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Turbulent Tweens

The word ‘turbulent’ here refers to the frame of mind of the parents of tweens and not the tweens themselves. Honestly, I can even begin to take a gander at what these self-involved little hoomans are thinking, with half their brains trying to not give into the sociopathy that kids seem to have a blueprint for vs the sulky, snarky era that apparently spans the way ahead during their teenage.

While I have often wished and wished hard, that I could be one of those parents who fawn over their kids most of the times; I am unable to suppress my gag reflexes at the thought of constantly thinking of TO as my “little prince”.

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‘My-little-pain-in-the-ass’ seems closer to the mark and I’ll tell you why. My usual interactions with him seem to go in these directions- A) I’m a slave driver and he’s a slave especially when it comes to getting him up in the mornings B) I’m not justified in asking him to bath properly rather than just looking at the soap and imagining himself as properly lathered, C) Expresing disappointment at the state of the loo post his using it (Ok now that’s the problem with most men but I’m trying to get him to be a bit more aligned to women in this regard), D) Me not behaving like we offer room service when the water bottle, glass etc is just two steps away. See? It’s not him, it’s CLEARLY ME!

This is the starting of the age when anything that comes out of my mouth is met with a “no”. And it’s not like when he was chubby, drooly and cute and saying no because it was a new word he’d just learnt and wanted to use it to death. Now the ‘no’ comes because he clearly has a setting activated in his brain that says keeping pushing that short, round woman in front of you till her head explodes. It’s not a fun time for me. And am told it gets way more interesting from here on. See how I effectively demonstrated the use of an euphemism? My English teachers are doing this somewhere-

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But getting back to my causes of being in a snit- the kid’s growing up. Acting dumber at times sure, but growing up. He doesn’t fit into my lap, he’s not soft and squishy anymore and it takes more and more work to not flick his ear in irritation every damn day.

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So pretty much on most weekdays and definitely on all weekends there’s a scene playing out which looks like this. For those of you who aren’t parents, that’s TO’s confused “What did I do look” followed by my “Eye of Shame/ I’m a part-time Medusa” look followed by TO’s nyah nyah attitude which in turn in followed by my “Now I’m seriously displeased look” and that’s all topped off with Red’s “Oh man! I have to run before they ask me to take sides” look.

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P.C: Paolo Nicolello@Unsplash
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P.C: Ruth Caron@Unsplash
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P.C: Drew Beamer@ Unsplash
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P.C: Dmitry Ulitin
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P.C: Bruno Figueredo@ Unsplash

S-I-G-H.

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Semi Old Dog, Heap New Tricks

I am adaptable with technology but the kind of technology that’s been a constant with little tweaks here and there. Same goes for the hardware part of it I guess. Am currently in the limbo between Windows and MAC OS. The lovable geeks in my life (and a few of the non-geeks) have praised the MAC *quite* a bit and have looked askance at me for using an HP or earlier a Dell laptop. Ok that was just the husband but his askances don’t count since they’re a constant also.

Image result for once you go mac you never go back

Apparently the image above resonates with a LOT of people but somehow I was muddling along with my Windows 10 and all the long-used keyboard shortcuts and whatnots when a MacBook was thrust into my hands today. Red set it up and gave me a basic tutorial and has since left me to find my way through a keyboard which is further scooched up and some two-fingered jazz I have to keep doing to get things to move around. I ended up almost closing this tab a few times before being able to complete the post.

Right now, in this moment, I am a Luddite crying out for the comfort of a Windows laptop with the keypad comfortably located in a way that you don’t feel carpal tunnel-y and where you keep looking to close or minimize the page on the wrong side. Kind of driving on the right side of the road vs the left…erm yeah….Image result for luddite meme

But here are the positives- it’s so pretty!!Image result for blinking eyelashes gif

The darn thing starts up before I can say Siri (or Alexa to some of you) and the resolution is crisp and clear. Just like sparkling clean, artesian well water. I am slightly enamored if you couldn’t already tell.

Oh..conundrum thou art being caught between two OS.Image result for sophie's choice gif

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The Changing Face Of Things

I belong to the Wren&Martin generation. It was ground up, chopped, blended, diced and shoved down our throats till the knee jerk reaction for anything pertaining to grammar and syntax meant reaching for our copy of W&M to confirm its accuracy.

Fast forward a couple of years when colloquialisms rule the roost. There are differences in the way English is spoken all over the world and idiomatic speech is how people prefer to express themselves. Well most people barring Mr.Tharoor because once he starts tweeting or talking, the crusty old Brit vanguards of the language are left scrambling for their copies of W&M and the Oxford dictionaries to unravel the mysteries of his verbosity.

Adages too have undergone a change. The majority of the essays written by middle and high schoolers about women usually had the cliche- ‘the hand that rocks the cradle, rules the world’. In the last couple of years I’ve realized that the ‘hand that wields the ladle, rules the roost’. And let’s admit, you might as well get control the home and hearth before heading out for world domination.

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Having control over the ladle means a lot. Essentially it means whose taste buds get precedence over the others, how spicy or how bland will your food be, can you switch it up food wise from time to time or do you stay old school, tried and tested. Who has the ladle also plays out in how the kitchen looks and where the “essentials” are placed for the cook.

Sharing a kitchen is often harder than sharing clothes or even a home. Important stuff happens in a kitchen. There’s a power play of spice placement, the cutting boards even right down to the size of the blade and kind of knife that’s going to be used.

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I have been raised by 2 VERY particular people. My mother taught me to keep a separate knife for fruits. She also has a separate paring knife for those things which need paring (Duh!). She uses a rather biggish cleaver for the meat and small knives for everything else. There is no ‘one size fits all’ in her kitchen. And that is something I’ve imbibed as well.

But if person who views all knives the same way and essentially looks at functionality and nothing more, your carefully pigeonholed knife arrangement goes for a toss; bringing waves of discomfort not akin to a bout of OCD. Because there’s been a break in the order of how things are done, how you feel they ought to be and the fruit knife ends up reeking of garlic is not what you need when you’ve reached for the musk melon for a mid morning snack. Before you know it, you want to draw a line down the kitchen and divvy up the space so you’re not sighing in frustration about the other cooks who (mis)use spatulas and leave the wooden spoons soaking in water for hours.

Let’s face it, food is important. How it’s cooked is even more so, where the ingredients are kept; all that matters. I don’t want to go all Patrick Bergin on things but even then it’s only natural that there can be only one Queen (or King) Of The Kitchen. And that is me!

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The Joys of Living Alone

I am not averse to sharing my living space with another person or other people. I’ve lived in a dorm, as a boarder and lived with my folks till I was an adult and those things really drill it into one’s head about the utter necessity of having your own space for your own shit. I mean, it’s critical!! Especially after a more permanent cohabitation starts with someone and they just leave their things all over the place like goat droppings. It can vex you like nothing else truly can.

Picture this- a smallish studio space or Praise Be To The Gods Of Personal Space, a loft…a few bean bags or bean bag chairs scattered around the room. A few non-skiddy throw rugs with vivid geometric designs on them. A large white wall designed a la Jackson Pollock viz this-  

There needs to be an island in the area designated as a kitchen for the cutting and chopping and sleeping is either a sleeping bag or a water-bed in a corner.

Not a very pseudo boho-chic manner but a messiness that gets into every living space but also one which is just short of a tornado-hit area.

Because at the end of the day it all boils down to this- my shit is my shit but your shit is just bloody annoying!

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Red

That’s how I refer to my husband in digital media- Facebook, blogs, and in my phonebook. I don’t know how or why it started but it did. He’s not red at all- no communist tendencies lurking here and there neither does he have one red hair. He’s been a salt&pepper guy since we met nearly 9 years ago. He’s pretty young still, just hit mid 30s and is quite an interesting person. I mean I keep thinking about him so clearly his mystique hasn’t died down after 7 years of marriage and one preschooler.

Let me break it down for you- he’s quieter than I am and less likely to go and start off conversations with strangers but it’s taken me a few years to understand that he’s not entirely introverted. He’s more of what you call an ambivert- he’d like to socialize more, is capable of it but is choosy and would rather hold off on commenting or jumping head long into things till he’s more comfortable. Sensible to the core but can stumble onto domestic minefields with unfailing regularity. Or maybe that’s just him being a husband 🙂

We are quite different from each other in many ways- am round and short with the increasing roundness seeming to increase the lack of verticality and he’s slender and well taller than I am. I can and often do talk nineteen to a dozen and he talks when he wants to, precisely, doesn’t meander and doesn’t keep talking beyond a point. Quite well moderated in his ways. Extremely well moderated in leaving wet towels on the bed and leaving lights on irrespective of having exited a room or a bathroom but those are quirks ( to use the best possible euphemism).

He’s pretty smart too. But kind of a binary guy. Focused on child, work, home (in that exact order) and a very sweet person overall.

Now comes the big question- WHY am I extolling my husband’s good qualities without any provocation whatsoever first thing on a Sunday morning? Well…he and the brat are both asleep. Peacefully. And seeing them knocked out like that always induces a benevolence in me that usually starts dissipating soon after they both wake up. And mainly because I’ve been grousing about MLM practically from my first post here and I thought it’s time to direct my attention towards another who causes my world to tilt here and there and spin haphazardly.

And most importantly, unless he’s away on work, he gives me my coffee every morning; made just right. You gotta love a man who gives you your dose of sanity everyday 🙂

P.S: A blog post detailing the annoying stuff about him is already in the works!