I promised myself that 2012 was going to be different and I’m going to make it happen. While the month of January was spent doing a lot of things that I’ve never done before (like walking backwards, speaking in Hindi for a whole day, asking a man out on a date, etc.), the month of February is going to be spent just being nice and overly expressive and mushy, so please bear with me. Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and like most people my age, it is the day when the cynic in me comes out to play (read sit-in-a-chair-and-mock-everything-people-younger-to-me-say-or-do). But not this year. This year, I’m going to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Minus a valentine. Minus the sickening Archies-gallery-and-Hallmark products. Minus the skepticism. It is just going to be a day of appreciation. There are a lot of people in my life who have been exceptionally nice to me and I’ve never taken the time out to let them know how much they mean to me. That’s going to change. Tomorrow, all the very lovely people in my life will receive an email/letter from yours truly. Not a lengthy, sappy letter. Just a small note telling them that they are appreciated. It’s time to give back. Sadly, I realized that I don’t have mail addresses for all these very nice people. So the element of surprise will be missing because I’m asking them for mail ids. If you read this, and if I know you, and if you’ve been remotely nice to me, please send me your mail address. The notes are going to be personalized and not copy-pasted. Make my day. I promise I’ll make yours. Love.
Here I am. 15 days into the new year, 30 years old and none the wiser.
I've received a lot of unheralded advice, and unwanted opinions about my life choices in the last few months. You know the drill. They say I should stop switching jobs, get married, raise a family, look for stability (ugh!) and basically, do what people (especially ladies) my age are expected to do. I'm tired of the questions and I'm extremely annoyed by their total lack of understanding. So instead of ignoring them like I have been for the past couple of years now, I decided I should address their questions (no, they call it concern) in a blog post. I'll try to be as forthright as I can but just in case I get sidelined, please do read between the lines.
Let's break up the problems people have with me in categories and address them, shall we?
Yes, I'm a qualified engineer and an MBA and no, I do not have a 7-digit salary per annum and no, it does not look likely very soon. The longest I have managed to stay in a job is umm...9 months (and no, it wasn't what you're thinking and no babies or men were hurt in the process). I switch jobs every few months, it's true. The HR people of every company I work in give me quizzical looks because I walk out of jobs just a few months before appraisal time. My job profiles have changed from client-servicing to marketing to concept development to writing to editing to God-knows-what. But I don't go out looking for jobs armed with my updated CV and butterflies in my stomach.
I simply refuse to stay in a job that offers me no growth opportunities. I refuse to be party to office politics and gossip. I refuse to find a "comfort zone" where I work so that leaving a job becomes a task. I refuse to work in a place where putting in 16 hours of work 5 days a week makes me feel guilty for taking the weekend off. I refuse to lick the floor or my senior's ass. I refuse to let my ass be licked by people who are not senior to me. And, I refuse to close my eyes when the bubble is about to pop.
I work for 2 reasons only. Growth and money. If I'm not growing, I'm not staying. And if you can't afford me, then you can't afford my growth. My CV is more botched up than you can imagine, I know. But what is the point of working 3 years in one company when by working only 6 months in it, you know that there is nothing left to learn there? Now I'm not advocating that everyone should follow suit and change organizations as quickly as I do. And to be honest, I would love to work in a place for years at a stretch. I'm just looking for that perfect place.
The only people who have the right to question my single status are my family. This right is exclusive and nobody, NOBODY else is allowed to ask me what my plans for marriage are. Basically because I don't have any right now.
I realized a few very unfortunate things recently. I'm not an anti-social person. I have friends of varying ages and backgrounds and it's a pleasure to talk to them so that I can understand their deep-rooted retardedness. I was only kidding about the term "friends" of course. So the unfortunate things I realized were:
Men are more insecure than that tiny little pup you bring in out of the rain.
Four out of the five single men you will meet will say "I am commitment phobic" and then as soon as you give them your phone number, they will break down and tell you how messed up their last relationship was and how they still bear that scar and <I don't know the rest. My brain switches off at that point and my phone suddenly runs out of battery disconnecting the call.
If you stay alone in a place like Delhi, you should accept the fact that every man wants to drop you home. It is advisable that you travel in your own car or in groups to avoid that, unless you want to find refuge in the arms of a random stranger.
You are 30 years old and a single woman in North India? Okay, that just doesn't compute. We will have to reload the data.
Wanted by many, taken by none. Looking for me, honey? You've had your day in the sun. (Meaning: Be paranoid.)
People have a problem with me because they say I'm too frivolous about things that they are sensitive about. Well, I'm sorry. I have enough problems of my own. Deal with your own shit.
I do not care if you have been cheated in love. You should have seen it coming.
I do not care if you think my updates on Twitter or Facebook reveal too much about me. It's my life.
I do not care if your favorite celeb has had a baby or released a new movie or launched a new perfume.
I do not care if you and your parents don't get along. If you want my opinion, it's not going to be in your favor. So don't ask for it.
I do not care if you think reading this blog post wasted your time. I'm not Dalai Lama.