In retrospect, I’m reminded of some of the most embarrassing moments of my life. While some sprout a chuckle now, some still hurt to an extent. Time is the healer and deservedly, the oldest of incidents belong to the former while the latest of them fall in the latter category. Penning them down shall relieve me of the ill-feelings, to an extent. This piece may turn some sympathetic while also proving to be a good entertainment for many thereby supplanting a laugh riot. I don’t mind both.
The oldest of them happened when I was in UKG. I still have a vague memory of that afternoon. There was this relative of mine, a 50 yr old man then, who seemed too harsh. Leave alone me, be it any child, had I been him, I wouldn’t have treated a child that harsh. Just because I had failed to answer the 'Camel' as the ship of the desert, he made me kneel down under the scorching sun and I was made to repeat that sentence at least 10 times. That hurt me, both physically and mentally and I was too small a child to have so much gut to speak against. It was embarrassing to get punished by an outsider but today, I pity me. Poor kid!
I had always felt insecure in the absence of my parents and though we live in a joint family, the comfort a child shares with his parents is unmatched. I was no exception and though I never felt 'mom-sick' and did go on tours with relatives, I had done so without realizing this insecurity I used to face, time and again. Even the smallest of scolding from relatives, in the absence of my parents, pained and hurt as bad as a tight slap on one’s cheeks. Though I hardly showed up any emotion, these gloom drops piled up to form an ocean of ill-feelings and the gloomy waters drained in a laminar fashion only after the re-union with my parents. As a kid, those were the toughest of times to face but I made sure, the ocean never produced a tsunami-like outburst. Looking back, just like the previous case, I pity me.
I still remember this particular incident when my Grandma questioned me in a 'slightly' higher tone as to why I had failed to shut the back gate of the house. That was unusual of her because she’s the kindest of people I’ve ever come across. That tone really bothered me so much that I started weeping. Tears rolled down involuntarily and it was so humiliating to cry amidst 8-9 people. All in my house, including grandma were shocked to see my reaction. In retrospect, I’m bowled over by the respect I had for her even at that young age ( I was, maybe 7 or 8 yrs old) that I felt bad for such a small thing.
Another embarrassing incident happened while I was in class 9. The half-yearly IT papers were distributed to us and I had managed a mediocre 54 percent marks. Some students who had deserved better marks approached the teacher for re-correction and she was seen awarding them with more marks with no cross-checking. Sensing this, in an attempt to boost up my marks and with notoriety, I took a red ink pen from my friend’s bag, added more marks for many answers and complained the teacher of totaling error. Already carrying a 'notorious-character' certificate for passing sarcastic moments and having teased her, quite a lot during class hours, I was an exception there and she verified my paper alone. PANG! I had made the smallest of mistakes as the exact color of the red inks differed. While the ink she used was dark, mine was lighter. She questioned me if I had indulged in any sort of malpractice by correcting some answers myself but I stayed adamant by not admitting the fault. The drama gained momentum, news spread to neighbouring classes as she started screaming in a higher tone. Other teachers entered and having succumbed to the galloping pressure, I finally pleaded guilty. I was screwed badly with the class teacher jacking me left, right and center and I was asked to meet the Principal that evening. On retrospection, this passes off as yet another infamous act of mine, while in school and sometimes I feel proud to be part of this drama. The scenario then, was in complete contrast and I was shell-shocked, the moment I was instructed to meet the Principal that evening.
More of such incidents are lined up for next weekend. Watch out!!!
To be continued…