Friday, July 12, 2013

THE WEDDING CHRONICLES, PART TWO

So, how much has changed since I last posted?

To be honest, not much. The date is getting closer, more people who I don't know but I must pretend I do are being spoken to, and so much  money is being wasted you would think my family was effluent (hehe).

Now, from my limited exposure to wedding-based Punjabi music videos (face it man, we all had a crush on Malaika Arora in that video), it pretty much seems that the groom is the cynosure of all eyes, and my reticent silent-corner-seeking self was dreading the prospect of the whole wedding shindig for just this.

Fortunately, it turns out that the groom is never in the aforementioned cynosure. This is due to a variety of reasons including the fact that a TamBrahm wedding is largely never about the bride and the groom. It's actually all about the clothes. In fact, it's quite okay if the groom doesn't show up as long as well-laundered apparel does. 

Secondly, as you saunter around the TamBrahm universe, which is a fate I wouldn't bestow upon even Steve  Bucknor after the Sydney Test of 2008, you realise that it is rife with hypocrisy. For instance - on one hand, they admonish you for indecent clothing when you walk around home with shorts, but seem to have no issue asking you to bare your chest in front of an auditorium of 500 strangers.

Today is apparently my last day as a bachelor (technically engaged tomorrow night. I think. I don't keep up too well with these things, I just go along) and have had no time to do any bachelorry things (however, I did sneak out to have a vada and lime juice. Don't tell parents).

It's frustrating being a non-practicing engineer while meeting random people. For instance - my brother and I are at many times dragged from our reveries to be introduced to many people. Now, I - with all due modesty - happen to work for the biggest and best advertising agency in the world. The brother - with all due respect to him (he's cut out for WAY better things than software) works in a not-exactly-top-level software company. Conversations with random strangers (RSs) typically go like this:

RS: So what do you do?
Me: I work for an advertising agency. Ogilvy and Mather.
RS: Oh... Hmm... Ok. Did you see Australia batting? Hmm. Ok. Nice. And you? What do you do?
Bro: I work for US Tech.
RS: OHWOWISTHATTRUEJIZZIHAVEANUNMARRIEDDAUGHTERAREYOUINTERESTEDTELLMORETELLMORE

Bro and Me: #facepalm

Also, way too many people are given respect for nothing more than their ability to have sired a very large number of people. Reverence is always to be given and never questioned. Where's all that scientific temper that we speak of? ;-)

In the middle of all this, the brother and I have managed to sneak in time to practice a few songs. Those of you who are coming for the reception and are sticking around at the end - we promise you some interesting stuff. 

So anyhow, I've got a whole lot of ceremonies to look forward (?) to. I'm writing this blogpost in blatant defiance of orders that I've been given by my aunt ("Don't work at a computer - go straight to sleep"). The next time I write a post, I will be in some stage of matrimony. 

Wish me luck (for surviving the aforementioned ceremonies more than anything else!)




Sunday, July 07, 2013

THE WEDDING CHRONICLES - PART ONE

I guess there are few better ways to restart a blog whose posting strategy is Afridiesque in its consistency, than to talk about the single most important event of one's life. But let me for a moment not talk about the time I got my Grado SR325 headphones, and talk about something else which a few of you are privy to.

I speak, of course - of the fact that I'm going to get hitched. On 14 July 2013, Divya and I are going to be one. One in the way Lennon and McCartney were (without the fallout). One in the way two amoebae fuse (without the grossness). And one in the way HTC's latest phone is (without the useless Beats Audio).

It's been three years since we started going out - a term appropriate for India where parents get scandalized if an unmarried couple were to be seen in the same Cooperative Housing Society.

And now, after many anxious moments - it's finally happening. Whee!

I started off the journey telling my parents that I was landing up on Monday, totally intending to surprise them as I'm actually reaching Kochi on Sunday. Alas, that idea backfired as they got wind of what I was up to and  the only surprise for them was the fact that I've actually managed to gain more weight than was thought to be humanly possible.

So here I am in Tripunithura. Houses here are quite massive. Granted, that is also partially because the region is not the most flourishing of real estate markets. Neither is there an IT park in the near vicinity, the types of which have been responsible for many youngsters gravitating to the area, followed by fashionable establishments. The upshot of all this essentially being - you could buy a bungalow in Tripunithura for the price of a, say, closet in suburban Mumbai.

Tripunithura is also quite unlikely to immediately top any lists of 'happening party destinations' in India. I'd like to use the term 'charming' to refer to it, but flocking off to temples at every possible occasion and the absence of sustenance of the more protein-enriched variety (if you know what I mean) really doesn't meet my idea of 'charm'. As a kid, I've never really looked forward to my bi-annual sojourn to this sleepy little place, having to pass time by playing Scrabble against myself, and re-re-re-re-re-re-reading my latest stash of Archie comics.

Nevertheless, it's where the nucleus of the whole wedding preparation is going to happen. And one thing about this whole shindig is that I've been very removed from all the action. The last time I met my parents, they had no idea I was even seriously seeing someone and they were constantly raising the "we're getting old now..." statement. A while longer and things would have possibly reached the comfortable forget-Tambrahm-just-get-anybody-and-we'll-get-you-married-off stage.

So since I've been away from all this, and the fact that Ogilvy and my freelance work keep me wonderfully busy, I haven't had much time to contemplate or look out of the window with a cup of tea going "Gawrsh, I'm gonna be married in a month!". The most I did was download a countdown timer app on my phone.

Perhaps this insulation was a good thing? Cold feet, jitters, butterflies, and all those things which your Facebook friends believe you should have, never really came. I've been quite clinical about the whole thing - having planned everything from the honeymoon to house-shifting in Excel. Now some of you might say that this Steve Waughian ice-cool nature was a good thing. Others might call me a killjoy, not giving in to the emotions of a momentous event.

But tell you what, I'm quietly thrilled. And not just because that app is telling me I have only 6 days to go.

A lot of fun events have been planned over the next couple of weeks, which I'll attempt to list down over here. From my mom's attempts to get me to shave my French beard off, to my brother's excitement at adding 15 devices to the home Wifi router (serious) - there's a lot of hilarity to be had here.

I've just spent my last weekend as a bachelor.

Oh, and if you haven't seen our 'story' yet, please to click here :)

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