Recently Neil Nitin Mukesh was quoted saying, ‘I don’t like scrawny women. I prefer ‘healthy girls.’

Okay, so now imagine the sculpted  Mukesh with a really ‘healthy’ female. And DO NOT think of Laurel and Hardy.

It’s tough enough to be fat in today’s shallow, thinner than stick- thin obsessed world. But it’s defintely worse if you are uhm ‘healthy’ and your special someone is the type who has the abs/ size zero figure of a pin-up model. And he/she gorges on fries with casual disdain. While despite a diet of lauki and dried chilli, your weighing scale continues to tip over gleefully at slightest contact.

Her friends whisper, ‘He must be really rich’.’ His colleagues wonder why he married someone so much older. Your childhood buddies snicker ‘Bhabhi must be keeping you very happy.’ Mom-in-law comments, ‘Gym jaaya karo.’

I was once researching with a group of teenage girls on the topic of redefined beauty when one of them, a perfectly pleasant-looking girl commented sincerely ‘I want to put on weight. I have tried everything- eating sugary, fried things all the time but it doesn’t work.’ Stunned silence ensued as our collective eyes narrowed menacingly, while we struggled to keep an understanding smile plastered on our faces. 

Later her friend confided, ‘Her boyfriend’s really huge. They are such an odd couple-I don’t know why she’s going around with him,’ she declared with the cruel objectivity of a college girl.

Now imagine the jibes the poor boyfriend must be fielding all the time from smart-asses in college. Makes me wonder why he’s going around with her. And yes, tons of respect for both of them.

And of course I know of many friends who have been constantly ribbed about their post pregnancy weight by insensitive other-halfs. Which makes me want to retort, ‘Why dont you try it first and we’ll see how you come out of it!’ Men have nerves of floss.

All of which makes me glad I never married thin;-)

One of my post pregnancy friends was particularly stressed about her weight gain, despite the fact that her hubby wasn’t one of those- ‘oh, look how thin she is’ types. But then he was a built like a model. And he works in the ever dubious ‘entertainment’ industry. For months my friend dieted and worked out, but she just wasn’t able to lose the last 5 kilos. Then disaster struck. During one particularly motivated session at the cross trainer, she pulled a muscle and was laid up in bed for weeks. Plus her marwari ‘dieting-sheiting-chodo’ mom came in to look after her. For weeks, I got agony phone calls from her as she wailed about her increasing girth while munching delicious chura and dal batti despodently.

Then the phone calls dried up and I assumed her dieting and ‘working out till death’ routine had begun again.

Till I met her at a party. She was still a little over, but positively ravishing and glowing in satisfaction.

‘Wow! You look lovely,’ I murmured congratulating her on her renewed self confidence.

She laughed and thanked me, looking very much like the life of the party.

For a moment I felt a warm glow of girl power. At last she had overcome her petty insecurities and stood up for what she was.

Until her hubby walked in behind her. The ex-model was still smart but he didnt have a uhm ‘model-type’ physique anymore, Mom’s dal-baati-churra formula had done it’s work- he looked happy and ‘healthy’.

My friend grinned as I stood mute in confusion. She leaned in to whisper with a wink, ‘If you cant lose it, get him to gain it!’

My recommendation for anyone who’s frustrated with their lopsided loves. A month of daal-baati is far better than weeks spent huffing and puffing in the gym.