The One Hundred-and-Twenty-Seventh Chart

May 9, 2014

By Ekta R. Garg

Enjoy these Spurts from the last two weeks, readers!

Seven has turned into quite the cut up.

Last week after we finished homework, she began telling me a story about earlier in the day when her teacher gave the class a listening test. You know, it’s the classic, “Listen to all of the directions before starting this test” and ends with some really simple task that challenges kids to actually listen through the entire thing. Seven shared that she and her BFF were the only kids who passed.

“So if you do such a good job of listening at school, why can’t you do that at home?” I asked with a smile.

“Well, that [Seven] is at school,” she quipped. “I’m the one who comes home.”

Can I ask for a kid exchange? Once a week, maybe, when I get the one who listens all the way through?

***

Five and her father are the early risers in our house. It’s ironic, actually. On weekdays Five may complain and pout about getting out of bed (until she gets into the shower and starts singing songs about how she’s turned into a panda,) but on the weekends she doesn’t bat an eye at jumping out of bed around 6:30 or 7.

To her credit she’s learned to entertain herself quietly until the rest of the family gets up. Another trait she shares with her father. That’s why it’s only fair that she creeps into our room and asks him to open her curtains so she can read.

Seven and I, on the other hand, are the resident sleepyheads. The name Five and her dad have given us. I like to position it as catching up on much-needed rest.

Or so I thought. Last weekend I woke up and then went to Seven’s room to get her up. We enjoyed the luxury of taking our time. Weekdays provide enough pressure to make me rush the kids through the whole waking up thing, so I deliberately go in the other direction on Saturdays and Sundays.

“Those moonheads are saying we’re sleepyheads,” I said to her conspiratorially. “We’re not, are we?”

She grinned. “Yes. You’re a sleepyhead.”

“So are you!” I exclaimed.

She shrugged, the label obviously not bothering her that much. Does that mean I should embrace my sleepyheaded self too?

***

Later that night we watched the Hindi flick Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (“One Shot at Life”,) which stars Farhan Akhtar, Abhay Deol, and Hrithik Roshan, the original dancing superstar in India. Hrithik’s body moves like water. Even you non-Bollywood fans should take a minute to Google “Hrithik Roshan dancing” and watch him.

Because of his dancing skills, most directors usually find a way to work that into their scripts. Given that most Bollywood films use music in significant ways, getting Hrithik to dance isn’t really that much of a stretch. And it gives us fans something to look forward to.

In this particular film, Hrithik plays a financial broker from London who learns that life is about more than money and making the next big deal. He does this while on a guys’ trip through Spain. After skydiving for the first time, he and the guys go to an outdoor restaurant and sing and dance. The song, appropriately enough, is called “Senorita,” and along with the main actors of the film it stars several female Spanish dancers.

We watched the song for the millionth time and complimented Hrithik for the millionth time. Then my husband said, “I can dance like that.”

The man who has two left feet doesn’t mind poking a little fun at himself in doses of self-deprecation.

“Yeah,” Seven rejoined, “I’m sure we could find you a dress like that.”

I gotta tell you, her wit is really starting to grow on me.

***

(I realize this next Spurt is about Five, but it was so cute I just had to share.)

Yesterday I picked up Five and moved the car in the direction of Seven’s school. Five took note of the traffic and asked if we were turning at a particular intersection.

“Yup, we’re going to turn left.”

“Oh, because if we turn right then that means we’d be going home.”

“That’s right.”

“I’m going to have a motorcycle when I grow up,” she said suddenly.

“Do you think motorcycles go faster than cars?”

“Yes, I think so.”

I nodded, even though she couldn’t see me. Then she said something that I didn’t catch, and I had to ask her to repeat it.

“I said, I’m going to have one and so is my husband.”

“Your husband?”

“Yes, when I grow up. I’ll have one and so will my husband.”

“Um…okay.”

“My kids will have pretend toy motorcycles.”

I nodded again. Apparently this kid had everything worked out. I mentioned to her that a family friend had a motorcycle and that she should ask our friend to see it sometime.

“You’re going to use a helmet, right?” I asked. “You want to be safe.”

“Yes. I’ll use protective clothing too.”

“Okay.”

“I won’t wear the protective clothing all day, though. That would be weird. If I wear a t-shirt under it, I would feel hot. And if I spilled something on it, it would stay dirty all day.”

“Oh. Are you going to share your motorcycle with your husband?”

“Well, he’s going to have a yellow motorcycle, and I’m going to have a turquoise one, so he won’t want to use mine. His favorite color is going to be yellow.”

Hmm, this girl really knows what she wants. “What if he needs to borrow yours? Like if his is out of gas or something?”

“We-ell, he will like yellow and turquoise, so he might like mine, but he can use his own.”

Glad to see I’m raising a girl who won’t back down and knows herself so well.

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