Monday, August 01, 2005

Matters in law 

This post is courtesy a chat with my darling sis's boy friend X. Now I had called up home and X was also there. So I asked Pummy what X was doing and she told me that X was chatting with my parents. Aaaah! The customary sweet talk with the girl's parents once they allow you into the house. I've done it several times and have seen tons of my friends face the drill too. So I asked for X and passed on some invaluable advice to him and since this blog is mainly an educational forum (!) I thought of sharing the droplets of wisdom here as well.

For starters, it's a big honor when the girl's parents start talking to you. It's a different thing when you and two other male friends visit her house and you are just "one of the guys". All you have to do then is say, "Aunty the food was very good." But when one-on-one visits begin (or are allowed) it gets a lot trickier. You, my friend, will be judged and you, my friend, will have to pass with flying colors if you want things to go any further. It's very easy to make your "very nice guy from a good family" tag turn to "I dunno what she sees in him" blotch. So be careful.

The line is thin - very thin if I may say. On one side lies the adjectives of "earnest, sincere, very sweet etc." and a small jump can get you the unneeded basket of "strange, fake, weird". So walk carefully. The key step is to identify who the leader of the house is. From my personal experience, the chances are higher that it'll be the mother. Once you've figured that out you have to divide your attention on a 60-40 scale tilting towards this leader. Remember - the mother always "cooks brilliantly". An occasional joking mention of "how the daughter is not even an ounce of her mother's talents" works wonderfully. There are some trump cards and the best one is when you say, "Aunty, how did you cook this? I have to tell my mom to do the same!" Yes! Once "aunty" ups "your mom" in some angle - you become the darling of the house. So remember - aunties are easy to please and the way to an aunty's heart is through your stomach.

Now let's talk abt the "uncles". The father is normally more protective abt his daughter and the chances are high that you'll face some icy chill cold shoulders to start with. The key is to overlook this phase. No father will greet you with "Wow! You are the guy who wants to date my daughter" smile. But there is one thing that's common to all these fathers. No middle aged man in India is ever at ease with the political situation there. It doesn't matter which party is ruling - there's always some political policy that irks the Indian man. The key is to ask non-partisan questions and then just let them speak. "So, uncle. How do you think the present govt. is doing?" If "uncle" likes the present govt he'll rant abt the previous one else the sides will be changed - but rant he will AND that lil rant my friend will get you a lot closer to the warm heart by the cold shoulder. Another savior when it comes to the father is Cricket. A "do you think India will win this series?" can get you the man of the match award very easily. So try to use it well. As a final note remember that music, movies and literature are dicey topics and should be avoided if possible.

Having passed on this information, it's time to get back to Perl scripting!!

That was some Pearls of Wisdom!!
Pummy sure is the best source of information on your blogs.
I think the "uncles" and "aunties" are catching on. Things are way more complicated than good food and political banter these days :)
I tried a different tactic - ingratiating myself with the much younger brother, whom everyone else used to ignore. This automatically endeared me to the mother, who doted on her little boy.
@manchus - yes, am i not happy that she is too busy to blog :)

@m - chah! whatever happened to othe good times when all the mentioned things would earn me rave praises from "mashimas" :((

@g9-the great - brilliant ploy but one that would backfire if the brother is replaced with a younger sister :))
have you guys faced this: your mom hates every single girlfriend of yours, and everytime "the one before her was such a nice girl"?
hahah good advice Sagnik!...
sigh, my dad doesnt like sports at all!!.. and NO politics!. wonder what the poor boy will do!!

My MOMMM however LUURRVEs boys who act dynamic and dashing and do silly little gentlemanly stuff...*while i gag in the corner watching them try to impress her .. *.. err and thats JUST for her cooking.. trust you me!!... the way to a mom's heart is through his tummy. is 100% true!!
Nice points..reminds me of 'Meet the Parents'...unfortunately for me I am still looking for the 'right' girl so the right parents take a distant second on my list of priorities!

And I thought all that was needed was to watch (and learn from) "Meet The Parents/ Fockers"...
Damn! vin stole my thunder! (didnt plagiarise... honest :))
@hhsnbn - an awesome observation. AWESOME!

@grafxgurl - see that's where the leader of the house info comes handy. if ur mom's the head - then even if daddy dear doesn't like sports - mommy will put in a god word for the guy :)

@vin - join the gang - or should i say welcome to the competition :)

@aj - what? you wanted me to just Fock Off???
Since u seem to have it all figured out I guess u shall not be having any butterflies when u go to do ur version of 'Meet the Parents' :), brilliant post
Lol !
My mom always have problem with guy friends of mine , so bf ...far fetched thought but one true thing that works even with my mom is to just tell her how bad her elder daughter is and her younger daughter is sweet sister and she cooks amazing !
And my dad never had any issues with guy friends of mine, he would start up a conversation himself , specially on career options ,etc and he hates politics and cricket.He just loves talking about hostel life!

Don't you think, for every parent the ball-game is different ?
@rohan - thanka man. but what abt "meet the girl" :((

@debalina - yeah! as it turns out from some of the comments - the fathers are difficult to generalize it seems - though cricket and politics has always helped me. mothers on the other hand seem to be easier to deal with and there is not reason to complain abt that :)
attention, attention, someone find sagnik-da a girl or list all the dating sites available. fast! he sounds desperate. BEAUTIFUL post. positively absolutely illuminatingly gorgeous. that should make you feel good!
the tech i used or rather still use is..go to my bf's house,xchange a few sweet hellos with mom dad..n promptly start teaching/guiding him in some subject tat he is weak in.n it works out wonders.not only do u earn the name "goody two shoes girl with a veryyy big helping tendency n g8 attitude" but u also get to stay in his house as long as u wish.in bet scores of sugar dipped smiles n pampering looks 4m his parents u also get to do a lot of "combined studies";).spend time with him n at the same time earn a 'nice goody gud girl' image 4m his parents:)
wow, i think you need to write a book about this, you'll help a lot of guys and from what i've heard i think they really need it. :)
but personally i've never let the bf meet the parents, just too afraid of the carnage.
Oh Boy! You are The Expert:) I have to send my boys over to you for crash course when the time comes (I am serious).
I AM IMPRESSED!!! (my CAPS key is not stuck... this is how much I am impressed.) Write a book "Meet the parents for dummies" :))
@sayantani - what? do i come across as that desperate :)) thanks for the nice words and now go and repeat them to some hot eligible girl :)

@xyz - you women have it "slightly" easier. slightly though. but your technique of group studying is brilliant. sadly for PhD students - there is hardly any chance of using that :((

@ashanka - oh! i've heard abt these carnage creaing houses too. the key is to create an image that he is a great guy who every one in college/work loves and then bring him home one day with other friends - the key pt is - make him appear hot propoerty without letting your parents know that you have the hots for him :)

@ratna - yes,a lil side money after poor grad school days will be surely welcome :)

@pradyot - thanks man :) another avenue for making money - yippie!
brilliant tips for the wud b bfs who havent yet faced the parents,
yaa i think cooking,politics n sports works most of the time
also the guys shud keep away their bracelets,single ear-rings n even opt for shorter hair when visiting those moms n dads else itz "funky guys keep away from my gal"
@swathi - great advice - earlier i used to be a heavily ornamented person (read 1 chain + 3 rings + 2-3 wrist chains :)) and had to face questions from everyone abt them :(
You realise how sexist this post is, right? Aunties are only interested in cooking and housework, and they care about nothing else in life. Good advice, of course. I am sad to say that the guy who tries anything even remotely close to this on my mother - just DIES.
found interesting!!
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