i dont wish i were more male about some things, i just wish i was more ‘ma’ about some
ma is abrupt. She tells people exactly where they get off.
I hated that in her when I was growing up.
And dad could walk into a room, and not recognise a relative, who has been a relative for
the last 31 years.
Sandwiched between these two asocials, i tried to be the polite smiler to make up for the
and now, how gah is it that i want to help myself to some of ma’s specials.
1. tell some kids where they get off. (“One million times while growing up, I’ve prayed ma
wouldnt tell off a friend… and she did)
2. one rotten apple + 11 good ones = a dozen rotten apples was her ditty. so was not allowed
to make friends with kids who pinched,slapped, lied, talked back to grown-ups… yep. i had
like one point three friends growing up.
and now, I want to apply that rule to the firstborn.
3. look bored when some people speak.
4. never look at photo-albums of friends. not even of the grandsons. not even of my wedding.
online ones she skims through, though.
you know the kind of photo albums that i dont want to look at == the mmmim’s friends (who i
dont like) who show off their Pattaya vacation on a slide show. but i just look and ooh lala at
the right places. big fake = me.
5. never say ‘drop in’ home if she didnt mean it. and if someone did drop in, she never
asked them to take a seat. Athithi devo bhava, she is not.
6. hold a grudge lifelong. She remembers wrongdoings from 1963 November, 1973 mid-may, 2008
feb. she can tell you the lifehistory of a grudge from how it was born. (me: just found a
couple of people to hold a grudge against. oh and it’s not the mmmim)
7. deliver a 15 minute tongue-lashing. without pause. i am 2/ 5 at the tongue-lashing bit
which is pretty ok, by my standards. but i take pauses that are 10 minutes long. need to
8. she couldnt vacillate. never had nagging equivocal thoughts. never made decisions that
were between ‘neither a yes nor a no.’
9. repartee. deadpan. not as sharp as her dad’s. but just as stinging. mine are good only in
my mind. and about 24 hours too late.
10. be a misfit. and accept it.
the things that I have…er inherited
~ the pep talk. motivate friends out of comfort zones and into glory.
~ larger than life gifts. she gifted one friend a coffee maker like the ones at Starbucks. I
have inherited her appreciation for the non-birthday gift, and those ones I always remember
~ more preoccupied with world news and politics than family and home. me too. not very obssessive about my role as mom/wife. it’s a significant but not a major part of who i am.
sorry. if this didnt conform to the tag rules. but am not too sure of what falls into a gender stereotype and what falls out (see that’s why i need to work on point 8). so.
all non-bloggers can feel free to do the tag — originally born here — , in this space.