June 02, 2005

Pretence

One of the not-so-amusing changes that has happened to me over the past year or so is that I have become increasingly arrogant towards others and to make it even worse I don't feel anything bad about it. In fact, it has grown into something of a defense mechanism whereby I don't have to let anyone into my system way too prematurely, only to regret it later. In reality, as a person, I am quite friendly, approachable and even quite gullible, though it might look like I am either terribly bored or disgusted enough to bite your head off, when you meet me for the first time. Honest!

Have you ever wondered why we make such a huge effort to try to appear nice, approachable and friendly, while the real person might just be the opposite of all that? Why do we have to pretend at all, in any case, to anyone at all? Why do we have to drift any further from what we feel? Why do we have all these layers of pretence between us and everyone else in the world. Are we that desperate, even at the cost of spending an entire lifetime being a fake, lying to ourselves, to belong to something or anything at all that comes our way? Are we that scared of it, while we already are quite a bit alone in our lives?

Talking about pretences, an interesting side effect of my not-quite-unofficial-anymore end of proceedings of my relationship is the kind of advice that I have been getting. Most of it has been to take up the plum job offer and move to Mumbai; some have advocated getting married to the next available female entity (so that I don't give the impression of avoiding the marriage route because of the earlier mentioned end of proceedings); but the most interesting of the lot has been to tell my parents to find someone whom I will marry two years later, while I get to have have all the fun I want to before that.

Strangely, nobody wants to give you enough credit for having other priorities in life other than getting hitched. I mean, what is it about being hitched that makes it sound like a panacea to the problems that all single adults face? It is bad enough that I see couples who knowingly walked into it having trouble keeping it all together. Now they want perpetually confused, distracted and easily bored psychological disasters like me to take another person's life, and maybe a couple of new ones too, as a hobby for the next couple of years and introduce them to an already chaotic planet, which is a horrible handful as it is.

There has to be more to life than procreation for the amusement of family and relations and of course, the one we cannot miss, getting to fuck for free (pardon the French, but that is what it precisely is for at least most of the men I know) and getting a car or a house (or even both, should things go well) that should get you into committing to something serious and long term as a marriage. I am not asking the rest of the world to follow in my footsteps. If you are well and prepared for such a step in life, do go ahead, but just let the others be. Of course, I did nothing better than to nod my head to all of that and pretended to agree wholeheartedly. Can you too smell the warm, tinglish hypocrisy in that?

The main reason why I am not making any of the above choices, or any other for that matter, is because I want to get in a nice reality check and figure out where do I stand now. With the eventfully routine and boring lives that we live these days, I have not had the chance to actually sit down and figure out how I am actually holding up. Something I know for sure is that I won't take the beaten path. I might be bored, I might be disillusioned, but I can't walk that 500 meter wide road that every Tom, Dick and Harry take every day.

For all practical purposes, I know and I have finally come to terms with the fact that I am a weirdo. I will snipe, sulk and snap at you because I feel like it. You know, it really is not my thing in life to make it easier for anyone.