Month: August 2016

Dear Marriage,

I’ve been witness to your evolution for a long time, at close quarters and without affection. I mean, ya, as a habit you’re ok. So is smoking.

In my childhood, marriage was a symbol of stability except when cold or hot wars raged. As I grew older and financially independent, marriage was aspirational and yet something in the distant future. It often felt like an invitation to surrender the future. Finally, there was the act of marriage itself. I always wonder why I did it? All my instincts rebelled against it.

Let me be clear. I played an equal and contributory role to this whole, roles and expectations and KRAs type arrangement, little realising that work relationships and personal relationships require a different grammar. I discovered that we wanted different things after marriage, while I had romanticised that it would be just us on an island, wanting the exact same things, forever more. In time, the island got claustrophobic. We both stayed away at work for long hours. At home, we devised ways to stay out of each other’s way. The walls began to cave in. And yet, we continued in those ruins, breathing the unhealthy air and the death of affection and love. Each day and every minute was exaggerated and underscored with irritation and heaviness. We’d pretend with family and friends. The facade was so clever that even I sometimes believed in the unreality of it all … until it came to sitting at the dining table at home with no words. Just the sound of the cutlery and the heavy silence.

It’s not meant to be like this. A relationship should exalt.

Eventually, at the cost of being labeled failures, we moved apart and as with any ending, this cold turkey was distasteful.

Today, the air feels clean. I take long, deep swallows of air and smile.

Been there. Done that. Thank you very much.

Dear male protagonist of indian soaps,

I wonder how you stand up at all since you have no spine. You are so easily manipulated by the women of the house and ready to believe the worst of the woman you marry. You follow some profession or the other but it’s rarely of any consequence, till the time you succumb to politics and backstabbing and lose all your money and render your family penniless and then blather on, while your wife rises to the occasion with her miraculous and hidden powers of submissive leadership … all the while trying to ensure that she doesn’t step on your fragile little ego.

As a father, you rarely have anything of consequence to say to your kids. As a son you are respectful and dutiful and often mindless.

You come on strong and then back off in a hurry.

You are often possessed by the devil, lured by a temptress or just plain dumb but you are largely like a vessel that rolls from one point to another depending on which side the bride … Oops, I meant, bread is buttered …

You are a nice guy overall. Just mind numbingly stupid. You wanna look around and see some men in real life? They are far more evolved and while they are struggling to comprehend and adapt to the changing world, they are far more flexible and funny and dynamic and aware than you and what you stand for … LOOK at the world around you. You may find that there is still time for you to stand tall.

definitely not a fan.