Again and again and again…

We went to watch 8×10 Tasveer a few nights ago. I enjoyed the movie and kept laying bets as to what the ending would be with a a friend who joined the OA and me.

Akshay Kumar is as dependable as ever, the stunts are cool, Ayesha Takia carries her only assets, errr, upfront, it’s awesome to see Sharmila Tagore back on the screen and I don’t know why they had Javed Jaffrey at all.

On nights that we want to go out, we have a simple strategy  – we take the kids out, let them have a blast, tire them out and then leave after we’ve put them to bed. And so we spent the day taking the kids to a fun fair on wild rides and before you knew it they were falling asleep over their chhola-bhatura dinner. Yes, it’s a never-fail strategy. So they went to bed and we went to the movie – a 10.10 pm show.

The movie started and within minutes of it a baby in the theatre started crying. Loudly and nonstop. But we’re parents now and we try to be understanding. So we ignored it. This went on for the entire first half of the movie.

By our side was a man with a son who seemed to be about 4 years old – and we then realised that the wailing baby and lady and this man with the boy – were one family. The boy was doing wandering up and down the aisle while we had our hearts in our mouths, knowing that one false step in the dark and he’d go rolling down the stairs, probably break a couple of bones and disrupt the show.

What? Yes, I’m a mother and I feel bad if a child is hurt for no fault of his own- but if you’re going to bring your kids to the theatre for a late night show, let them wander around in the dark and then expect sympathy when the inevitable happens – you’re not getting it from me. All I want is my money’s worth and a peaceful movie which is why I didn’t bring my own child. And if you can spend Rs 250 per ticket for 4 people – you can afford househelp or then BUY THE DVD when it’s out.

I smiled at the little boy, made funny faces to entertain him and tried to dig into my purse to find something to interest him but he steadfastly climbed up and down the stairs until I gave up.

So anyway, intermission happened and then the second half of the movie. By now there is full scale violence, supernatural bonanza, dead people hanging by the neck and oh wait – a murderer with an axe. We’re used to that nonstop howling of the child almost like the background score now, but now it gets better as she shrieks in absolute terror – I turn around and see that it’s not an infant but a 7-8 year old girl!!

Naturally she was old enough to understand what was happening (muder!) and was terrified. And the little boy looking wide eyed – while the foolish parents ignored them and watched with their mouths agape. And so she just screamed louder and louder while no one bothered to console her.

I’d had enough and turning to the OA I told him that if he didn’t tell them to bugger off, I would. So the OA who was also losing patience by then, turned and politely said, ‘Bhaisahab, why don’t you take the child out and calm her. It’s obviously upsetting her and we cant hear the dialogues.’

I understand that the father was frustrated and tired but really – if he wanted a film so badly – he might have used some birth control a few years ago. Or then some self control and waited for the damn DVD to come out.

But what he did was unwarranted. Turning around he yelled at the OA – ‘I don’t care. I’m not taking her out. If you have a problem, complain to the management.’

I’d had enough by then and if there’s one thing I don’t stand for, it’s people mistaking my gentle husband’s manners for weakness. Oh well – that is their folly. Because the boxing champion, ace swimmer, basketball player, is only mild mannered and can pull a mean punch. It just takes a very long time for him to get incensed enough to get to that stage.

Taken aback by agression instead of an apology the OA lost it and all hell broke loose with the OA and I yelling and the man yelling back while the rest of the theatre watched mutely. The nice thing about the OA and me being poles apart in our nature and thought process is that when we take up an issue we take it up from different ends and yet end up meeting on the main thing.

So he of course in his organised and rational way chastised them about the time. It was almost 1 am – and way past any child’s bed time. What the hell were they doing bringing the kids for a violent movie, at a time when kids are naturally sleepy and cranky.

Me? I just had a snarky one liner that sounds so much better in Hindi than in translation – ‘You know how to give birth to kids but not how to raise them?’ Oh I love using it on idiots who let their kids run out in front of cars too. And then glare at the drivers for honking.

I don’t think anyone in the theatre could hear anything because by now we were all screaming. His poor wife picked up the big 7-8 year old and said to her husband, ‘let it be, I should take her out, don’t fight.’

But he put a meaty hand on her and shoving her back said, ‘Sit down, why should you leave?’

Errr…because your damn offspring is howling the place down???? And by now the kids were getting louder. Both of them.

‘You will understand when  you have kids..’ he roared.

The OA and I had both probably been waiting for that because we delightedly chorused  – ‘Oh but we do. TWO of them. Both home and asleep.’

Because we’re not selfish parents like you with no care for either children or consideration for other movie goers who have paid good money, spent the entire day strategising to exhaust their kids and finally left home to spend 3 hours in the blessed calm of a theatre, away from their own kids and household chores.

Finally the lady broke away from his meaty grasp and took the bawling child out. My heart going out to the poor kid who was terrified by the blood and gore, and mad at the parents for subjecting her to it and possibly nightmares for days to come – and disrupting our movie experience.

It ended there but I was quite annoyed and then my favourite part of the movie came back to me. The song Kuch is Tarah. Sung by who else? Mohit Chauhan. MARRRY MEEEEEEEEEEE MOHITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT.

Phew. Good to get that out of my system.


This was written a while ago and now I realise it comes close on the heels of the judging post. Now here again, some parents will get mad and say oh well we don’t have maids to watch over our kids. True. Maids aren’t the best option anyway – the best would be if either set of grandparents lived with us. But I make the best of my situation and you have to make the best of yours. If you are willing to pay Rs 800 for a movie and not Rs 2000 for a maid for a month, that is not my problem. And neither is it my problem if you can’t have the patience to wait for the DVD which is what we did before we got a maid or when the maid is on leave. So I totally think you’re an idiot if you allow your kid to ruin the show for a hall full of people who have paid good money to come there.

On the other hand, having maids isn’t the ideal situation either. The last few parties that we’ve taken the kids to have been over run with terrible kids and worse maids. The pinata (khoi bag) is broken and there is a mad rush of older kids stamping on the fingers of little ones etc, well, can’t help that. But I see the maids of various kids pushing kids out of the way and grabbing stuff wildly for the ward’s loot bag.

Yesterday was a repeat performance of that – the bag bursts and I leave the Brat to fend for himself while I help the Bean understand the concept of picking up a few for herself.

And then this ill-mannered maid throws herself bodily across the scattered goodies and starts sweeping them up into her dupatta. I reach out my hand for one and she screams and grabs and scratches my hand. The OA doesnt usually take me seriously but when I came back home with an angry red scratch on my hand, even he was shocked!

I told her to behave herself but she certainly wasn’t listening to me. She grabbed some stuff away from the littler kids too and got me really mad. And yes – this again is why I judge people who send maids. They don’t train these awful women, they have no idea how badly they behave at parties and as a result teach the kids to misbehave  – telling them to go and ask for the return gift, letting them hit other kids, teaching them to grab, all while we’re painstakingly telling our kids to behave.

I have no doubt some parents are equally ill-mannered, but it’s so much easier to deal with an illmannered parent than to tell off a maid who is poorer, knows no better and isn’t in a position to fight back with you.

It’s not always a bad maid  – a couple of days back at a shopping complex I saw an old maid limping along, chasing two kids – a girl of about 5 and a toddler of about 2.

The little one was running around madly. The old woman limping along couldn’t keep up with her and was yelling out to the elder one to catch her and the younger one to stop.

The elder one kept catching the younger one and twisting her arm viciously to keep her in place. Even I could see that the little girl didn’t mean to be vicious – but after ten minutes of this was simply tired of having to chase the little one and couldn’t think of a better way to handle her. It’s really rather unfair to leave one child babysitting another, while the maid is too old to be of use.

I had to wait there for an interview and as I sat there, distracted from my book by this scene, I saw the older girl grow more irritated and get rougher, the little one get crankier and more troublesome and ask for her mother, and the maid get more tired. I have no idea where the parents were. I hope to God they were doing something earth-shakingly important. There was no other excuse for the little scene I witnessed. Eventually the person I had to interview arrived and the last I saw of them, the younger girl was in tears while the elder one and the maid looked close enough to it.

66 thoughts on “Again and again and again…

  1. I wanted to comment on your judgment post too, but couldn’t get around too. Here’s the thing, I agree with what you say. People should not bring babies to the theater. But then if they didn’t and if they left them at home and if the maid did something to them? Or if she overslept and locked the door while the kids wailed, then? How do you know that is not happening to B&B? Can you ever be 100% sure?

    Me: Oh you can never be sure. Which is why until I could trust maids I didnt leave my kids with strangers. If you cant give up the odd movie or dinner – dont have kids! How can I be sure its not happening now? Possibly because the kids love the maids and the maids love them back, often rescuing them from mama’s temper. Which is why I keep them despite their inefficiency with other housework. there’s no 100% – in which case I should worry about the OA molesting them too na? the only way to judge is to see if the kids cringe away from such people…

    the rest is just precautions at home – removing latches, taping plugpoints etc..

    Basically what I’m saying is that if you ever leave your children in the care of somebody else, even a grandparent, you have got to put up with the possibility of something going wrong.

    Me: sure.

    When you spoke about the limping, I thought of my mom who sprained her leg just the other day and refused to go to a Dr. So there she was limping mildly for two weeks, insisting that she would manage both kids on her own. I put my foot down and yelled at her. And made sure I worked from home. But what if I couldn’t?

    Me: I dont know Poppy – but would you send your limping mom to a mall to chase the kids around? there will always be a story behind everything – i can only look at something i see and tell you that it doesnt seem right to me. huge diff between a limping mom and a limping maid who should be given time off to recover or else not put in charge of little kids if she has a permanent disability and cant keep up with them na? very unfair to make elder siblings babysit younger ones. its not their job

    Judging is common yes, but I think the point of Y’s post is that parenthood is funny. It makes you eat your words sometimes. I would have judged anyone before I had my second one. Now sometimes I make choices that I would never have made, because it’s more acceptable to me now.

    So now while I still judge, I don’t pass judgments. I don’t call someone a “bad” parent because their maid came with the child instead of the parent, or because their kids are shy in public (mine are!).

    Me: I wouldnt either. I’d definitely call them awful if their kids misbehaved and the maids stood by and they werent around either. someone’s got to take responsibility for child and maid and unfortunately that can only be the parent and employer, na? Its not my problem if you’re busy with something else – but it DOES become my problem if am mauled and scratched and my kids stomped on while no one manages your little tyrant! as for shy – i dont have a problem with them as long as they’re not mine… shy is good ! atleast they’re not monsters!!

    Parenting children is a long road, who knows what will work in the end? To each her own I say!

    Me: but of course…. always. To each his own as long as it doesnt affect me. The rest is just sympathy as you stand by and watch. I dont know where those little girls’ parents were -all i know is i felt terribly sad watching them all so unhappy.

  2. Phew long comment huh? But couldn’t go away without disagreeing with you:) For old times sake!

    Me: totally 🙂 and i hope you realise the judgment is not of the parents bringing the kids really. if the kid shuts up and sits quietly – i dont care. its not my child getting scarred and traumatised. and if the parents dont care – thats the child’s loss. my issue is with them being unable to either quieten the child or leave. that is really unfair and i am well within my rights to object or have an opinion

  3. after almost one and half years we gathered courage to go to cinema hall with Adi. you know i can’t leave him anywhere. prior to that i made sure that he is hell tired running around in the mall and looking at the fishes and playing. he was tired and hungry. as soon as the movie started we gave him milk and he went to sleep.. hopefully that trick works again for me.

    Me: I think you can start leaving him with me. Honestly. Do an afternoon show and let him play in the nursery with my kids. The OA and I will manage him. Once he gets used to us you can start doing late nights.

    or we can get a CD and sack out at my place with popcorn and beer while the kids sleep. anything you want. my point simply is that there is always a way to have fun. its not the end of the world if you have kids and neither do we need to inflict them on others… or inflict trauma on them – right?!

  4. Oh this is such a pet peeve. Young children are not supposed to be in cinema theatres. Period. The decibel levels are too high for their delicate eardrums, the content is usually not child-appropriate and it is a public place, where you cannot claim immunity from the effect that your child’s resultant behaviour will have on other people’s viewing pleasure.

    To me, a movie is such a small price to pay for being a parent. It’s not an unavoidable necessity like say shopping in a grocery store or traveling in an airplane, where you have no choice to go and take your kid along. A movie, and that too in a theatre, is such a small luxury to give up for a few years if you do not have babysitting options. Miss the latest releases, watch them on TV or DVD or not at all but have a care for the child you brought into this world and the comfort of a hall-full of people who paid good money to watch the movie uninterrupted by wandering kids or screeching infants…

    Phew! Long comment! Looks like the shock of agreeing with you brought on verbal diarrhea! 😀

    Me: 😀 i’m infectious.

  5. MM: for such parents the DVD method is not even an option. Only birth control will do.

    Inconvinience of others apart.. do THEY enjoy a movie white the kids shriek down collars?

    Me: I call my kids the advertisement for birth control 😀

  6. Dunno what you think of this, and how common it is up north, but in the south, its a common sight, to see a lil girl of 7-8 yrs, carrying a big baby baby, or sometimes the baby, while the baby’s family, is busy shopping/ out having a good time.
    Without even starting off on the whole child labour being illegal stuff, i cant begin to fathom how a new mother, can agree to let another baby, take care of hers! It is more heart rending when you catch the lil girl, wistfully look at stuff in the shops.. she is still only a baby!
    I know a lot of people who do this and they try to justify it by saying they treat the child well, feed and clothe her well, and most of them do – but is that the point?

    Me: common everywhere and i am sick of that reasoning. i would still be fine with a little girl coming to play in the garden with my kids, maybe paying her, educating her and thats it. but to have her carry my kids around is the limit. yes – childlabour – and i’d never trust my child in another child’s arms. poor kids… 😦 taking them out of the frying pan – but not very far from the fire.

  7. OMG, the man must’ve been high on something illegal and exotic to behave like that, no? Good on both of you to have told him off.

    I had a similar experience with a college kid whose cell kept buzzing incessantly with SMSes & he insisted on replying with KEYPAD TONE ON. After sometime when I politely told him to silence the phone, he asked “Theatre aapke baap ka hain kya?”. Without a word, I started walking towards the exit & casually asked my friend if that’s where the manager sits – I imagine that shook him & he hastily apologized & promised to keep his cell on silent.

    I was serious about walking out and creating a scene ONLY coz the movie was Jodha Akbar & I needed some spice to prevent myself from sleeping 😉 Otherwise most of us generally grin & bear it esp. where kids & youngsters are concerned…..aaarghh, little beasts!!!

    Me: 😀 little beasts is right. and then the rest of us all get a bad name because some parents cant handle their kids and then they grow up to be like the asshole you encountered.

  8. Q1: What were the other patrons doing while the argument was going on? They must’ve been just as bothered by the kids. I hate it when I’m the only one protesting.

    Me: I think everyone is waiting for others to object. And once another starts, they dont bother because someone is fighting their battle.

    Q2: Do these parents not KNOW their kids? What scares them, their bedtime, how to get them to shut up?

    Q3: Why rate movies and then allow kids into the theatre? Sab kuch chalta hai?

    We take our kids for animated or lovey-dovey, smiley-laughy family movies. Hands over little eyes and ears at the occasional slap or ‘adult’ smooch. Mega popcorn bucket to stuff their faces quiet. And the maturity as parents to miss part of the movie if the kid is yelling, misbehaving or unexpectedly inappropriate content.

  9. So if we had a theoretical (and much-needed) entrance exam for parenthood…if ppl qualify to have a first kid, then they should do enough of a good job raising him/her to qualify to have the second child! Bar those who think the elder one’s job is to replace the parents. And those who’re having the second one ONLY as ‘company’ for the first one.

  10. Dear MM,

    Oh the horror! When I was not a mom, I used to be in ‘teacher’ mode and constantly horrified by terrible parenting and its even more terrible results, and now that I am a mommy myself, I am even more shocked at how badly behaved most kids seem to be these days!!! It seems almost fashionable to have ur kids behave badly. I am in perpetual shock that most parents just dont get it…I can feel your ‘pain’ cos that’s what they are! I am seriously wondering how will Yohaan ever manage to make decent friends at this rate! Do you not worry about it too for B&B?? Gawwwwd, how will we ensure our kids are gentle and considerate when all around them hooligans are probably stamp over them, sometimes literally too!!:(



  11. @ your reply to my comment:
    Exactly !!! Though I would personally never paint all parents with the same brush & tag them with a bad name because of a few rotten specimens encountered, I KNOW this attitude too well. Exemplary parenting seldom gets lauded, bad parenting – on the otherhand – leads to reams & reams of ranty blogposts


    Once again, MM, I think it’s great that you were considerate enough not to get the kids to the theatre. How painful is it for people to sit at home & watch the DVD?? Difficult, maybe, but not impossible!

  12. Ahhh typical Delhi behaviour…or am I making another generalisation that I will regret? You know, children are not allowed in theatre performances, don’t you think some rules of that sort can apply to violent films? Why do we wait for the A certificate from the censor board?
    If we give birth to children we are completely responsible for their mental and physical well being. Poppy is afraid of the harm that can come over her kids under the maid’s supervision, what about the harm that comes to them from their parents?

    Me: good point! as for Delhi aggression -its a well known fact. Its just that in the midst of it all is a lovely city and some very nice and cultured people too

  13. This is an extension of the same agressiveness that we encounter everyday in various forms. The Merc driver coming from wrong direction will glare at you and shout gaalis if you ask him to back off. People just don’t care – for enviornment, rules and everything in general. Kids are just a part of it. There! that’s judgement from my side 😉

    Me: LOL!

  14. “as for shy – i dont have a problem with them as long as they’re not mine…”

    Aww sharrup woman!If you’d had a shy kid, you’d have loved that kid to pieces too and spent time and effort making /him or her more secure to face the world. And since you might not be *entirely* done with babies yet, donchya go tempting fate! The universe, I hear, has a way of listening and teaching you stuff!:-)

    Seriously, is shy an issue? Some of the funniest people I know (kids included) are painfully shy at first. There’s just a lot more fun under the surface is all!

    *Mother of Not Shy Children Who Wishes They Would Be Sometimes And Give Her A Bleddy Break*

    Me: Okay the next person who brings up shy kids is dead!!! i dont write about shy kids. As far as I am concerned they dont really exist since they neither annoy me nor interfere with me. So you guys have to stop making me take a side or pushing me into a corner over some random statements. Really. The only reason I’d have an opinion about shy kids is if they were mine. Until my hooligans get there – I dont care. As for the universe listening – I sure hope it is, because the OA isnt! and hell – i’ll even take shy *shudder* if I get to hold another little one 🙂

  15. we watched dev d a couple of months ago when it was released….some scenes even had US shocked….and there was a 7-8yr old looking on with eyes wide open at an adult movie…here i was glad that my mom wasnt watching the movie with me…and here was a 7 yr old watching it with her mom

  16. Guess what? I saw the same movie with the kid and ma-in-law, and my kid also got scared and closed his ears and shut his eyes, and so we left the hall for some ice cream and then came back after fifteen minutes.

    No idea why some films scare kids and some don’t: Last year we had seen that Lokhandwala Shootout movie and Pavan kept telling me he is NOT scared. ‘You leave the hall if you are scared. I want to watch.’

  17. lol.. there was this one time when i had a kid stare at me for 3 hours from the front seat in a shatabdi.. only a dog has stared longer at me. her mum was blisfully asleep.. taking intervals only to eat.

    i was first flattered.. then started feelin uneasy.. then decided to outstare her.. then my sense of humor got the better of me and started playin peek a boo. She stopped staring after that.

    I wish her mum had atleast made an effort to entertain the poor child.

  18. So scary to have parents like that who don’t care if their children are getting scared of an adultish movie! Do people think children bawling and shrieking in a cinema hall normal? I wonder.

  19. oh MM this is one thing I agree with u 100% and have had enough arguments and fights with my closet friends for this, the cinema hall is not the place for kids, its not just the fact that whether there is someone at home or not, its also a fact that how good is it for the kids??? i saw a couple coming to watch Ghajini with two kids in tow, one would 3.5 yr and the other i think abt 6 months… a movie which was too violent for me, the guard at the entrance told them its not allowed, they put up a fight and came in nevertheless, the poor elder one was crying all through the movie… sometimes clutching my elbow hard as the mom was almost out with the little one…my heart broke for her and I cried too

    taking a kid to the movie theater is wrong for everyone… the kids, the other people and frankly I fail to understand how the parents can enjoy the movie too so it has be wrong for them too 🙂

    ok so on the second part the long comment above I think speaks for itself that I think being judgmental does come naturally to us and also I think till we discuss these judgments we really dont grow as a society (wanted to comment on ur prev post but read it way too late)

    as far as taking the maid is concerned its abs depends on the person and the situation, i have myself taken my maid along multiple times but there are two things I always make sure
    1. check with the host if its ok to bring her
    2. lay the rules straight for her and try and keep them in my sight to monitor 🙂

    PS: sorry that was long comment

    Me: I dont have a prob with maids Monika. that would be hypocritical. But yes – i have a prob if we’re going to a 5 star restaurant that i can ill afford and have to split the bill for a maid holding somebody’s kid, who wont appreciate the foie gras and is pushing the burger around disgustedly. I feel bad for them sitting there awkwardly, i feel awkward with them sitting in on the conversation (and trust me, they all understand english after a point)….
    and yes – i have a prob if the maid sits by and watches her ward tear up my childrens’ books and hit them.

    so its situational. its not a blanket maid rule.

  20. It’s all about the scary lack of respect that is fast becoming the norm these days- no respect for the other paying patrons of a public space, no respect for the needs and well being of your own young child. Bah.

  21. Chill, MM:-) No intention of pushing you into any corners. Or getting claws out.

    Though you should have that 3rd kid:-)

    Me: 🙂 yeah i’ve had like 5 comments on shy kids and they’ve left me wondering why people pick on the least impotant part of the post! and claws?! I take offence – i’m never claw-ish with those who dont ask for it.

    and err… i’ll need the OA to agree on that 3rd kid 😉

  22. Seriously crazy. So net-net no one got to watch the movie, eh? (I have not seen a movie in ages. Boo Hoo.)

    Me: Why not? you judgmental soul??? You wont take your daughter to the movie and you think others shouldnt i bet 😀

    *runs and hides before the marathon runner catches up to bum knee and hammers her!*

  23. An eight year old in a slasher/murder movie?
    1) Why is that movie not rated? What the hell are the venerable censors doing? If this is not rated/censored, they can go home and let us perverts live and watch stuff in peace.

    2) If it is indeed rated, how come the kids managed to enter the hall? Someone sue the theatre-oweners, please? And the parents as well?

    Me: I’ve seen parents fight the ushers and drag their kids in. such strange behaviour. and once they’ve bought their tickets they feel rather entitled and this being india – no one else puts up a fight.

  24. I have one question and it maybe unrelated to any of this. When you leave the kids home asleep, have you ever come back home to find them awake? Does it worry you that they may stir awake? Don’t mind me, I’m not asking to judge you, but I belong to the somewhat paranoid category. I hope someday I will find the courage to leave kids behind (when I have them that is)

    ME: LOL! not at all.. ask away. yes, they do wake up at times. but i have maids at home and the kids are used to them. the maids are pretty much family and the kids love them … for 3 years i was paranoid and now finally i have maids i can trust so its fine.

  25. you’re going to kill me for this, but i can’t imagine how people can *enjoy* horror flicks. i am a big phattoo and get really scared while watching horror movies- even the really bad ones where i know its just a man wearing a rubber mask. 😀

    under pressure from friends etc. i have tortured myself a few times and have screamed my lungs out every time. i now wish you and the OA were present in the movie hall. you could’ve shooed my friends and me out for torturing me and scarring me for life and for ruining your experience. :p

    Me: LOL! Oh the OA is used to his hands being crushed to a pulp when i am watching with him. i’m rather phattoo too. i dont mind people screaming in the horror movies. it adds to the atmosphere. but a child wailing nonstop is annoying and sad.

  26. The song was lovely. You are becoming my one stop shop for picking up great new tunes!

    And I think you and the OA did right. While you were describing the shouting match, I couldn’t help feeling a sense of justice being served. These folks needed to be told exactly what they were doing wrong (becos it was woefully wrong), and they may have reacted with terrific ego right then and there, but it will play on their minds for awhile to come and they might think very hard the next time they repeat a nigthshow with 2 very tired children!

  27. Huh ? One question seems to pop up in my mind – why the hell do these people have kids at all ?

    Sometimes I wonder if by telling our kids to behave and be polite we are actually harming them – I mean it scares me to think of six and seven year olds with no emotional parental support who watch freaky movies at 1 am – and it scares me even more when I think of just how those kids are dealing with watching all the violence and the gore.

    As far as watching movies in the theatre – gosh its been a long long time. Getting any household help here is not easy. Plus, I’m paranoid about leaving my kids with some teenager.

    Besides, you can watch the movie on DVD in the comfort of your own house, in your PJs, rewind, FF and pause at will, take pee breaks when you want and eat all you like for a fraction of the cost that you would pay at the theatre.
    Plus, the husband and I watch movies late at night after the kids are in bed anyway – its usually our date” night. So I guess what I’m saying is that I’m a skinflint and lazy LOL 😀

    p.s. have emailed you.

    Me: 🙂 same here. we mostly get the DVDs and relax in the comfort of bed, AC, popcorn, chips, juice… and watch a peaceful movie. pausing the movie to argue, rewinding to get a dialogue….

  28. Am totally with you on bringing the kids to the theater. Mine are 11 and 8 yrs and I still won’t take them to most movies even though they end up sleeping mid way most times. I take them to the movies they want to watch during the day time.

  29. I haven’t read the post yet, i need to go get coffee/tea and have a break at my desk! How do u manage to write so much?! And this blog is only a hobby, wonder how much you churn out at work!
    Anyhow as long as it is from u, am not complaining about the length 🙂

    Me: 🙂 takes me abt 30 minutes to churn out even the longest of posts! mostly because i already know what i want to say. as for work – well lets say i’m one of the most efficient people i know and i hope it reflects in my appraisal 😀

  30. And what assets they are. (Ayesha T’s.)

    Entertaining post; felt like we were in the movie hall with you. Did your poor friend die of embarrassment, though?

    Me: trust you to ask! you and the OA could spend an hour discussing ayesha’s assets but my friend will be embarassed because we stood up for ourselves? you wait till i catch u, you perakath!

  31. Agree with Rohini here. A theater is no place to bring young kids to. S is 10.5. I still don’t take her to hindi movies if I think they are violent. And a movie is something I would (and have) give up in a second if I didn’t have someone to look after the kids at home. In fact, I do have a reliable baby sitter but we have never gone out for a movie while leaving the kids with her. Do plan to soon, though. And a late movie show? Never. This is one case I can confidently say “never” because I know this is one thing that will never be urgent enough for me to warrant dragging the kids along.

  32. I use that plan(make them dead tired wala) when I have plans to go out by myself. HA. Its been way too long since I(we)watched a movie. No maids, no grandparents and no way in hell am I paying $20 per hour for someone to watch my kids.

    So it was a good movie and we should get the DVD?

  33. Poor kids.. first have to watch a ghastly movie (I am terrified of horror/slasher pics and have been known to leave the room even if people start discussing them) and then have to watch their parents get into a brawl.

    I so agree with you on the khoi bag thing – we don’t go to too many bday parties and D hasn’t really grasped the concept. We went to one last month where the ENTIRE real estate under the bag was occupied by pushy maids. Well after they had dispersed, D and the 2-year birthday girl spent a peaceful 20 minutes scrabbling for the little coloured thermocol balls. No pushing, no grabbing. Actually I must tell you about that party..first time I saw a Jimmy Choo bag (and boy was it ugly :-)). Also the first time I saw someone who brought two maids (ok, for two kids under 3)- both of whom were wearing identical, uniform-like salwar suits. That parent spent ZERO time with the kids, while S and I spent the entire evening running after D and making sure he didn’t misbehave with other kids. As you said once before – why bring maids to a KIDDY party?
    OK rant over.

    Me: well D and my 2 year old daughter also scrambled around playing with confetti at her birthday party! no choos or maids in uniform. yes – i’ve seen many of them. blogged abt it once – the doctor’s office – two maids in uniform holding sick child while mother flipped through a mag!! i had two kids under three and now two under four but i’m guessing if you can push them out from your vajoojoo you can jolly well handle them for a couple of hours!

  34. Next time when I am in Delhi, I’ll e-mail you and you can tell me if you are going to a movie… Man.. what wouldn’t I give to watch a lady in the thick of action 🙂 🙂

    Overall, this is wrong and this mostly happens in our country.. simply because most of the people just do not care about other’s comfort.

    Here, we haven’t watched a movie (together) in theater for maybe 7 years, but before that, we did see (rarely) young couples occasionaly bringing their you ones to the theater… (and I can understand where they were coming from.. long hours at job, wife or husband taking turns attend the kids, no breaks for any individual coz of monetory issues, etc. etc.).. yet, if the young one started to cry, one of them would immidiately take the kid outside, so that the other one and the rest of the crowd can watch the movie peacefully

    Conscience… where are you thou, when we need you??

  35. And here is something about maids or Aayas that I saw in my zamana…these children grow up thinking that they have a slave…that its ok to yell at them, pull their hair, ride on their backs and they won’t be smacked…at a very young age, they get a lesson that its okay to treat some people differently. At a very young age they realize, that there are certain ppl who don’t sit with you at the table. At a very young age, they realize, you don’t have to address all elders with the same respect…
    I will definitely have a maid if I move to Delhi…I know convenience will win over principles and I am not sure how many things I will be able to do differently in terms of treating domestic help…so far now I am only grateful that I dont have an option and my daughter isn’t observing the subtle but obvious things…

  36. Bah – people like these who give the human race a bad name….best ads for Sanjay Gandhi’s infamous sterilisation programs!

    Have a question re: maids at parties – Could a hostess/host or other non-maid attendee announce (politely but firmly and then follow-up), before the pinata/other free-for-all activity is started, that ONLY kids are allowed there – send the maids to another room/location, don’t allow them near the little darlings? Or would this not work in Delhi?

    M (socially challenged)

    Me: it would not work anywhere. parents wont get up to help tiny ones like say, the bean. and they just get crushed to death because huge 9 year olds stamp on them to get the silly little whistles and rubber balls they dont really want to play with. it starts early you know – if those kids had been taught better, they’d behave better. although i’ve seen some sweet little eight year olds collect handfuls and bring them to the bean 🙂

    and oh maids? they even tell you that they work for a bigger home than the one you’re throwing the party in. really.

  37. I am tired of crying babies in Desi movie theaters. So I did the next best thing – splurged on a projector. Now we have our white bedsheet up and our surround sound connected and we sit in our living room and have the theater like experience.

  38. MM,

    Ah so these are mixed age b’day parties…most parties I know of are same-age (after the initial first/second b’day thingies) – and if they’re not, (i.e. parents invite all friends of the family, with assorted age kids), the activities are segregated by age, with the pinata being reserved for certain ages….

    Rude maids – ugh. What’s to keep one from calling her employer with complaint about her behaviour? (apart from alienating said employer – assuming you don’t want to do so? :-))

    Where is the host/ess of the party while such shenanigans are going on?

    (sorry to go on about party behaviour – theatre behaviour – ok any public behaviour is a lost cause in India, IMO).


    Me: sigh. its not that all parties are bad you know 😦 sorry if i sound like a whine. naturally one only writes about the bad experiences -unless its like the lovely wedding i wrote about some time ago – letters to all i saw there.

    haan – so getting back to these. i dont know – i guess you dont complain because no one seems to. and i seem to be the only one. the OA calls me the complainant because i truly believe in taking up issues about bad sales staff etc. i just get tired by the time we get to the parties because no one else seems to care.

  39. Nodded vigorously along and cheered for u in my head as I read 🙂 Not much else to add. I don’t have kids yet, but a LOT of the time I read you and so totally understand and agree. I’d even go so far as saying you’ve influenced my pov some bit on child-rearing..hmm mostly in a good way I guess.

  40. Came back to say: this whole party talk is scary though. I hate how kids bday parties have become all protocol based and complicated now (so it appears from the comments out here, I’m clueless so far). I had to look up khoi bag and pinata et al

  41. I second Dipali – you see instances of this everywhere – people just doing what they think is convenient for them regardless of how it might inconvenience someone else. Or what else the repurcussions might be.

    I’d have stopped going to those parties. seriously. i look for every excuse to wiggle out of most….!

  42. I cant tell you the number of times we have been disturbed because of bawling babies and ringing cellphones. Atleast in the US we can get up and change our seats….I dont think we can do that in India. If parents have to absolutely watch movies and dont have family or maids to take care of children I think they can swap babysitting duties with some other parents. My friends do that. All of them stay in nuclear families and there is always someone who is willing to baby-sit if it means they get to spend some other day by themselves!

  43. I personally don’t care whether parents get along children to a movie theatre or not, late night movie or not – its their kids, their parenting, nothing goes of my father’s as Channel V would say. But I do care that those parents are extra-careful that their children are not being a nuisance in a public place, especially when other people have paid good money to be in that public place and noise would disrupt the experience. Its incredibly ill-mannered of those kind folks to think that their pwecious little bundle of howls can scream through a movie and have everyone grin and bear it, just because they (the parents) can (and should in fact, for what is parenthood but unconditional love in the form of tolerance for one’s spawn?)


  44. And, then there are parents like us who haven’t gone out, in I don’t know how long in spite of having grandparents for help, coz we feel guilty! I know…shout it loud…but the kids will be asleep anyway for a night show! We are stupid na! I am sure I am going to miss this time later and whinge once the grandparents leave.

    Totally agree with you in not taking kids out for a movie if we ever decide to venture out!
    1. They wouldn’t enjoy it.
    2. It would spoil their routine and make them cranky, making the next day miserable for us!
    3. They would have a million questions and not let you follow the movie (whatever age (2-12), unless they are old enough to go out on their own)!

    When the point of going out is to relax and take a break why spoil it for yourself and mainly others around you? Wonder why parents would do that! Pity the kids!

  45. I took a bunch of 4 year olds to see Chak De in the theater once. And they spent the entire 3+ hours on my lap, whispering to me, asking me to translate. *Such* a fun experience – NOT! Feel your pain. There should be age restrictions for any movie in the theater.

  46. oh dear, guilty as charged!
    my parents fought with the usher and convinced him to let me in to watch- i can hear a collective gasp- the blue lagoon- probably at age 8 or 9. no, i did not howl.

    we were the family who saw a film every friday.i still get withdrawal pangs on fridays. luckily over the years i have become a film snob so not much to see every friday.

    and my child attended a docu film festival at age 6 months- for six days. no, she did not howl. i fed her as the opening titles would begin, and she slept until we got out of the cool, dark hall.

    and believe it or not- she loved saawariya at age 2.5. dark blue tones set her off even today and she sings saawariya. white towels do that too.

    i hope i will not be lynched for being the terribly bad mother… god promise, i did not take her to see Dev D. and any film with akshay and ayesha assets –

    Me: LOL! see – the only people who are guilty as charged are those who let their kids ruin the movie for others. i doubt that would ever be you or her 🙂

  47. first of all – theatres should be a little strict about letting in little three footers for u/a and a movies. i took my little runt to see hulk – never even realized its u/a – and i regret it to this day.

    “if hulk was good, why did the army chase him?”, “if i get angry i become hulk”

    the so-called superhero did no heroic things, saved no one, basically suffered angst throughout and ran from the charging army.

    now i check the rating EVERYTIME. 🙂

  48. and since we are into bad parenting and i am in confessional mode :

    i dont let her watch tv programmes because
    ” they are full of really bad and not funny jokers ” -my words.
    she does not let us watch the news because
    “police are always beating up or shooting people”- her words.

    censorship is a two way affair in this part of the world.

  49. Oh this kind of irresponsible parents get me so mad!! The other day, somebody I know was telling me how, she took her 1.5 yr old son to a movie and he had a good time watching all the fights and started crying only in the end(?). So after the movie was over, a lady came over and told her that she should have really no brought her child to a movie like this and that she felt sorry for the little boy.. And apparently, my friend/acquaintance tells me proudly ‘I told her ‘Shut up – I know how to look after my child’!!!! I was so shocked when I heard that I was speechless!! Can’t believe that parents can be so thoughtless!! And then I read your post – only to realise that there are many more 😦

    We are extremely careful about what movies we take our daughter to – we have till date seen only Madagascar 2 and Kung Fu Panda in the cinema – if we want to catch any of ‘our’ movies – we watch it at home – after she is asleep! Can’t believe that people can be so insensitive – towards their own children..

  50. 🙂

    ah well! we take Cubby to movies! but for one he doesnt cry or run around! he is well fed and ready to sleep by 10pm!

    he might or might not be awake for about 20-30mins and then sleeps off peacefully! 🙂

    and the days he does cry, i am out within the first wail! period!

    but movies i shall watch in theatres! 😀

    the ones that are too violent are skipped!


  51. I haven’t seen the insides of a theatre in the last 2.5 years. Before that I was the first-day-first-show type who could stand in line for hours to get a ticket. Now I wait for the DVDs and for the little one to be asleep to see movies.
    It is a small luxury to give up when your kids are this small.
    I am looking forward to my in-laws visiting so I can leave the little one with them and go to the movies again.
    Oh to see the look on your face as you said that you had two of your own, both at home asleep.

  52. There is a movie theatre here in our place that has special showings for moms/babies or date night with babies 🙂
    they dim the lights partially, so it doesn’t get completely dark, and don’t take up the noise all the way. it’s perfect, as nobody cares if your baby screams or cries. in fact, like most other moms, you will be able to tune out those screams & cries. usually, you see a lot of parents with infants or toddlers. occasionally you may see 3-4 year olds.

    Diaper Days
    – every other Wed @ 12pm, in Campbell
    Diaper Dates
    – every other Tue @ 7pm-ish, in Campbell
    – every other Thu @ 7pm-ish, in Los Gatos

    They even have a yahoogroup where you can vote for the movie you want to see.

    Me: what a cool idea!

  53. “Maids aren’t the best option anyway – the best would be if either set of grandparents lived with us.”
    Really? I think the best option for any child is the parent… and simply no one else. I could not even imagine leaving my son home and go out for fun, really, I would be so damn worried I tell you…. no way would I have any fun.And with a maid, in a world like today? Just never ever could.

    Me: Oh I dont know that. It takes a village to raise a child. Its ideal but not possible for kids to have family around so that they get to interact with more people and develop all those very important bonds. After all most of us grew up in joint families so parents did get a break from us. And we’re better people for that interaction.

    And while no random maid would do – taking your time to get to know the maid, arbitrary tests etc are good enough for me. After all if I cant trust them with a maid today, why should I trust them with a school tomorrow?

  54. champion boxer, ace swimmer, basketball player, investment banker, apparently a looker … abbey yeh real life hai ya Harlequin ki novel!?! :p we are missing the ‘tan’ component bas. he is too light to be a typical Harleq hero from as much as I deduce from reading you. get ‘im tanned and dang! who needs harlequins after that? we’d drool here for free. 😀 😀

    Me 🙂 now you know why i wrote the ‘honest’ post last year!! And you bet, even I wish he were tanned! On the other hand you could dismiss the whole lot as the ramblings of a besotted wife!

  55. Pingback: Ki jaana…. « The Mad Momma

  56. Pingback: When I say no, I mean it « The Mad Momma

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