This Friday was a day of learning. Jai has in his unit of inquiry been learning about Child Rights. I was a bit concerned of its manifestation at home as all “good” mothers know children have no rights and what mom says is law! Anyway as part of that unit the school showed the kids a movie on Martin Luther King (My friend Martin), which I guess impressed our little friend (at least I hope so). But he came back and asked if we could go and check if the movie was available on DVD. One has to grab these few moments of enlightenment, as most are submerged under PSP, DS’, Spongebob and WWF. So we headed off on the way back from school to the mall, of course to find that it was not available and told “we don’t keep movies like this” by a nubile nymphet.
As we got home and I gathered stuff from the car, picking up a sodden bag of swim stuff pushed me into asking Jai-“sunscreen applied?” Why do I bother… of course I know it’s never slapped on unless I am the one doing the “slapping”. But what is life without hope. In all innocence I loudly proclaimed “you’ll turn black”. This being a direct translation of “kale ho jayo ge” which stems from a deep Indian mother psyche of “bachha kale na ho jaye”. Prompt came the response “Mom that is so racist.” WHOOOOOOps tried to back track, explain etc etc. but the face in front was stoic and unyielding.
This from a kid who a few months back (in Delhi) had shocked me by proclaiming that “all Muslims are terrorists” and this was conveyed to him by So-and-so who in turn had heard it from his Dad. I could have kicked So-and-so’s dad and it took an accelerated course in respect for all religions and a reminder about Aneela masi, Saajid uncle and Shawar ma’am to wipe that out. So learning being –watch the mouth (mothers and fathers) and if you don’t (cause you are human too) sometime the kids will surprise you.
Black or rather blackened Radhika
Ps: Have decided its time to "tweet" under Manilamusings