Posts Tagged ‘school’

The kite conundrum
It is that time of the year again. When my city plunges into the depths of insanity. We love to bask in its unmatched profound revelry, and make a silent promise to ourselves, holding out strings of time in our hands whilst looking up at the sky in the backdrop,

“To never growing up!”

Turning the time handle to revisit glimpses from past, I remember, clear as crystal, doing the “kite-talk” with my friends at school. Some would be curious to know how many kites each one of us would be buying just to slap back condescendingly at our numbers, some would be bragging about their kite-flying skills, some would be teaching the correct manoeuvre to take down enemy kites, some would throw in unheard of kite-jargon making things even harder for the newbies to grasp, whilst I would be busy listening to each one of them with jaws wide open in awe. I remember rushing back home and sharing it all with my brother. Something had me convinced, if there was any truth in the world, it would only spew from the mouths of my friends.

With gusto written all over my face, I would always be found on the roof, every evening, months before the actual festival knocked on our doors. Hours wasted in sheer hope of catching a fleeting kite, ‘cause nothing compares the ecstasy of scoring one. When I would catch a fish, I would keep pestering my dad into flying it. I would initially be the live audience, the one that fuels the passion of the protagonist. “Papa! Cut the red one! Go compete with the green one!” would resound like little dares whilst my father would come back triumphantly, “Now, which one?”

Come the day of the festival and I would go loco! I used to be fond of a star-studded sky. But finding myself ‘neath a kite-studded one, hurled me into pits of unmatched euphoria. Those were my learning days. When slackened kites hovered over me, I would leave my own to catch hold of the ailing plaything. Sometimes I would wake up with dreams of strings that flew past mocking me.  I ended up being the joke of the town. Talk to my mom, and she still has my kite stories on the tip of her tongue. She loves that stuff! Having a good ‘ol laugh at stupid things I did!

Time taught me the ‘how’, and my verve got the better of me. Oncoming years found me a fad I am still trying to reason with. Two days of festivity under the hood of the punishing sun. But that’s not how our brains look at it. We see fun! Downright orgasmic leisure!

With tanned skin leaving my face burnt as cinders, I would be surprised to find out my friends talking to me normally at school. I would actually go with extreme honesty, “Dude, are you able to recognize me?” Then our relentless showing off would commence! We would flaunt our injured fingers, then the taped ones, then laugh at those who had all ten of them intact, brag about uncooked parts of our faces, (goggles would often leave an unmarked territory around our eyes) and we would pretend like superheroes, talk about our high scores or come up with a funny account.

Even today, the fever hasn’t run out and the fire is still burning. It is quite surprising how every year I somehow make it home during the festival. To that I am really grateful.

Name it as you may! You can call it Lohri, Makar Sankranti, Pongal or Uttarayan. We really don’t care as long as we get our badass kites to soar! That’s the only thing we know of. This day has only one significance to us.

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I happened to come across an interesting list on IMDB, wherein people shared how customary, goofy, yet slightly terrifying movies used to scare them as a kid. How some unique features of some character played horror-games into their brains and how when they grew up, they laughed it off. This brought something from my childhood to the front page too.

I remember the time, when I used to be dead scared, owing to a stop-animation series they showed on TV. The show was called ‘Bump in the Night’. It aired on an Indian channel DD Metro (believe me that was the only interesting channel they had back in the days), right after I would complete my homework. I became a great fan of animation, ever since I laid eyes on one. They aired a bunch of cartoons at dusk. My brother and I, animation’s biggest fans, would make sure, we didn’t miss a single episode the channel aired. We would sit in utter silence and amazement, as the shows appeared one by one on the Idiot Box. It was our time. Nobody messed with us then. Primarily, because we would always sit right after we were done with our homework. Right, mommy?

The concept of stop-animation was entirely new to me. I didn’t know there was something like that until ‘Bump in the Night’ bumped into my life. The show was about little monsters that lived under the bed of a small boy. They would come to life in the dead of the night. It was a fun show actually. Comedy. I don’t know what but something back then made it look formidable to me. I was so scared of the character Squishington. Her droopy eyes would scare the shit out of me. The fact that she had everything drooly on her body, made me hate her even more. I started imagining if these characters were alive and living under my bed too. The fact that Squishington owned the toilet made me scared to go to the loo. Even though she was one of the better looking monsters amongst the other ugly ones, I would always be horrified, and peek through my fingers to see her talk, politely.

I would often ask my brother, “Why are they like this?” But I would never show that I was literally pale.

It was only recently, when I happened to see one of the episodes from the show again. All the characters look so funny now. The show was hilarious for kids. I, on the other hand, peed my pants, watching them fool around on the screen.

While at it, there were some other things that scared the bajesus out of me. I remember the first time I saw Chucky. Boy! I was afraid of that toy. I stopped loving dolls ever since.

Ron Weasley wouldn’t have the slightest idea that a fellow fan, facing the screen was even more afraid of those spiders in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets than he was. That snake, in the end, nearly killed me and believe me, there was no 3D back then. I am sure it bit me. Oh Wait! Those were my teeth on my fingers.

Even some of those dreadful episodes from Courage the Cowardly Dog would slap horror, every now and then, into my terrified brain. Some of the minacious batman villains from the animated series like Scarecrow, the Man-Bat from On Leather Wings and Mad Hatter, (this reminds me, I was more scared to read Alice in Wonderland than intrigued) ushered in terror, whilst I grew up watching my superhero.

Bats, ever since I watched the movie as a kid, something told me bats aren’t at all mushy mushy. The precise reason, the trepidation still lasts.

One time I watched Coraline and revisited my childhood, back when horror and thrill used to be BFFs. Yeah I know. What a wimp! Totally!

I wouldn’t go to my school because I was afraid that an eagle, (actually a bunch of them packed around my pathway everyday), might take me off my bicycle just like a ‘Sindbad the Sailor’ show manifested in an episode. I am pretty sure they were plotting against me. That boy on the red bicycle. One day! One day!

There is a reason I am afraid of lizards. Primarily, because they used to be dinosaurs once. And when they come pretty close to you, they beat all odds. And Grasshoppers! I am sure they are concocting something up every single second. And BTW, who asked them to be so big?

All those days are in the past now. Today, when I watch them, I don’t feel even a tinge of horror in my guts. I can walk in the dark. My brain is prepared. Miracles are a myth. I realize that unwanted imagination is a bitch.

Today, I am a grown up and not afraid of anything. Today…….Don’t you even think about attacking me cockroach!