Monday, January 16, 2012

Romance That was Not


Next to Man, among primates Chimpanzees have the general disposition to jealousy. I do not know if jealousy is more a gender specific trait and seen in women than in men, but seems likely so. Men do envy, but some say the extreme feelings are found more in women. And this is a short story of what actually transpired amongst three young people- a man, woman-friend and wife.

Romance, subtle and subsumed is part of academic curriculum. Though in some cases they go overboard and are publicly passionate. And are often displayed in the corridors of the alma mater, to eventually be enshrined in the scrolls as la affaire Romeo & Juliet! Sometimes the philandering consumes the platonic liaison.
It began as a trivial past time and fun for the group. By some odd way the two were declared in love and serious at that, though in reality that was not so. Recess and bunking of classes were in a group and the rest of them ensured to nudge and playfully prod the two as couples in romance. There was eventually a theatre of a wedding towards the end of the college term and was, let me put it, “solemnised”, by another affable chap.The fun and fan fare took place in the college canteen- wedding as if in a cathedral!

She was gregarious, fun loving, exuberant, lively young woman with abundance of laughter and a great repository of good conditioning.

The hero in the dramatics was a frequent and honoured visitor to her home and was considered as one in the family by her parents. They were such good souls that, the small group of her friends all had free access into the house. This gave opportunity for some outings together, with friends and even late in the evenings, of course with her parental approbation. A late evening at an annual fair of flowers was a catharsis of sorts. A fascination to be at arm’s length was discernible. He began to notice somewhere that she was not averse to the much made about peculiar relationship going critical (a term used in nuclear science when atomic reactors go functional, splicing atoms).Which should mean here that she began to like him and can be serious too about. There was love in the air! And it was subtle and quite.

I’m certain that only the duo would know that, without thinking that the other felt alike. He would be keen and willing to acknowledge and reciprocate her fondness. But the will to take a plunge was found wanting in both. Perhaps they were expectant that the other would show the courage. And most of all there was still a way to go to be flying on their own.  Reasons are obvious of a generation that was marooned in conventions and fear of the social controls.

Life moved on and she was married away.

However their affableness and friendly relationship continued. She was gracious to be present as a good old mate at his wedding which took place years later. And she stayed through with her little son and her genteel husband.

As destiny and chance would have it for a while, she moved into an apartment- stone throw from the house where he was with his young wife. It was a remarkable coincidence.
There were a few visits she made to his house, with her toddler son and sometimes together with her husband. It was during those visits and casual meetings on their evening strolls that he began to notice a decided irritation she displayed to his wife. It seemed more like the nagging nudges young kids throw on another. It was inadvertent, he presumed first. And once after a dinner at her house, he understood well and clear that she was fond of taking digs at his wife. Gathering little instances together it was apparently displeasure, annoyance and shreds of jealousy for a still born affair of long ago. It was plain “woman” in the act, nothing more nothing less! And only women can be tongue in cheek and throw subtle digs to make the supposed adversary uncomfortable.

As pedigree and conditioning would have its bearings, her conduct, attitude, and the envy which she may have borne in mind, slowly ebbed to metamorphose into dignified and loving friendship with C.


I once asked C, much later in life, if she ever noticed a petty irritation and annoyance in her during those early days after our wedding when we were neighbours. She nodded in the affirmative. And was also intelligent enough to realise that it was the ghost of a long ago relationship that never was, but could have been.

22 comments:

KParthasarathi said...

A beautiful story well told bringing out the subtle jealosy that is common when one loses out and another gains.I liked the way you carried the story

R.Ramakrishnan said...

Powerful story beautifully narrated of failed campus romance, affair after marriage, intrigues caused by jealousy & the understanding & mature young wife. Yes jealousy of extreme nature is normally associated with women - This is a man's perspective. What would a woman have to say about this ?

Happy Kitten said...

If jealousy was gender specific, then C should have exhibited a form of the same even if she was sure of your love..

Still waiting for the part 2 of another story that you did not complete...

Insignia said...

Loved the way you presented the story as a third person narrative.

I am not sure if jealousy is more prominent in women than men. I have heard of cases otherwise.

Nevertheless, C really took it in good spirits.

....Petty Witter said...

I think how jealousy manifests itself varies greatly. Woman very often seem to take revenge in a less violent way (by cutting off all the arms of his very expensive suits etc)wheras nine times out of ten it is men who you hear about murdering in the name of jealousy.

Anyway,

A great story, well written, thanks.

kavita said...

Sensible C ! In my opinion people who insecure and are not sure of themselves are more jealous than the rest irrespective of their gender .And yes ,I have seen that women are more expressive and show it while men tend to hide it.

anilkurup said...

@ KParthasarathi,

I guess there was nothing lost out here. The usual little cupid influence in the late teens. That was all.But then the slightly provocative attitude - how else can that be explained ? Thanks for liking it.

R.Ramakrishnan
That is a good question.Perhaps denial ? I, don't know!

@ Happy Kitten,

Do not take my statement on gender specific matter to heart. We are not relating murder and crime as such in this regard and borne out of jealousy.
This is not even jealousy here but a slightly less intent variant.
And C, at that moment and time did not know of the fun and games we had in college . It was only some time later I told her and she could relate the subject.

Part 2 ? oh it is reality that is too boring than a fairy tale beginning.

@ Insignia,

B, you too seem to have taken the jealousy and the gender specific relation to heart.yes indeed how else can one explain the mother in law feel of antagonism?
Thanks for liking the format of the story.

@ Petty Witter,

Thanks for the comment. Again let me say the extreme acts of crime borne out of jealousy is not in discussion. Such acts happen from both sexes. The jealousy of lesser intent are indeed women specific. No offence meant.

@ Kavita,
The slightly irritant attitude was discernible to C too. Perhaps she wondered why that was so. It was much later that in course of some stories from college days I may have told her the fun and she exclaimed relating the old incident. By then they were good friends .

NRIGirl said...

Loved the story.

About jealousy, I would suspect men are more prone, atleast from what I have heard around...

Mélange said...

Nicely written.And as I truly expected the young bride turned as 'C', intelligent and modest.Fine there.

Well,yes we may be jealous.In many ways.But Thanks to the EFFORTS you people have taken to repeatedly 'affirm' and 'declare' that we ARE.

Whatever the gender ,if you are into heart and emotions,true to it,it's natural to show that off.Perhaps the so called clever 'under cover'act of emotions by other gender made it easy to impose.(Here,I guess if the lady been jealous in such a situation,there may be other reasons which is untold.)

It's your freedom,but I have noticed,whenever you get a chance,you make a point to poke the other gender.

Regretful that otherwise a genuine guy,has taken 'gender specific relation to heart' (obliged to Anil,my friend there haha).You don't know Anil,you are more into gender.I have a journalist friend of mine,who happen to write something about 'women habits' and 'feminists' unnecessarily in whatever he writes.Finally I found the reason that he is been left out by his feminist 'lady love'.haha..Tell me the truth Anil,you have something ?

Insignia said...

Oh Anil, no I didnt take it to heart.

I am amused each time I hear about women's jealously because I have only witnessed/heard about men being jealous.

anilkurup said...

@ NRIGirl

There is a subtle difference between the context where jealousy and the term envy can be used. don't you think so.Manifestation of the feeling into the former and the later is all that takes place. Yes there are men ,who go rage with jealousy too.

@ Melange,
Ha , ha your reaction is on expected lines.
Let me assure you that the opinion you have gathered about my alleged gender bias or baiting is not true. There are certain characteristics that are glued to either genders.However the matter of jealousy is certainly more intense in women. And that need not be seen and understood as a flawed genetic disposition. But a strong via media that women ( female species of all creatures especially the primates and their cousins) to survive in the men infested surrounds and competitive environment amongst their own gender.I'm not a zoologist, but this is what I infer from the past many years of living and materials I could read.

Please see the opinion is not impassioned . And there are certain traits that are distinct to man and woman. Survival instincts, survival techniques, zealous guarding of possession ( read it as family here and the other possessions are collateral) are distinct to women. Man despite of his brawn and nefarious motives can become a cropper in the end.

You know the fact that there are more still born male foetus than girl and girls survive childbirth and childhood in far greater proportion . This the WHO finding. There is a distinct Natural predilection here. Can you say no?


@ Insignia,

Oh just a pun. Nothing as such B. I can understand take it easy.

Mélange said...

Ha,there you are with the justifications or whatever you may call.But I am there on what I opined Anil.That's my observation on your writings ,one among them incidentally.And yes,I may argue in paragraphs.But that's not worth it to me.It's nothing new that one is justifying what he is or what he writes.Go ahead Man !

anilkurup said...

@ melange,

Ha ha hee!! That is quite good.
Now, I'm yes indeed justifying my statement with some related matters. Well if we make an observation or a statement and is not able to reason it well then the power of discussion is value less. isn't it?

anilkurup said...

@ melange,

Ha ha hee!! That is quite good.
Now, I'm yes indeed justifying my statement with some related matters. Well if we make an observation or a statement and is not able to reason it well then the power of discussion is value less. isn't it?

Mélange said...

"It's your freedom,but I have noticed,whenever you get a chance,you make a point to poke the other gender".This observation of mine,I believe I don't have to explain to you.We had many of such writings from you where people like me came and left comments.But then again,if I feel that it's sheer wastage of time for something personal of me,that's my freedom.You may call it value-less or power-less.Good for you Anil.Lastly,many thanks for your latest comment for attesting my thoughts.

anilkurup said...

@ Melange,

Look friend , I'm not deprecating your stand. This is a healthy discussion.,It has to be so. I pen things in my own lay way taking cue of things and people as well as situations I have experienced in my , to be precise fifty two years of living. There are certain traits in both genders. Let us acknowledged that. That is biological. It is only when you see it through the prism of social etiquettes and norms that it/they look odd.

Please do not see this as an umbrage.I value your comments and consider you as a sane outspoken frank blogger.
Let us if we cannot see an agreement on a point accept that and be good bloggers.

I have been relating in my blog my experiences with women folk, there are very disturbing stories I can narrate about men who were near me in blood.
Come on its life, we meet all kinds of people. Do not take my comment as a offence

BK Chowla, said...

Jealousy....very natural.

anilkurup said...

@ BK Chowla,
Yes Sir. Quite natural. It matters only when it changes course.
Thanks for the comment

anilkurup said...

@ BK Chowla,
Yes Sir. Quite natural. It matters only when it changes course.
Thanks for the comment

adithyasaravana said...

i kept smiling while reading this and laughing out loud at places, with all the comments too.
Yeah, Jealousy is seen more in women.This is what i perceived being in a department dominated by womenfolks.
the story was a nice read.
went as examiner for a week and so was not able to follow any blog.
Free day today and this " romance that was not " made me grin throughout.

anilkurup said...

@ Adityasaravanan,

Thanks Doc, for the appreciation. There was some annoyance too in some comments. That makes the matter livelier.

anilkurup said...

@ Adityasaravanan,

Thanks Doc, for the appreciation. There was some annoyance too in some comments. That makes the matter livelier.