In the last few days Rekha and I have been on warpath. Domestic terrorism, if you want to call it so.
Being the mother that she is, she has been trying to get my daughter to say ‘amma.` In case you didn`t know…‘amma` in Tamil means mother. That wouldn`t be much of an issue if I wasn`t trying to get my daughter to say ‘appa` at the earliest. By the way, ‘appa` means father in Tamil.
Our daughter has divided the house into two unequal halves. What word would she utter first – amma or appa?
I checked with some of my friends to see if I stood a chance. Apparently, all kids end up calling for their mothers first. It seems, I was one in a billion…in the sense…nobody in the whole world would have ‘babe` has his/her first word. Apparently, that`s what I called the maid who would bathe me everyday for a paltry fee of Rs 70/- a month in 1975.
Fathers don`t get a chance to get close to their babies in the first six months. When they aren`t sleeping, they are clinging on to breasts. I am referring to the babies. And by the time they get out of breast feeding…the first word has already been spoken.
While on the subject, let us also find out why this famed Bollywood dialogue is not be seen in today`s movies: “Kutte…kameene…maa ka doodh piya hai to samne aa…” Because the dialogue writers can`t get beyond lines like: “Kutte…kameene…Nestle ka doodh piya hai to samne aa…” or “Kutte…kameene…Milkmaid ka doodh piya hai to samne aa…”
Anyway getting back to the bigger issue on hand…the war has gone out of hand.
According to the latest news I picked up from the security guard in my apartment, my daughter has managed to say “Ammmm….”. The guard says, on sunny days (it is winter here in Gurgaon) my wife brings the daughter to the small park and talks to her.
I confronted my wife. I asked: “Why didn`t you tell me that she was now saying ‘Ammmm….`.”
“Why should I tell you?” asked my stoic wife.
I immediately snatched the baby from Rekha`s hands and started teaching her “Appa”. We were progressing well for sometime – she was saying ‘Ap…..`…but after a while she lost focus and started repeating a word which if spelt will look like this: “eeeeeeeeeeeee”. I know it doesn`t make sense …but as long as it doesn`t mean ‘mother` I am fine.
The fight is still on…
Note: I need the support of all the fathers out there. Come on…give me tips to win this war of the sexes!