Childhood Antics That Got Us Grounded

Childhood was probably the most colourful and carefree time in our lives. College days not so carefree, because we had our supply exams to care about (*smirk*). Childhood was a time when we could be caked in mud and still get pampered with a hot water bath and a cup of Bournvita. It was a time when our requests were heard and not met with, “Venamenkil ottakk poy cheytho!” But with these privileges came a little book of guidelines and restrictions. And how we howled when we got punished for the violations! This is an ‘ethinottam’ at some of those moments from our childhood we cling to dearly!

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Landline bill D-day

Before mobile phones came into our lives, landlines were the kings. Even if we met our friends every day at school, a ‘paathum pathungiyum ulla’ call was a cheap thrill! School day lovebirds found mind-blowing techniques to give ‘missed calls’ on the landline highlighting that we were way ahead of our times. From “padich kainjoda?” to “enikkum koodi oru micro xerox edkkane!” we found solace in these little conversations. Everything was awesome until the phone bill arrived and your parents looked at you, demanding an explanation. Of course, all we did was grin like a fool and say “Ath pinne..”

Current veruthe kittunnath alla!

If you have a habit of turning off the lights and fans as soon as you exit a room, we can imagine what you went through as a child. It didn’t even matter if you were on the first floor of your house or in Hawaii, if you forgot to turn off the fan you would have been called back and asked to switch it off yourself so that “ini ni marakkaruth!” 

6PM curfew call!

After a ‘hectic’ day at school, we used to fling our school bags to a corner, take a bath, change, and rush off to our next spot – the playground where a tournament would have been scheduled. We didn’t care for ‘naalu mani chaaya’ or snacks on those days; we were that hyped! But just as Cinderella remembered that she had to get home by midnight, you suddenly got that ‘ulvili’ urging you to get back home before curfew. And if at all you were late by even 5 minutes, you would find your dad/mom standing in the verandah with a face which more or less told you what you were in for!

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Ink stains on the uniform to holes in your sock

Your parents would have been extra proud to see their little one transitioning from the pencil phase to the pen phase. But what they didn’t see coming was the sight of you dancing back home, looking like a Dalmatian. Of course, they never understood pen fights and recess time shenanigans. And somebody please tell Surf Excel that “kara nallathaan!” doesn’t work in real life!

Using cuss words accidentally at home

We bet that this revoked a lot of ‘beautiful’ memories in you. Remember when your sibling pissed you off and you instinctively said, “Onn poy theruo my**!” instead of “Onn poy theruo Maatha!”? The stares that followed were could burn a hole through your soul. These were the days you tried to teach your brain that school and home were two different worlds, and that the conduct of conversation was light-years apart.

Wearing muddy slippers inside the house

This is a threat even if you are a child or an adult or even a dog! Your mom does not give a shit as to who brought the muddy slippers or shoes indoors. Only the why and how matters here. Some of us wear slippers inside the house too and god forbid if someday you accidentally forget to swap them while entering, you are ‘ded’! What followed was a long lecture about how you have grown into a ‘pothu’ and yet behave like a brainless maniac! Aaha those ‘romaanj’ moments!

Petti TV always the villain!

Long before parents could blame us for spending all our time swiping our mobile phone screens, there was a time when ‘paavam’ TV was held culprit for all the goofiness we were up to. If your marks went down or if your teacher calls home to tell your mom how you had behaved in class, there was only one solution to the problem – “cable cut eyyaam, mathi TV okke!” And when you would schedule all your study timetables around your favourite TV show or football match, you would be slammed in the face with “Ee shushkaanti padikkaan kaanchirnnel rakshappett poyene!”

PTA meeting maholsavam!

That time of the year when you had to be at your best behaviour at home and school because you are still not over the ‘PTA meeting effect’ from last time. Just as a heads-up you would drop hints at home that you have not been a very good boy/girl lately and that you are willing to change and pretend to swot hard at your study desk. All the blackmails would hence be channeled to, “Ha adtha aazhcha teacher kaanuello!” You prayed that your teacher forgot about how they threw you out of the class because you celebrated Holi in the toilet and hoped that they remembered that one time you collected the notebooks and cleaned the blackboard before they entered the class!

Though our heart went ‘padapada’ in all such moments, what would life been like if not for these little ‘kusrithikal’! What were some of the reasons you got grounded for?

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