In the 20 years I have spent trying to live on this planet, I have observed that everyone’s favourite hobby is to somehow believe that they have every right to ask me if I have a boyfriend.
As a kid, growing up, it is done in jest. As we grow older and pretend to be more knowledgeable about the workings of this wondrous world, the question continues to haunt you….in your preteens and early teens- it is asked with a coy or sly smile.But as you deny any “romantic attachments” at the age of 12, fighting that peer pressure which sees you as a misfit for not having a “boyfriend”, little do you realise that the true battle has only just begun and will lead to a thorny path requiring a very special set of skills (one Liam Neeson would have to learn too).
After years of trying to explain that I don’t need a boyfriend, I will try and explain to all those concerned friends of mine as to why I do not have one.
A) I am extremely anti-social– My idea of free and fun time is to lie in a corner with a good book, watching TV, travelling to serene places- all involving things where there is minimal interaction with people. ALSO might have to do with me being LAZY. I really have to make an effort to talk to people and can never bring myself to be really close to them….bringing me to the second issue.
B) Medusa– In Biology…Polyp and medusa are the two options that an organism belonging to phylum Cnidaria has.Mostly both these modes of life may occur in a single organism in phases or the forms are seen in separate organisms- Polyp being the form where the animal is attached to a substratum and the Medusa form- free floating, an example being the Jelly fish- unattache . My over-sensitivity and extreme scepticism, along with the fact that I have never stayed in one place long enough to be attached to ANY human being [I understand that relationships are based on strong trust and other random social glues for which time or a socially outgoing personality is of essence (reason A )] and sadly the human beings I do know, I cannot feel the same for after, a few years. Although I understand the predictable unpredictability of love and related human emotions; I loathe it.
C) Miscellaneous– I never got a chance or feel inclined to play video games (most as I hear are violent and as usual-objectify women.) I am not easily surprised or amused although fascinated constantly by nature-of space, time, living and non-living. I think I can be coaxed into watching sports but will not be committed enough to follow through, support a team, fall in ‘love’ with a game or sportsperson. I do not understand fancy cars and will not be impressed unless I can be assured that the car is secretly an Autobot or a Decepticon. Same goes with gadgets. Also although I’d say I am an avid reader-graphical novels, comics etc. aren’t my cup of tea although I have tried reading them. Maybe it has to do with the fact that I prefer a narrative way of story- telling with no images to one with multiple characters in boxes with speech clouds looming overhead. Perhaps I’m not visually smart at all.
D) Cheesecake: My father says that one must always brace one-self and deal with all unpleasantness as soon as possible and calls this- “eating the frog”. Highly idealistic advice but as all kids with parents and all those ‘wise’ parents, who were once kids know, we’d all rather eat cheesecake. To me- having a boyfriend-is a grown up relationship (albeit with its extremely foolish and petty-immature creepiness). I have observed the change which needs to be brought in to accommodate the egos of two people, their differing viewpoints (which I understand are glaringly obvious after a so –called “honeymoon phase”). I also observe that both the boys and girls become more removed from the general population- are not the same with their normal friends and most conversation being about the ‘significant other’- either a string of whiny expletives or a dreamy monologue of benefits of “love”. All of these traits are revolting and to a person of my already brilliantly “pleasant” demeanour and outlook- they seem bizarre. And having dealt-second hand with the teen drama easily comparable with American shows like 90210, I have realised that peer-pressure shouldn’t be a trigger or causal factor to begin or stay in a relationship. The “cool factor”-sadly, to date remains a major reason for people to “fall” in ‘love’- especially when they are in middle school (WHAT is that even about?). And because of the ‘cheesecake’ being my chosen path to salvation- all this drama just seems like a whole sack of frogs giving me indigestion at the thought of them.
E) “Not my cup of-”: I run the risk of being called immature and stupid thanks to the following analogy: – I get up every morning or sometime in the evening with a terrifying dilemma- what should be my choice of beverage? I like coffee one day….tea on the other, plain milk- with sugar, honey , turmeric (I’m prone to sore throats), green tea, milkshake (supposedly brings boys to yards) and so on. And variety is important- I am not the same all throughout- Change is inevitable, so I am a person with many personalities (no it is not a disease- necessarily) and from what I know of mixing beverages-mixing all of the above is a waste of resources so I sincerely hope a pleasing blend of personalities in one person is a real thing because as always I’m sceptical of the outcome.
F) Holy mother of Paradoxes– I have always maintained, that an individual-if willing is capable of thought and making informed choices but society is not, it is evil, un-understanding and derives pleasure from the tumults of another. Not only have I been accused of belonging to a generation of absolute “good-for-nothings” with no respect for “culture” and “tradition”, but the accusations are mostly unfounded as most of these people have never talked to me, know me or my opinions (and once I start with the opinions-as few know….I’m honestly sensible-open to debate). So one is stuck with a tag- and I notice our society-it’s take on women(even some women’s views) and no matter what we say of “progress”- I regret to inform you that everyone is actually in love with the ideal woman. You don’t have a boyfriend- “ugly” or “bitchy”, have one- but don’t want to get married or talk to others- attempting to have a social life independently- “Slut”. Like to talk aloud, express opinion which goes against the tide of blatant bull-sh*t thrown around- “can’t wait till she’s married and her husband or mother-in-law ‘teach her a lesson’”. The situation is so sad that the near constant stream of letching-intensifies if you laugh, smile, tie your hair, leave it open, wear nothing or everything, walk, move or eat. Because this is all part of the culture- the rape culture, the whore paradox- a vicious cycle every girl is inadvertently born into and suffers in until she dies- after having given birth (with or without her opinion) to yet another generation of sufferers. And in her life is forced into perpetuating the same crap she once wanted to fight and push that burden onto posterity, her daughter, daughter in law, the house help, that underprivileged “lower-caste” girl (yes- I maintain that most things like casteism, communalism, sexism, homophobia, racism etc-come in packages). http://www.storypick.com/damaging-truth-indian-entertainment-industry-doesnt-want-know/
This absolute hypocrisy of fake rationalism with stupid “traditions” is apparently the “culture” that I am supposed to be accused of trashing. So I belong to this culture where liking must lead to love to meeting the parents (not as hilarious as the Ben stiller movie), to marriage to kids. And liking someone is not simple- because most of them might be creepy, perverted stalkers- date rape is a reality one hears of often….but so is marital rape after a good, traditional arranged marriage. (yes please by all means- forgo all your personality and identity given to you by the specific permutation and combination of your parents’ genes, your mom’s mitochondrial DNA and your dad’s centriole- all to love and cherish some dude who is made from a whole different set of genes-might be a drug addict, a paedophile, a rapist, an alcoholic and so on OR an all-out nice guy). This is indeed the culture you want me to bring forth another life into (Duh!)- even though humans have reached the point; where it is not necessary to have children- overpopulation, so many sad and bad things and most importantly the vicious paradox- have girls to have more girls but don’t tell your sons what’s okay and what’s not okay “cause hey, the girls know how to behave-so boy’s needn’t”.
G) True Love: I’d like to blame Disney and Yash Chopra for ruining any practicality left in romance but I have come to realise that ‘practical romance’ is an oxymoron, I have realised that romance is just a sparkly cover to a hideously complex feelings’ stew. Up until now- I believe you could characterise me as an overbearing bitchy control freak with trust issues and no social life-with no want for an improvement from her present state. Actually you’re not alone because I know that of myself and the day I accept these flaws and imperfections(which also happen to be my strongest and best quirks)in myself completely, will I be truly ready to deal with another person’s. This understanding-at the rate I’m going might take some time but if I’m fine and content-shouldn’t everyone else be too?
Maybe I’ll start dating when I have the resources-monetary and emotional, to deal with the complexity required to deal with this elusive human relationship and so does the chosen human- to take chances but until then to all those concerned (in reality or just meting out what has been implanted by society’s need to butt in and ‘improve’ everyone’s life and use it later at gossip sessions)- Please refrain.
How do I explain to my boy-cousins, who make fun of each other for being “friends” with a girl- while they accuse her of being the other’s girlfriend and worse call each other a girl like it’s an insult. Do I make them understand the sad facts of life and the hypocrisy of society when they ask me if I have a boyfriend, accuse me of having many, ask slyly if I’m lesbian or assume that I am going to get married, become a housewife (said in the most menacing tone) and have children like that’s what every -one should want in life. But they are at the age where everything’s funny or needn’t be known and understood, but to those who read this and do understand, I hope that the next time you meet me or another human being, make the difficult choice of not invading her privacy and ask her about HER!