No end to demands

No end to demands

You will understand why after reading it. Tell me, have brides become so cheap? I feel like taking that eligible bridegroom to court.

Your loving daughter, Kamala.

A portion of the advertisement that had upset Kamala went like this: ‘Wanted a tall, slim, fair, beautiful girl who is from the same community as the eligible bachelor, who lives in USA (community mentioned below). She must not be more than 25 years of age. The boy is 28, well-qualified, works in a reputed firm, and earns well. Reply with photo.’

Kamala’s mother, who lives in Karnataka, responds to her letter. Dear Kamala, saw the advertisement. Nothing wrong in it. It is a man’s world. Hence his privilege to demand the best. Why don’t you try? Mummy.

After receiving her mother’s letter, Kamala writes to Sunita, her friend in India.
Dear Sunita, I’m sending you a matrimonial ad, and my mother’s letter. See what the world has come to! We are supposed to hunt for our bridegrooms like Savitri of the puranas. Anyway, I tried, and here is the reply, and my response to it. Read both and tell me what you think.

The advertiser’s letter: Dear aspiring bride,  I saw your photo. You are pretty in a way but since it is only till the bust, I am unable to gauge your height. You do look a bit plump but we can rectify that through a strict diet. Since there is a lot of make-up, I wonder if you are really fair. My mother wants a very fair daughter-in-law so that the next generation will be fair. My father wants a lucrative profession-holder as my wife and I agree with him. Tell me frankly, how many dollars do you make? I hope you have saved most of it and not frittered it away on your parents like some silly girls do. Alongside, you should be able to manage the house completely. Since you know, servants are hard to come by in the States. You will be everything to me. By the way, I hope you are a green card holder.  Ram.

My letter to Ram: Dear Mr eligible bridegroom,  thanks for your prompt reply. I see you are in a hurry to get married, and at the same time choosy. Well, I am in no hurry as such, but would like to ask a few questions. You have stressed on ‘fairness’ (to be handed out for generations), does that mean you are dark? Alas, we girls also like fair men (Not for the same reasons as you). You have not made any mention of your height, or even sent a photo. For all I know, you could be short and fat, or puny. Alas, we girls also want tall, well-built husbands who are gentle in nature. Are you gentle?

You have also stressed on professional qualifications, more or less a computer-bride spinning out money. Your query on dollars confirms it. Does that mean you are not earning that well? And may I know how much you have saved? Or have you wasted it on your parents, like some silly boys do?

Regarding the green card, I hear many seemingly eligible bridegrooms marry just for a greencard, to stabilise their stay in USA. Are you one of them? And about house work, we working women believe in sharing responsibilities of house work, from toilet cleaning to cooking! Believe me, I am soft-natured (not just soft-ware), as long as I am not rubbed on the wrong shoulder. Convey this to your dear mummy and daddy. Kamala.

  Well Sunita,what do you say? There has been no reply from the mama’s boy.
Sunita writes back to Kamala:  Dear Kamala, excellent! It is time girls give back what they get! If not, at this rate, a time may come when these ‘eligible, USA-based bridegrooms’ advertise for strong, healthy, in-laws (without encumbrances) who can devote all their time and energy to helping out their daughters in all matters apart from baby-sitting.  Love, Sunita.

Meanwhile Kamala receives a letter from her mother which goes:   Kamala, foolish girl! You have spoilt a wonderful alliance! You have spoilt your life with your own hands. Have you no head?

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