I must disagree with the adage that goes “what you don’t know can’t hurt you”, Mi.
Considering I suffer from infobesity and that I am curious as a roomful of cats about everything I come in contact with, I just cannot bear not knowing something. I am not inquisitive, mind you. There is a difference. I just love the joy of knowing. It is like stroking my mind with a loving hand. Could it have something to do with my name? Never mind.
The truth is, ignorance is not bliss. At least with certain things in life.
Ignorance is dangerous, and very inconvenient, and sometimes fatal. The things that come to mind right away are:
- Blood tests. Remember how we used to wind up our morning saga (and raga) at home and head out to the lab, only to be told that the tests must be done on an empty stomach? All thanks to the doc who did not tell us while writing the prescription and pocketing the hefty fee each time we went for a consultation. I mean, we’re not supposed to know on our own, right?
- Signs of failing health. My heart breaks when I think that we did not know your lung had collapsed the night before, when we rushed you to hospital the next day, never to speak to you again!
- How to take medication. I’ve always wondered why doctors, after writing illegible prescriptions, act high and mighty about educating us on the dosage, timing and foods to avoid. I mean, are we supposed to absorb all the info in one go? How? Especially when we’re sick or in pain?
But these experiences taught us to ask questions, no matter how trivial, just so we could avoid stressing ourselves out by making useless trips. So there’s a silver lining around every cloud, no matter how dark!
I fondly remember the advice you gave me when I was in the 2nd std. You were my class teacher and had asked the class to write an essay about “My Family”. Of course we all came up with a few lines, relevant and irrelevant. Some couldn’t get past one line. That’s when you taught us that whenever we needed to find out information or trigger our thought trains, all we had to do was ask the following questions: what, when, who, why, where and how.
I have never forgotten that and find it useful in all walks of life, whether I am talking to people, writing something or just having a conversation with myself. Ha ha. I need expert advice sometimes you know!
Ah, talking of knowing, something really funny happened recently. Vidur wanted vadu manga. We were down to the last one and I made a mental note to get it when I went shopping. I would have ordered it with the grocery, but it was out of stock. So anyway, we happened to go get veggies the next day, and passed Nilgiris. Telling Vidur to wait outside the store with the bags, I dashed in to get the pickle. A quick look at the shelf showed me “Kaduku mango” and I grabbed the bottle. What? Kadugu mango is the smaller vadu mango variety, a little spicier than the brine soaked vadu mango. Or so I assumed. I did wonder why they spelled it kaduku and not kadugu, but didn’t dwell on it.
So imagine our shock when we opened the bottle eagerly and found almost shredded mango in a superspicy chili mix. I was stunned. Vidur of course picked up the bottle, read the description and laughed. It clearly says “tidbits of mango blah blah blah”. I was mad at myself. He teased me about “family” lingo not always being general lingo. I went and asked our neighbor what was kadugu mango. She said small vadu manga in a spicy mix. Triumphant, I looked at Vidur. He just continued to laugh and said the “k” made all the difference. Oh well. It was hilarious. Just one spoon of this kaduku mango keeps my tongue tingling for hours. The good part? I know now this pickle exists…and who knows, it may grow on me. I had half a spoon with a couple of rotis today.
It is time for my second cuppa, Mi. Nothing like a trip out of town to make us hanker for our special coffee eh? I had a tough time holding back the tears at the gym today because I missed my buddy so much.
Here’s a funny for you:
Day 2 of the #BarAThon Challenge from 1st to 7th August 2016
I am with Team #CrimsonRush
26 thoughts on “What you don’t know”
Absolutely – ignorance is NOT bliss — it can hurt you. So funny what a difference one little letter can make. Glad it brought some laughter however!
Well rightly said, to ask questions is one of the most important skill a man can posses. I have seen many marits of this skill in myself.
Your posts are always a delight to read, Vidya! Reading them feels like eavesdropping on your thoughts:)
I agree with you on Ignorance not being bliss and I’ve made a mental note of the 6questions to ask, the ones you learnt in Std 2 🙂
And yes, I now also know the difference between Vadu and Kardugu/Kadaku Mango Pickles :))
I agree with you, Vidyaji.
When it concerns health & medication, knowledge is important. We must ask relevant questions.
I love spicy pickles 🙂
My dad used to write on the corner of prescriptions given by doctor to remember the amount of dosage. The handwriting was that illegible. Ignorance is not bliss… even more harmful is half baked knowledge. Incidents similar to the mango one happens to me all the time 😉
Great post, Vidya. Ignorance is the biggest enemy for health. Thank God we completed our annual complete body checkup few days back and found everything normal.
About asking questions- I was always shy in class to ask questions to my teacher and this continued in meetings in my first job and slowly realized the importance of asking questions. As you said, ignorance is not bliss.
A happy bantering post. Loved it Vidya 🙂 A balance of info and ignorance would be perfect methinks but how does one get there 😉 Mango pickle , its the mango thokku pickle you are talking of right? All pickles are great anyhow.
Your take on prompts are so …You. That is what I love about reading you. It feels like a chat with a friend. As odd as that sounds, it does.
I loved that word ‘infobesity’. It makes being fat sound somehow smarter :-). A lot of us want to hide away our ignorance for fear of being laughed at but that doesn’t really help. I am glad you picked this blog for the BARATHON. I love your conversations.
I second Mayuri. Your posts are a delightful mix of joy and wistfulness and doing the challenge on this blog will ALWAYS bring out the Vidya I know and love dearly. I can’t read without a tear in my eye. There. That’s something you may not have known before today. Sigh.
Life is lived best by those who do not shy away from clearing doubts and are as happy to learn… Your writing is so effortless and smooth as if it is “one to one”.
Oh! I didn’t know your mum was your teacher too! Mine taught me at school and I used to be so self-conscious that it was my mum delivering the lessons. Being ignorant especially in health matters is definitely a big no-no, but knowledge overload from Google baba on the basis of one’s symptoms is scary too! Sigh! I want to have a cup now….
Your talks with your mum are so beautiful. I wish l could have maintained a blog like this. I talk to her in my heart smiling at her and our memories. Asking questions is always good. Sometimes l don’t understand why people don’t ask if they don’t understand something.
That reminds me of an incident one of my uncles keeps sharing. He had a severely blocked nose and a soar throat during his first Delhi trip. Doctor prescribed Karvol tablets and said ‘garam paani ke saath’. After 2 days he visited Mom and said he was still not better. When asked he mentioned that he had swallowed the inhalation tablets with ‘garam paani’ thrice a day. 😀
Hahahah. I remember a movie scene – a comedy – where the doctor writes a guy a prescription and tells him to take “it” with water. The guy promptly crumples the paper into a ball and eats it and drinks water.
Yes! Ignorant is not bliss. It never has! half information is always dangerous than the full one! And the point about the doctor, that is so true.. Only if they understand 😛
It sure was a post filled with so much of warmth in it 🙂
Some wonderful anecdotes in there. Both the collapsed lung and the mango got to me (albeit for different reasons entirely)
But you know what? I think its scary that people don’t want to know the truth anymore. They don’t want to be inquisitive. We learned so much because we were curious… and we did not even have an internet to find out!
My mom always says that you need to ask, and ask again. She is one curious woman, and teaches me to inquire about things around….On a lighter note, however, if you had asked, you would not have been able to taste the spicy pickle…..So here’s to the spicy moment…..:)
Ignorance is certainly not bliss. Especially for curious cats like that.
You know what – i do not like Vadu manga at all. My wife calls me weird just for that 🙂
Love that last quote!
That IS strange. What do you like, Sid? You can have the Kaduku manga if you like 🙂 The quote – hehe, me too. So true.
Ignorance is certainly not bliss and land us in serious trouble. As for doctors and their prescriptions, the lesser said the better. Recently, our neighbour completed a 10 day medicine course in 5 days simply because of illegible writing of the doc and incomplete instructions! People are scared to ask questions for they dont want to appear stupid.
I remember you told me about when, what, why, how, who. 🙂 I do not know what is vadu mango or kadagu mango 😛 Will Google it. Infobesity? I think I too have that. I also love collecting information however useless that may be to me 😉
Yes, sometimes the things you don’t know lead you to things that you know! As weird as that may sound, it is true! The example of the pickle bottle is too good 🙂
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