21st Nov 1983
Dad: Bolo beta… daddy
Dad: Bolo beta… banana
Me: B nana
Dad: Bolo beta Boeing 737
Me: Letting out a fart and chuckling
Dad (with moist eyes): My son’s going to be a pilot!
21st Nov 1986
Dad: I’ve an awesome gift for you
Me: boy o boy o boy…a G.I. Joe action figure?
Dad: nice try
Me: a bicycle?
Me: a Barbie?
Dad: no (my dad never gets sarcasm)…lemme give you a hint
Dad flapping his hands
Me (disappointed): wow a parrot.
Dad (smacking me): no dumbass a MIG-21 replica
Me: whoa!! Does it fly??
21st Nov 1991
Dad: what do you want to be when you grow up kiddo?
Me (rudely): I don’t know
Dad: don’t you like your present?
Me: I love the MIG dad. I’ve a whole squadron now.
Dad: that’s my boy (my dad never gets sarcasm)…if you continue doing well in school maybe…just maybe… you’d have a Sukhoi next year.
Me: Dad… What if I want to become a comic book seller when I grow old?
Dad: hahahaha… smack
Some random day in Nov 1995
Dad: Where are you going?
Me: Today’s a huge match dad. We are playing against the 11th standard!!
Dad: Why don’t you open your present before you leave for your match?
Me (in a desperate tone): da..aaaad
Me: why do you smack me all the time?
Dad: coz that is what ideal fathers are supposed to do…now open your gift
I peel off the wrapper
Me: whoooooooooooaaaaaaaa!!!! 16 bit SAIGA gaming console (when the rest of the world is still drooling on the 8bit one)…love you dad…you are the best!!!
Dad: I know
I run to tell my friends about it…why doesn’t someone invent a mobile phone or something…
Mom: What was that all about? Why’d you have to spend this much?
Dad: It’s okay kali…boys his age OUGHT to have fun
Dad: Moreover I’ve heard that these video games sharpen your reflexes…something that’ll come in handy for the P.A.B.T
Me: Dad!!!! Cleared the UPSC written examination!!!!
Dad (concealing his delight): I’d have felt better if you’d gotten through engineering or something.
Me: NO dad…I’ve decided. I want to become a pilot.
Dad: Theek hai. Who am I to stop you from being what you want to be.
And I used to think of my dad as the one who didn’t get sarcasm
Brigadier: So dude… why do you want to join the forces?
Me: To become a pilot
Brigadier: But you wear specs… I don’t think you’d clear the medicals
Me: I plan to get a Lasik done if I get the temporary rejection
Brigadier: That’d qualify for a permanent rejection. Moreover, we don’t encourage aspirants who’ve gotten that surgery done. Is there any other reason why you want to join the armed forces?
Me: I want to serve my country (dramebaaz)
Brigadier: hahahaha… so you are saying that you’d want to join the armed forces even if you don’t get to be a pilot…to serve your nation?
Me: Yes…no…ah… maybe? (I can sense the trap)
Brigadier: you know a sweeper serves the nation too!!
Me: but I don’t know how to apply for it
Brigadier: ha ha ha ha ha….go home son… I’m doing you a favor; take some time off to figure things out. Then, if you still want to join the armed forces you can always come back.
That… was a great piece of advice. I didn’t take it…attended 3 more SSBs just for the
heck of it…to see if there’s a crack in the system I could exploit…I’m glad I didn’t find any.
So things don’t turn out the way they were destined to. I go on to complete my
engineering much to my dad’s “delight”.
Dad…He made his peace the day I flew from Bangalore to Bhubaneswar (my first airborne experience), to see them.
As for “my” flying dream…lemme tell you this…I’ve decided to let go of the quotes…and have found this easy way out…