September 25, 2013

Date a man who reads

…but DON’T marry him.

When you’re dating, it’s all so cool. You’re proud of the fact that you’re dating a man who reads a lot. You’re thrilled he has more books than he has clothes. You find the idea of you and him, cuddled up in bed, reading, oh-so-romantic. You find that concentration so hot. You’re happy that when it comes to buying gifts for him, you don’t have to rack your brains too much; all you have to do is gift him a book, and he’s the happiest man in the world. You’re already churning up visions of him reading to your children as he tucks them in at night. All that ‘intelligent’ conversation gives you such a high. You melt into little pools of adoration when he quotes from your favourite books, and doesn’t give a second glance at a hot chick passing by when his nose is buried in a book (alright, I exaggerate here. Such a man does not exist. Even with his wife sitting next to him, he will still check out other women. That’s just how they’re wired).

So awesome he is, no?

That’s what I used to think too. I used to find the idea of a guy who reads very attractive. I still do. Especially since reading isn’t a habit that men adapt to naturally. Also because none of my exes were much into reading. They’re a very rare species, the man who likes to read rather than watch cricket or fiddle around with his tab. I’m not saying they don’t exist, but they’re quite rare. To be honest, I have always wanted to cuddle up in bed with my guy, reading, falling asleep with the book open on my face. I have wished that my boyfriend would be awed when he set his eyes on my collection of books (which, incidentally, is bigger than my collection of clothes I think), and would, without wasting an instant, lose himself in them, forgetting about me altogether (yeah, I’m THAT kind of girl. Ignore me for another girl, I will punch your face. Ignore me for a book, I can forgive you). But like I said, none of exes found books as magical and essential as I did. I didn’t grieve too much about it, though. Because they were awesome in their own ways.


God must have thought, so what if you didn’t date a man who reads, puttar? I shall get you married to a man who reads. And you both shall live happily ever after in your home filled with books in every possible nook and cranny.

And that’s exactly what happened. I got married to a man who really does have more books than he has clothes. We cuddle up in bed reading, and when I fall sleep with the book (and my spectacles) on my face, he puts it away very gently, taking care to not wake me up. While all this is super-awesome, I soon found out that being married to a man who reads as much as my husband does, comes with its own share of problems. And what are those, you ask?

1) I keep the milk to boil and tell him to watch it while I go brush my teeth. He does so, with his nose buried in the newspaper. And while he’s busy catching up on what’s happening in the world around him, bang in front of the stove, the milk happily boils over and spills on the stove and kitchen platform. And that, my lovelies, is a sure-shot way to raise your BP right in the morning. Works every time.

2) Me (in the morning):  Please take the trash out, baby.
S: Hmm (but of course, reading)
Me (in the afternoon): Please take the trash out. (an octave higher, this one).
S: Ya… (still reading)
Me (in the evening): Take the trash out!!
S: What? Oh, yes. I will.
Me (next day): Take the fucking trash out! I’ve been telling you since yesterday!
S: Oh sorry. I forgot.


3) The whole family is sitting around talking. Dad, mom, uncles, aunts, cousins, nieces, nephews, siblings. We’re all meeting after months. Everyone’s talking at the same time, one over the other. Catching up, gossiping, laughing. And in the midst of all this, one guy sitting silently with –yes, you guessed it- his nose buried in a book. Before our last trip to my native place, I told him that if he did that again, I will throw the book into the pond in my mom’s house. Surprisingly, it worked.

4) Karma can be a real bitch, you know. For all the times that I used to pretty much ignore my mom when she tried talking to me during train journeys because I was too busy reading, God is now paying me back. I get the royal ignore in the train from S, who takes out a book before the train even leaves the station. I have had to grab the book from his hands many times and say to him “Talk to me!”.

5) 8 out of 10 times, he will not be paying attention to anything I’m saying, because he’s too busy reading. And then when I bring the same thing up a few days later, he’ll be all “What?? When did this happen?! You didn’t tell me!!” Umm.. sure I did. Maybe if I had written it in a book and given it you, you would have remembered it better?

6) Reading in the toilet. Need I even elaborate?

7) Sweetheart, do you know why I request that we switch off the lights during sex? Not just because the tubelight is a mood-killer, but also to make sure that you don’t start reading even during the act, in case a book is somewhere there in the vicinity. Because frankly, I wouldn’t put it past you.

8) And to top it all, he has ebooks on his tab as well, which he will bring out when he doesn’t have a book handy. As if I didn’t have enough competition already.

9) We were travelling by a night bus to Palakkad a couple of weeks back. Since it’s a night bus, they’ll obviously switch off the lights. So I thought “Thank god, at least now he won’t read and will talk to me instead”. And out comes the stupid fuckall smart phone in which- no prizes for guessing!!- he has ebooks stored! That pushed me over the threshold. I would’ve thrown it out of the window if it hasn’t been an AC bus. I made up for that loss by confiscating the phone and keeping it in my handbag for a while. Can you imagine!!

So ladies, don’t complain that your guy spends too much time on his phone and tab. Consider yourself lucky. I, on the other hand, have to compete with books, magazines, ebooks, newspapers, tabs, smartphones-with-expandable-memory-that’ll-allow-you-to-store-damn-ebooks, the internet, brochures, condom packs, cereal cartons, CD covers, Wikipedia, “I fucking love science”, graffiti on the walls, blah blah blah.  

But the silver lining to all this is that I can spend as much as I want on books and he’ll never ask me why. Ha!

P.S. I love you. Which, by the way, is a book by some lady, in case you want to read that as well.  


  1. Fluent, frank and full of good humour, as always. I enjoyed reading the post.

    Oh, if the first line of the post was intended at shocking the reader, especially when juxtaposed with the title, the ruse worked. I almost spilled coffee on my keyboard!

    1. Thanks, Srinivas. :)

      And yes, that was precisely my intention. ;)

  2. hahahahha LOL! P.S I love you ! I loved that part !! :D Sorry about that wild laugh but it is really funny how you had to confiscate the phone! Well here, I am dealing with a gadget freak who is always on amazon thinking of buying other gadgets :-\ Many a times I have yelled 'Please LOOK AT ME WHEN I AM TALKING !' Seriously.

    1. Believe me, books are no better than gadgets. :/ At least you have the hope that gadgets will eventually stop working at some point or the other.

  3. LOL doesnt describe it. I have to Bwahahahaha!
    Simply loved it... Sigh. It is really is hard to please a woman.. read, dont read, horny, not horny :D

  4. Inspite of the post, all i can say is a big



  5. my hubby doesn't all..not even my blogs! :( and I have been sulking about it, like, for eternity!! i somehow feel good reading this!! and P.S I love you was a great book and even lovelier movie....

    1. Ayyo, don't sulk too much. Trust me. :/

      I liked the movie, P.S.I love you. Somehow the book didn't motivate me to pick it up.


    I can imagine my future husband (if i ever get down to it) complaining in the same fashion!! :D

    LOVE it. :D :*

  7. awesome, awesome, awesome post.. :) You know I have always wanted to be married to a person who reads a lot of books just like me.. This post has made me rethink. The first 2 paras aptly describes what I too feel (Super awesomly written). If he keeps reading who is going to cook (That thought scares me more than you can understand because I am a bad cook ;) ).
    Again. Awesome, awesome post :) :)

  8. Hahahaha... this is the first time I am reading something about the harmful effects of reading.. A man who reads, I find him sexy. And that was the first thing I liked about John. We both have a great collection though our tastes in books are entirely diff.

    Anyhow, I am so surprised that you have to compete with books and condom packs?? really???? hahah...

    There is a silver lining, you don't have to worry about reading to the kids, he will happily do it right? :)

    1. I never worried about reading to the kids. I would do it happily. :)

      That reminds me, how're you getting along? Are you fat yet? :D

    2. Nope.. not yet... Fifth month on the go..anytime soon.. :)

  9. When I began reading this post, I thought, "What is this woman complaining about?" I mean, you have this guy that every book/literature loving girl dreams of. And then came the reasons why his obsessive compulsive reading ticks you off. Too funny! :D

    I still want to get married to a person who reads and if he isn't one who loves books, I am going to give him the ignore treatment with my collection of books. Ha!

    Good to see you back. Really enjoyed reading this post. :)

    1. Thanks sweetie. :) Good luck finding your nerd-in-shining-armour. :D

  10. I am a man who obsessively reads. But i don't have to worry about a wife who complains

    Single for life :(

  11. I can think of similar things my partner would say :P

  12. Just happen to drop by my old blog (which now currently rests in peace) and on one of the posts, saw a comment from you..and finally, ended up here..
    very interesting read, Roshan..but just wonder, how a man would feel dating a woman who reads/dont read at all. Both the scenarios ? Thought about that ? . :)

  13. Hahaha. Appo this is how the muggles feel like when they see us pore ourselves into a book. Silly them. Excellent post like usual Mademoiselle.

  14. As always Divya...u r awesome..........but after reading this i have to say ----Chicks R Wierd :)
    ... I think ,some guy out there has to write down the experience of having a Wife Or GF who reads a lot.. :)

  15. You know, I still envy you - my husband is not the wee bit interested in reading; what's worse - I can't make him read my blog, even if my life depended on it! Reading (and writing) is something he's the least interested in... so there, how do you think that feels? :|
    The best part (perhaps) about this is that maybe I can get away with any shit I write (especially about him). He won't know! :D

    It can be a tad irritating (given the scenarios you've mentioned) but it's good to have someone who can appreciate and understand your talent. So quit complaining! :P

    (Oh yeah, I got married this year too - more on that in a post, perhaps!)

  16. After spending the Sunday evening working through your archives, I thought an appreciation was in order:

    Take a look it if you can when you have the time (*dark template warning* though).

    ps: Just to be sure, the words 'a bleak kind of narcissism' has nothing to do with your blog. :D

  17. Ouch! Good God! That hit too close...I am just as bad as your be able to read anywhere and everywhere I get all my gadgets out if I am not with a hard copy...Yikes! It actually sounds scary to think my folks have to put with that...
    Btw, Sooopeer post, really :)

  18. Wow!!!... Loved the post.Its a wonderful bit of advice or warning for people like me who always loved bookish people.
    Simple and humorous. Good One.

  19. Oh gosh i ll keep ur sugestions in mind even i always had this thing for 'THE GUY WHO LIKES READING MORE THAN OOGLING ON GIRLS' but now i m in a fix:-P

    Do someday drop in by my blog as welll they call it


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