When I was in school I had this problem with my mom, apart from waking me up early in the morning she will insist that I should read the newspaper. For me reading is like drinking Kashayam (for non-Tamils:it’s a homemade medicine given for cough, fever, stomach ache and what not- few claim they have such medicines even for AIDS and SARS), about my reading abilities I write a separate blog, so I always lied to her that I‘ve finished reading newspaper. She trusted me for a very long time until one fine day she found out I was lying for so long(that’s when she decided I will be a good lawyer) On that fateful day she asked me a silly question of what’s the tax levied on Housing for that year? (Its not a very brilliant question to match my caliber those days, if she had asked me about Kamalji’s next movie, I would‘ve given her not less than thousand words answer) I replied coolly like our great Crazy Mohan, “How do I know?” , thats it she caught me red handed gave me some archanai, poojai, punaskaram (for non-Tamils:it’s a code word for 'scolding’s' generally used by the innocent victims of child abuse)and finally the prasatham (conditional existence at home- this is a great threat used by the Indian parents against their children which is denial of food & shelter; if they fail to perform some duty which the parents think as inevitable for the survival of the kid whereas the kid thinks it otherwise)that I should read the newspaper everyday and I should answer her questions that very night(Phew…)
As usual the criminal in my mind woke up; he started finding a way out of it and found it as well (necessity is the father of invention)
TERMS & CONDITIONS: What I am going to tell you now is a patented method so don’t try to copy it without my express permission. DISCLAIMER: Method tested and performed by professional, don’t try it at home if the people at your home are smarter than you and/or without enough criminal cells at brain. I disclaim any liability whatsoever. The result of this method might vary from individual to individual depending upon the criminal cells in their brain.
I always had this habit of taping the stereotype mentality of my fellow Indians to fulfill my needs, this came handy this time. I had so many extraordinarily brilliant fellas at school who had the ego size of a dinosaur and Mr Know it all mentality (in short the male versions of Hermione) what I did was I just read the Title of a news item say for example 'Sachin scored a century' what I will do is go to the school and go straight to one of these Geeks (the mistake is not involuntary and/or unintentional) oops extraordinarily brilliant fella and just bruise his ego, “Machan do you know Sachin has scored a century da” that’s all I have to do (I quote here, Madai thiranthu – not the Yogi B version) he will then start bragging, “that’s all you know eh, this is his 18th century, 4 more to go to beat so and so’s record, its his 7th century in this ground, he needs nine more runs to reach his 10000 runs blah blah” my reply, “Machi chancea illada next Siddharth Basu neethaanda”( you are the next Siddharth Basu) and I could see the size of his head bloats by few inches. The same technique for different news items with different big heads and at the end of the session I will be filled up with the news in the newspaper (at times more than what’s provided in the newspaper) and those big heads with bigger heads. Back home my mom was so happy to see how clever her son is, she even asked me to apply to “Kaun Banega Crorepathi”. So I managed to survive at my home for the rest of my school days.
Feedback from the people/person who followed my advice: When we contacted my sister Jeny Shaw, she said, “She faced the same threat from her dad and she heard about this patented technique of reading newspaper (which the tutor discovered as a traditional habit of the tribes in Amazon and Africa, he after so many years of struggle learnt this art and applied it to the modern era and made some modifications to suit the current generation), she had to clean the tutor’s room for a week to learn this technique and she is reaping the fruits. No side effects reported so far.”
Good luck in reading the newspaper