life hacks from agony akka Opinion

Oak vs bloke

Illustration: Satheesh Vellinezhi  

Dear Agony Akka,

I am writing to you under extreme duress. My parents are pressuring me into getting married. To make them happy, I reluctantly agreed to see a few boys, who have visited us steadily with parents, sisters, sisters-in-law, brother, brother’s friend, dead aunt’s parakeet etc. Thanks to them, the corner halwai’s business is booming, as we order samosas and barfis every weekend. One prospective groom asked me about my BMI; one declared he is BA (fail); one said he imagines himself a bee and wants me to be his beebee. What little hope I had in man is eroded. I don’t want to spend my life with one. More so since I find trees more attractive any day. Please advise how to tell my parents to let me be.

— Seeking only lovely oaks

Dear SOLO,

Welcome to my exclusive club. As you are no doubt aware I myself have eschewed the institution of marriage because of a similar disillusionment with the male species. Also, because I did not want to share my bathroom.

I find it very baffling when people talk of adding a husband to one’s life. If it’s a dog or cat or parakeet, that’s fine. There’s ample literature and booklets explaining how to feed them, when to walk them, litter boxes, seed quantity etc. But there are absolutely no instruction manuals for husbands and yet they seem to be needing something or the other all the time. Food, tiffin, tea, water. One friend told me that if you keep a husband you have to be qualified at finding socks. Another said they are very attached to remote control and one must train in jujitsu to extract it from their clenched hands.

After hearing all this, I realised that husbands are like high-maintenance machinery — someone has to be tweaking some knob, oiling some wheel, adjusting some lever all the time to keep it going. One drop less oil means it will creak noisily and collapse. Too much hard work. Better to keep cats. Keep window open, put Whiskas in bowl, watch TV (remote control safely in your own hand).

It is very good that you have come to same conclusion so early in life. In your case, even better, because trees don’t even need Whiskas. Plant oaknut, water, let it grow, watch TV (remote control safely in your own hand).

Naturally, you cannot expect any sympathy or understanding from parents and friends and relatives and neighbours and colleagues and the uncles and aunts of all the above people (young women get advice from large unwanted circle).

So what remains to be done? You must ward off all these unsuitable suitors like halwai warding off flies.

One major mistake you are making is in high quality of tiffin you are offering. Many men must be coming for that only. Next time offer some ragi barfi and oats upma with Diet Coke. Smile sweetly and say that you believe strongly in health foods. Soon, number of suitors will drop sharply.

Second option is to offer to show prospective grooms the view from the terrace and then push them into the water tank but this is a little costly option because these days they are charging too much for tank cleaning.

Maybe best thing to do is to take to religion. I am 100% sure women like Andal and Meera only went into that whole closed-eyes singing jag to avoid having human husbands thrust upon them. And being married to god is better than tree because even very worst relatives can’t argue with former choice.

— AA

agony.akka@gmail.com


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Printable version | Oct 22, 2021 12:41:04 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/oak-vs-bloke/article36498530.ece

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