5 Things From Hollywood Movies I Wish Were True In Real Life
Okay, I am old enough to know that all that happens in movies is not real; but what can I say, for someone who was introduced to the Star TV Network at an impressionable age (ah! the joys of growing up in the 90’s in India); I believe it is okay to pine for some of the things that I have seen time and again in Hollywood movies. Wondering what I am talking about? Here goes –
1) Backyards and treehouses
We have all seen the sprawling homes in Hollywood movies, with backyards that have a pool and at least one tree with a tree house and sometimes even a hammock! (Yeah, what bliss!) Even the modest homes are shown to have backyards with at least a strip of green and the quintessential tree with a tyre hanging from it. Even if some homes don’t have pools, there is enough space in most homes to have an inflatable pool for kids to play or at least to have some garden furniture to sit out in the evenings sipping tea in peace when children can play around outdoors under the watchful eyes of their mothers. And all this, right in their own backyard! Living in a metro, and stuck in a high-rise apartment, I really wish I had that backyard, complete with a hammock to relax in, as I read my favourite books!
2) Easier school life for children
Books remind me, have you seen how school life for children in these movies is so much easier than what we had (or have)? The children do not need to wear uniforms, are not supposed to carry heavy bags full of books for all the periods that may or may not actually take place any particular day; they are also not stuck in one classroom from the beginning of the day till they are saved by the final bell that tells them they can go home now. They have projects and homework that is much more interesting and way cooler than writing tables or doing word problems on division. What’s more, they have cool cafeterias too, unlike the out-house kind of structures most of our schools have, the ones that sometimes boast of tin roofs and serve only samosas and chai, as against theirs which serve much more appealing fare! Yeah, growing up in Mumbai and attending schools and colleges where discipline was of prime importance, I really wish I had that easy life in school.
3) Young children earning their pocket money
Speaking of easy life, what do you think of young children earning their pocket money? I feel and have always felt, that it were true in our lives. Since the time I was younger and dependent on the pocket money my parents gave me, I have always liked to have money on me, enjoyed the independence it afforded. I also liked to have a bit of surplus so I could surprise my Mom or my younger brother with some little trinket, without burning too big a hole in my pocket. And I would have been really happy to earn some of my own money so I could save even more. Of course, that was then. Today, as a mother I think earning your own money is definitely good for children who are old enough. It teaches them responsibility and the dignity of labour. It also teaches them that independence comes at a price and makes them understand that there is no “free lunch” in this world. As someone who will soon start giving pocket money to her little one, I really wish, I could let him earn some money on his own; not because I want to skimp on paying him, but because I want him to appreciate the importance of labour.
4) Little League/Soccer
Now, as someone living in a metro, dedicated time for team sports every single day, is something I desperately wish I could have for my child. Outdoor play is extremely important and we all know that, but most of our children play either in the building compound or (as in my case) at home or go on a playdate. How many of us living in cities really have the luxury of taking our children out for team sports? I wish there were some team sports my little one could be part of – not the soccer he plays in the building with four other boys, but the actual game that is given as much importance by adults as if it were a game they played themselves – where my child could actually feel important enough that his team depends on him to hit that goal! Another reason I would want him to be part of the Little League is that his Dad would actually have the opportunity to volunteer to coach his team! And the bonding that would create, would, I am sure, be much greater than the one created by watching IPL games at home together.
5) Independence – accepted and expected!
And finally, I come to the point that I have come to long for, that is not only part of the so called Hollywood movie brigade, but also part of the western culture. And unlike many of my countrymen (or women) I think this is one thing that is really good in western culture. And I say this as a daughter, as a woman, as a mother and most importantly as a person. Individual space is something that everyone wants and needs; and we all need to accept that and live life expecting to be allowed to be ourselves. I also say this as a mother, because I believe, coming from a culture where parents forever hold themselves responsible for their children’s lives, I am afraid to end up pressurizing my little one too much – to study, to perform to his fullest potential, to follow the path I choose for him, to take care of me when I am old – I mean, no harm in hoping he does all that; but I don’t want to pester him by expecting too much of him!
And that is my list. What do you say, did I miss out on something?