Those were the days – Humorous article
School days were the happiest days for many but not for me. I am charting out the reasons for this. I was studying in tenth standard. I was carrying a huge bag full of text books and note books relating to various subjects.
Tamil, mother tongue, English other tongue and Hindi one more tongue. With all those tongues I was able to taste South Indian, North Indian and Continental food but not able to utter even a single error free sentence in these languages.
And there were other subjects - Maths, Physics, Chemistry, Botany, Zoology, History and Geography.
Tamil, being mother tongue is supposed to be an easy language for me. Other than Tirukkural, other literary works like like Seevaga Chinthamani, Silappathikaaram etc, were like foreign languge to me. Somebody had to translate that from old Tamil to new Tamil.
In English, there is something called preposition. ‘Fill up the blanks with suitable preposition’ was a nightmare for me. For eg.
Question:He stared ----- teacher; Teacher complained ---- headmistress.
Answer:He stared at teacher ; Teacher complained to headmistress.
I was not worried about that incident in adolescent days, but my doubt was about the preposition itself. As the word ‘preposition’ denotes, it is supposed to occupy the first position not the middle position of the sentence as in the answer. The teacher did not change her position not only with respect to the student who stared at her but also with the grammatical position of preposition.
Then comes Hindi. We have four kas, four chas, four tas etc. ka, kha,ga, gha – My throat was taken to task and I was admitted into hospital for few days. I enjoyed the sick- leave days but again I had to go back to school.
Maths. I thought it is a logical subject and all my logical questions would be answered. This (a+b)^2. I was arguing with the teacher that (a+b)^2 is a^2+ B^2 and that 2ab is unnecessary. But Maths teacher was insisting that 2ab is very much required. In English, the problem was with preposition and in Maths, the problem was with post position.
And this Physics. The scientists with long beards and dreamy drunken eyes had come out with so many theorems which we had to memorize.
Oh! Chemistry. Hope you would still remember that pale permanent pink color. I never got that. I always got only thick permanent pink color. I even told my teacher that pink is for girls and let boys be exempted from this exercise. But the teacher did not appreciate my valid logic.
Then Botany. I went to the class happily hoping to see flowers and plants. Yes the teacher had a flower in her hand. She said ‘this is ‘Hibiscus Rosa Sinensis’ - I said ‘this is Sembaruthi in Tamil’ – Teacher warned me. ‘This is the botanical name of this flower and you have to memorise this’.
Zoology lab is a horrible place. Teacher gave us an old dissection box with pungent smell. Would have been used by senior students for so many years. The lab master asked us to dissect the cockroaches and display the respiratory systems. My respiratory system was taken to task and I was again hospitalised.
History - Friends said that marks were awarded based on the number of pages we wrote. The question was- ‘Explain the activities happened during Chola’s period’
I wrote. ‘Cholas have planted many trees on both sides of the roads. They have planted palm trees on the left side, banyan trees on right side, then papaya trees on the left side and mango trees on the right side and x trees on this side, y trees on that side etc. ‘for three full pages. I had planted trees on behalf of the Chola King. But no marks.
Then Geography. Teacher gave us the map sheet and asked us to mark Cauvery and Ganga in the map.I marked Ganga in south and Cauvery in north. I was trying to integrate the rivers but my teacher never appreciated my good intention.
Those were the sad days for me. Though the subjects were very difficult, I still remember the teachers who struggled hard to teach us and made us to secure good marks and pass the exams.
September 5 is not the only day to celebrate those teachers; all the days are teacher’s days.