Our society is quite cruel to the single people, they may not raise any furor over Kasab living of off their taxes, but they CAN NOT see a single person living his/her life to the fullest. They would go to the extent of personally tightening the noose made of a wedding garland over his neck. Little do they know that behind every individual’s decision to stay single there is a wounded heart, a heart that once dreamt of living the typical Indian dream of buying an apartment near a tech park and paying the EMI for it every month while dreaming of their children becoming all that they could not become. In short, we too wanted to be like our parents.
It’s even tougher to venture out in family gatherings, there is always a fear of being thrown into the center of a conversation without any warning– what with the innumerable peripas and perimas, chitapas, chittis, who try to play Cupid lurking around in the background, enough foreplay is performed as the elders of the family beat around the bush about various trivial gossip before the crosshairs are aimed at you. It is only inevitable that you fall into their neatly laid trap. Our relatives have the uncanny ability of connecting two vastly different topics with your current relationship status.
“Did you watch the kirket match yesterday?” Ambi mama asks.
“Yes mama, I did”
“This Dhoni romba nanna captaining pannan da yesterday” he comments.
You breathe easy thinking this topic is way off the radar and has no chance of coming back to bite you in the ass.
“Yeah, his field placements were good, correcta he shuffled his bowlers also, he never let Pietersen settle.” You quip some comments you read on Cricinfo.
“World Cup win pannan, IPL also he win pannan, after marriage his stars have completely changed da” he slowly comes to the topic.
“Uh-oh” you realize that it’s too late to avoid his bouncer.
“So kanna, when are you going to get married? Kalyanam saapadu saaptu romba naal aachu da” (loosely translates to: “It’s been a long time since there has been a reason to celebrate in the family”)
You duck the bouncer, only to realize that you’ve been yorked. Your middle stump is sent back cart-wheeling.
* * * * * * *
The topic of matrimony is centered on any individual who is in their mid-twenties, earning, single, and virile - names of long distant relatives who have daughters who are nubile, or in the words of Borat Sagdiyev -"can be ploughed" are rattled off as a suitable match. They cite the example of their elder son who is settled in America with his wife and child, heading a major project, and is leading a happily married life as they cradle their grandson from their daughter to sleep in their arms. Your parents longingly look at the sleeping child wondering when would they ever get a grandson of their own, an organism that was born as a result of your orgasm, someone whom they could pamper, whose poop and piss they would teach you how to clean. Their eyes sparkle with a hope that asks in capital letters "WHEN WILL OUR TIME COME?” You try to avoid their gaze and take out your mobile as you log into Facebook whilst your peripa murmurs in your ear:
"Kanna it is better to marry by the age of twenty-seven maximum. Nobody gives girls to guys who are beyond twenty-eight or twenty-nine, you will lose all your hair by then, its better you schedule an appointment with Dr. Batra". You silently nod your head, biting your tongue from asking where from do they get these facts.
As you log into Facebook you see:
“Rahul is married to Anjali” that has a 29 likes from people he hadn’t invited to the wedding.
You wished Facebook came with an added message: “….as a result Rahul’s life is screwed.”
You heave a sigh of despair. You logout.
Peripa continues buzzing in your ears “Buy a home in Velachery near your office, your office will be closer to home and you can also go for lunch.”
“If at all you are marrying a working girl, marry a teacher, not much pressure also and she doesn’t have to stay back for extra work also” paati throws in her hat into the ring.
You nod along wondering what to order next from Flipkart.
“Why don’t you create a profile for Raju at shaadi.com?” suggests Perima to your parents.
Now you are reduced to that commodity that you planned to order from Flipkart.
* * * * * *
You realize family may be tougher to hang out with, but you have no clue of how socially stunted your friends might make you feel. Especially when people around you are getting married or are in the process of becoming a parent, or are having thoughts of throwing in the towel and getting into a relationship, it becomes tougher to even log into Facebook when all you can see is them hanging out with their better halves in the beaches and parks and in the malls as they do all the cheesy stuff that lovers do. And to top it all, they share a snap of them eating out of a single cotton candy as the profile picture.
What you may not know is that the average duration of your profile picture of you and your better half lasts only till the first two months of your relationship after which you guys would put on weight due to lack of sex and excess of outside food and remove it as your profile picture.
The singulars when amidst their committed friends realize that they are in the presence of people who have reached a different level in life, it’s a mature stage of life where they are no more plagued by all those little things that used to plague us in our school/college days. They take this meet as a chance to make us realize of our hollowed existence and superficial pursuits and trivial achievements. All that the singulars have achieved amounts to nothing, for the committed men and women have embarked on a journey in the sea of life on their swanky cruise ship, while the single guy is pedaling the oar of his lifeboat that seems to be busted out of air and is gasping for its own life.
They boast of their vacation they had in Mauritius.
The singular boasts of how he completed a 900-page book, a vacation that lasted three months.
They boast of their new car that they have bought.
The singular boasts of the new version of Need for Speed that he has bought for his PS3.
They boast of how their kid had started to walk without the need of a pram.
The singular boast of how he has watched six episodes of Dexter back-to-back…. In a 17-inch computer screen…… WITHOUT SUBTITLES!
* * * * * *As the clock keeps ticking by and those glances of judging passersby in a crowded mall pierces through you for sitting all by yourself on the bench, you need to give up the dreams of bumping into the Chosen One in a coffee shop. You need to realize that you are not living in a Sitcom set in New York. We all can’t be Ted Mosby, for all those who can’t be…. there is Bharatmatrimony.com. But as of now it’s okay to keep dreaming.