Band Baaja Bakwaas

Hype Weds Hysteria

Band Baaja Bakwaas

Illustration: Arré/Mandar Mhaskar

If you haven’t received a television screen as a wedding card yet, we’re here to tell you that the wedding season has arrived and with it have arrived all the modern trappings that take it from your averagely annoying display of wealth and love to a massively annoying one.

The modern Indian wedding has all the perks of a regular wedding – free food, free drinks, and as many people as on a Mumbai local – but it also comes with some new features that have been patched in after Snapchat became a thing. Now along with awkwardly dancing relatives you can enjoy watching people make duck faces into a camera as well as wear blazers with a bow tie and cargo shorts (you can thank Rannvijay for making this a thing).

The modern Indian wedding experience starts much before you attend the actual wedding. First, you will have the lucky privilege of logging onto Facebook and tracking the entire journey of the happy couple to be. Right from the expression she made when he first farted, to how they decide to stand, when they visit a random monument as a couple. From there on, you will be treated to sneak peeks of their pre-wedding photo shoot where they “candidly” pose for playful pictures, usually shot in black and white. The comments section below will have a generous sprinkling of the word “blessed” in a variety of phrasings such as  #blessedcouple #stayblessed. You may be sorely tempted to add #blessedidiots here.

If you happen to be a part of the sangeet and dance to a song originally conceptualised by Justin Bieber, now is a better time than any to make that long walk off that short cliff. And if you happen to be the person, who professionally choreographed the dance the awkward siblings of the bride and groom are performing, I hope you’re happy with your life decisions. 

Once you’re at the actual shindig and happen to be of a marriageable age (anything from 14 to 30, according to some), make sure to come up with a drastic enough excuse to avoid further questioning. Something like, “everyone who loves me dies in 13 days”. Or “I have aggressive AIDS” works well in such situations.  

In the loo, be sure to offer all services to your stressed-out friend who accidentally pees all over his sherwani because he had a couple of drinks too many.

In case you want to eat a meal at said wedding, be prepared to fight through bunch of men in flannel shirts talking about how “sab khana kitna tasty hai na”, and the women who rave loudly about the 17 different type of cuisines from Africa to Alaska on offer. But when you catch them eating, it will invariably be butter chicken.  

Once the booze kicks in and all hell breaks lose, enjoy gyrating to the latest item songs, while the videographer tries his best to make you look good in the two-and-a-half-hour-long feature film the happy couple plan to make and that you will then be invited for a screening even though you’d rather spend your time gouging your eyes out with a tiny screwdriver.  

In the loo, be sure to offer all services to your stressed-out friend who accidentally pees all over his sherwani because he had a couple of drinks too many. Also make sure no one is going live on Facebook from the loo to avoid further embarrassment.

At the actual wedding, you can pretend to pray to a fire that the couple circles like a pair of self-righteous vultures while secretly chugging vodka from a Coke bottle.  Then you can make fun of the fact that they’re going to lose their virginity in the most veiled and layered manner, even though we all know that it’s 2016 and who the fuck are we kidding. Post the jokes, you can enjoy modern renditions of old songs played on an “exotic instrument” such as a violin or cello.

If this is a “destination wedding” (read: I’m rich and I want to show it), it is at exactly this point that you go back to your lavish hotel room and continue drinking from the mini bar because it’s free. There you will encounter sloppy drunk guys trying to hook up with “wedding chicks brah” by standing outside their rooms, desperately trying to remember the lyrics to “Badtameez Dil”. 

If you’re wondering what we’re talking about because you’ve only attended one of those boring boozeless all-vegetarian weddings, I’d advise you to choose your friends more wisely the next time.

The modern Indian wedding has morphed itself into something between a lit circus performance and Sooraj Bharjatya’s wet dream and there’s nothing to do, but enter this wonderworld and throw yourself into it because the wedding may be fake as hell, but the FOMO is real.