Friday, December 27, 2013

Wish list gifts for Junior's future

Courtesy of audfriday13
When it comes to gifts for Junior, the list starts with the usual suspects - from a gaming console to a remote operated two-feet long red Ferrari, from the long-pending European tour to the Ben 10 Ultimate Alien Games collection, from the obvious sounding investments on health and education to the mundane looking clothes and shoes. But since this is the season of wish lists, and perhaps for hard-to-fulfill resolutions, I let my imagination take the driving seat.

My wish list consists of the gifts ...

Of wisdom to make the right choices and confidence to own them up

Courtesy of jscreationzs
With each passing day, we see the list of choices in front of us increasing manifold. Be it for something as simple as "Which political party to vote for?", to something much more complex like "Which movie to watch, and in which theater?", the choices are endless, confusing and usually contradictory. Some times the choices turn out well, some times they flounder. We are the first ones to claim credit in case of the former, but do not hesitate in justifying and taking a step back in case of the later. Be that as it may, we must learn how to own them up and be accountable for the outcomes.

For those of you who are curious about the complex choice, here's the reason - yesterday, when we were at it, we took slightly less than the time taken by AAP to arrive at their decision to form a Government in Delhi, and still ended up watching Western Bank of Chicago go down, the misery compounded by the price of tickets having taken the Gold category reclining chairs, faulty air-conditioning and the more-than-required height of the chair in front ... you know how it feels, right?

    Of independence of thought and freedom of expression

    Everyone around talks about independence of thought and freedom of expression. Many more make a mention of rights and how fundamental they are to our existence today. The empowered lot comes with the all important issue-based external support. Indeed, these are certain aspects of life that will come naturally to the enlightened generation Junior belongs to. But with this, like the all pervasive "Buy One, Get One Free" offers this shopping season, I would add a few freebies.

    • With independence of thought comes the accompaniments of responsible actions
    • With freedom of expression comes the sense of accountability and reasonableness
    • With rights comes the obvious obligation of duties
    • With empowerment comes the acknowledgement of existence of the not-so-empowered-ones

    And to accompany this heavy duty list, Junior gets to download the latest version of Angry Birds for FREE! Hmm, that makes it a better deal, isn't it? Much like the Indian batsmen in South Africa getting a full toss in a Dale Steyn over!!

    Of developing a constructive hobby

    Courtesy of Boians Cho Joo Young
    Many of us collected stamps and coins when we were kids. Then we moved on to comics when we grew a bit older. Cricket came the next, followed by creating multiple New Folder's when computers came in. Replace these with cars, music, travel, painting to the more exotic ones like photography, robotics, artificial intelligence, trekking and so on. We essentially found some default activities to keep ourselves busy and engaged. Then there are a few like yours truly who developed a hobby because it was essential for clearing the MBA entrance interviews.

    I believe Uncle Google is more capable of explaining the importance of having a hobby. However, this gift finds a place in my list because this is where Junior will see a rare similarity in suggestions and advice from Daddy Dear and Mommy Dearest.

    Going by what Ernest Hemingway says about books - "There is no friend as loyal as a book." - I believe reading is one good choice that Junior must make when it comes to hobbies.

    Of loving life as it comes

    When life in general has become too competitive, full of daily struggles, it is becoming increasingly important for all of us to love it as it comes. There are just too many variables in our lives to worry about. The short life we have should be lived to its fullest (I know this is easier said than done).  

    Here's quoting Polish pianist Arthur Rubinstein -
    “I have found that if you love life, life will love you back. Of course there is no formula for success, except perhaps an unconditional acceptance of life, and what it brings.”
    Of being a good human being

    We live in a world where basic values like compassion and kindness are often derided upon, and hence are on the back burner. We tend to forget that these two are easy steps towards personal happiness and success ... the be all and end all of individual existence today. I would also borrow from my too-good-to-be-true perfect-world wish list and add the following:

    • Being dutiful towards society
    • Being loyal towards friends
    • Being affectionate towards fellow human beings
    • Being thankful towards parents

      This post is a part of the 1001 Gifts Activity by HDFC Life in association with BlogAdda

      Tuesday, December 3, 2013

      Gems from Junior - Bonding with Daddy Dear

      Junior continues his tryst with innocence. This time the target was Daddy Dear. During one of those Daddy-Junior bonding sessions, when Junior took a break from watching Doraemon and Chhota Bheem showing their prowess, and was, for a change, not interested in scoring more high scores on his tablet, he unknowingly pulled a fast one on Daddy Dear.

      Junior: (After a long observation of Daddy Dear's receding hairline) "Daddy, why do you have so less hair on your head?" (Moving his little fingers in his 'overdue-for-a-barber-visit' jungle) "See, I have so much hair that my fingers get lost in them."

      Image courtesy of jscreationzs /
      Daddy: "When I was a small kid like you, even I had a lot of hair on my head Junior. But ..."

      Junior: "But what Daddy?"

      Daddy: (Moving his hand on the head, and thinking of taking advantage of Mommy's absence from the scene) "Junior, this happened because Mommy gives me a lot of trouble. I have started losing my hair now.

      Junior: (Scratching his head) "But why does Grandma give you trouble? Doesn't she love you?"

      (It was Daddy Dear's time to scratch his head. It didn't cross Junior's mind that it was his (Junior's) Mommy who was Daddy Dear's target.)

      Similar session with Junior a few days back left me speechless. It was another day without Mommy around!

      Daddy: "Junior, it is 5:00 PM. Come on, milk time."

      Junior: "No Daddy! I don't want to have milk."

      Daddy: "But how will you grow big and strong if you don't drink milk?" (And this was followed by the usual arguments and counter arguments on milk)

      Image courtesy of marin /

      Junior: (Finally relenting to Daddy's persistence, but with some mischief in his mind) "OK, I will take a glass of milk. But you will have to put one extra spoon of Bournvita.

      Daddy: (Closely observing Junior's expressions, figuring out that there was more to come) "And?"

      Junior: "And, you too have a cup of coffee."

      Daddy: "But I don't like having coffee alone. I always have it with Mommy."

      Junior: "You are not alone Daddy. I am here. Won't you give me company?"

      Daddy: (Speechless)