Thursday, April 16, 2009

More Gup shap

I had earlier written a post on how inanimate objects behave as if they have a mind of their own. The power supply goes of just when a news of national importance is being flashed on TV and the gas cylinder has to be replaced when one is winding up cooking and just the seasoning bit is left and the list goes on. Suddenly I realize that animate objects become inanimate whenever it suits them and that is even more frustrating.

Take for example the head of the family who is sitting in the drawing room, newspaper in hand. No, I don't mean just my husband my father in law was no better. The door bell rings and the onus of opening the door and answering the call invariably falls on the lady slogging it out in the kitchen. She has to remember to switch off the gas or else the milk will spill over, she has to keep the knife out of reach or the brat will invariably cut himself with it and yet the newspaper reader is as good as the sofa he sits on. He just does not hear the bell.

The child has decided to be difficult. He refuses food, won't listen to a story and insists on being carried around. The father becomes selectively deaf. He can watch a cricket match, follow election analysis in 3 different channels but the child's tantrums do not affect him. You have no option but to dump the child on his lap and the brat becomes quiet and manageable.

The telephone rings and it is only the mother who has to pick it up. The grown up son/daughter have their own mobiles to receive personal calls and the husband seems to have lost the ability to walk. "The phone is ringing" he announces, but will not pick it up. As if all land line calls are only meant for the wife/mother.

Visitors have arrived. The children mumble a hurried 'namaste' and retreat to their rooms or better still go out as if they have some important work to do. The husband has only a half hearted smile to offer and the job of entertaining them, enquiring after their ailing grandfather/their children's entrance exams/their thrice removed cousin's marriage preparation.......well you are supposed to remember so many things and your better half keeps changing channels and watching TV. You go to the kitchen to prepare tea and either invite the visitor into the kitchen or continue the conversation from there since all others have become selectively dumb. Glaring at the husband will not help. He can look into your eyes and not 'see' anything. Point it out to them later and pat comes the reply.

"You were doing all the talking. There was nothing for me to say."

The very same children can talk for hours on the phone with their friends and the conversation has to turn to politics or cricket/football and just see how animated your husband becomes.

Multi - tasking seems to come naturally to women. Or is it perhaps forced on them and is acquired over time? I, for one, feel that men have it easy. At least I know of one man who does. Or is it that their priorities differ?

I have a lot of freedom. I sometimes I wish that I had less of it because decision making also means taking responsibility when things go wrong. I have seen women who will remain in the background out of choice and they seem to be better off. Or are they? My friend Prema for instance is handicapped but is still a pillar of strength to her husband. It is perhaps this very quality that is sustaining her. I cannot imagine her being different. Her in laws say that they remain in touch with the brother only because of her. This may be a bit of an exaggeration. But it also emphasizes on her role in running the show.

I meant to write a light post but this is becoming serious. I really want some inputs from the male perspective. But perhaps these are not issues to men at all. Like my husband would say-

"Yes, I was watching TV when so and so came. So what?? What is your problem about it? The programme was interesting and they would have watched it with me were it not for you." How's that? All my raving and ranting goes waste. Too bad isn't it?

15 comments:

Smitha said...

HHG, Were you talking of your husband or mine :) They sound identical :) And I keep ranting that just because I do stuff - I get loaded with more :)

Avaran said...

hey are you a stannite? teddy uncle (mani - and i presume th person who moderates th site) is my relative/friend/friends dad, whichever way u wanna put it....

and well, i was gonna comment on th post, but anyway im not married and wouldn be able to say much... :)
good writing btw...

Hip Grandma said...

Smitha:Ha,ha!!All men are the same you see.

Avaran:Yes I studied in Stanes School from 1963 - 67 and Teddy was 3 years my junior.I had the pleasure of meetinh him in Bangalore some 2 years back.Unfortunately I've not followed the school blog that links us together and I have only myself to blame.I'll catch up soon.BTW thanx for your input and welcome here.so what if you are not married, you must've watched your parents having those cute little quarrels that add spice to their lives.

Suma said...

i think it comes with having selective amnesia and not being able to mutitask...

but oh so frustrating, nah?

Renu said...

I have also always been an active person in evrything, but now when I want a laid back life without any decisions, then my whole family wont let me be). Sometimes I feel it would be so enjoyable if I had no responsibilities now, nothing to be thought of, but it never happens, because evrybody has this habit of relying on me for everything:)

Sumana said...

I see this going on bit by bit everyday at home with inlaws and as well at parents. Dad and FIL do not seem to bother about the ringing doorbell or the screaming phone. But luckily husband has been kind enough on answering such things. It gets really annoying, my MIL gives a dirty stare at my FIL still does not make much difference because the head is bent over the newspaper.

Hip Grandma said...

suma;yeah it get's on one's nerve and causes a breakdown.

Renu;me too.And playing the all rounder in the house is tiring.

sumana;lucky you.i think I'll send mine to your husband for some useful tips.

Just Like That said...

OMG you could be talking of my husband. Seriously sometimes this newspaper reading gets me so irritated that I even think of stopping supply for a day..

Anonymous said...

This is my hot button against Indian men. I feel that the culture has tolerated laziness and chauvinism to a large extent. Now, it has been changing, and the women are becoming less tolerant.

Sarita

Hip Grandma said...

JLT:I think it is the X chromosome that makes them laidback.And these men cannot get on with their days work without reading the morning newspaper.

sarita:Mothers are guilty of pampering their sons and getting their daughters to help them.No wonder men feel that they can grow old reading the newpaper and watching TV.

Usha said...

Why does every scenario seem straight out of my life - it is at least a little consolation to know I am not the only one who is subjected to this.

Hip Grandma said...

usha:i was almost thinking that you were perhaps one of those lucky women whose husband/son were different to mine.i think we all sail in the same boat.

Tys on Ice said...

since i can see that this has become a kind of male bashing, I volunteer to step into the ring to defend my counterparts.

Its not we dont hear the child crying, its just that we are surrendering our reactions to you...its the ultimate in love...we are letting you take over the home...so the child, the fone, the visitors are all there for you to handle...its our gift to you...

coming from our large hearts...

damn, we are a misunderstood lot, arent we? my heart breaks in self pity....sniff.

the fone is ringing...i guess mads will get it

Prats said...

Left to my husband he would have said " I can specialise in one thing at a time, so no mistakes are made...so we leave the multitasking to you'll" Hmmpfff....I guess all men are alike...or maybe the fault lies with us, where we have over years shown them that we are far capable at handling issues in crisis better than them...so they just pretend selective hearing and seeing :(

Mampi said...

so true,
but as montel williams said, these dishes are yours to do, because you call them 'yours' otherwise it is the responsibility of the entire household. we women tend to enjoy our martyr status.