I had attended a wedding of a friend of mine in Delhi recently. It bought back good memories of all the Punju weddings which I had attended over the last 29 (ye gods I am old) years. In fact about two years ago , I had written this small series on Punju weddings which I am putting down here.
** Disclaimer - I am Punju myself and I love all things Punjabi. This is just a humorous version and no offence is meant to any community ( I am writing this because there was a person from Canada who had actually threatened griveous harm to me when he had read another version of this).
So without Further ado...
Most punju weddings start with one of these song and dance functions which is imaginatively tilted THE SANGEET. This is the best opportunity for failed actors and dancers to make their presence felt. Shakespeare once said all the world’s a stage but I don't think he had ever realised that people at Punju weddings would take his words this literally.
Major actors present are a bua who has deemed it fit that she will anchor the proceedings with her amazingly sweet voice (that her voice sounds like the mating call of frogs will of course never dawn on her); Another maami(aka aunty sumo wrestler) who has decided that her aim in life is to drag unsuspecting poor people from the crowd and force them to dance and finally aunty drum beater( who will henceforth be referred to as aunty tribal dance for obvious reasons) . There is also another character kown as the spoon beater (unique to punju weddings) whose only job is to hit the dholak with a spoon. Coincidentally this person is tone deaf so what one does get to hear is clang clang without any semblance of a beat whatsoever.
Funnily enough the dancers are divided into 2 lots the aunties and the uncles. The aunties are most eager to dance but the uncles somehow feel more inclined to spend some time with Mr. Johnny Walker. So we have to endure the half hour where the females try to get the males close to the stage so that the function can start.The main idea of the function is to dance at the joyous occasion.
Of course before the dancing we are treated to a fantastic bit of acting by the dude/aunty in question where they say that "no no I don’t wanna dance …. Not me ,,, I cant dance" ( when it is more than apparent that the only thing which they want to do at that time is dance ). Once on stage most people seem to beleive that it is their screen test for the Oscars and they make sure that they put in the performance of a lifetime. Once the person in question comes on stage then his / her ownly aim is to show the audience aerobics, javelin throwing and frisbee catching all in one.
The songs, which are chosen at these occassions, are also keeping in tune with the solemn and sombre occasion. How can I forget the dude who decided to dance to the song "tu cheez badi hai mast mast" to tell his to be wife how mcuh he liked her. Other songs which I have heard are baazigar main baazigar (please please tell me the need for this song) mumbhai (duh ) kallu mama …. Man I can go on and on. Oh yes we will also have the mandatory daler mahendi song where everyone will be forced on to stage and be asked to shake a leg. For this song you will be dragged on stage in all probability by a drunk dude whom yu have never ever met after he will tell yu "bete mere nal tohnoo nachni hi hoga" and then he will proceed to show yu fine karate kicks where he will knock at least 6 people of the stage.
Oh yes the person who has said that females are the weaker sex has obviously not attended punju weddings. Aunty sumo wrestler would probably scare Mike Tyson, Aunty tribal dance would give any marathon runner competiton for pure stamina and endurance and one just has to see the other assorted aunties performing the twist (incidentally to a song like rang barse) to know that the meek will never ever inherit the world.