Fathers are strange people. That’s not unique to any particular community. All father across the globe are not your so called ordinary beings. They have special powers. They can be incessantly annoying, embarrassing and endearing. While watching Piku the Bengali in me connected to each of those quirks that Big B pulled of as a senile grumpy old man and I missed my dad a lot. Here are the 6 ways Shoojit Sircar’s Piku reminded me of my father.
1. Know it all: Shorbojanta is the word we use. But then that’s true for all Bengalis. Me included. If you are a software engineer and are talking about technical details of your profession chances are my daddy will tell you that you know nothing.
2. Hypochondriac daddy: When the doctor tells him that he’s not unwell he scowls and tell me that the doctor must have passed out of an engineering school. Then self prescribes medicines and claims he’s feeling much better after two days. No one in my house goes to the doctor much. We all get treated and miraculously cured under my father’s medical expertise.
3. Living in perpetual fear: Of what? God knows! But… the main door needs to be locked and the keys need to be kept upstairs next to the bed as he goes off to sleep EACH night. The almira needs to be locked and keys kept in secret location at all times. The gas cylinder needs to be checked each time during delivery. You can’t run down the stair in my house neither can you walk around wearing wet slippers without hearing the word – shabdhan (careful).
4. Complete alienation from surrounding: My papa has this thing of hating Delhi. He’s lived in the city for the past 20 years. He’s worked here, retired here, conducted most of his heated political debates with the chaiwala in this very city. But he couldn’t distrust and dislike the city more. I believe it comes from a sense of fear that he’ll forget his roots.
5. Detailed details: Every day for the last 26 years I have heard the man describe in detail how the winds in his belly are moving and how the stomach has not been cleared in the last three days. Where Piku gets it perfectly right is the details. The pulpy mango. The exact shade of green (mind you not black but a dark green).
6. No ego: Yes he’s bizarre and he’s annoying most of the time. But we have all liberties to scream and vent out our frustration against him. He won’t take a grudge. 5 minutes later we’ll be buddies again. No hard feelings!