We’ve all been told little white lies growing up. It’s not just a cultural thing, I find. Some of the lies are so universal. And inevitable – you’ll realise this when you start using them yourself. Before we begin though, I HAVE to share this Indian parent meme I found online. Go ahead, laugh!
1. Change your appearance – Make a silly face and it will get stuck that way. I tried for so long all these “poses” Calvin is so good at and failed miserably. Led me to the conclusion that I must not be doing it right. Damn my lack of play dough consistency face.
2. Every ache has a reason – My mum was our resident doctor. Whenever I was ill, I’d hear her say “Oh, you have a headache in the middle of your forehead? It means you’re dehydrated. Drink water” “Oh, your little finger hurts? It means you aren’t eating enough vegetables”
3. Pet Adventures – I used to idolize my pets because they would always “run away” and go off on adventures. Usually for love. My parents once showed me a newspaper clipping of
a cat that looked like ours our cat who had just been married to the love of her life. They had garlands around them. A proper Indian wedding!
4. Parents know everything – They are the true all knowing superheroes who not only manage to provide you with everything you need, they also know EVERYTHING. Where we came from, where we’re going, what is our purpose, why Mr. Neighbour was yelling at his wife (he was practicing for a play).
5. Chewing Gum Trees – Mum used to say that if you swallowed gum, it would stay in your system for 7 years. And in that 7 years, if you swallow a seed and god forbid it gets stuck in gum, you could grow a tree. I feel like I have many bonsai’s in me right now. I’m my own environmentalist.
6. Beauty Tips – These aren’t what my parents have said. On a list of priorities, appearance was the last thing. But these are lines I have heard other parents use “If you eat meat, you’ll become dark”, “If you eat too much chocolate, your hair will fall out”, “If you drink coffee, you’ll get pimples”. If you want to be fair, with luscious hair and flawless skin, STAY AWAY from meat, chocolate and coffee. Don’t tell me I didn’t warn you.
7. Saving the world – Every time we fussed about food (which was fairly rare in comparison considering aid worker parents) we’d get the standard “Do you know how many people are starving?” Before we were old enough to understand the true lesson, we assumed that if you ate without wasting anything, those starving multitudes would be hungry no more!
8. Yummy in the Tummy –
Noodles Worms, Pasta Intestines , Chicken Wings Frog Legs were the TASTIEST meals we’ve ever had in our lives. The more disgusting, the better tasting.
9. Distance – We’re always “almost there” whenever we were on a road trip. They’re make us start singing countdown songs like those green bottles, 12 days of Christmas and local equivalents. Then we’d start counting backwards from 10,000. Then we’d start counting red cars. No matter how long the destination, we would almost always just be 5 minutes away.
10 The Afterlife – Tales of the afterlife always changed based on my favourite story. As far as I’ve figured out, the afterlife is a place on the moon that is paved in gold and buildings are made out of candy. The hills are made out of chocolate and the snowcaps are vanilla icecream. Everything is free and you never have to work a day in your life. You can read all the books you want, watch all the tv you want.
P.S. Santa is a real person and I don’t care what you say.