Invitees to our Party

What are you so engrossed with mamma? Asked my daughter Preeti noticing that I was seriously writing something sitting at my desk.

I am preparing a list of invitees for our wedding anniversary, I said.

I guess    the list will be longer this time from the way you are making new friends year after year, she said.

Not exactly, on the other hand I am trying to delete some names and replace them with new ones, I said.

Have you thought of the consequences of your fool hardy decision? She Observed.

Well I did. I know it will cause a lot of ill will, I said.

By the way what are the criteria you are adopting in your selection and deletion of names?  She asked appearing curious.

That is what I am racking my brains about. I know it doesn’t seem to be as easy as I thought. I am sure  even  Amithab Bachhan  would have faced the dilemma when  he drew the list of invitees for his son’s wedding, so also Shilpa Shetty  at her’s, I said.

You know it left a bitter feeling among the excluded ones and they began attributing motives for not being invited, she chipped in.

Yes I know, it is bound to happen with me as well. Even if the ones left out of the list pretend to forgive, I am sure they cannot forget, I said.

Anyway, I have  decided at last  on three criteria  for  dropping some names   from  the  list this time,  I  said  feeling proud  of  using my discretion .

What is your criteria mamma? Preeti asked all attention.

First:  All those who try to monopolise    the conversation and talk about their illnesses—past, present and future.

You mean hypochondriacs mamma? Preeti said.

That’s right, I concurred.

 Second:  All those who always expect to be invited to parties hosted by others but never think of reciprocating the gesture.

I know whom you mean and   Preeti reeled out a few names looking at me as though for confirmation.

I didn’t bother to respond.

Third:  The “I used to—types.” They talk  about things  and positions they held  in the past  by virtue  of which  they expect  you to  treat  them  like Queen Bees  even  ages later.

Preeti gave me a knowing look which I acknowledged.

Mamma, then you may have to delete a lot of names from your list of invitees, she observed.

Yes, that’s the problem, I rued.

But mamma, deleting these three categories from the list will leave very few. What is the fun in celebrating  your wedding anniversary  with just a handful of people?  I am sure the party will be insipid,   Preeti remarked.

What do you want me to do? I said.

I have a bright idea, she said sounding excited.

What is it? I asked eagerly.

Instead  of dropping names from the list Why don’t you  drop the idea of a party altogether and take  pappa  and  me  out to dinner  at …..

suggested the girl  mentioning  the name  of a Five Star  hotel.

Let me think, I parried.

Wait, I haven’t finished, buy me a designer salwar kamiz and the accessories as well which would be a befitting gift on the occasion, she suggested.

I was back to a square one!

 

N.MEERA RAGHAVENDRA RAO

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