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.