Today I am sad and depressed for again, as on innumerable occasions, I had an argument with my parents. Arguments, rifts and disagreements between teenagers and their parents do occur. The elders blame it on our recklessness and carefree attitude while we blame them on our parents ability to understand us.
Take today for instance – such a silly argument it was. Today was a holiday and the movie Roja was being screened at West End. I had some money left over even though it was nearing month end. So no hitches one would think when I planned to watch it with my friends. But all of a sudden my pop came up with a command – no pictures since I had an exam the next day.
‘Exam’, I said, ‘You call a ‘teeny- weeny’ unit test an exam? Why even our teacher told us the other day not to take it all that seriously.”
My statement had a ring of truth to it and indeed I had spoken what had happened. I had only left out what was a bit inconvenient to mention. My father was shocked that my teacher could make such an irresponsible statement – little did he know that she had said to ensure that we did not start bunking school three days before the test and then say we were preparing for it.
But so what? I was in no mood to provide the context and spoil my chances of convincing my dad to let me have an outing with my friends. I seemed to be gaining the upper hand and it seemed like ‘Mission Accomplished.’
So there I was imagining the scenic visuals of ‘Dil hai chota sa, choti si asha…’ when my mother played her trump card – the results of my last report card.
On recollecting my marks, my father turned red and livid. As the President of our home he declared an Emergency and I couldn’t muster the courage to commit an Insurgency.
So there it was – my friends went to see the film while I was at home staring at my English text-book upside down, my eyes full of tears. Bah! These exams – they are always so very inconvenient. I confess that I feel very bad while obeying my father’s dictum. It is a sad world now, the smiles have vanished to accommodate the frowns. That’s all my friends. I am going early to bed now to at least catch up on the movie in my dreams. Good night.
The article appeared under the ‘Have Your Say’ column in the youth supplement of The Indian Express on June 3, 1995 in Pune, India.