Rebels without a cause



Delhi is tough. The so-stiff-you-can’t-unpeel-her kind of tough. And I presume it is her personal, silent strategy that makes congenital rebels out of so many of her people.

Kids, for instance. I stare open-mouthed as my masis and chachis (aunts – in convenient English) battle with their juveniles. Sometimes, it’s about school. Or about classmates and stuffing Maggi in tiffin boxes. As the years rush along, the subjects for post-puberty girls become far more complex – washing or not washing your hair and nail enamel colours for instance. With their male counterparts, subjects like calling a girlfriend home or going out for a vacation with well-fended-for classmates take precedence.

I wonder if it’s just my err, social circle that has such a rebellious composition or if it’s the same everywhere. Markedly though, I remember Pune being more generous that way…little kids would troop into bookstores holding hands with Mamma and Pappa and would spend many a gleeful hours browsing the shelves. The capital, in being the business-money-page3 capital of the country, loses out on the associated calm and peace of the non rebellious being.

Sample a few case studies:

Art Wart

Girl of ten, with a talent for felt-tip art, doesn’t concentrate at school. Bespectacled teacher recommends a tuition center.

Ma: Wouldn’t you love to go there darling? You will find so many friends and we’ll get you new books –
Girl: What happens to my art class?
Ma: Oh that happens on weekends, it wouldn’t be affected at all.
Girl: I am attending only one of the two. I am packed for time.

Khaana Khazana

Ma meticulously cooks an exotic chingri ‘prawn’ curry for lunch and keeps it on the table for sonny boy to eat. She returns from work in the evening to find the contents of the bowl emptied into the dustbin.

Boy: (in response to a thrashing threat) but how could you expect me to eat up a dish so infested with cockroaches?
Ma: You could have left it lying there! Am I insane or blind to cook cockroach curry for you?
Boy: I can’t be bothered with ugly-looking food Ma. Mitali says I need to keep up the fitness.

P.S.: For the uninitiated, prawns aren’t the prettiest of sea creatures.

How you met my mother

It’s a Puja lunch at home and aunts and uncles in their best traditional finery are gathered around the buffet tables. Enters diva in a backless costume paired with a shorter-than-your-underclothes skirt.

Diva: Hullo, I am his girlfriend.
The ‘his’: Should I show her around Mom?
Mom: (aghast) Does she need any more showing? (To husband) I told him to have her wear something more traditional. He says skirts are a part of our culture.

My, my, my. Kids today, I tell you. I wouldn’t have Delhi harbour all the blame, though her big city lights do have a role to play in all that’s cooking. Years down the line, I am sure these kids will have the necessary skill-set to rise up corporate ladders or the ones laid next to a lover’s window. But while they are at it, the parents have one out-worldly time. Gives me nervous pimples, it does.

*all incidents reported in pure jest. Lest anyone reads a connection, I am just a story-hunter. πŸ˜€


36 thoughts on “Rebels without a cause

  1. Pingback: Shouts from the “last century”… « Saddi Delhi

  2. Pingback: Biting my Head Off « Saddi Delhi

  3. OMG!!! Scary, but it seems like that is the norm. Kids have a say in almost everything, and parents don’t always draw the line either. At the same time, imposing too many restrictions on kids is going to turn them into rebels anyway. So one has to learn!!

    • Yep. It’s a very sensitive line that needs to be walked on with care. I believe it’s essential to draw the line. Un-watched liberties may not always be wise.
      Thanks for dropping by! πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

    • Hey Rituparna!
      That is such a pleasant surprise… thanks a lot for the award. πŸ˜€ The feeling is mutual of course for I have always enjoyed your delicious posts. πŸ˜€
      I will be spreading the love soon.

  4. Oh yes! Well said. Influenced by Western media and the world being smaller, I have noticed that in Indian cities parents provide extreme protection to kids when they are young, giving them every single thing they want (and even sometimes so that they can match up to their friends) and then suddenly get shocked at the kids’ attitude once they grow older. My parents wouldn’t give me every single thing I wanted irrelevant of the fact of whether they could afford it. I hated them as a kid but I know the importance of that now. Not being a parent myself I really don’t have a right to say much but I do agree with BR above, a large share of this behaviour lies with the parents and the environment they give their kids.

    • Exactly Dhaami.
      Some people seem think that giving kids material things can compensate for all the hours not spent together. Kids need their parents not only for things, so to say, but also and more importantly for life lessons. You were lucky you had such nurturing parents. I hope all kids have such fortune… spoiling your child rotten doesn’t do much paving for future goals after all.

  5. Can’t blame kids Debo, its we who lay the foundation.
    We get them flashy clothes when they are small and we ooh and aah, later on they get even flashier ones and we object, why?
    Kids in nursery in their innocence say ‘mein isse shaadi karoonga or karoongi’ and we giggle. later on in school they say she is my GF or bf and we pass knowing glances but later on in college when they say tthe same, we panic, why?
    When kids don’t eat home food we order Italian or Chinese and then later on when they want that only we panic, why?
    Its the foundation that matters, isn’t it/

    • I have to agree with you BR. We are to blame for what they grow/don’t grow up into.
      What’s a sweet and mischievous trait in a kid doesn’t remain so when he/she clings it it post infancy. I guess it’s too much to expect everyone to be responsible and well-mannered without being told to be so. But when older people claim their generation was more civilized, I cringe. Our technical advancements are also to blame for the state of the world…
      Sometimes I foolishly hope life was simpler and kids, well, sweeter.

  6. true I am from chandigarh and we thought we were advanced and Hip-hop but when we went to delhi we had our Oh MY God moments nad even now I am in UK, but when i go back to india which was 5-6 years back now at that time too.. Delhi kids were far advanced to kids here in UK, true and I am wondering how it will be when i come there now ..
    Delhi is so far advanced …

    • Yep Bikram, advanced is one way of putting it. It’s interesting how you think Delhi kids are above those elsewhere in this advancement factor. πŸ˜€
      I am sure you can look forward to a gala time when you’re back in town.

      • Thanks, will let you know how it went once I’m done πŸ˜‰

        No new post? I came by expecting one, since you’re on a big commenting spree πŸ˜€ I’ve to go on a “like” spree myself; the button isn’t active when I comment from mobile 😦

        • Ha ha yes, I woke up this morning with the determination to read through all the lovely blog posts that had been piling up in my inbox. Whee. I am almost done. I am drained of energy and the time so a new post should be here say, tomorrow?
          And oh, thanks for the liking spree. Mutual if I may say so. πŸ˜€

  7. OMG… Seriously kids these days… They are more than difficult to deal with… And trust me its the same everywhere and not restricted to only big cities…

  8. Oh Deboshree… None of the stories that you have narrated is an exaggeration. I am a native of North India, but I don’t think that I can ever muster the courage to live in this city 😦

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s