While the shopkeepers are busy raising the commodity prices and aunties engaged in fierce verbal combats to cut the prices down, the young ladies imagining themselves, probably trillion times, in the outfit and matching jewellery they want to wear on the special day, the men of the family are silently looking, with a mixed expression, as they see their savings gradually disappearing in the dazzle of wedding clothes and arrangements. The wedding season is near and it is time for many men and women to tie the nuptial knot and bond in a forever union.
When it comes to wedding, our otherwise lazy minds become extra imaginative and starts picturising, an outcome of too many romantic and happy-ending movies, of how the whole occasion is supposed to be and by the time the actual discussion starts within the families, we already have our shopping list ready. Now, shopping for a wedding is for both parties so obviously there are two types of list – a list for the bride and a list for the bridegroom. Here we will definitely talk not about these lists, but the other secret list that the grooms have in the back of their minds, strictly to be disclosed and discussed with close friends only.
As I have been honoured to be a part of many discussions regarding the secret list, here I present some of the important items from the so called ‘Secret Groom’s List’.
Alcohol – Although the trend is changing in modern Indian weddings, some families still have raising eyebrows and immediate opposition to alcohol in a wedding. Thanks to some of the instant messaging facilities, the groom will definitely have a group discussion regarding the most objected thing. ‘Kaunsa Chahiye? (which one do you want?), Kitni Bottle (how many bottles?), Desi ya Videshi? (local or imported) are the obvious questions asked by the groom and to the groom before the wedding. Not to forget about those friends doing emotional blackmail and making alcohol a compulsory item to be served secretly in the wedding ‘Daru nahi rahegi to main nahi aaunga’(If there is no liquor, I will not attend your wedding).
Girls and women – Even before the wedding date has been fixed, the groom is bombarded with questions regarding how many pretty faces the groom’s friend can see at the wedding. Trust my words, the friends have nothing to do with the wedding but to eat, drink and flirt! ‘Usko bulaya?’(did you invite her), ‘wo aayegi?(is she coming) are some mandatory questions the groom has to answer and before he can even finish answering, his friends have already selected the girl they are going to be busy with. Mind it, there is a gentleman’s agreement that no two men will flirt with the same woman, ’Bhai wo meri wali hai’(Brother, I have selected her).
Honeymoon – The marriage is yet to happen and the groom will already have a secret list for his honeymoon, and yes, friends are a major contributor to the list. Suggestions like ‘Bhai, bhabi ko leke yaha jana, mast jagah hai’ (Brother, take your wife to this place, it is nice place) have to be welcomed, willingly or unwillingly. Not to forget, suggestions of ‘mast jagah’s will come from every friend irrespective of whether they have visited the place themselves or not. Talking of honeymoon, there are other stuffs associated with it as well and the groom, without any doubt, will have a list for those stuffs as well.
Shoes – While the groom’s family members decide on the dress, the friends become experts in suggesting the matching footwear.’Chappal pehenke shadi karne jayega kya?’(are you going to your wedding in slippers?)is a common example of groom-shaming question. Believe it or not, the groom includes shoes in their list to save himself from sheer embarrassment.
All other items can be managed by family but somethings need special attention, so it is always fair to have multiple secret list on these occasions. And by the way, the groom should also have his say; after all, it is his wedding too!