Nobody. And I mean NOBODY subscribes to an Indian (as in from India) matrimonial Web site thinking they’ll become the subject of someone’s work of non-fiction. Then again, I never thought my Internet groom-hunt would become a conversation that included a flasher, a sex freak or two, a stalker, a mute, an Indian cowboy, and a man with a speech impediment, to name a few. But it did.
They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. So I am either insane or insistent, and spent three unsuccessful years online dating for desis (the slang word Indians use to describe ourselves). Yeah, well ... I don't think I am down with brown any more.
In fact, when I think about it, I resisted the concept of online dating for a very long time. I cited vanity --- I was too good/pretty/smart/young/insert adjective here --- because, really, who other than freaks, geeks, losers, undesirables or untouchables did it? This was followed by my loud proclamations that the Internet was ONLY filled with liars and creeps (this I wasn’t actually wrong about). And finally, with Indians numbering over a billion worldwide, equipped with an international network of sari-clad aunties born to arrange marriages, should getting married really be this hard or become the subject of an entire blog. Yet, it did.
I suppose growing up in Minnesota, where you couldn’t swing a dead cat without hitting an attractive white boy, didn’t help. The Land of 10,000 Lutes wasn’t the ideal place to set up base camp and date in a niche market of Indian-Hindus, hoping his Honda (driven for fuel efficiency) or Mercedes (driven for status) got stuck in a snow bank outside of my house.
This led to insomnia --- did I really want to marry an Indian man? Or was I doing it to please my immigrant parents? I used to think I was battling being American and Indian, Minnesotan and Punjabi --- but really I think I was suspended between the Indian goddesses Sita and Durga. Sita is considered the perfect daughter, wife and mother who spent her ENTIRE life sacrificing and from my point of view, suffering. And Durga (created by the male fraternity of Hindu gods) restored law and order on earth when the MALE GODS lost control. While Durga is revered for her strength, she is never associated with a male counterpart. Additionally, I began worrying my ovaries were rusting out and that I was giving myself gangrene.
Then one August morning I had to do something before I woke up at 80, a spinster draped in a caftan, with cats, drinking Cutty Sark straight out of the bottle. Then it struck me, if American companies could outsource jobs to Bangalore, I could move myself from the Minne-Apple and plop myself into the Big Apple, home to one of the largest populations of Indo-Americans in America. So I took control, packed up my stuff and got the hell off that iceberg.
Because writing is very cathartic for me and I actually heal this way, I decided to blog about my misadventures in desi dating. It was also a very effective way to share my stories with friends. In time though, all of this became a lesson about my resilience and my ability to forgive the most important person in my life, myself. I might be the only person in Manhattan without a shrink!
I acknowledge that these entries involve actual men, women, children, dogs and locations. Accordingly, I changed names, jobs, events, hometowns, and places of origin to protect the innocent and guilty, the un-expecting and the informed.
For anyone who has been single or has a single girlfriend, sister, friend, mother, cousin, mentor, etc. please take the time to celebrate the woman warrior inside of her.
And if you have a story to share ... bring it on! I would love to hear it!
IMPORTANT PLEASE READ (this paragraph is added Thursday, December 22, 2011 to Post 1: This blog is being written in present tense about past events. It is journal/memoir/blog all in one. I am trying to comment in present time too about the present posts. If you have any questions, let me know. The comments are being monitored as I received A LOT of hate and venom comments this week and had to begin censoring. I do read all comments and will release the ones that add value, I have no issue with discourse, please just respect one another and no name calling. I have been called everything you can think of and I won't tolerate readers and commenters go through that!
DG (Desi Girl)