The blurb ob by blob...

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Mother, writer and daydreamer. Also chocoholic and chick-flick lover. But mainly mommy. To two boys, at that! When not escorting my Elder One (EO) to karate class, I'm trying to get in as many cuddles as possible from my Younger One (YO). And when not doing either, I'm hard-at-work trying to maintain a steady relationship with my laptop. And as for the Man I Married (MIM), well, let’s just put it this way – even though we share a bedroom, our most meaningful conversations are held over the cell-phone!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Sex Ed: The Saga Continues...

A while back, the EO and I were watching "Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara." He was loving it for a number of reasons, such as the songs, the fact that it was based and shot in Spain and he loves all things Spanish (and Japanese, but that's besides the point), the plot-line of going on three daring adventures with one's friends, the camaraderie between the friends, and so on and so forth.

I was loving it primarily for one reason and one reason alone and that reason is named Hrithik. Sigh... Yes, yes, his hair was coloured all wrong in the movie, but have you seen the man dance, people? Have you? He is pure, unadulterated, wild, joyful sex. That's what he is. Sex.

Anyway, so we're watching and loving the movie. My son is being his normal self and asking me hundreds of questions when we're suddenly at that song sequence, "Der Lagi Lekin" and there's a three second visual of Hrithik & Katrina spooning in bed and of course the EO noticed. Now I know what you're going to say...yes, yes, there was a scene earlier in the movie between Farhan (my other love, just btw) and random Spanish chic, but the remote was in my hand at that time and I was able to skip it...not so lucky this time round and besides it was such a blink-and-you'll-miss-it scene -- the only problem was that my boy didn't blink just then. Sigh. Whatchyu gonna do?

Anyway, so he looks at me, shakes his head, rolls his eyes and asks, "Sex"? As nonchalantly as I possibly can, though I feel as if I have been punched hard in the guts, I simply say, "Yes."

Some more head-shaking and eye-rolling happens and then he informs me, very, very seriously, "Mamma, we're not going to tell bhai about all this stuff ever, ok? He doesn't need to know, alright? Even when he's a hundred, ok? Ok?" And while I'm mulling over what to say and trying to form a single, coherent sentence to say, it suddenly dawns on him, "Ooooh! But how will he have children, naa? Hmmm... Ok. We'll tell him a few days before the wedding. Ok? Ok!"

Oh boy! My boy! 

If only it were ok, my over-protective, little, big boy. I still can't wrap my head around the fact that YOU know this!! If only it were ok. If only.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Of Calligraphy and Calvin

The boys are unofficially on term break now. While I'm pretty much allowing them to do what they want, I have, however, insisted that they both do two pages of handwriting EVERYDAY -- one in English and one in Bangla. This is because,
a) their handwriting sucks,
b) gives the gadgets in the house a break,
c) it gives them something to do, and
d) it keeps them out of my hair.

I was wrong about (d). Soooo wrong.

Anyway, the EO is sitting and writing a script...the sequel to "Kickass" is you please, and he wants me to send it to Hollywood. Not satisfied enough with his screenwriterly ambitions, I still point out that he needs to write properly as the original purpose behind the exercise is good penmanship. After all, who needs to foster creativity when one's handwriting can conquer the world, am I right? And besides, our schools are doing such a brilliant job in the first place, no? (snigger-snigger-sob) So my son gives out a long, deep sigh, one that would do any long-suffering writer proud, and says, "Nothing spoils fun more than when it leads to building character."

I stopped in my tracks, turned around and asked him to repeat it. He did. Clearly and precisely. "Nothing spoils fun more than when it leads to building character." It sounded vaguely familiar so I asked him where he'd got it from. "Calvin and Hobbes", he smiled.

Wonderful! Just what I needed, my boy quoting Calvin. Possibly modelling himself in his image too! *shudder*

And then he started singing, "Another Brick in the Wall" at the top of his voice.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Movie Time With the Brats

This evening, the EO was watching "The Artist." With a lot of interest and a lot of curiosity. As is his nature, he asked about 545 questions during the 100 minute movie... Sigh...

I like this, though. The fact that after watching something like "Shaolin Soccer" on repeat for the last three days, the boy sits down to watch a classy movie like "The Artist." It's the same reason that while I may cringe at the EO's love for these crass, ugly, new Bollywood numbers, he adores Beethoven and Rabindrasangeet and Queen and Sufi... It's the same with his reading habits. While he loves the Wimpy Kid series, still reads Geronimo Stilton, he's also into Tintin and Asterix and Shakespeare (abridged) and Satyajit Ray.

And that is important. The fact that we expose our children to every genre. They will pick and choose their favouites and have a more well-rounded, balanced appreciation of art, literature, films, theatre and what-have-you.
While watching "The Artist", the conversation suddenly turned to beauty spots. The EO asked me if they are always drawn on and I said no, that usually people are born with them, and so saying, I showed them the one on my chin. Then the conversation turned to birthmarks and both the boys launched into a frenzied search for beauty spots and birthmarks upon their person. The EO tiumphantly declared that he'd found a beauty spot and was content. The YO had been born with quite a prominent birthmark, but it has started to fade over the last few years. Unable to find a suitable replacement he suddenly beams and exclaims, eyes a-twinkling, "I know! I know what my birthmark ijj! Everybody sayjj I'm cute, right? So that's my birthmark! I'm cute!"

Oh baby! He certainly is, more than he can imagine! And just like it's his birthmark to be cute, it's my birth right to squoosh and squish him to my heart's delight!

After 'The Artist', 'Ratatouille' starts playing and the boys and I continue watching for a while. There's a scene when Remy's running on the beams in the attics trying to discover where he is and that blink-and-you'll-miss-it scene plays out...the one of an arguing French couple. Through the hole in the ceiling that Remy runs past, we see the angry couple standing face to face, the woman is holding a gun, Remy passes on, we see nothing but our friendly little rat running and then we hear a gunshot; startled, Remy turns back to the hole, and we see the man holding the woman's hand, the gun must have gone off in a struggle and the couple stare into each other's eyes for a few seconds before falling onto each other's lips and sucking face. It sounds longer than it really is, the whole scene does play out in a few seconds flat and it really is blink, wink, sneeze and you'll miss it.

But of course my boy's do none of the above and they see the whole scene and the EO shakes his head and turns his attention to the iPad on his lap, his cheeks turning red, while the YO giggles and whispers something in his big brother's ear. I pounce on him and ask him what's so funny. He shakes his head. I ask again. He shakes his head again when big brother jumps in to save little brother.

EO: It's nothing Mamma. Just the French doing what they usually do.
M4: Whaaaat?? And what makes you such an expert on the French and their habits? (Was he wrong? He'd got the stereotype down pat!)
EO: Oh come on Mamma, the whole Europe know...romanta! (Totally making up this word to give it a European sounding flavour)
YO: (pipes in to add weightage to his brother's words) Yesh! Mamma, thish time on de Eiffle Tower, Dada saw two French people kissing for ONE HOUR!
EO: (a little irritated by his brother's exaggeration) Nooo!! Not one hour! For five minutes! If it was for one hour, then you can't breathe!

I am genuinely concerned about where he's getting all his info from and forming his own conclusions!

Monday, March 3, 2014

#WFHMs and Growing Boys

The boys' holidays have started, unofficially. Exams got over Friday morning and by Friday afternoon they had already managed two things:
1) mentioned the word 'bored' 245 times, and
2) had Mamma wishing she took Valium.

Sigh. This is why I hate it when school is closed...

Yes, I said it. You can hand me 'The Bad Mamma Award' now.

This morning, as I attempted to get some work done, I had the YO trying to snuggle into my lap so that he could carry on a conversation about his love for sports, while the EO went round and round in circles asking me questions about Robespierre and Mary Antoinette. They  effect of yesterday's viewing of "Mr. Peabody & Sherman", you see.

Didn't have the heart to throw them out of my room, because man! They're growing up! I mean, the little one starts Class 3 next month and the elder one, why, he crosses over to the Big School! Literally! It's another building altogether, across the street from their safe little haven. A whole new world, if you look at it.

We've been trying to prepare him for it over the last few weeks. About the big boys, the indifferent teachers, the possibility of bullies and the need to stick with your friends. I think we did too good a job, because the other day when my MIL asked him how it felt to be on the threshold of Class 6 and Big School he replied that he was ready for his "descent into hell." Hmmmm, I think we scared him more than prepared him!

And then, on Sunday, I was lying down on my bed, reading a great book, when he suddenly zipped into my room and threw himself on top of me to give me the tightest, bone-crushingest hug possible, making silly, little boy sounds. My heart over-flowing with love for this beautiful boy of mine who I gave birth to ten years ago, but still seems like yesterday, I asked him, a little scared, "EO, don't you want to grow up?" And he looks into my eyes and says. "No."
M4: Why?
EO: Growing up bad. Me no like growing up. Me stay small.
M4: So you want to be Peter Pan all your life?
EO: Hai. Si. (apart from braces, the boy seriously needs some language lessons as well...he's been wanting to learn Japanese and Spanish since forever. Now added to the list is Greek, for some reason)

Anyway, the point is that I don't want it either. For them to grow up. I'd like to be able to manipulate time. I'd like to be able to bottle up their babyhood and toddlerhood. I'd like them to remain beautiful, innocent and sensitive forever.

And with them, I'd like to be forever young too.