T Anna turns twenty-eight this year. He is, by most accounts, a good catch. - IIT + Ivy League. He can also play the flute. Though to be honest, the only song that I have ever heard him play is – Kurai Ondrum Illai. That too only the Pallavi and never the Charanam. And Shivaranjani as a raagam is good only in small doses. What girl will want to marry a boy who is so melancholic? Anyway, he is still a good catch. Being in the land of opportunity has made him learn cooking (or so he claims). Also he is very boringly good. And most significantly, he is 6’2” that means every girl is shorter than him and potentially marriageable.
However, things are not that perfect either.
Two years back when T Anna got a job, Visalam Atthai came up with a proposal. That of Athimber’s elder brother’s daughter - N.
Visalam Athai thought that N would be the perfect bride for T Anna. This essentially because N was 5’8” (how many Asal Tamizh Penn will have such Miss Universe proportions?) and also because she was in Austin, Texas too. Appa turned down the proposal for two reasons:
1) T Anna was twenty six then and it looked like he could do better than that. After all, N was only an engineer from Erode but T Anna from IIT KGP
2) More significantly, Appa has always been Anti Kaushika Gothram. He felt that the hedonism of Vishwamitra was not compatible with the austereness of Bharadwaja Gothram
Amma herself a Srivatsa Gothram had cautioned Appa on his foolishness. Yet, a letter was sent off to Visalam Athai saying, the horoscopes didn’t match and therefore cannot be proceeded with further.
N got married two months after that.
Since then, T Anna has seriously considered five girls.
Girl 1: L who was working in an IT firm in Hyderabad. She was 5’3”. Wheatish complexioned. Srivatsa Gothram. And accomplished enough. T Anna liked her. Because she was pretty without being fat. After meeting T Anna, she rejected him. Because T Anna refused to get rid of his glasses with a laser surgery at Shankar Netralaya.
Girl 2: N who was a journalist working with a newspaper in Delhi. She was 5’2” and Kashyapa Gothram. Amma and Appa were initially hesitant about a non Science stream girl and that too from Delhi. But after L, they were a little desperate. T Anna liked her as well, even though she was a little well endowed. But she was a closet smoker and had an Ex Boyfriend from IIT Delhi, which appealed to T Anna. N went to Texas to meet him and rejected him as well. Because she couldn’t imagine spending the rest of her life with someone who had not smoked Marijuana.
Girl 3, Girl 4 and Girl 5: were all Kaushika Gothram. By now, amma and appa were very worried. T Anna, rejected all three of them. When he rejected Girls 3 and 4, the parents thought that it was only fair. After all, two girls had dumped him.The last six months have been a lull period. No jadagams come. T Anna’s vision is worsening. And every time he sends his photographs, he looks more world weary. We even put up an ad in – The Hindu and while we got close to 300 responses, most didn’t work out.
Rejecting Girl 5 was a mistake. She was nice. She was pretty. Except that, she was far prettier in her photograph. Somehow, this was considered tantamount to cheating. I felt sorry for Girl 5. Just because she photographed well, she will never get married. I thanked god that I look the same no matter what/how/where?
Initially, we were choosy. We removed all of the following:
1. Palghat Brahmins
2. Tanjore Brahmins
3. Ahilyam Nakshatram
4. Kausika Gothram
But when we wrote to the others, they all responded in the negative. Then we compromised and included Palghat and Tanjore Brahmins. Still the same. Then Ahilyam also, still the same. Finally, the Kausika Gothram also. Still the same.
Amma says, the problem is – Bharadwaja Gothram.I am very worried. Especially for me.
Appa says, the problem is – Texas. It seems like a place that only losers will live in. Girls only want to go to California.
Mani Periappa says, the problem is - the Soda Bottle Kannadi.
T Anna says, the problem is – the boom in the Indian job market and India’s shiningness. India is the new Glam place.
Is there any way to change my Gothram without marrying?