Saturday, February 13, 2010

Attack of the Aunties

I recently became victim of something I only thought happened to girls in Pakistan. No I wasn't leered at by strangers while out shopping and no one tried to grab my bum in Sunday Bazaar, (well not recently anyway).

I was GOSSIPPED about by Aunties.

Now while my female friends have alway complained and warned me about this very desi phenomenon, you never realize how hilarious and gross it is until it happens to you.

So my parents have been quietly worrying about the fact that I need to get laid soon find a wife. Let me make it clear, they're not the pressuring sort, they simply wanted to plant the idea in my mind that I should stop dating whores and try to settle down. Fair enough. Anyway, I didn't really give it too much thought, but things were happening behind the scenes. Some aunty introduced my mum to some other aunty at some social event in the hopes that they would like each other and do the obvious thing and bind their offspring in holy matrimony. So the aunty met my mom, and checked out my stats on paper, and wanted to "take things further". My mum didn't really pursue the matter, given that I didn't know about it, and probably would have thrown a shit fit.

Fast forward a couple of months, the same aunty runs into the aunty who introduced them and is hysterical. Apparently she had run a background check on me and was horrified at my "tight pants", "long hair", "sleeveless shirt", "rock singing" and "dancing with girls".
Clearly she was looking for a boy with "loose pants", "short hair", "full sleeve shirt", "ghazal singing" and "dances with boys".

I guess she had heard about my performance in "Mamma Mia" or maybe she'd seen me on TV or heck maybe she read this blog. Either way she then launched into a rant about how glad she was that she found out that I was the destroyer of all civilization and how lucky she was that her daughter didn't meet me.

Now when I heard this story, I thought it was hilarious. Obviously. But the comment I heard next really got me. The aunty said:

"How can his parents be so nice and he turns out like this?"

Now it's one thing to gossip about me, or criticize me. I accept that I'm going to be under public scrutiny having chosen to be a entertainer. Most of the time one has a pretty thick skin about these things. But this was the first time anyone had brought my parents into it. It was a horrible feeling, It had never once occurred to me that my parents might have to suffer from embarassment because of me.

My parent have been pillars of strength for me and I have never once done anything without their whole hearted support. Hearing this story angered me and I ranted back at my mom telling her that we shouldn't even be socializing with idiot people like that. What she told me next was something I had never even thought about. She told me that I have to be prepared to hear comments like that about my family, because once you are an entertainer, people feel like they can talk about you without fear of judgment or consequence. We cease to be people. She told me that any girl I marry eventually will have to be someone who can cope with this. It's a sobering thought.

Up until now, I always thought my band and I were underground performers, known to some people in the entertainment industry and a few media personality, but not really known to ordinary people. But the fact is that more people know about us than I thought, whether it's through the internet or simply just talk. I'm not famous, but I am becoming.."known"

For people in my families social circles, it's almost unheard of that someone they know should be involved in the entertainment industry. Especially someone like me, who went to Karachi Grammar School and went to college in the US. They would imagine I would be doing something more respectable than being an entertainer.

Sadly this is a cultural phenomenon. This ambivalence towards the entertainment industry is crippling. On one hand you can acheive fame and fortune. They'll even call you a legend like "Madam" Noor Jehan. But behind your back, they'll refer to you as a marasi, a street performer, basically a whore.

I contemplated toning down my online presence after this. I even toyed with the idea of shutting down the blog because lets face it, the first thing that comes up when you google me is this blog and a post entitled "Kanye West: Chootia". I realize writing up here without anonymity is not without consequence.

Then again...fuck it. This is fun.


Anonymous Maryam said...

Do NOT shut down this blog. I love your blog. And I'm sure most of the people who read it will agree with me.

3:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I, being an average middle class Pakistani girl, who is 'supposed' to have all her values and morals in place would be more delighted to get approached by mothers of people like u for thou 'holy matrimony' instead of a lamba,chora, jawan, ghabru banker! So u just need to show everyone a finger and keep shaving ur pubic hair in zig zag deisgns and dying their tips red! Aag hai tu aagay barho....*gawd, this turned out to be cheesier than i intended*

5:04 PM  
Blogger . said...

Yay! The blog lives

5:27 PM  
Blogger Ali. said...

Aag tv should SO copyright that line lol.

6:43 PM  
Blogger KM said...

"Let me make it clear, they're not the pressuring sort, they simply wanted to plant the idea in my mind that I should stop dating whores and try to settle down."

sweet. at least they think you're getting
atleast you're a guy. I've had my poor mother questioned about how she can let me travel so much, not knowing what i get up to when i'm out of her sight.

although everything that aunty said is true. i think i've seen that picture of you in sleeveless shirt, long hair and crazy dancing. she missed out the eye makeup.

8:26 PM  
Anonymous Sana said...

aw and im so glad u came to the conclusion that "fuck it. This is fun."
so keep writing oba and stop caring bout the stupid aunties....we A.D.P aunties love u and ur blog!

9:02 PM  
Anonymous Nab said...

Hi this is your new follower. Am I late?

9:22 PM  
Blogger jammie said...

your band name makes all news kinds of sense now na. you need to disco up these aunties and give them a life so they can start looking beyond their blinders to the KIND of people these are.

10:12 PM  
Anonymous heena said...

you can't and won't go the arranged marriage anyway.

10:52 AM  
Blogger Moonie said...

i make all my friends read the kanye west wali entry. then they think im crazy. but its funny.

4:34 PM  
Blogger Omar said...

Thank you all for your love and support. If I could I would marry you all :) And yes the blog lives! I won't let some crabby old aunty take away my right to put dick jokes on the internet.

1:05 PM  
Blogger SWR said...

haha thanks!

6:20 AM  
Blogger Sami said...

dude, if i could get married, it shouldn't be too difficult for you. Fuck dem aunties. No. Literally. Fuck them. As in have sex with them. You never know.

See? Got married despite saying shit like that.

12:28 AM  
Blogger Moonie said...






concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert concert!!!



1:48 AM  
Blogger Rafaeel Akbar Chaudhry said...

Respect Sir Respect! \m/

6:10 AM  
Blogger Alpha Za said...

'Fuck it, this is fun', that's pretty much all that matters. Good on OBA, as a fellow Grammarian who to the US for College, keep your shit together and keep doing what makes you rock.

We wouldn't follow your band otherwise.

2:05 PM  
Blogger hushed said...

Glad the blog stays
Auntys never stop at anything
I think this is one of the few totally honest and heartfelt blogs I have come across in recent years.
No one is important enough to deprive you of this gift you have
Besides, dirty jokes rock!

2:08 PM  
Anonymous Mahvesh said...

Hey, people don't know about you and you're not 'becoming known'... just that they hear you have a band that's not even on TV a lot like Atif Aslam (yes I know he's not a band) and that's ALL it needs for you to be labelled negatively. Aunties NEED to gossip. The only bit you got right was the one about your family being dragged into it.

9:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you shave every day; Aunties are gonna talk and say hawww - he shaves every day!

If you keep a goatee; Aunties are gonna talk and say haww - he has a goatee!

If you grow a full bear...

You get the point... Rock on.. Blog on ;)

-Saad Rehman Shah
(The author has forgotten his id and password, but doesn't wish to remain Anonymous )

7:46 PM  
Anonymous SadafFayyaz said...

Aunties are worst towards girls...They ask more stupid kind questions from them and their families....Yuck.....I have been writing against aunties.....just changed their names,,,,,,its more fun....:))

4:07 PM  

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