Let the storm pass
The party starts at 7.30 in the evening and the driving time to Shyam and Shree’s house - our host, is around 40 minutes. Its 6.30 and I am in the middle of tying my shoe laces, when a very innocuous question is posed by the Lady Of the House (LOH) – “what should I wear”. This is the most dangerous four word sentence mankind has ever heard. The uninitiated and inexperienced husband will offer an answer without thinking twice. If you do, you are doomed for life. This is a very loaded question which needs to be handled with utmost care and tact, failing which you are certain to end up in the dog house. The way out of it is not easy. To answer this question, firstly you should know what and how many saris, dresses, etc she owns, their colours, what is the latest trends in fashion, what kind of a party, is Nosey Naina attending etc. If you are an ill informed man or kind of person who believes, bell bottoms are still in fashion, Asha Parek was your heart throb, this is the right time to sound the retreat and depart from the battle field. Say you have to urgently put fuel in the car, you have to lend a thousand bucks to your close friend Mr Nobottom on the 9th floor, say something, even mumble if you have to and do a Carl Lewis.
What ever answer you offer, you are entering into a complex black hole from where there is no escape. You add “Why don’t you wear the saree you bought from Kalakshetra” and you think you have passed the viva, wrong “ which one the blue one or the one with that broad pallu or the one I bought with your mother”. I recommend silence or quickly fake a sore throat and start gargling. Any answer you may give, is fraught with inherent danger – especially the last choice. At this stage there is only one escape route . If you have a grown up daughter, hand over this life threatening situation to her. “ why don’t you ask Akhila, let me get her for you’.
Normally no solution is found at this stage and you are told ‘ I don’t have anything matching’. Here also I very strongly urge you to remain silent. I know you are itching to say ‘all the cupboards in the house are full of your clothes’. I beseech you to exercise caution as you don’t know the next . ‘ I have nothing to wear’. All lies, you are still paying the credit card chaps for the huge shopping expedition she undertook in Nalani with her friend Mrs Kumpel Save Shoopar only last week.
If you have managed to survive till now, you are a great husband. In the next society get together all the meek husbands will look up to you as their role model.
‘Please for heavens sake get dressed fast or else we will be late for the party”. Boy oh boy you have made the gravest error. Instead of holding her hand and guiding her through the most difficult journey in her life which happens at least twice a week, you have blamed her for the delay. Nobody can rescue you at this stage. Maybe tell her “we will go to the Cottons exhibition at the Kanteeravas next week” “ I will take a day off ” even better “ why don’t we plan Paris this summer’ no guarantee, you never know it may work.