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Friends First

Friends First

September 28, 2011

The dating scene in India. Funny, awkward, intimate, practical or just plain different?

There’s a casual once-over. Then there’s the decision to go over and say hi. There’s the brain-squishing task of coming up with a line and then there’s the getting shot down or realization that the posterior lured you into a false sense of security and the anterior does not deserve to hear that great line you came up with. Isn’t that how dating works from a guy’s POV? Here not so much. There are probably exceptions, but truth is India rocks the friends-first romances. You could probably even postulate theorems and corollaries to the situation, but I’m going to stick with a list :


1. Identify target.

2. Stalk target on Facebook and discover your mutual friends.

3. Offer to buy one of your mutual friends lunch in exchange for an “intro”.

4. Depending on success of intro, start messaging target (you may intersperse it with the occasional call depending on the situation).

5. Become friends.

6. If target’s appeal has persisted through those 5 steps, submit “proposal” to target, to take things to the next level.

7. Target responds affirmative, then proceed to the courting stage else resign self to wallowing in self pity and go back to step 1. I’m not sure if this approach is good, or even if its success statistics are better than the conventional dating rituals, but I do know that this is what happens here. You have to wonder if we think more with our brains when it comes to matters of the heart, or if we just have an organ that’s somewhere in between the two (the larynx maybe?)  making these “love life” choices.

I’m not entirely sure why the stark contrast in the patterns fascinates me. Maybe its the fact that it reflects a bit on the reluctance we harbour towards spontaneity. Or its the obvious amount of planning and rigorous mulling we put ourselves through for the smallest of things.

In a way its a good approach, although a therapist would probably find a way to relate it to childhood trauma, to the anxiety and unwillingness to confront people. I for one have watched with amusement as my friends fell for each other, over the instant messages flooded with ‘lol’s, text messages delivered at 2 AM with her *blushing* and him saying ‘gn :):), (which after the success of step 7 would turn into ‘gn :) :) <3 :*’). And of course there are the conference Skype calls which eventually split into a multiple couple-fest when the single ones are forced to sign off on account of the unbearably cutesy conversations. There is quite a contrast in it all, where spontaneity and the physical aspects take a backseat, and emotions take the wheel. As always we remain unique in whatever we do.

Photo credit
: lecircle 

4 Comments

  • Alfred Jones
    By
    Alfred Jones
    04.10.11 07:53 PM
    Ha, nice try Vidhya kanna, I'm not falling for that one again ;-)

    Thank you for the 'gn' explanation. As a newly minted Uncleji I'm obligated to find this abbreviated English a constant annoyance. In fact, a snot-faced kid from one of the IITs emailed me with a question about a product of ours he was using for one of his classes. His email was full of 'cud' (could), 'bc' (because), 'pl' (please) and similar abominations. I wrote him back suggesting that he first settle on propah English as a means of communication if he was serious about getting any help with his question.

    ~alfred
  • Vidhya
    By
    Vidhya
    04.10.11 12:38 PM
    :) gn= Good Night. Do I get a laptop fpr answering your Uncleji question? Uncleji
  • Alfred Jones
    By
    Alfred Jones
    03.10.11 08:09 PM
    Vidhya,

    For the record, this friends first MO is how 'dating' has been done in India for a long time now. The means and technology have changed of course. Back in the day, my buddies and I got into debt for those damn 'intro lunches' till we realized it was a complete racket.

    Wait, I just got suckered into buying a laptop each for my nieces because they said they need it for speedier schoolwork. Damn, those girls are clever.

    ~alfred
  • Alfred Jones
    By
    Alfred Jones
    03.10.11 08:02 PM
    Holy cow! And I just bought two of my twenty something nieces a laptop each because they said they needed them for speedier schoolwork.

    [Start Uncleji question]
    What does the 'gn' stand for in 'gn :)' and/or 'gn <3:*'?
    [End Uncleji question]

    ~alfred

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