29 July 2010

Saturday morning

Saturday mornings have changed. I remember when I was 6, it was - get up as early as you can and switch on that tv with the volume as low as possible. I always had excellent hearing so I can pick up that high pitched whine the old CRTs used to produce if my sister woke up earlier than me. Why mute / low volume? My parents didn't like me watching too much tv anyway. Standard. Well, of course they knew I was up - I used to giggle like a jackass at every bit. Easily amused then, easily amused now. This would continue until 10-11am when the cartoons stopped. Of course that was a sad time. I knew it was coming from Friday evening. 'Just enjoy those few hours in the morning, D!'. Nah, I'm a realist. The end of the cartoons meant that teaching would start. Mostly math, but sometimes science. This meant I was always 2-3 years ahead in math and had a general idea of how things worked. Archimedes principle and TMNT go together in my head; they were imparted around the same time. By 6-7th grade most of the concepts being taught were so second nature to me I was surprised no one else knew. I was a goddamn genius back then. After teaching came market time and it's pretty evident I didn't learn anything there, lol.

Saturday mornings changed into version 2. All this time I realized my parents would sit in the living room talking about the rest our family, making calls to India, essentially, discussing policy. One of these days I realized that I could do both. I think it was when I was dragged there to say hi to relatives over the phone, mostly as a formality. And I hate formalities. In any case, I used to finish my cartoons and listen to the dysfunctional family. If there's one thing I learned, it's that you need both of these things to produce some massive family drama: 

1. An inability to shut the fuck up.
2. Stubborn people that hold grudges forever. 

If you even took one of these things out of the picture, 80% of the drama would cease. Mostly, it was a lot of me and my parents playing Steve Irwin watching the drama unfold. One of these days I'll comment about a typical Brahmin family hierarchy and how it functions. Anyway, the drama made things more interesting. Of course, within the drama were implicit lessons on behavior and social norms and responsibility (to both family and community) and loyalty. By this time, the math and science lessons had tapered. More.. social lessons. 

The hallmark of Saturday mornings version 3 were the lack of cartoons. It sounds sad saying that I don't watch cartoons anymore, but have you seen the latest ones? They're horrible. I used to think Looney Tunes and Tom & Jerry were made in my time, but I was surprised to find them to be pretty old. It's like America watched some pretty awesome cartoons for decades (which both adults and kids could enjoy - my dad used to watch loony tunes with us) and then realized she wanted stupid shit like "Ed, Edd and Eddy" and "Yu-Gi-Oh!". Pokemon was another one of those horribly mediocre cartoons. They were things that only kids with ADD would enjoy - formulaic, mind-numbing and just plain old fucking boring. So am I sad? Not in the least. I like not having a seizure every Saturday morning. Version 3 continues. More family drama. More stories. Sometimes I sleep in, wake up around 1030am and get the abridged version of all the stories. Maybe I'll ask for elaboration if one strikes me as particularly amusing. Maybe I'll offer my own solutions; they often include baseball bats and broken bones. 

I think I just described 1/14th of my life up until 18 years old, and pretty much every Saturday morning when I'm back in Plano. Speaking of which, I should go back sometime. 

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