My first haircut, at age 15, was the result of a three-month campaign of begging and pleading with my parents. My father is a bit of a disciplinarian (speaking of hair, his staunch mustache helped cultivate this image). It was very important to him that my two siblings and I maintained our Sikh identity. This meant we weren’t allowed to participate in a number of social practices, including consuming alcoholic beverages, staying out past 6 pm or cutting our hair. My parents patiently explained to me that growing out our hair was an important part of Sikhism. Of course, my parents could never get very far saying this to a 15-year-old with incredibly thick and wiry black hair (prone to tangles) who wanted nothing more than to blend in with her peers.
By Bhairavi Thanki
Indian food is the best kind of food.
These aren’t my words but those of my mother. All my life, as I substituted salads for her cooking in an attempt to lose weight, she’d convince everyone at the table that I would never achieve my desired results until I started eating Indian food for every meal, every day. So, I rebelled, completely ditching my diet. I asked my dad, who was more open to a multicultural palette, if we could eat somewhere non-Indian.
I took my parents to eat some Thai, which has slightly similar flavours to Indian. My mum said she could make it at home. I took my parents to Chili’s to have some nachos. My mum said she could make it at home. I took my parents out for pasta at the best Italian restaurant in town. My mum said she could make it at home. I snapped. I challenged my mum to forego her regular schedule of cooking daal and rice to baking a batch of nachos. What happened next blew my mind.