Wednesday, April 14, 2010


I couldn't wait to grow up when I was a kid. I had three major issues with being so young:

1. I didn't like my face and was dying to see what I would look like as an adult. All the Hindi movies showed the knobbly-kneed female child growing up into the most glamorous woman ever, complete with a ruby pout and butterfly eyelashes. I often wondered, and with impatience as I spent hours primping and posing in front of the mirror, about which beautiful face I would have - Sridevi's, Kimi Katkar's, or Parveen Babi's?
2. Nothing mainstream was ever in my size. The walkman's headphones kept falling off of my head, the bathroom mirror was too high, and I always had to climb on a chair to check out if we had any ice cream in the freezer. I absolutely hated having to ask and wait on others to help me with things out of my reach. I envied the adults who lived in a world that was built for them. Heck, even my dolls had houses and furniture their size.
3. The grown-ups looked like they knew everything about everything. I hardly knew the names of more than 2 movie stars (Amitabh Bachchan and Sridevi) and Michael Jackson. The grown-ups knew what to do, where to go, how to talk and to whom - they never made any mistakes! Being the youngest of the family, no one ever took me seriously, and my frequent crashes after bouts of excitement had me erroneously labelled as the poor weak child who would never have any physical stamina. I existed on the edge of society. I was physically smaller than everyone else, and I always felt like I didn't know enough things - I still remember the day when a friend mentioned how she'd discovered the magical fact that you knew the movie was about to start right after the director's name showed up on the beginning credits. Even my much older siblings knew what they wanted to say. I couldn't wait for the day when I'd grow up and suddenly know how to do everything right.

That was 1985. In the time since then, Sridevi has had multiple nosejobs, I stopped growing after 5'2", and Michael Jackson...well, he died last year. The beautiful people took off their makeup and grew old, and I discovered the farce of adulthood.

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