Just like the tortoise boss, the arm chair boss, the peanut boss, the skirt boss and the dolphin boss, there are many types of fathers in law. I am not bluffing here – these boss types real but this post wouldn`t elaborate because it is dedicated to father in laws.
Fathers in law are unique relationships. Men have no choice over them – they come with the girl they marry.
It is not that you meet your future father in law in a party or discotheque and give him your number and say, “hey, why don`t you call me up sometime? We can catch up on things.” Once he calls you, visit parks and beaches and develop a relationship and then ask: “Now that we thick and like hanging around together, what is your daughter doing? Got a photograph of hers?”
To give you an analogy, marriage is like jumping a pit – if the daughter is the scenery beyond the pit…her father is the depth of the pit. You can see the scenery before you decide to jump…but you can see the depth only when you look down while jumping. Like all those suffering men, I also met my father in law once I decided to get married to Rekha. I came to know him real better after my marriage.
There are many types of fathers in law (FIL) and mine is the “Surveyor FIL” – because he surveys everything I do.
When he entered my house in Chennai for the first time, he asked: “How many square feet?”
“What do you mean?” I questioned his dominance.
“Never mind. Is the entrance North facing?”
“I don`t know uncle. Why don`t you sit down and take some rest?”
If my words didn`t do the trick my stare must have for he sat down on the bean bag. The moment he was on the bean bag, he opened his mouth again: “You should have bought the smaller bean bags – now they occupy at least 50 square feet of your space.”
What happened next is not important, primarily because my wife came to her father`s rescue. Once she started staring at me, I had to give him more respect than what I gave the fish-thorn stuck between my incisors and pre-molars.
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Do you know your father in law type? If no, read on….
THE ASTROLOGER TYPE
One line definition: He thinks he has enough experience to predict the outcome of all your actions.
Usual Greeting: Let the divine plan unveil.
Favorite Sentences: “This won`t work out.” “Why don`t you hold on for a few days?” “I am telling you- invest now and relax for the rest of your life.”
THE ARMYMAN TYPE
One line definition: He thinks if you are not physically fit and disciplined like his pet, you are going to be a failure in life.
Usual Greeting: “Hark! Who goes there?” “Attention!”
Favorite Sentences: “Why don`t you come with me for a walk in the mornings?” “You are putting on a lot of weight.” “In 1975, when I was your age I could run 40 kilometers a day.”
THE MANAGING DIRECTOR TYPE
One line definition: He wants to keep all the stake holder`s happy – his relatives, your relatives, his friends, your friends. Everybody.
Usual Greeting: “May all think good of you.”
Favorite Sentences: “What will your relatives think if they come to know?” “What about your friends – do they know that you are going to US alone?” “What does your mom say about your new jeans?”
THE UNION LEADER TYPE
One line definition: As a union leader is concerned only about labourers, this type of father in law is only concerned about his daughter.
Usual Greeting: “May you live long.” (That is coz he doesn`t want his daughter to become a widow soon)
Favorite Sentences: ‘My daughter would be happy if you come home early.” “My daughter feels you should spend more time with the baby.” “My daughter likes Vanilla ice cream, why don`t you get a family pack on the way back home?”
Other Must Reads
# Accepting gifts from relatives
# Never be selfish, go and meet your in-laws
# My world is suddenly crowded
# Get, Set, Go! Or should it be Get, Wet, Go!
# Of cows, urinary bladders and the Vivekananda Rock