Singing Vs Almirah Assembly

There was a point in the past week when we found ourselves assembling and lifting a huge almirah. Beads of sweat creased the forehead and the lip curled in concentration as the husband and wife duo drilled through the wood and clasped and shoved the pieces of the puzzle together. The beauty of creating something is always exhilarating even if the real genius is the guy who designed it that way. Have I gushed about Ikea before? I must have. I love that store.

Anyway, I don’t want to waste words praising somebody else in a post that the designer is never going to read. So, I shall stick to the point and go back to huffing and puffing with the almirah. I heaved and ho-ed. The floor bore it well, the bones did not. By evening, we looked like scraps of wood that could be blown away with a mighty huff and a puff.

Give any two engineers a task of moving an object into a space, and they will discuss strategy. We did too. Over coffee. Finally, we were ready. Shoulders squared, jaws set heavily, we pulled and shoved and pushed. The range of noises went like this


Grunt                           heavy breathing                 undecipherable loud noises

Just as I almost placed the darn 350 pound thing on my foot, I put the thing down clumsily and burst out laughing. That rankled the husband, since it upset his sense of balance. He somehow managed to save his toe in the nick of time and grunted like a mole under a mountain.

I am not an almirah-upsetter usually, but this time I was wondering about the age-old tradition in South Indian arranged marriages. There are a number of frivolous parameters used to gauge acceptance from the girl. After the social, economic and moral angles are suitably dispensed with, they come to the girl and ask her to – hold your breath – sing! Yes sing, of all the almirah-assembling tasks in the world, they ask a girl to sing, to see if she can handle the pressures of life?! It caused my father great tension in my youth, because even if I could sing, I was showing every inclination of pelting “Now, why don’t you sing a song?” people with stones.

If you ask me, they should have asked the fiance and fiancee to assemble an almirah and lift it and place it somewhere to see if they would be compatible. My spirit hovered over-ground and as I saw the sweaty saw dust covered couple trying to lift 300 pounds, this tradition tickled me in no small manner.

We laughed ourselves silly at the thought and suddenly the load seemed lighter to bear. The new almirah is ready and I have a new tradition for South Indian arranged marriages. How much better could it get?!

8 thoughts on “Singing Vs Almirah Assembly”

  1. I love Ikea!! If you love Ikea you will adore Scandinavian Designs! :–))

    And many ways to test the man-woman compatibility for marriage. :–)

  2. If I had been asked to lift an Almirah…Huh..mmm… I am not sure if I would have ever been married.. LOL.. On second thoughts, I might have convinced the guy to lift it on his own.. 🙂

    IKEA !! I know you guys love that store but I get lost and can never find what I want there..Not my cup of tea..rather store.

  3. Now that is one cool tip to check the compatibility levels ;).. i a thinking of making him pick it up all by himself, lets see if he can do the work meant for two 😉

    some more are welcome, since you got the experience..

    PS: now i know from whr does this sing a song idea keeps coming now and then

  4. I could think of a dozen more compatibility tests- my list keeps growing with every passing year of my marriage!! BTW, I will celebrate my 16th anniversary this year!!

    The questionnaire should include room temperature desired, sleeping patterns (my sister married an owl who is awake all night while my husband is up like a lark even on a weekend when I am fast asleep and clutters around!!)….

    I am referring only to some stuff you simply can’t get used to over time.Things like taste, colour, music…one can tolerate differences!! Any thoughts anyone??

    1. @ Jayshree: Oouch! This sounds more like a dissection you have done (trying to scare those who are yet to cross the line) I bet it is cool to have some differences in taste… else it will be like living with your mirror image, now how predictable will that be! Challenge and fun is to make your life around such chotu chotu non issues…

      After 16 it should be the wow! Factor, I bet… 🙂

  5. And I forgot to mention, my whole family now knows my husband will not assemble stuff from Ikea or move an almirah even to save his life!!

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