7 simple rules (or not) to impress ‘rishta aunties’

Published: April 19, 2014

Realistic acting is not an easy art to master, therefore rehearse your fake ‘rishta moves’ and be well-prepared. Practice will make you perfect. PHOTO: FILE

We all know for a fact that middle-aged aunties are on the lookout for prospective wives for their sons and nephews, during the wedding season. What is surprising though is that young ladies love being the centre of attention and enjoy all the looks of admiration showered on them.

And let’s be honest, what better place is there to plan the conception of your own wedding than the venue of someone else’s wedding?

However, there are rules that need to be taken into consideration if you wish to actively participate in the South-Asian game of ‘match-making’. Even if you intend to avoid the game altogether, it is important that you at least understand the rules.

1. Don’t look fat – at all

This is the time to bring out all the corsets, shape-wear, Spanx (or whatever you call them), hidden safely in your wardrobe. That little paunch may not hold much significance in day-to-day life but it can completely wipe out your game progress (if any).

‘Rishta aunties’ (matchmaking aunties) can catch the signs of a potential ‘jelly belly’ from miles away.

Needless to say, a few extra pounds can kill the deal here.

2. The perfect heels

You need to find that perfect pair of stilettos. Never go for shoes that are nice and comfortable because you’re always going to be a little ‘too short’ for their sons. While tottering in uncomfortable shoes, remember ‘no pain, no gain’.

3. Do you know how to cook?

This is the age-old but very, very important question when it comes to mothers looking for wives for their spoon-fed sons. And the answer is always a very confident ‘Yes!’ They don’t need to know that your greatest culinary achievement is munching on extra-cheese pizza without looking like an idiot… at least not yet.

In short, cooking skills and even just the claim of having them can turn rishta aunties on – (now now, don’t let your mind veer off in the wrong direction).

4. Small talk

We all know that small talk is the key to success in life. Whether you’re looking for a job or looking for a guy, this skill can take you places. Learn to conceal your disinterest and indifference and chat with the aunties about their pets, stoves, servants, furniture and every other petty thing that they hold dear. Trust me, they love that kind of attention.

5. Walk the walk and talk the talk

Do you want to be the trophy wife?

Well, you better act like one too. Watch the movie Pretty Woman countless times and rehearse your steps. Your posture should be straight and elegant and you should be able to walk like the ghost of a British aristocrat descending gracefully down the stairs of Buckingham Palace.

Now is the time to put that fake accent to good use too.

6. Smile away

Trust me when I say that a smile is a lifesaver. It can rescue you from the toughest of situations. Whenever you just don’t know what to do or when you lose track of a never-ending and dull conversation, go ahead and show off those pearly whites until your jaw starts aching.

Remember what I said before? ‘No pain, no gain’.

Of course, you have to be convincing enough to prove that you’re probably the nicest, sweetest and politest young woman these aunties have ever come across.

It’s a tough competition ladies so, fight like a man.

7. Don’t let your appetite get in the way

Yes, I know you’re probably terribly hungry and exhausted after all that talking, smiling and mindless nodding but this is the time you’ll need your will power and self-control the most to fight the war against hunger.

Eating an entire horse or drinking to your heart’s content are simply out of the question because some aunty out there is watching you, judging you, ridiculing you and maybe even striking you off the list. So, just sit tight and keep your hands tightly clasped (to keep them from reaching out for that freshly fried samosa and that enticing slice of cheesecake).

Don’t worry, the fridge is all yours once the guests leave.

So, please feel free to consult this ‘instruction manual’ before attending a wedding where you’re most likely to bump into a considerable number of eligible bachelors and their ‘oh-so-scrutinising’  mothers.

And remember, realistic acting is not an easy art to master. Therefore, rehearse your fake rishta moves and be well-prepared. Practice will make you perfect; who knows you may even get a chance to go to drama school next year!

Having said all that, if you’re one of the very few who wish to be disqualified from the ultimate game of ‘matchmaking’ and those who find this rat race to be absolutely ridiculous as I do, there’s only one tip I have – be real and imperfect.

Be yourself.

Eat like a man, look like a woman and revel in your moments of sheer awkwardness because that’s who you are. Let’s face it, cooking is not your thing and you probably need to lose a bit of weight too!

Zoya Abdullah

Zoya Abdullah

A young aspiring writer with a degree in 'Media and Communication'. I also have a passion for all things bright, colorful and humorous.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • S. Khan

    My aunt is too myopic. She told me once that the girl she looked for her son had superfluous number of indents (dimples) on her cheeks when she smiled. Girls should get plastic surgery from Chicago or Baltimore if they want to marry these ladies’ man type of Pakistani guys (alias DHA guys, burger kids, Facebook kids, aspiring future leaders and bureaucrats, all so-called highly qualified graduates who want to see Sharia laws implemented in Pakistan, hate-preachers followers, anti-Western patriots, etc.) Oh! I forgot to mention all those guys who strut around the awkward, English or Italian, named LOCAL cafes. Burger-kids, Please start spewing venom as soon as possible. Eagerly waiting.Recommend

  • Malik Abdul Rehman

    or better don’t impress them and settle for a trustworthy match as prescribed by a parent or relative,if you expect those rishta aunties to come up with a righteous alpha males then you are as wrongRecommend

  • Hunza wala

    Yowzat ! All that, just to land a husband. This should be titled :
    ‘ Husband hunting 101’..[very interesting and a mine of info. for prospective brides.]Recommend

  • Dante

    Materialism just overflows from your suggestions. I thought marriage is much more than just cooking good, wearing high heels and losing those extra few pounds.Recommend

  • Nobody

    I’m confused. Did the sarcasm go over my sleep deprived head or are you serious?Recommend

  • Parmjit Athwal

    It’s funny but trueRecommend

  • Queen

    So true :D. The author definitely has good observation.Recommend

  • hadi

    Is it just me or are the ET blogs getting repetitive?Recommend

  • Misguided Hindus

    Pakistani don’t deserve women.Recommend

  • Sufia Zamir

    sadly..this is what is needed in the marriage market. ive even been asked once how much the house i lived in was worth. i actually blurted out it was rented and u shouldve seen the face the aunty made.

    and funnily even high heels can be disaster. i was once told i was to tall even when i was wearing flats. for the record, im only 5’5″, which nowhere qualifies as “tall”.Recommend

  • Another Victim

    Fake accent? No way. Even the indian accent sounds so gross. Speak urdu. Literary urdu is a melody to ears. Saray jahan mein dhoom hamari zaban ki haiRecommend

  • SamSal

    This better be a sarcastic piece.Recommend

  • Fareed

    tell me something new. oh well; to each his own. cannot , rather should not generalize but ok , happens to the best of us..whatever floats your boat :sRecommend

  • Kalam wala

    This comment is funny ! Also, if 5′ 5″ is too tall,..er
    the prospective bridegroom might have been awful
    short. Say…er..a pygmy.Recommend

  • Kalash wala.

    Nice, funny, blog. Readers will get some chuckles out of it.
    This is how it plays out. Most of the time.Recommend

  • I am a Khan

    Why are so called ‘High class’ Pakistani girls so obsessed with their marriage and even more obsessed with their would be mother in laws? Just be a good human being, respect your elders and be nice to your peers and things will be easy. This goes both for boys and girls.Recommend

  • Heer

    It is not that simple.Recommend

  • Syed

    We should have a site like facebook. where people can upload profiles and pictures if so desires, free of cost and people can view them. This will eliminate the scum of rishtey wali aunties and save all the young people the trouble of going to them and getting treated like products.Recommend

  • Parvez

    Great stuff…….the punch lines were in the last three short paragraphs.
    As I was reading this I thought that if the girl were to follow these rules she may as well well get married to matchmaker aunty or the to-be boy’s mother……and then I got to the end part and smiled.Recommend

  • sane

    I remember reading same topic on these pages. Probably writer was Faiza……. Isn’t a repetition?Recommend

  • sane

    Pakistani men are better husband. At least they do not burn their wives on dowry issue.Recommend

  • Nobody

    Uff. I really hope not. What a shame.
    Advice should be simple: be yourself. Best way to weed out the potential mismatches is to be original and be comfortable/confient being yourself. If a guy [or his mummy] doesn’t like me in my chuck taylors/jeans/hoodie then he probably isn’t the guy for me. :-
    Although this sort of filmy rishta hunting tends to be mummies more than guys so I suppose I can’t blame guys for it…..Recommend

  • Nobody

    Amen. if it isn’t that’s a frightening collection of advice. Enjoyable to read but would never ever tell someone to actually do the above in execution.Recommend

  • Ali

    hahahahahahaha funny,Recommend