The two pranksters are “The first” and “The kid”
1.1 (From the memoirs of the mother)
The first was the first child into the family. Naturally, everyone wanted to peck his cheek. As he grew about 2 years old, he found a really nasty way of insulting them. He would glower at them after they kiss him and then wipe his cheek hard as if they had contaminated his face. He didn’t like all that attention. He hated being called “cho chweet”.
1.2 (From the diaries of the first)
The kid was an attention seeking, crowd-loving person. So after the kid was born, he got most of the attention. The first heaved a sigh of relief; after 4 long years, people were not treating him like a cute li’l puppy. He however felt sorry for the kid. Poor little kid; he would have to suffer all these mollycoddling.
2.1 (From the memoirs of the mother)
The first liked mangoes more than any other fruit. When he was 3 years old and he was in Madras, one of his grandma’s brothers visited his house. A peck-in-the-cheek and a rough-wipe later, the first was left to his own and the elders started chatting. After some time, his mother realised that the first was missing. She checked the door. It was bolted on the top. The balcony door too. But he was not to be found anywhere.
Everyone started calling out, “First…First…where are you?”
His mother started panicking. After 5 minutes of frantic search, the first’s uncle thought he heard a noise which sounded like a slurp. He went near the fridge and moved the door near it. The first was sitting there in the gap between the door and the fridge with the bag of mangoes that grandma’s brother had brought. He had a half-bitten mango in his hand. His face was full of mango pulp, which he did not care to wipe in the middle of gobbling up the mangoes. The first looked up at his uncle and smiled innocently. (Looks are deceiving)
2.2 (From the memoirs of the father)
There has been a similar incident with the kid too. But the thing he loved to eat more than anything else was sand. This happened in his house in his hometown. His mother was in the kitchen and her attention was in the food. His father was in the backyard. After some time, the kid was not to be seen anywhere. The kid, however, had found a much more comfortable place to hide. He climbed the stairs with his shirt and pant pockets full of sand and hid in the attic. When he was found, he was happily eating the sand in a dark corner of the attic. His father says he had opened the door to the attic and forgotten to close it. How the kid managed to climb the stairs at the ripe old age of 2 years is still a mystery.
3.1 (From the diaries of the first)
The first’s craze for mangoes went so far that he was always under the mango tree during spring, thinking up ideas to get a hand on those juicy mangoes high up in the branches. He tried throwing stones and felling the mangoes. He was getting increasingly adept at it when a stone he threw strayed into the next house and broke a window pane. After complaints from the neighbors, he gave up throwing stones. But he still didn’t give up the idea of getting those mangoes. Once he tried to climb the tree. The result was a fall and 2 stitches in his head as it hit a stone. The first still has that little scar in his head.
3.2 (From the memoirs of the mother)
The kid at 5 years started thinking he could dance well. (Even now he thinks he can. He often performs some silly move which he claims to be the “Moonwalk”) He asked his mother whether she had seen him dance. She ignored him as she went into the kitchen. He then performed some weird move. The result was a fall and a broken jaw. However, no stitches were needed. The kid now says that the doctor was afraid of using needle and thread; that’s why he didn’t do the stitches. The kid is nowadays trying to hide that scar with some beard.
4.1 (From the memoirs of the father)
The first was attracted towards ten pin bowling during the vacations after his kindergarten when he saw that in TV. After pestering his father, he understood that, to play the game, he needed 10 talcum powder cans/bottles and a football. He easily acquired a football by shouting and crying (The first’s father got fed up with his pestering) . He managed 6 powder cans too. (Not all of them were empty). He borrowed without asking (A more decent word for stealing, shall I say?) another two from the neighboring apartment when he went there under the pretence of visiting his best friend. He however returned them after his game. Good boy!
4.2 (From the diaries of the first)
The kid was a sportsman through and through. His favorites were indoor games like cricket, basketball. There are a lot of things that he broke inside his house (the list of which I’ll be coming to shortly) because he tried to prove outdoor games were really indoor games. His all-time favorite was Cricket. There have been several instances where his mother had confiscated the cricket ball because he was playing inside. He then would get some pebbles from somewhere and hit them with his cricket bat. (This, of course, was outdoors). He invented solitaire cricket.
5.1 (From the memoirs of the mother)
List of things that the first has broken:
The neighbor’s window pane
A set of fancy tea cups and the beak of the kettle (All were made of porcelain)
5.2 (From the memoirs of the mother)
List of things that the kid has broken/damaged: (This list is not exhaustive)
A wall clock
Two electric bulbs
The puttied interior of the house has dirt marks (of the cricket ball) in several places.
The dressing table mirror
Innumerable glass/porcelain items (His mother even thinks he has managed to break some supposedly “unbreakable” items, inspired by a Mallu movie in which the hero drops a dish and merrily says “breakable”)
6.1 (From the diaries of the first)
The first liked to lie to the kid. He was a big fat liar. (Well….Not exactly fat!!) One of his greatest lies was when he was in college. He lied to the kid that there was a place called “Valley” in their college. That it was a lush green meadow and was a small golf course. There were no students to volunteer to join the college Golf team and so the first joined and was now a Golfer. The kid believed the entire lie from the beginning to the end.
6.2 (From the diaries of the first, Also from some dialogue with the kid)
The kid liked to brag a lot. He bragged more about his parents and his brother than himself. The first realised the extent of the kid’s bragging only when he accidentally met some of the kid’s classmates.
The classmates asked, “Hey…The kid said you play Golf..Really? How is it? Can I have a look at your Golf club?”
The first stood there, not able to speak a word. The first, in fact, hadn’t ever seen a Golf Club in his life. There was a place called “Valley”, but it was nothing close to a green meadow. It was a barren strip of land with rocks and weeds. He was skilled enough to make one person believe his lie. The fact, that the kid was able to convince his entire class about what he thought to be a fact (Later the kid admitted that he had added some more lies to what the first had told to make it more convincing), was something extraordinary. A gleam of triumph flashed in the first’s eyes. Followed by a reverence for the kid’s brags.
The mother and the father aptly named both their sons.
The first was named Deepak which rhymes with “The Puck” (For those who don’t know, Puck is a mischievous sprite in English folklore)
The kid was named Dileep which rhymes with “The Lip” (Because of his loquacity)