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Marriages are Made in Heaven… Sez Who????

Getting bored at work is a routine thing for Indian males, especially those who are on the wrong side of forty. And if the male is internet-friendly, there are two sureshot ways to cure boredom. The obvious first option is to furtively watch others fornicate on the porn sites that adorn cyber space. The thing about porn is that while it excites watchers at one level, it may also end up making one feel incapable (read impotent) at another.

Being in my naughty forties, I wasn’t too keen to compete with the gigolos of the web and their randy ways, and hence took the easier option out by posing as Mr. Know All. Quite a easy task in modern times, given the surfeit of information that a simple Google search throws up.

And so it was that I managed to find myself shadowing the mixed-doubles event of the decade – the announcement of a marriage between India’s tennis sensation who makes more sense on fashion magazines and Pakistan’s cricket star who finds himself twiddling his thumbs for a year, thanks to disciplinary action initiated by their authorities.

What’s more, the television channels endlessly served up news, views, expert opinions, political analyses, stock market gyrations, legal opinions, sporting headlines and whatever else they could categorize the Sania Mirza – Shoaib Malik wedding plans under.

In fact, my learned friend Rajdeep Sardesai described it as the “silly season for news” but reaffirmed that it was indeed news that kept tumbling out of the Mirza residence in Hyderabad and Malik’s cupboard in some part of Pakistan. Suddenly, one started hearing about Ayesha Siddiqui, Maha Siddiqui and many other Siddiquis when the only one that a Bangalorean like me know was the famous kabab shop of the same name!

They sell fabulous kababs there and my suggestion to the owners of the place is to take advantage and create a bigger branding based on the recent controversy. Of course, I’m not sure how I’ll react if the boy bought me a plate of “Maha” Kabab or “Shoaib” Mutton Fry or a “Sania” Tangdi.

Grr! Another problem with 40-year-olds is that they blather too much just as I have done now. The point I wanted to make is that how could television assume the role of detergent when two celebrities, including one that has assumed the status thanks to media, start washing dirty linen on the crossroads?

Any internet buff worth her salt would have found at least ten articles on the couple and the Siddiquis at any point during the day via a search on Google News. That tells me that spin doctors were working overtime as even a developing news story like riots, floods or other calamities cannot hope to set such a pace for “breaking news”.

The hacks had minute-to-minute reportage from the Siddiqui clan including details of when they married, where they spent their honeymoon, how the lady had a miscarriage etc.etc. The rabble rousing reached a crescendo whereby the police booked Shoaib and asked him not to leave India.

The question is, was he even planning to return to Pakistan? The chap is out of the cricket team and by the looks of it, he may stay out for a long time. So, what better option than marry your neighbor, qualify to play in the IPL and make some mega bucks and popularity that has so far shunned him?

As for Sania, she seems to have a lot of free time on her hands these days as she barely manages to stay afloat in any tournament for more than two days. I guess, I am mistaken… it is indeed a match made in Heaven! With the Indian media playing the Baratis.

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