Roasted Peanuts- Arrangement of Love (English version)

Amma… Ill hang up the call now… I guess he is on the way back home… I’ll call you up later, once I am done with clearing up the mess in the kitchen…Bye ma…Take care…
Gosh! if its Friday night, trust me, I’ll have to prepare a lot for the weekend… Its nothing big though, I have to make some snacks for my husband who watches these stupid Football matches… I sometimes doubt if it is a Friday or Football day! Sometimes I feel like puncturing that football when he wears this stinky jersey…I go mad at this…. I don’t know how people watch it till 3:00 am and above that, they shout and scream as if their cheers are heard from India to the players, playing somewhere in Europe! Let me go and roast some peanuts for him!
Well, peanuts remind me of my marriage… This football lover became mine with these peanuts…
Meenu, did you see his profile in Tamil matrimony? Did you like him? Look, his family has liked your profile and especially the boy.. He said he liked you the minute he saw your profile…
Yeah ma.. I saw.. I want to meet him…
Fine, we’ll arrange for a meeting of the two of you…
Amma dint leave it here.. She immediately called up to Appa, who was away on a trip to Srisailam with his friends…
Their happiness knew no bounds when I told them… The coming weekend, our families arranged for a modern “shaadi” meet or “ponnu parkal” or “pelli chupulu” at Eatstreet; that food street near tank bund, here in Hyderabad, on Saturday at 5:00pm, good muhurtham set by our astrologer…
I went to eatstreet and sat on a table far away from the Hussain sagar lake (who can bear the stench, yuck! 😷😫)
It was almost 20 minutes and I searched for the guy in blue shirt…
Meena, you idiot.. You should have seen the guy’s pic… Mad you are… How can you be so dumb to agree to your family’s choices… How will you spot him you fool.
In my mind I imagined like doing a facepalm coz I couldn’t do it in a public place… I cursed myself for not seeing the guy’s pic…
Hey… Meenu… Hii…
Hii Shankii….
So… Why are we here Meenu? 😝😝
Why would I know the reason you are here Shankii… Well, I came here to meet a guy, some Shashank Krishnaswamy… They chose him for me from that Tamil matrimony… They said he’ll be here in blue shirt… Bloody blue shirt fellow dint turn up yet…its almost an hour…
Meenu, did you see his profile?
No Shankii.. My parents saw and matched our horoscopes…they liked his profile… Coz they liked, I thought I’ll meet him directly… Never expected they’d plan the meet this way…
Aiyo meenu! Well, I am here to meet a girl… Same, for marriage purpose… She said she’ll be here in sometime..

Shankii and I met on Facebook, a year ago, on a page called IyerTips… All the members of the page formed a group and once or twice, the Hyderabadi Iyers met and Shankii and I became good friends…
It was almost 8:00 pm and the people we expected did not turn up… Or, even if they came, they must have left seeing Shankii and me talking.. 😂😂😂
Hello Appa, I met they guy pa.. He is not nice… He seems to be a bit flirty.. Tell his parents I did not like him… Say some reason pa.. I don’t know.. I am coming…
I lied 😋
That night Shankii and I were texting on WhatsApp pulling each other’s legs…
Days passed… One day Shankii met me near my office… He asked me to join for a walk at necklace road that Sunday… I agreed coz my brother Sreedhar said he too had a friendly cricket match with his friends…
6:00 am Sreedhar and I went to necklace road… Shankii and I joined to cheer Sreedhar while he did the batting…
Hello Akka, haan… I saw the girl.. Yeah I like her a lot Akka… I met her sometime ago…
Liar liar pants on fire… Why did you lie to your Akka that you met the girl..
Oh! Hello Meenu madam… Don’t talk like a good Samaritan… As if Satya Harishchandra’s blood is running in you… Liar you are…
OK OK! Don’t drag it…
Fine 😝😝😝
Sreedhar joined us after the match… Shankii, Sreedhar and myself, we walked and sat on a chair by the lakeside… Shankii bought a pack of freshly roasted peanuts from a vendor and ate it…
Sreedhar pulled my leg with some matter… Shankii joined Sreedhar and the boys teased me till I got angry and left…
I went home and gave nice dose to Sreedhar but then, I stopped talking to Shankii… I did not like the way he took all rights to pull my leg…
A week passed and Shankii sent me a message on Whatsapp, asking me to join for the organ donation walk at necklace road on the 13th … He specifically mentioned not to bring Sreedhar along… I hesitated initially, but it was a noble cause, so I had to agree…
It was 13th of August- organ donation day… Shankii, in a white T-shirt came running to me and gave me a white cap… On a sheet of paper, we signed our consent to donate our organs… Shankii introduced me to his team mates… We walked almost 5km, spreading awareness of organ donation…
A tired Shankii, sat on a bench in the park, puffing and panting… He held my hand and asked me to sit beside him… I sat…
We sat there gazing at the boats and steamers on the lake…. It rained mildly…wind blew on my face gently… Shankii as usual bought a pack of roasted peanuts… I felt nice that day..somehow…things around me were going on good… I looked to my right to find Shankii missing… I felt someone tapping my leg…
Meenu.. I am here..
Shankii was on his knees… I laughed uncontrollably at the 6’foot and hefty framed chubby guy in white T-shirt…
Shankii, what are you doing there, something fell down, shall I help?
Meenu, will you marry me, I love you di! 😍😍😍😍
Shankii 😨😨 😨😨 what? Are you joking? Come on, your peanuts and all won’t work with me.. Put them on some one else…
I am serious Meenu.. Promise on these peanuts… I love you to bits di.. Marry me.. Please… 😍😍👫👫😆😆😆
I sat still for a few minutes.. Unable to figure out what was happening around… I had some tears flowing from my eyes… Somehow, don’t know.. Things felt nice… I composed myself quickly..
Hmm.. Shankii, I need my parents’ consent on this…
I’ll invite them over to my place… Come let’s start too…
OK Shankii..
*We reached Shankii’s place in about 20min*
My parents reached there already…
Amma.. Appa.. This guy has proposed me for marriage.. I like him too. What do you say?
My parents stared at me with a shocked expression.. So were Shankii’s parents and sister… Few minutes later they burst out laughing… I was confused to hell… 🙀🙀🙀
Meenu did not you reject this boy for being a bit flirty, the other day at eat street…
But, Appa… This is Shankii, my friend from Facebook… I did not meet the boy you selected for me.. He did not turn up….
Shankii, what is this??
Haa.. Meenu… I am the guy whom your parents shortlisted… Thinking that you saw my profile, instead of blue shirt, I wore a grey shirt… I hinted to you several times… You are one tubelight… I can’t help….
Shankii… 😂😂 you crazy guy…. Your full name is Shashank Krishnaswamy?? Ha-ha , yeah Meenu… Everyone says a 1000 lies to fix a marriage… I just hid the truth for a while and roasted some peanuts….. I love you Meenu…
Shankii… Po-da… Chi, va-da… Aiyo vango nna 😄😄😄😄😘😘😘
Well, this is how I married this great peanut roaster for 2 years now…
Meenu Maa… Can you get some more peanuts for me…..
Here I come sweet 💗 …
I am now blinded by love 💑💑💑💑 … I won’t tell you what’s gonna happen next… You too don’t get too inquisitive to read… Byee…

P. S. The story and characters are fictional… Especially Meenu and Shankii… Let’s await to see them come alive in the short film.
Well, the story’s Tanglish version is available too Check the Tanglish version of the story here . I re-wrote it for some of my friends, who wanted it in English…

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Misleading Trad-Critics

Ellarukum Namaskaram…. Ubhaya Kushalopari – Hope you are all doing good 😀
Well, naanum nanna daan iruken, unga aseerwadathula, sila peroda saabhathila innumum nanna ve iruken 😛

After a very long time, I came on facebook… To my horror of the Indian haunted houses, my news feed was filled with several blog links bashing our wedding traditions in the name of ‘sexism’ and some blogs requesting us to change or mend our ways…. I have given these people a new name – “Trad-critics” .. I read each and every article well and asked some views from some sensible lot of people I know…
“In the name of Criticism, some writers are just showing their inability to understand some traditions and their values” says Madhavan, a 27 yr old research scholar from Srirangam, who is vexed with the so called Trad-critics.
“They think being western means being modern . The irony is west is adapting our culture. They are like a heard of goats, can’t think for themselves.most importantly they will malign the image of their land , for money. They basically do nothing but voice out their opinion, not knowing anything about the traditions and values. Nothing is actually done in the process. Empty vessels make more noise” Says Kicha, a 21 yr old CA and Law aspirant from Chennai, who is vexed with the trad-critics.
“Without knowing the scientific significance behind the traditions, which have been proven to be right by the scientists, you have no rights to comment” Says Vaishu, a 24 yr old double PG holder from Chennai, vexed by the trad-critics.

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A clear example of how well people have mis-understood our rituals, mis-leading the youngsters.

Makkale, did you notice that the person writing this post and the ones who gave views about our traditions being ruined are youngsters?

Coming to the next part of the post…
I had come across a blog post, which, I guess is 2 years old, by a learned person, whom I don’t really know 😛 , but his blog did annoy me… Time For Brahmins To Change At Least in Marriages.

Sir, after reading your blog my Appa is literally behind my akka and me to marry asap… Arey, what is this? Do we really have an age to get married (doesn’t mean 60 aam kalyanam ok! 😆 )
And yes, the reasons stated in the blog by the girl and her parents are absolutely nonsense….
Ever thought about parents who have one daughter or 2 daughters? Just getting them married isn’t any great accomplishment of a parent… I guess you have no daughters, that is why such a one-sided blog….
Remember these things,
– We don’t really mind going and telling our parents to search for a suitable match for us…We are not so shy as you think..
– We need to focus on our career like any others would so that with a little bit of financial independence we get, we can relieve our parents of some financial burden… I feel it is nothing wrong to contribute some money to our house… We are not any beggars for that reason ok!
– Remember that no father or mother is dependent on their daughter’s earnings… Our parents are very big Roshakaaras for your kindest information… It is we who feel the responsibility and ask them to retire from work…
– Our parents are not so irresponsible or paavam to accept any decision of ours, you don’t know how much our appa and amma keep lecturing about the advantages of getting married early 😡
– And finally, Kanya daan is done way before the girl reaches her puberty, because child marriage is a sin, our parents are doing Kumari Daan 😛 what if it is delayed by a year or two, they wont get any sin…doing kanya daan at the right age will only teach them how to count the grills in the jail 😆

And then, coming to the next aspect – Asking brahmins not to consider the other sub-castes for marriage.
Uncle, you clearly mentioned that you spent 3 years searching alliances for your son, in the matrimonial sites…. Had you not considered the sub-castes or astrological stuff, your son would have got married within a month of his profile being posted in the websites… Wah! how nicely you are talking after getting your son married…  As such, our parents are not so desperate in getting us married to some random person… What is wrong if they search for a right person and yes, we will consider the sub-caste… Not only sub caste but also we will search for a Kerala Iyer only, what is your problem? We are happy like this, our parents are not having any burden coz of us, I don’t know why is it bothering you too much… Can you Imagine your tam-brahm daughter facing issues in a telugu or kannada brahmin household, right from the language we speak, everything differs, except for the Divine Janayu.
It is easy to speak anything you want…

Dear elders, remember that we youngsters have great respect towards you, but please have some consideration towards our views on life too… We are listening to every word and order of yours, why don’t you give us a chance to choose the time we want to settle down? As such we are not asking you to start searching matches for us girls at 22 and boys at 25… We are just asking you to delay it by 1 or 2 years only…. We are still young at 22 and 25, unable to figure out several things of life… At this age, we just want to progress in our career and make ourselves financially stable so that our parents can sit back and relax…. Don’t you fear that we will marry some one out of your choice, remember that we have given you all the rights to choose a right partner for us coz we very well know that you elders know what is the best for us and we trust our parents so much….
Dear blogging elders, please don’t mis-lead our parents to find a partner of other sub-caste or some one whose mother tongue itself is so different from that of  ours.. You just don’t know how difficult it is to adjust in a totally new place… Had you given a thought that your daughter would be an alien in a new planet if she is married into a totally different language speaking, different traditions following house-hold, you would know the pain….

Well, this is not aimed for any personal reasons, I am just making my points clear so that such blogs don’t mis-lead our parents or any other parent to have a wrong notion about the girl’s parents….

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