If there’s anyone I hate more than these pretentious grown-ups, the government of India and Kamaal Rashid Khan, it’s my baby cousin. She will turn two this August.
You might think of me as a stone-hearted asshole for hating the loveliest, cutest and purest kind of our rotten species, but, to be honest, that doesn’t change anything for me. I will continue to hate her till she grows up and realizes her mistakes and calls me one fine day to say, “Hey brother! I am very very sorry for all the trouble I caused you when I was about to turn two. And it would be kind of you to whatsapp me your address so that I could send you a blank cheque as compensation. ”
Well, there was a time I used to like kids. I mean they are cute, and it kind of melts your heart when they flash their gummy, pearly smile. But then, one of my neighbors, a two-year old, took advantage of me. He was adorable at first, but as we gelled together, he became bossy and whiney. He’d call me Kaliya and ask me to cook Maggie for him. I could no longer watch sports channel because he wanted to watch Lungi Dance they played all the time on 9xm. He made life hell and I swore to myself that I would never, ever, allow myself to undergo such molestation again.
And then, Delhi happened. It’s been almost two months now. Two months of extreme torture. Two months of freaking babysitting.
The girl is one smart thing, I tell you. She’s treated like she’s some kind of queen. The only thing she has to worry about is her one-eyed teddy ,which is treated like he’s some kind of king, and which keeps getting lost all the time. Well, I am sure he’s sick of her too, for she is always pulling and biting his nose, because she believes it’s a berry.
At first, I thought I could handle it. I have faced tough situations before. I took tetanus injections in my butts all my childhood. I was sure it couldn’t be tougher than that. But then, one fine morning, while I was carrying her in my arms and showing her our neighbour’s Chihuahuas, that little thing pissed on me. And I swear on Holy Santa, she smiled after that, as if she had been planning this for a long time. As Doctor would say – that spineless git!
SOS! Help! 911! Maa!!!!
I ran to my mother, who laughed till her eyes pushed tears through the corners and her face went red.
“What’s so funny? I just got pissed on. “I hissed.
“Well, that’s what’s funny. “She said and restarted laughing.
“Is anybody here aware of a revolutionary invention called MamyPoko Pants? “I yelled. Aunty arrived on the spot, and then she laughed too, and then they both laughed together. The baby looked at us as if we were from a different planet.
“At least you’ll bathe now. ”
“I need chemical cleansing. “I said, “I need Dettol. ”
That’s only one of the one million ordeals I’ve been through. A few weeks ago, she asked me to wear her Tiara and sing Jingle Bells for her. I politely declined, and she began to howl as if I’d put a lizard in her shoe. My mother said, “why don’t you just do it? ” and after I did it, she said, “you’re, like, the worst singer of all time. ”
The baby smiled in agreement.
Back when The Kite Runner arrived at my doorstep, I took the parcel with a butterfly stuck on my forehead. The courier guy looked at me in mortified astonishment, and I had to explain that there’s a baby girl in this house who believed it’s extremely important for every person in this house to wear butterfly stickers while communicating with strangers.
“Oh! “He said, befuddled, “That’s….”
“Yeah. “He nodded.
She is learning alphabets these days, but to be honest, all she cares about is the picture of ice cream on the third page of her book. I told her once that she was not learning properly. She punched my nose and squealed, “Dhhish. ”
My mother goes crazy with joy every time she speaks a new word.
“Did you hear that!!!??? She just said ‘bottle’!!!!” As if bottle was Massachusetts!
“She is so intelligent! “My mother planted a few dozen kisses on her cheeks and announced a treat. Wow! I don’t remember being adored like that. Maybe that’s because I was very small, but I certainly don’t remember being gifted a book with a picture of ice cream in it.
The baby absolutely loves throwing away my shoes. I have told her a million times to stay away from them, but I always end up spotting them in weird places. Two days ago, I found my shoes in the mixer.
And to add to that, the number of Dettol baths have shot up, too. So yeah, IT SUCKS.
Her birthday hits in August, and everyone’s excited as hell. My mother is looking for baby products on amazon.com. I have decided what I’ll gift her, though. MamyPoko pants.