome. http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1982190,00.html

Geez Almighty, it's Bruce

The other night, Mamma was peacefully reading a book in which the romance dragged and dragged and dragged until Mamma felt like jumping right in and shaking the two characters up and yelling at them to get on with it, when the brat entered the room. A spring to his step, a whistle on his lips.
"Mamma," he declared, as jauntily as could a child who had chanced upon lifetime free supplies of Gem Surprise Ball/Jelly Belly/Kinderjoy all rolled in one.
"Don call me Krish now. My name is Bruce. "
Mamma visibly recoiled. "Bruce?" She asked in thin tremulous voice.
"Yes, Bruce." He added, in case Mamma hadn't grasped the import of it all. "Bruce Manral."
And repeated it for good measure. "Bruce Manral"
Mamma quivered in shock. "Why, child? Why Bruce?"
He looked at mamma with the scorn he reserves for playmates who go squalling to their mammas when he lands them a right hand hook to the ear.
"Because is nice. When I want I will be Bruce Ween. And when I want I will be Bruce Alnighty."

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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Conversations with the brat

The brat played a particularly vicious battle with his Bakugan Brawlers mauling my floor tiles, while I sat in midst of chaos and read about two star crossed lovers romancing each other with painful slowness making my fingers and toes curl in boredom.

One particular action figure had a particularly rakish streak of hair do which would have required strong anti-gravity hair gel to keep it in place had it been not moulded of plastic. And it was jet black.

The brat went to the bathroom and wet his hair, and slicked it up. He grabbed hold of a sizable dollop of Pappa's much neglected hair gel and applied in liberal, professional manner that made mamma suspect he's been moonlighting as a hair stylist in his free time. His hair stayed up. In spikes. Defying gravity. Making him look, for all his effort, like a wet little chick, bedraggled from the rain.

"Lookit my hairstaile! I am lookin hansome."

Looking handsome is something he takes for a given, which is a plus over mamma who agonises over her reflection everytime she chances on it. Maybe its a man thing.

"I got young hair, mamma?"

"Young hair?" Mamma was puzzled. "Yes, I have young hair, you have young hair, daadi has young hair, oney pappa has old hair."

Err, yes, pappa does have old hair. Very distinguished old hair. But a nice full head of salt and pepper.

Before mamma could explain that not all young hair was naturally young, including her own, he continued.

"Wai Pappa still goes to offis wid old hair? With old hair he should go for walk in the park."

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Of loud TVs and hearing loss

There we were, the brat and I, in the park. No one else of brat size had yet descended from their homes. The brat draped himself like a limp asparagus on the railings of the park and craned his neck to check for glimpses of various frens from assorted balconies.

Brat: A, A, A (yelling name of one fren in sharp staccato bursts).

No answer response.

Brat is not easily deterred. "A, A, A."

Silence.

Brat: V, V, V (now pointing head in direction of V's balcony).

No tiny voice pipes up in response.

Brat: D, D, D ( In direction of third building, where the third fren lives).

All is silent.

He looks at me in puzzlement. "Mamma, I tole dem nod to lissen to TV so laudly. Now everyone is become deafly."

Monday, July 12, 2010

Of working Saturdays

Thanks to our esteemed opposition parties calling for a Bharat Bandh on the previous Monday, it was deemed by the powers that be that Saturday would be a working day to enable the teachers catch up with the syllabus. The brat, naturally, protested violently. The kind of protest that has him rolling on the bed, thrashing desperately at the covers hoping to scare mamma into going away and leaving him in peace. Mamma is not to be deterred easily and he was dragged off said covers, deposited in the bathroom, scrubbed and dubbed with hot water and soap, dragged out like a bedraggled chick and poured into his school uniform. He sulked throughout. He kicked random invisible things on the floor. He put his huge school bag on his back. He stomped the ground and kicked it. Jumped and stomped the ground again. Mamma let go of his hand. He kicked the ground again and clean lost his balance.
Lay down on the lobby of the apartment complex a small grin playing on his lips. "Mamma, mamma, lookit me. I fell down."
Mamma looked at him, looking to all purposes like a flipped over turtle. "I am fallen down. I is hurt. I canna go to skul now. "

Thursday, July 08, 2010

A meeting with the special educator

The dratted call came just as I was basking in the afterglow of a delicious Chinese lunch. "We would like to meet you regarding the brat? Could you make it tomorrow?" I was out of my calorie induced stupor quicker than a sharp pin to the butt. "Err, what about?" I wanted to ask. "My son is perfectly fine now. He has no issues. Dont scare me. Do you not know I will chew my fingernails and fingers down to stubs by tomorrow morning, that I will spend a sleepless night tossing and turning all through and wake up looking like Kung Fu Panda, down to the dark circled eyes?"
Instead, I said yes, I would be there, my hair in a braid.
So we landed there, to meet the special educator who has been assigned to the brat for the past couple of years. The good thing about the school is that they do try to ensure that the same special educator takes the child through the years so there is a continuity with the child, and the educator is familiar with the issues the child faces. The spouse and I sat across her, fear twisting my gut into discomfort. I dont think I ever feel this terrified even sitting across doctors who have my biopsy reports in hand. (All benign, for those who cared enough to ask, and a long while ago). She smiled. I shivered a little. The good news is, she began, I am cutting down his weekly sessions from three to two. Which indirectly meant that he does not require three weekly sessions with the special educator. If I could have sprung up and done the bhangra right there without dislodging the flexiboard partition, I would have. But I restrained myself. With great difficulty. I sat calmly. I nodded my head. She took me through the entire list of the syllabus she was going to do with him, and what we needed to do with him at home. Pincer grip. Pincer grip. Why can a boy who scribbles beautifully on all my walls not write legibly? Explain, someone?
And as we finished the interaction, she smiled. "He has improved a lot. I hope by next year he will not need remedial sessions." My eyes misted over. If I could have hugged her I would have. Now I go home and teach the brat how to pinch.