A dash of Pepper…

…with a splash of Mint

How ‘lucky’ am I?

Posted by Pepper on June 16, 2011

I was talking to somebody I know and I happened to mention to her that my mom was around. I went on to tell her all that we’ve been doing and the kind of fun we’ve been having. She told me I was really ‘lucky’ because Mint was okay with my mom staying with us. I was stumped! I am supposed to feel lucky for something like that? Why should I feel thankful when something is the way it is supposed to be? My maternal grandmom would live in our house for months, and both my mom and my dad would be happy to have her. I don’t think my mom ever felt ‘lucky’ because my dad was ‘okay with it’. We wouldn’t have married men who are as chauvinistic as that.

So that statement about me being lucky baffled me. I am a little surprised such kind of thoughts come from people belonginng to our generation, who are seemingly modern. Patriarchy seems to be raising its ugle head everywhere. My in laws plan to visit us in a few months and I bet nobody would ever tell Mint how ‘lucky’ he is because I am okay with his parents staying with us. That is just expected of me.

It was dinner time and I was just saying to myself for the millionth time, what a stupid, sexist society this is. And then I paused and I looked around me. My mom and I were seated on the dining table, chatting and eating. Mint was standing, sweating it out in the kitchen, making dosas and serving them to us, hot and straight of the pan. I smiled as I felt a deep sense of satisfaction. Maybe there is some hope, afterall.

64 Responses to “How ‘lucky’ am I?”

  1. Titaxy said

    Comments like that leave me speechless, esp when it comes from people my age. it’s a long way to go before these mindsets change, but yes, there is hope πŸ™‚

  2. Comfy said

    You get hot of the pan Dosas. Just for that I won’t talk to you anymore. 😐 I am so so so J πŸ˜₯

    I can’t even understand about your friend, so no comments.

  3. Thank you for saying it aloud. Come let’s shout it out together standing on top of a tall building. There are two people to make ANY relationship to work. Just because the relationship worked doesn’t mean one of them got lucky. It is like insulting somebody to call them lucky for having a partner they have.

    And this idiotic chauvinism amongst the educated- show me the wall where I can bang my head!

  4. Phatichar said

    Don’t worry, these ‘lucky’ shots are by far ‘n few – my mom-in-law stays with us more often than my parents. It’s nothing to even think about, forget feeling ‘lucky’. Just ignore.

    PS: The dosa thingy made me nostalgic (I’ve done that many times as well)

  5. pixie said

    yup.. there’s hope!! πŸ™‚
    People were stumped too, when they learnt that K made the tea in the mornings, even for my folks.. and that my mom didn’t do any cooking when she came here!!
    heh! thats how people are and there’s hope with people and families like ours!

    have loads of fun with your mom! πŸ™‚

    • Pepper said

      Oh yes, people are always stumped when they find out my dad wakes up earlier than my mom and has the tea ready by the time she’s up. πŸ™‚

      • dipali said

        You know, my dad always made the tea in the mornings, till he was well into his seventies. Stopped when he couldn’t physically manage it. I grew up in the 60’s and 70’s with a father who could and would do anything around the house if required. I still remember the rather ugly looking but extremely delicious rasey ke baingan he would make. Of course I had to marry a man who is majorly domestically challenged, but both sons are reasonably competent in this sphere.

        • Pepper said

          Wow. I think a man who did the kind of stuff your dad did in the 60’s and 70’s is rather admirable. I’ve grown up watching my dad do a lot of things around the house too. My mom and dad used to take turns to wake up in the morning to pack our tiffins and get us ready for school. All the chores have been divided. So I don’t know why people find it so hard to think of that even in this day and age.

          The rasey ka baingan really made me smile .. πŸ™‚ .. It is okay if the husband is domestically challneged. At least you’ve raised your sons in the right way. This is why I said, I see hope..

  6. Sig said

    Lucky indeed πŸ˜› Seriously you are – to have all these people in your life to love you πŸ˜›

    But yes I know the feeling – I live like 5 minutes away from my parents so they don’t stay over but my sister gets that all the time. Sigh.

  7. R's Mom said

    Awww! Isnt Mint the sweetest ever πŸ™‚

    but seriously, I cant imagine myself being ‘lucky’ to have RD ‘let’ my parents stay with us..ulta RD says he is ‘lucky’ whenever my mom is here because he gets to enjoy her company..

  8. Bikram said

    It is indeed like that society is very silly. Dont know whats the problem.
    And the last few lines you and mum sitting and mint in kitchen is more of a awwwwww moment πŸ™‚ if you know what I mean.

    We live in hope but then I doubt for it in indian society..fingers crossed though…..:-)

    So where all have you taken your mum to… She enjoying her stay….

    • Pepper said

      Indian society is changing Bikram. I see it happening. Slowly, but surely..
      We’ve taken her to the usual touristy places around here.. πŸ™‚

  9. Scribby said

    may be your friend has had a bad experience herself [if she is married and her husband doesn’t approve of ‘normal’ things like this]

    But who cares…hum hain na tere generation aur tere jaisa sochne wale πŸ™‚ so YAY !! πŸ™‚

    • Pepper said

      No Scribby, my friend isn’t married. Nor does she come from a very conservative family. That is why her thinking surprised me even more..

      I know. Mere jaise sochne wale yahan bohut hai.. πŸ™‚

  10. NoName said

    Hey Pepper… I have been following your blog for some time, commenting for the first time.
    What u have written about is very true… It happens.. it exists everywhere..
    My in-laws are sexists. The things that they do will appall alot of people. I have tried reasoning, it just doesnt help. My husband tries too but then.. things never change.

    • Pepper said

      Unfortunately it is extremely hard to change the mindsets of people who’ve led rigid lives. No amount of reasoning works with them. It is sad. But as long as you have your husband’s support, as long as he is fair and does not let their sexist behaviour affect you, you can live the way you want

  11. Childwoman said

    You know, posts like yours make me feel that there IS hope after all! πŸ™‚

  12. Swaram said


  13. stuti said

    our thinking often stems from the way we have been nurtured( at home) and our borrowed beliefs(from home and our formative years). though , its is also contended that education and exposure change our mindset, but unfortunatedly and also commonly , some things are etched so deep that they, like old habits die hard!

    • Pepper said

      Very true. But you know, I’ve rarely seen cases where education has made mind sets evolve. Most of these unacceptable beliefs come from highly educated people. I think the environment at home and exposure to the kind of society you live in have a much greater influence on people. Like you said, it is because somethings are etched so deep, that they become to resistent to everything else.

  14. I have seen few cases, what your friend was referring to, in our generation and our parents generation also. I don’t think i will ever understand why any person would deny such basic things that bring much happiness in peoples lives (btw, it’s free). All i can say is – “it’s the stupid mind”. I hope i would offer a free “mindfullness meditation” course to such people at one point in my life.

  15. scorpria said

    Yea, I think most girls expect their husband to walk over them and think the slightest hint of a smile on his face or a nod of approval makes them “lucky”. If they’re in such a relationship, they’re not with the right person.

    And well, Mint is just out of this world. You’re soooooooooooo LUCKY, Pep πŸ™‚ πŸ˜€

    • Pepper said

      Yes, most women are wired like that. They are elated with just a smile from their partner. It is years of social conditioning.
      I know πŸ˜€

  16. Yes… it IS a patriarchal society … it has been so for ages … but changes are seen … slow and steady. There is hope though …

  17. Sands said

    If I wasn’t this “lucky” I wouldn’t be married πŸ™‚ I would even go as far as giving the person a piece of my mind πŸ˜‰

  18. Kavs said

    Such crazy people – will they ever learn about equality? Girls who otherwise appear modern in their expensive clothing and multiple professional degrees have sometimes stumped me with their ultra-regressive thinking. e.g A very well-educated ,independent SIL tells me that i’m very lucky that my husband’s family is okay with me retaining my maiden name. Hello! What makes you think i’d need to ask anybody?

    • Pepper said

      The name issue is quite a big one in Indian society. I wrote about it earlier. Yes, it is shocking to see how regressive the thinking of some girls is, especially when they faunt their modern clothes and coveted degrees..

  19. I just can’t buy in your friends comment on being lucky, of course you are lucky to have Mint and loving family around, but that comment of her makes no sense to me. R makes me tea and cook food for us, I feel lucky but meantime he feels lucky to have me around to do the same. Isn’t it we deserve same credit for our actions? We took my parents all around US when there were here and we did repeat the same when In laws were here, I feel there is no need to feel lucky factor as long as we play and give and take game.

  20. dipali said

    I like the ‘closing scene’ of this post!!!!!
    Anything that is not commonly ‘traditional’ gets these kinds of silly responses, given that patriarchy is really deeply entrenched:(.

  21. Someone really said that?!

    Arrgh! No words.

    How did you react/say to such a thing? (am still thinking how I would have reacted..huh!)

    Loved the picture the last few lines portrayed. Mint seems to make some mean dosas. In this case, I’ll sure say ‘Lucky you!’ πŸ˜€

  22. Mint makes dosas for you? You are “lucky” πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ teehee!
    *runs off*

  23. Deboshree said

    Ah… the ending makes me feel all is well with the world. You are lucky you know Pepper. πŸ˜€

  24. binpin said

    Tsk Tsk..some people.:).I used to get dosas made for me all the time and the exact same scenario happened two years back and I smiled. Hopefully years from now and I can relive the scene again. ..Hope you and your mom are having a Fab time.Btw i found this new indian drive thru in Santa Clara with some amazing non-veg dishes and thought of Mint!

  25. I think you are lucky to have Mint —hot dosas really???

    sigh…i guess i shudn’t complain – the tall one does make tea for my mom and i will say with a Hmmmph that it’s the thought that counts.

    On ur friend’s comment – all nonsense!!!

  26. soulmate said

    Thats how our society is generally conditioned.. ‘Lucky Girl’, you are..

  27. Awww at the last few lines. πŸ™‚
    I so agree with you – people have told me many times I am lucky that the OH is ‘ok’ with my parents staying over at ‘his’ house. Stupid set of rules our society has formed. 😦
    This reminds me of the day I told my beauty parlour lady in Ahmedabad that I was getting married soon. She asked me – ‘Will you be allowed to wear salwar kameez or will you be wearing sarees only?’ That probably brought me face to face with the ugly face of the society for the first time. I hate words like ‘allowed’ and ‘permitted’ in relationships like marriage.

    • Pepper said

      Oh right, I forgot about the house being ‘his’ and not ‘ours’. * Rolls eyes *
      I can totally imagine that statement from the lady in Ahmedabad. How maddening it must be! “Allowed’ and ‘permitted’ are truly lousy words in a marriage.

  28. Ashwathy said

    Be kind to whoever said that comment. It is probably a luxury they cannot take for granted, but one that u get even without trying as hard. πŸ™‚ U know what I mean. There are people like that. It shows less about you, and more about them actually…

    • Pepper said

      But that is what got me mad Ash. It is something so basic and I hate that it viewed as a luxury .. But yes, for some people it is a hard life 😦

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