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Sex Education….From my Childhood Memories

Sex Education

Mr. Handa taught us General Science (Sadhaaran Vigyan- that’s what it’s called in Hindi) in the eighth standard. He was very fat and we called him Sanda (a word from Saand in Hindi which means bull, distorted as a homonym of his Surname). We were very curious about the Chapter IV or V “Jantuon Mein Prajnan” (Reproduction in creatures), but he was trying hard to skip that and we were determined not to let him do so. His mode of teaching was to ask a boy to read from the book. He would explain along the way.
“Varsha ritu mein Medank yaun sambandh ke liye tarrate hain” (The frogs ‘croak’ in the rainy season (send mating calls)..Suppressed laughter, some raised hands. No response, no explanations.
“Nar mendak madha medank par svaar ho jata hai aur uske pet ko apne panjon se dabata hai” (Male frog gets on top of the female and presses her abdomen). More raised hands, more squeaks, giggles and suppressed laughter- more ignores. The hands wer up at their full stretch by now. Obviously, because there was no mention of “Prjanan Ang” (Reproductory organs) here and Mr. Handa thought no explanation was necessary. He was right because there was no mention of those either in the book. For the NCERT or whichever organization oversaw school books content, imparting knowledge to the children even in the chapters of Prajanan (Reproduction) was egregious. The blokes who wanted decided what the coming generations should learn wanted to continue to fooled them like they were fooled, when they were children themselves.
But the boys, being boys, were beginning to learn through cognition that the appendage the nature had gifted them with was not only for making the process of urination easier. There was none to tell them of its other uses, except the mother nature herself. She tells, but unfolds its mysteries at excruciatingly slow pace, while the boys driven by curiosity and the influx of hormones, just can’t contain their thoughts in fantasy. In those days one couldn’t just turn to peer for knowledge. I have given you the glimpse of bullshit, I had to hear in the name of knowledge from Sunil in my curiosity about the secrets the green skirts held and the crap I got in return was similar to what other boys of my age were get from their peers. It was nothing more than gas coming out of their mouths instead of you know where from it should have but in quality it was nothing better than that.
Neither there were aids like access to internet, Google-Woogle or the mobile phones. Absolutely no help was available to us to get the answers to the queries the young questioning minds got flooded with. The books were censored, the teachers, old disinterested frumps like Handa, who might even have forgotten the auxiliary roles of the organs they were trusted with the task of teaching about. The lesser be said about the parents, the better. They were, no-nonsense, imperious folks, always looking for reason to give some thrashing for keeping their boys straight jacketed. And straight-jacketed the grew up to be, praying to be initiated by the females they ended up getting married to. I don’t know of the woes of the girls and so I can’t say but their knowledge about all this that I am talking about used to be dismal. It won’t be right to tell you about my personal experiences but be it enough to say that it wasn’t uncommon to hear from the newly married men that their brides cried and cried for months, refusing to give in to their ‘straight’ demands.
Upinder was giggling and so was Devinder and so was every Tom and Dick and Harry who had become aware of the other functions of the magic wand that could expand.
But Handa, who was generally not in a good mood, was particularly in a sourish version of it.
“Haan bhai Upinder singh khade ho jao ( Yes Mr. Upinder Singh stand up). The best thing about the teachers is, that they pick up a wrong guy; more chuckles, giggles..
“Kya takleef hai tumhein?” (What’s troubling you?)
“Kuchh Nahin, Sir” ( Nothing sir).
Araam se baitha nahin jata tum se? (Can’t you sit quietly?)
Chootad mein chamoone lad rahe hain kya? ( Are the pin-worms biting you up your ass?)
The whole class bursts in to a laughter, but Upinder remained standing and blushing, waiting for an imminent slap or a punch.
No answer..Some more squeaks because Mr. Manjit Singh sitting next to Upinder was holding a pencil vertical at an approximate centre of where Upinder was likely to sit.
“Theek Hai baitth jao, zyada hoshiyar banane ki zaroorat nahin, khadh dimag, sooar” Don’t try to be smart, Ok, sit down..Dimwit, Pig.
Upinder Sing sat down and immediately got up holding his butt and looking back, as the sharpened lead of the pencil had pierced through his pants and pricked his butt.
Roly- Poly Mr. Handa who would rarely get down from his perch, came down with a thud and walking like a tumble toy, tumbled to where Manjeet Singh sat and Upinder Singh stood massaging his butt. To further blow, Mr. Handa’s inflamed anger which had already crossed the danger mark like Fukushima Nuclear Reactors radiation level, he acted as he if was in deep pain.
If you have seen a football matches you will know what I am trying to hint at. If a player falls down due to being tripped by the opponent, he doubles up, tosses about, as if in extreme pain, till the referee flashes a card for foul play. He does this drama to make sure that the culprit doesn’t get away easily and if yellow card is shown, he plays antics with renewed vigour till the referee changes his mind and shows a red card instead. That was what Upinder Singh was doing now- vigorously massaging his butt and looking back as if he could see through his pants. Mr. Handa reached the scene of the accident and gave Manjeet such a severe thrashing that he almost became a frog. The school bell that went off luckily came to Manjeet’s rescue but imparting of the important knowledge was lost to us for good, like the knowledge of breaking Chakravayu’s was lost to Abhimanyu in Mahabharta.
We got our first child four years after marriage, obviously because my knowledge was only limited to eighth standard’s incomplete lesson of mating in frogs and my croaking had no effect on my mate. She on the other hand was taught in missionary schools by the nuns and therefore was as least interested in knowing what the frogs do in mating season. She cried and she cried for months telling me that she didn’t know that marriage meant all this and that.

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Navneet Bakshi

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