When our closest friend broke the news of his engagement, we were all very happy for him. Soon enough,we realized, the damocles sword of marriage would hang on our heads too. I had just breached thirty and had been dating for almost for a year now, yet I had been uncomfortable talking about the next step.
Last weekend, as always, we had lunch at my place followed by a couple of ‘Friends’ episodes.
One particular episode, Ross had just managed to break his second wedding and I decided to scratch the same itchy topic here.
‘By the way Mom had called yesterday..’
She gives me no reply, not even a glance. I had scratched the itchiest part.
‘She wanted me to create my profile on the matrimony website; also wanted me to come home next Sunday for some horoscope meeting with a Pandit.
‘What do you want, Shiv?’
‘I don’t want to go. I hate travelling by local trains on a Sunday’
‘Not that you idiot, I am talking about your marriage?
‘I am still thinking how to explain our situation to my Mother. She is firm on getting a true blood Tam-Brahm Bahu.’
‘Situation? Our Situation? I think you should work on your vocabulary.’
‘ I meant relationship!’ I quickly interjected.
‘Regarding the marriage, I feel your Mom is right. Our cultures differ. I am not even going to try learning Tamil. I cannot sustain on curd rice alone each night. I cannot watch every Dhanush or Rajni movie over a hundred times like you do. We wont be able to spend much time with each other. I am a late night person while you start your day freakishly early. So creating kids is out of question. Plus I will have to actually marry your Mom and not you. ‘
I wanted to stand up and applaud the excellent dialogue delivery. The proud stance, the unwavering pitch and the fiery stare she held in her eyes couldn’t have come out right for any actor in one take. I was sane enough to understand this wasn’t the time to preach theatre.
But now, it was my turn.
‘I am a free thinking ambitious person. Cultures don’t bother me lady.I do not care if you do not know my language. I am a liberalist. I believe in breaking society’s barriers. I believe in the sickle and the spanner.’
‘Its sickle and the Hammer, shiv’.
‘Yes, yes. Same thing. See, I am even politically correct.’
‘Yeah. I noticed’
She couldn’t stifle her laugh much and I couldn’t carry out this B grade scene anymore.
‘Alright Lady, I want to marry you despite your… I mean my imperfections.’
‘Shiv, Your imperfections are perfectly okay. I just want you to do one thing now. Why don’t you call your Mom now. Let her know that you are going to visit them…’
‘I can call her later.’
‘Along with me. Don’t forget that part’.
Before I could recover from this shocking line, flashed another potential threat; a call from the queen of Melodrama, fondly known as my Mom.
Now, That discussion can be told on another day.
PS: Life and this story would have been so simple, if she had just been a Tam- Brahm.