So,which marriage will you be having? – Part 2

Ahem..So, remember the Part 1? Well, this is Part 2, which I’m sure you have figured out by now.

Ok, quick recap for the uninitiated. My friend from America is tired of searching for her Mr. Right and wants to settle for an arranged marriage, which according to her is so hassle free. Well, more blah blah blah..blah blah blah later, somehow I was entrusted with the all important task of giving her 10 reasons as to why she should go for an arranged marriage and 10 reasons why it should be a love marriage. The arranged marriage bit has already been done with, which thanks to your generous contribution of ideas, just did not go beyond 6 reasons. Grrrr… Somehow, I still havn’t come to terms with the fact that I, who belong to a country where arranged marriage is a way of life, couldnt even come up with 10 reasons supporting it. 😦

Anyways, now presenting **Drumroll** 10 reasons as to why, a love marriage is the way to go.

1) Well, the most simplest reason will have to be that, you know who you are getting married to..and better still you are actually in love with him. You are attracted to him and you don’t have to spend nights praying to God that you hope you are attracted to him. Don’t raise your eyebrows, I know of people, ok relatives, who have gotten married without having even spoken to their partner even once. Yup, one look at the photograph somehow sufficed. So ya, in a love marriage, you know the guy and what greater joy than getting married to the man you love.

2) Physical compatibility. Oh yes, no unwanted surprises on the first night. You know he/she will turn you on. Imagine, getting married and realising that he does nothing to stir you. Forget the fire in your loins. There is not even a spark there..**Shudder**

3) You know for a fact that he/she is straight. Dont, gimme that look. You think I’m exaggerating? Really people, this finding out that the only thing straight about your partner is his hair, is becoming more common everyday. I personally know somebody who strongly suspects that her partner is gay. You know how we deal with homosexuality in India right?. Besides being a punishable offense, its not really something that happens to us, its exclusive to the west and if it does happen, then its definitely curable. The cure? Marriage of course, after a while they will outgrow their ‘weirdness’. Hang on, this is not me talking, I’m merely echoing the mentality of the average Indian parents. So ya, in a love marriage, atleast you are sure he is straight.

4) You will forever be the symbol of romance to the breed of 12-14 olds in the family. This might just be exclusive to India. You will be the embodiment of romance to them. I stll remember how when one of my friend’s sister had a love marriage, all of us were secretly thrilled. We were all fresh from watching Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jaayenge and her insistence to get married to her lover was complete WOW material for us. We’ve spent many evenings thinking if we will ever find our man and when we do, if we will ever dare disobey our parents and walk out with him. Though, my secret desire always always has been the climax of DDLJ. Aah!! Ive replayed that more than a million times in my lil head.

Oh well, thats how far I got with my list. Not that I couldn’t think of more, but all of them seemed extremely exclusive to India and I dint see the point in giving those reason to my AF ( American friend). Well anyways, she liked both the lists, though it did nothing to clear her confusion. She is as muddled as ever and has almost given up hope of ever being married. Last heard, she was looking for a tall, educated, well earning Italian to take sperm samples from. 😐

PS: Hey there, tall, educated, well earning Italian..Are you listening?

PPS: Is it just me, or does the new series of Airtel ads featuring Vidya Balan and Madhavan give you a warm fuzzy feeling in the tummy?

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Published in: on June 29, 2008 at 6:33 am  Comments (22)  
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So,which marriage will you be having? – Part 1

The grass is always greener on the other side. Really! My American friend is completely in love with the concept of an arranged marriage and is hoping against hope that her parents will find a list of prospective grooms for her from whom she can have her pick. She finds the whole concept very comforting and practically risk free. This after a string of rather wrong boyfriends with whom she has wasted a considerable chunk of her life and for whom she has earned the black sheep tag from her family. I was telling her how it worked in India, in most of the cases and the enthusiasm in her voice was unmistakable. She was pumped and I could hear that she was seriously considering talking to her folks about an arranged marriage. What was surprising was how she later told me that she ain’t the only one thinking of going the arranged marriage way.

This is one side of the coin. On the other we have us, the typical Indian folks who dream and hope for parents who will let us chose our partners and be ok with it. No emotional blackmail. No tears. No fuss. No guilt trips and certainly no ‘Is this how I brought you up?’ type melodramatic lines. And we most certainly dont want ‘ We shall give our blessings albeit grudgingly, we shall attend the wedding though unhappy and we shall put on a happy face, though we cry inside. No sir, we don’t want any of the above. We seek acceptance and understanding and a plain yes or no. Not that its gonna affect our decision, but we would just like to know how you feel, cause you are our parents. Now, this is the new Indian dream.

See, dint I tell you the grass is greener on the other side? So, I was telling her about the new Indian dream and all that and since I am a part of that country where arranged marriages are a way of life and since I belong to a generation which thrives on the New Indian dream, she set me this interesting task of giving her 10 reasons as to why she should go for an arranged marriage and 10 reasons why it should be a love marriage. ( The girl cannot stop giggling every time  I say love marriage, cause she says it makes it seem like the arranged marriage is love less. True na and to think I never thought of it like that until now) So, presenting ** Drumroll** 10 reasons as to why, an arranged marriage is the way to go..

1) Well, the most basic reason has to be risk free element. Perhaps not risk free, everything has its risks but hmmm..lets say, the division of responsibility. It was a joint decision. And, God forbid, if there are hitches in your relationship, then your folks are not gonna turn around and give you the ” I told you so” look. Oh well, no matter how much we talk about the ‘Its- my-decision- and – I’ll – honour it’ or ‘Its- a-mistake-but-its-my-mistake’, the fact still remains that we need our family’s support and in an arranged marriage, you folks somehow feel they have much responsibility as you do, to make it work.

2) It saves a ton of trouble. Your folks will do all the shortlisting. All the background checks and all the digging up. They will even go so far as to get conduct certificates from his school/college. I tell you, your folks transform into world class snoops when searching for their kid’s mate. Documents containing crucial information including his first smoke, first drink and first fuck is unearthed, god knows from where. Though I think women are exempted from it. I’m pretty darn confident that the parents crowd still thinks that smoke-drink and fuck are for “those women” and not for future brides. Dont ask me to explain that, I dont belong to the parents group.

3) Don’t ask me how, but the parents group somehow land up on dudes who seem so wrong for you on the outset but then when you get to know him, seems so right. Really!! Its a part of their mystical powers. You cant question it. But have no fear, when I finally join the parents group, a few million years from now, the mystery shall be reveled. Provided, I’m still blogging!!

4) In retrospect and I emphasize it again, In retrospect, those chaperoned first introduction between the girl and the boy seems hilarious. It makes for a good holiday story, a legend that can be passed on forever. Legend goes that my sister kept pulling at her saree so much that it actually came undone right in front of her my brother in law and he keeps claiming that he would have been an idiot to let go of a girl who gave him personalised strip show during their first meeting. So you see, embarrassing first meets can later become famous stories to be passed on. I remember this one time when this prospective mother in law called me at work to fix up a meeting between her son and I and the Goddamn lady, instead of asking me for a good time to fix the meet wanted to  know how much I earned. Well, it was embarrassing and I was in tears of anger and frustration post the call, but now, in retrospect, it seems hilarious.

5) Arranged marriage means that basically your family is at its happiest.( I suppose somebody once said, “Its all about loving your family 😛 ) And a happy family is a generous family and a generous family is a gift giving family, which means **Drumroll** Excellent wedding gifts..Lalalalalalala..Oh yes, come on now, drop the act, we like gifts, weddings, birthdays,anniversaries, we love em all and we love the gifts too. Now a ‘we shall attend the wedding though unhappy and we shall put on a happy face, though we cry inside’ family means you get annoying crockery sets and truckloads of linen as wedding gifts..**Sigh** but a ‘we are soooo happy’  family means you get holidays to exotic locations as wedding gifts. See, the choice is pretty simple. Ok, so I am materialistic!! But so are you!!!

6) Most often in an arranged marriage, the whole process of falling in love, happens post the marriage. (Err..That point sounded so romantic in my head but in writing, it looks rather idiotic) Well, anyways, so since you are already married to him, its like being in an island with only one man. He is THE MAN, you like him cause he is all you have and suddenly you realise that his annoying habits don’t matter and you learn to love him. (I know..I know, the point looks very weak, but I’m trying my best here to make it look romantic. Stay with me, will you?)

Ok..Now this is where I need your help. No matter how hard I try, I cant seem to go beyond 6 reasons to support arranged marriages. Come on now, we are country that has thrived on arranged marriages ( a population of more than 1 billion , no less ) and when put to test by my American friend, I cant think..So help me out here..gimme more reasons as to why arranged marriages are the way to go.

PS: Don’t think I am advocating arranged marriages, cause thats not the intent of this blog. Hell, I have to give 10 reasons right after this in favour of Love marriages. So, my doubting friend, my aim is not to convince you to get an arranged marriage. Far from it, this is to help my friend decide. She can be an annoying list-based decision maker sometimes and this is one such instance. So help, my friend’s future depends on you!!!! **puppy eyes**

PPS: My ‘ten reasons why a love marriage is the way to go’ will soon follow and looking at the way my list is developing, I just might need you help again!!!

Published in: on June 19, 2008 at 8:13 am  Comments (13)  
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