Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Great Indian Love Story

NOTE: I do not know anyone by the names I have mentioned below. If there is someone by that name, it is purely coincidental! PLEASE EXCUSE! AND BE HAPPY YOUR NAME IS IN A BLOG! OK let's move to the post now.....

Ah yes. Love. The time when the guy sees the girl and gets that feeling neither he nor she can describe. That innate feeling of happiness, joy and freedom. The need to keep on staring, whatsapping, FB chatting or Facetiming the other person. On to take the relationship ahead, and end with marriage, if the girl accepts his proposal. Oh! The good times!

However, in a country like India, things are not as simple as that. Oh no, not by a LOOONNNNGGG way. We Indians, when at the ripe age of 25 - 30, look at taking it to the next level. And that is where all the complications arise. For we are not a country with a single religion, single belief, same customs. No we are not!! Far from it, even God would have a hard time finding out the total number of religions and customs in this country!

We, as the youth of the country, are at the forefront of technology. This means, free access to all religions, beliefs, and of course, the women (or for the women, the men) of other religions, castes, creeds etc etc.!!! So much choice!!! What can do we do at this point?

  1. Go after who we want : In 99% of the cases, this would mean going against our parents wishes. This invariably leads to years and years of bloodshed, chaos, and most importantly, missing out on those delicious home made goodies!!!
  2. Go with what they (meaning, your parents) want: This way, your profile would be posted on all matrimonial sites, with yourself being projected as "Another man Superman!" instead of "Anantharaman Subbaraman". Families from the boys and the girls side meet, exchange many pleasantries, plan the engagement, wedding and the honeymoon of the boy and the girl, before the boy even gets the chance to meet the girl.
  3. OR, follow a third way. A blend of the first 2 ways. A 1.5th way, if you may put it that way. In order to illustrate how it goes, I shall put a "case study" below.

So say we have this guy, a queer sweet vegetarian Tamil Brahmin who goes by the name Thiruvillai Krishnaswamy Ranganathan Kunjappan Iyer (Yes, we Tam Brahms have tongue twisting, never ending names too!) . He sees a girl.

Immediate thoughts in his mind (basic instincts, rather, of any male)
"The girl looks good!"
"Oh man hope I can talk to her atleast once!"
"Hope she can say my name properly! Otherwise I'll just ask her to call me KR... much simpler no?"

He meets the girl. He asks her name
"Harminder Singh Sobti"

His heart sinks. "OH NOOOOOO!! Ayo parents will never accept! Marriage alliance down the drain, we can be only friends!"

The problem doesn't end there. KR meets another girl the very next day! The same thoughts go through his mind...... He asks her name

"Sapna Narayanasami"

His heart skips a beat. "TAMIL IYER PONNU!! OMG OMG OMG! YESSSSS" He thinks. He smiles at her and decides to take the next step in interacting with her. There is only one way this conversation is going.

"What is your Gothram?" (Don't ask me what this is called in English, I have absolutely no idea!)
He screams his head off! ITS THE SAME AS MINE! NOOOOO! All efforts to woo this girl down the drain!! Have to go back to friendship zone! What a waste of effort!

LO AND BEHOLD, the very next day, he meets this simple, studious Pattathi (Iyer) called Azhagia Brahmakumari Chidambaram Dorai (or, very conveniently, ABCD in short! I'm not sure Azhagia is a girl's name, but I just wanted ABCD to come in the first place.)

Our dear KR goes through the motions once again. This time his hopes are a bit low.

"Azhagia?? Is that even a name?? Ummm... she looks cute BTW!". For us men, after sometime, all it takes is a bit of cuteness, to set the ball rolling.

This time however, ABCD starts asking questions to him. His antenna goes into alert mode. He thinks "This is not standard protocol!!! Better alert the relevant authorities!!" and swiftly goes and tells his parents of a possible alliance, even before he talks to ABCD.

The parents huddle together and deliberate. KR watches on nervously as they go through her Facebook profile. "Good looking", "Well educated".... the vibes are coming out good! KR gets asked a lot of the standard questions. However, as he has already gone through the motions a lot of times before, he had done his homework!! He already got all the relevant details from ABCD in his own sweet way and presents them to his parents.

And finally, the outcome. Parents say YES!!! KR is ecstatic! FINALLY ALLIANCE APPROVAL FROM PARENTS! I CAN GO AHEAD AND ASK ABCD OUT!

Parents ask "DAI! How are you going to take this ahead?". KR actually becomes "Another man Superman" and replies "Don't worry Amma, Appa! I got this!" and promptly goes ahead to date ABCD, and get things in place before the parents can change their mind!

So you can see, the Indian Love story is not a simple "I love you, you love me, lets live happily ever after". There are a lot of external factors, unknown variables, and complex solutions, that even a creative MBA (HA, yeah right, that was an oxymoron right there!) would find hard to decipher. And that is what makes this, the great Indian Love Story (Or South Indian, as I have put all Southie names here, ah but it would be the same all across the country!!)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

What I took from the first week of the BPL

YESSS!!! It's that time of the year when all males (and a few females too, I must say!!) find themselves more busy than the president of their respective countries. Want to go shopping? Plumber come home to fix the pipe? The girl you like/love asking you out on a date? BAH!! All that can wait!!

Weekends are never the same without the beautiful game coming every weekend on TV. We watch with bated breath every pass and assist made, free kick taken, goal scored! We scowl at every foul,  swearing at the referee and the players alike! (That's a #^$£#+#^#£#£ foul!! RED CAAARRRDDD!!)

So it all started last Saturday. And there were quite a few things that happened that would indicate how the rest of the season may go. Of course, this is just one game, you would say. But there's a lot to learn from a single round of games!

1. Man Utd fans of the world (me included!!!)!! Please stop having very high expectations of the team. It has not changed much from last season (I would say it has reduced in quality!!). Please wait for a few months to see how many formations Van Gaal can make the team play properly. And what reinforcements he brings in the summer transfer window. The team is in dire need of reinforcements at the back and in the middle. The formation change will take time to adapt. The lengthy list of injuries are not helping either. But not all is bad!! This is United. We will recover!

2. Arsenal are looking quite the compact strong team this year. Winning at the last moment, the never say die attitude is in the team. But why do I keep getting this feeling that Arsene Wenger will 'Arsene'  himself again this year? (Going great guns in the beginning, only to falter in 2 weeks of continuous losses) The FA cup and Community Shield wins (Especially the community Shield) were impressive. And they have the German trio yet to come!! Things are looking up at the club now. But then, it was looking up at the same time last year as well!!

3. Liverpool might just end up doing a Tottenham this year. The only difference being they should still make it to the top 4 (Stress on JUSSSSSTTTTTT). They did buy half of the Southampton team (and a whole host of others) over the summer using Suarez's money. But they are still a bit short in the midfield which may just haunt them later on. Meanwhile....

4. Tottenham would look to push for the champions league spots. Lloris showed once again why he is pivotal to their charge this year. Some quite brilliant saves made!! This should be the season where last years recruits should start paying dividends, and they should be playing exciting football.

5. The major contenders for the title look to be Chelsea and Manchester City. Both eased to wins in the first round. Chelsea have made some fantastic signings (Mourinho factor always plays a part, of course!!), while City are consolidating on last years champion team! But I would not be surprised one bit if any one of Man Utd, Arsenal, Liverpool or even Tottenham give them a scare!!!

6. Will Keane (now assistant manager at the club) be able to make a difference in Aston Villa? They did start off well against Stoke. Some good play and a disciplined defence, I expect the fiery former Utd captain to make his presence felt in the style of play at the club!

There's so much more to happen over the rest of the season! So much to look forward to!! The scrap at the front and back of the league table will be exciting! New signings, new formations..... Each season just gets better and better!! BRING IT ON!!!!