Ever gone through matrimonial ads in the newspapers? All of them ask for brides who are slim, fair and “homely”. Mommy dearest, in her quest for the perfect son-in-law (another post for another time) decided to put in a description of her darling daughter (read ME) the other day over phone to someone. “My daughter is tall, slim and fair”, she proclaimed. Sitting at my computer, engrossed in finishing my reading list on Google Reader, I was barely paying attention to what she was saying until that minute. However, I did a minor double take when I heard her description of me.
Wait a minute. Just when did I become slim? Or fair for that matter? At five feet and nine inches of height, I surely tower over most Indian women, and even some men. But slim? I don’t think I’ve ever written about it, but my desperate attempts at going to the gym, salsa classes and even aerobics met with dismal failure barely one month after the start. I wouldn’t call myself overweight or fat, but I certainly can’t be classified as slim. As in, I do not resemble a lizard, an escape from Somali famines or Kareena Kapoor at size zero. Sorry. Nor is this my idea of beauty. I turned and looked at my mother, with an expression of disbelief. She ignored it. Over the phone, she continued eulogizing her daughter’s perfect proportions.
As if that were not enough, she called me “fair”. Not wheatish, not brown…fair!! Yikes! Me? Fair? Since when is brown skin considered “fair”? Dusky at best, would aptly describe my complexion. But no, mom refused to be convinced. According to her, her daughter is still slim, tall and fair. My arguments failed. Sigh! For the first time, I found myself giving up without a fight. All because of one sentence. She turned around, exasperated at my pointless protests and said, “Kaakkaikku than kunju pon kunju.” Now, who can argue with that?
PS: At least she didn’t call me homely. That would have been the ultimate sacrilege! 😛