I heard my dad’s voice and next thing I knew I was running to the hall, where he was preparing himself for his routine news hunt with his stationary and bundles of English, Urdu and Sindhi newspapers, adjusting his glasses on his nose, looking all serious. I sat on the couch across the room.
He gave me my real name and had this honor four more times after me and yet he never got tired of coming-up with exceptionally weird nicknames for me. Sufi, Undertaker (the wrestler) and Kaala pajama (Black trouser) to name a few. For obvious reasons I found charsi offensive!
Me: Abbu yar! you have got to stop calling me that!
Me: What do you mean why?? I have never even seen drugs in real life!
Me: So?!?! What if somebody hears you calling me a CHARSI?? Except all our relatives, neighbors and friends, who are pretty much used to it by now…. they will think I do drugs. What else’s charsi supposed to mean??
By now I’m annoyed and fidgety.
Abbu: This has nothing to do with drugs.
He maintains his poise totally ignoring the desperation in my voice. He continues flipping the pages of newspaper, searching for something new to bash us for our lack of concern for our county’s situation and world peace.
Me: Then what is it??? I’m in my 20s. I have no health issues. By no means I look skinny…..wait….is it my dark circles??
Dad: No its not.
At this point I just wanted to pull all my hair out but then it will be really difficult for people to differentiate between me and my dad and I didn’t want to lose my only feature that actually helps me look like a woman.
He continues turning pages circling “important” pieces of torture our print media regularly present us with. Brace yourselves for a tedious news bulletin on DadTV kids!
Me: So you will never tell me?
Abbu: It’s not about drugs or your dark circles … you must do something about the later though….
Well… it’s about you getting addicted to things. When you are given a task you will get it done no matter what it takes. You won’t care about time, energy, sleep, health anything that slows down a normal person. That’s what makes you a charsi. And that’s what I like about you the most.
He gave me his quick but warm signature smile, adjusted his glasses and dug his face in the papers again.
Something melted in me… my heart, lungs, kidneys everything liquefied by the warmth of this sweetest description of me. I smiled to myself but a moment later my shoulders were tones heavier with the weight of his expectation. He never stopped calling me charsi and it never bothered me again. I actually fell in love with it.
Me: Why were you calling me by the way??
P.s. Charsi means stoner in urdu.
Copyright © 2017 stoneronarollercoaster – All rights reserved