Dear Dr. Strangelove,
Subject: Bhindi-fry with Nigella
I am writing in to thank you for your wonderful piece, “How to bring back romance into your marriage” in the May issue of Family Life Magazine.
You wrote “Do something you normally wouldn’t like to, just for her sake.” I did just that and we have been riding a high ever since. Once, I loathed accompanying her to the vegetable super market: I buy bhindi by the kilo, whereas she interviews them one-by-one. I had tried explaining statistical sampling methods, but Anu continued destructive testing on each okra. The last time we argued about it, a passing Police Patrol fined us for disturbing peace. I’m a changed man now, I accompany her to the veggie shop every Sunday. Yes, we have a plan: she chooses the bhindi and I buy the tomatoes. This shop has the best tomatoes in town; so the population density around that counter is roughly 37 per square-metre. Jostling through and reaching the tomatoes, is an intensely physical thing. Considering that 90% of this population comprises hatti-katti sardarnis and Marwari-memsahibs in hipster saris (not to forget the occasional Iyer Mami) I find this activity very invigorating and conducive to building a healthy appetite. I now encourage Anu a lot–“I am alright dear, Go do your thing,”
And of course, I remember your other advice “Spend time together on something you both really enjoy”. We both enjoy watching TV, but there was this little matter of program selection that needed to be handled. I like Baywatch and Donald Duck, but she insists on watching soap operas about khandani families which regress into dysfunctional relationship patterns. We had some serious discussions before we overcame the obstacles (for instance, my epidermis often got entangled in her fingernails and sometimes my fist got stuck between her teeth). But true love conquers all, and last fortnight we found a solution. Thanks to my encouragement, my wife was exploring new vistas with bhindi (despite daily dispensation of bhindi sambaar, bhindi raitha, and bhindi-dopyaaza the shelf-space constraint was threatening our relationship). That’s when she discovered the Nigella Lawson cook show on TV. Her show is really good and we watch every night at 10. I know what you’re thinking—“You? Cook show?”.
Nigella is in her late forties (just my type!) and she has… ahem … personality. Her cheeks flush when she is excited about something (which is about all the time) and she puckers her lips in a certain way when she expounds the recipe. She wears a blouse which is a tad tight and has a subtly tantalizing neckline. When she brings her arms together to squeeze a lemon or whip some cream, it creates a ripple effect in her upper torso that is very pleasing to the discerning eye. And oh, I should have mentioned this earlier, I think she is size 38C !
God be with you, good Doctor! Kind Regards,
An Eternally- Grateful Husband.