Archive | November 2011

Problem 2: Earphone woes

Ok people, here goes. I’m a morning person who enjoys the delights each new day offers. The cool breeze( no matter which season),the chirping of birds, the rising sun, all refresh me and compel me to rise and shine, put on my jogging shoes, pick up my mobile/mp3-4 player/i-pod and take off.

Herein lies my tale of woes. I envy all those joggers in the park who breeze past me, earphones firmly in place as if glued on, enjoying their music, as they burn all the calories to stay fit and in shape. On the other hand, all the time that I jog I’m fumbling with my ear-phones trying to make them stay put. I haven’t really calculated but I’m sure all the calories I burn jogging I spend an equal number on continuously adjusting/holding the earpieces in place. And no amount of pulling(my ears) or pushing(the earphones) could make them fit either.

And I’ve tried my hand..errr.. ears at all kinds of models of mobiles, mp3-4 players that come with their special ear devices. I was banking on Steve Jobs to help me out but the i-pods didn’t help me either. I even tried to use some slick looking ear devices I bought at various techno-shops but to no avail.

As other people do not seem to have any difficulty in keeping them in place I’ve finally reached the conclusion that it is my ears that are ear-phone challenged. So many companies cannot make the same defect and I’m absolutely sure they have no grouse against my ears. Therefore the problem lies with my ears alone.

So I’m still at square one sitting on a grand collection of ear-phones which I’m hoping will someday become a collector’s item and fetch me returns. Or maybe I’ll start a museum with them. Till  then I will remain on my quest for the PERFECT ONE. I only hope they are not delusionary as the many other perfect things we aspire for.

TEENAGERS AND LOVE

“I’m a 15 yr old girl in love with a boy a year my senior. I think he likes me too. How do I tell him about my feelings. I can’t live without him.”

“I’m a 16 yr old boy in love with my classmate. We both love each other very much and want to get married.”

And many more such queries from teenagers( sometimes even as young as 13-14yrs)appear on a regular basis in the ‘agony aunts” columns of newspapers, magazines, etc.

This would seem like a worrying trend for most parents and specially the parents of a girl. Unlike the West our society is still not open to teenage relationships and the concept of ‘dating’ and such associations are looked down upon. But it is also true that over the years the boy-girl interactions have increased and parents have loosened up to the idea of girls having boys as friends and vice-versa. It’s only when the young teens talk about having a boyfriend or a girlfriend that the parents panic and go into restrictive or authoritative mode. But this reaction by the parents is akin to that of an ostrich that buries its head in the sand at the approach of danger thinking that if it can’t see the danger it’s not there.

Physiologically and psychologically teenagers feel attraction towards the opposite sex. When this happens they may begin feeling love towards another teen. In most cases it is a “positive’ thing. Studies say that teens who experience the feeling of love are usually more in touch with their emotions and will be considerate to others’ feelings.

Most parents feel that teenage love is more like ‘puppy love’, a crush or an infatuation. It may be so at times but for them it’s the real thing. They too feel the happiness of being in love or the heart-break of a broken relationship. Teenagers are capable of feeling true love, only they are not mature enough to handle the responsibility of a serious relationship.

What freaks out the parents most is the idea that in such a relationship their children may indulge in activities that may go beyond hand holdings or harmless pettings. Teenage pregnancy is already a major problem in Western countries that has made their government sit up and take steps to tackle the problem. In our country with the bias against the girl such incidents are hushed up or swept under the carpet. This fear also drives the parents to impose strict restrictions on the girls which impacts the holistic development of the girl and does nothing to solve the problem.

Here are some things that parents can do to keep off anxiety.

COMMUNICATE. Talk with your children early and often about relationships and sex. Initiate conversation and make sure it’s a dialogue and not a monologue.

Be clear about your own sexual  values and attitudes- communicating with your children about these issues is more effective if you are clear in your mind about them.

Supervise and monitor your children by rules, curfews.

Know your children’s friends. Welcome them into your home and talk to them openly.

Be media literate- know what your kids are watching, listening and reading.

These tips work best when they are part of strong, close relationships with your children that are built from an early age.

Express love and affection often, listen carefully to what your children say, do activities with your children that they enjoy, be supportive and interested in what interests them and help them build self esteem.

Each child is unique and special and so has to be treated individually. But the one thing that should be the basis of all your decisions is your LOVE for the child and not the fear of  ”what will people think.” Love and patience are the most effective tools in any such situation.

And most importantly remember that you were once a teen too and had your own fair share of romances, crushes and heart-breaks. IT’S NORMAL.

women in the driver seat

Feeling totally vindicated!!! A news item states that research has rated women as better and safer drivers than men. Women drivers cause less than 2% of all fatal road accidents and even for minor accidents the male- female ratio is 71:1. Whoa!! That makes me feel like saying..no, shouting( gloatingly, of course)..I TOLD YOU SO!!

For years I’ve seen women being condemned as poor drivers. They are sneered upon, laughed at committing tiniest of mistakes and get derisive looks from the male drivers. If they take a fraction of a second longer to start up at a signal as the light changes the honking of horns begins incessantly and sometimes they(read men) start honking in advance when they see a female in the driver seat of the car ahead of them.

I, who has only recently taken to driving once again after a long hiatus, have borne all that and much more. They(whether on a 2-wheel drive or a 4-wheel one) think nothing of cutting lanes in front of you without any warning and then will glare at you when missed by inches. And sometimes you get such a cheesy smile that you feel like getting off the car and slapping that smile off the face. This happens so often that of late I’ve started harboring a secret and almost sadistic fantasy of thrashing up at least one such errant driver. But mostly I am a peace-loving person and resort to counting till 10 which at times has to be extended till 20 or 50.

And to be fair to the not-so-fair sex, there are some good Samaritans out there too. They wait patiently (and quietly) behind you when stuck in a traffic jam and don’t blame the chaos on you. Once, one actually stopped and let me go first.

And now this news..well its just a confirmation of what we women knew all along.

So a message to all the male drivers out there..its time you took the back seat. Women are driving now.

P.S- i googled to get some pictures for this post and all i found were funny pictures and funny videos…and not averse to laughing at myself or my gender , i did have a hearty laugh at them all.. but that goes on to show the bias against women drivers. I only hope they are not made up… sharing some for the laughs..