Ever since the circus that is my personal life opened up for business, people have been asking me to write about my experiences. My friends would ask me how my arranged marriage conversations were going, barely masking their glee when their question was followed by a sigh.
Today, I will indulge you monsters by telling you about some of the boys I’ve spoken to. Before I start ranting, I want to make one thing very clear: I’m not here to judge. Not because I’m such a nice person, but because there’s very little ground for me to stand on. So if you think I’m picking on you because your profile was once on an arranged marriage app, just know that I was on the app too – with the anonymous email ID Grooms4Kalyanam. And if you think it stops there, think again. The ID was accidentally linked to my Google Pay account.
You get the point. I’m not the cool kid in the leather jacket and motorbike. I’m the kid with oily hair who brings curd rice in a multi-layered steel carrier, hoping that if she makes a joke, you won’t notice that she spilled rice on her socks.
Now let’s begin. I’ve assigned codenames to these boys – partly because I care about privacy and partly because I’ve forgotten their real names.
1 – Cricket match Karthik
We didn’t live in the same city, so we first had a phone call. It went decently enough, so we decided to meet over the weekend. He texted me when he got on the bus on Friday, and when he reached Bangalore (also on Friday). And then he said he had an important match and would meet me on Monday, two hours before his bus back home.
As it turns out, he wasn’t moonlighting as a cricketer and playing the game. He was watching it. He told his father he was coming to see a girl, and then hung out with his friends and watched cricket. This move is called the Reverse Rebel, and never fails to baffle me to this day.
2 – Ghosting Ganesh
We met for dinner twice, and then he promptly disappeared. That’s not why he’s our ghost, though. Around a year later, he resurfaced out of nowhere, pretended we never met, and asked if we could chat. Classic ghost behaviour.
3 – Overthinking Omeshwar
Look, I’m not delusional. I know what it means to have a “first date” conversation in the arranged marriage scene. I understand that we’re potentially spending our lives together. What I don’t understand is why I needed to have an answer to “when our kids are in middle school, we have to move them back to India because science education abroad is pretty substandard, right?”
4 – Shameless Shivakumar
A stark contrast to Overthinking Omeshwar, Shameless Shivakumar should’ve probably spent some time thinking before he opened his mouth. I wasn’t expecting an answer to “when our kids are in middle school, we have to move them back to India because science education abroad is pretty substandard, right?” What I don’t fully grasp, however, is the guy who asked if we could travel to another country together before deciding if we want this. This attitude is way too strange even for the sleaziest dating app, my dude.
5 – Paperwork Pramod
Apparently I’m a Silly Smitha who believes in things like “two people should first focus on whether or not they like each other.” To Paperwork Pramod, uncertainty from the US government rules all. There’s practicality, and there’s the guy who began the conversation with “how will we figure out your visa situation?” and not “what’s your name?”
If you ask these boys what they think of me, I’m sure you’ll have a very different set of codenames. But you didn’t ask them, so you’re stuck with my codenames.