While talking to a friend recently, the topic shifted to the
trashing thrashing we received as children. Don’t ask me how it even got started but discussions have their own way of getting around. She was describing how she was going to be a strict parent and all her children would be absolutely well-mannered. Well! I wish her luck but then I remember I had received a lot of trashing thrashing myself.
My dad was a very strict person and when I say strict I mean very strict. My grandfather passed away when dad was very young. He took the responsibility at a very young age. He knew the value of education as it took him a lot of struggle to come up in life. My brother and I were not superstars in our studies. We did average in our studies and sometimes we just became lazy to do our work. At that time we received a sound trashing from my dad.
We were pretty much scarred of our dad to the extent that we hated him for being so strict. He was so strict that once my brother was asked “Who was he afraid the most in the whole world?” His reply;
“Ghost and Dad”
I had received a lot of scolding and
trashing thrashing from dad but the first of the greatest trashing thrashing was when I was if I remembered correctly in the first standard. I got the first worst beating because I did not write what was for homework for the next day. I still remembered being beaten with a broom. I never missed writing the homework again after that.
Being not good in studies means struggling. In our society where educational excellence was how we compared and rate children, we were the black sheep. Two things that pushed us into trouble were from school, one was the report card and the other was the school diary. The report card was understood as we struggled to keep the marks above a certain limit. God forbids, low marks and everything was blamed on friends, TV and play, not in any particular order.
The school diary was a white book with a blue cover with the school emblem at the right hand corner. It was “THE” most important book in our school bag. It had the school motto, the morning and evening
pair prayers, lots of pages of weeks of school days to update and list of holidays. At the end of the diary, just before the few last pages was the most dreaded section of the diary, the remark section. The remark section was used by teachers to tell the parents what their ward was up to in terms of homework, behaving and all that stuff that could get you into trouble.
The parents were supposed to sign each remark the very next day. If we asked dad to sign, we were in for big trouble as a lot of explaining had to be done. If we did not get it signed, then we would be standing outside the class the next day. It was a high tension time at home when we got any remark. A lot of planning went in getting the signature from my parents depending on their mood and the current situation at that time. Mother was easier to convince than dad. She did sign but sometimes she refused and we were redirected to dad. To convince dad was a total different act altogether. The pressure to get the remark signed was so much that during my fourth standard, I did it. I went and forged my dad’s signature on the diary. Criminals start early in life and I started early too. Who said schools are a source of learning and knowledge. They are a breeding ground for criminals too.
As I had just started, I was not so good in forging of document. After all I was not a professional but just a trainee, that too self-trained. I was caught by my teacher and was made to stand outside the principal office for 3 days. As expected, I received a good
trashing thrashing that evening.
Another one I remembered was during the New Year. It was the days of two Doordarshan channels. One was showing Hindi New year programs while the other was showing Marathi New year program. I wanted to see the Hindi New Year programs while everyone else wanted to see Marathi New Year programs. I created quite a scene. They tried to convince me and when I did not listen there was one tight slap. A perfect way to start the year. Although I haven’t received any major punishment in school. I was an invisible child in school. I doubt anybody would recognize me now.
There were a lot of
trashing thrashing and there were a lot of reasons right from studies to school remarks to fights to playing and what not. My mom did not beat us so much and sometimes would even act as a shield between dad and us.
For the next years we received a lot of beating, some were quite eventful and some were just run of the mill. Sometimes we would do serious mistakes and then it would be a big show at our house with the neighbors as audience. Dad would be with stick, broom or belt depending upon what he could lay his hands on and we would be running around trying to escape. Mom did not intervene at the serious time. It was some neighbors who would intervene. My brother found himself more at the end of the stick then me.
Even the school did not leave any chances of hammering us. How could we forget the ruler on our knuckles. I still remember on of my classmate who was kind of rolly polly guy would wince at the sight of the ruler. The teacher would lift his/her ruler and he would close his eyes and withdraw his hands when the ruler started coming down. This made the teacher more angry and he would get an extra beating.
I grew up in the days when beating a naughty child was a routine affair. Nowadays it is advisable not to hit a child. Its not good for the child morale and psychology . I may be strict with my children if they are to be any but I would rather think twice before hitting them and if I can control my anger which I should be really working on. It does not mean my parents were tyrants. They brought us up as they thought was right. The method may be not so right but the intention were good. They were just trying to do a job nobody taught them.
Note: The title “Solid Padi” is Mumbai slang for getting a
trashing thrashing .
e.g. Aaj K ke dad ne usko padne ko kaha. Woh khelta raha, Phir usko solid padi (Today K’s father asked him to study, he kept on playing and got a good trashing.)