Thursday, October 23, 2014

Annette/Ravi: Kareena

I've got a huge crush on my girlfriend.

Weird thing to write, no? I laughed out loud when I said it to Benny, but I think that's good. The week when I don't find myself saying something that sounds ridiculous is the one where I get genuinely worried, because that means that being a 25-year-old Hindu-American man is in some way normal for me.

Getting back on point - Ravi mentioned Kareena Milothra once or twice in his posts, mostly to say that she was originally the one he was going to be at the Trading Post with, but for her grandmother falling ill back in Mumbai. She wound up staying there until her classes began anew - she's a helpful person and wanted to be with family after the funeral, as one does - and was so busy after she got back to New York that we initially didn't get a whole lot of time to see each other.

Still, she makes an impression. The first time she stopped in to say hi, both Benny and I stumbled a bit. She's tall, lean, a smidge or two lighter-skinned than I am, though not close to Jordan's current paleness, and she speaks English with this accent that is half Mumbai and half English boarding school and all to die for. If she ever wears makeup, then I kind of resent how good she is at making it invisible versus just envying her being gorgeous. Benny and I have come up with a new way to drive Jordan nuts, which is to have long, sexy talks about how an evening would have gone if she had stayed at the Inn, and differing positions or something meant I wound up turned into her and he into Ravi - almost a required condition of the game,as he tends not to give the idea that he could have become a girl much thought. It got a bit uncomfortable when I acted one out by kissing him on the lips, although he said Jordan's freak-out watching almost made it worth it.

I'm kind of glad it didn't work out that way, though, because then I likely wouldn't really have met her beyond just exchanging useful information via email. She finds my "new" interest in Doctor Who a bit surprising, but it's fun because she really likes Peter Capaldi - he reminds her more of the old-school version that her dad introduced her to - even though I don't think the old guy is a patch on Tennant & Smith. She's really sporty - apparently I have picked up right where Ravi left off in her ongoing quest to educate her fiancé on the greatness of soccer and cricket (i.e., nowhere), but she's also become a big Knicks fan. And since our busy schedules don't intersect much (side note: I would make a terrible med student, and I'm not sure whether "gross stuff" or "sixteen-hour days" would be what does me in), there hasn't really been that much time for her to notice I'm acting weird.

Or to do much in the way of fooling around.

Ravi assured me via email that I wouldn't have to do that much anyway; apparently she comes from a fairly conservative family, enough so that if an arranged wedding raises the hundred feminist flags in her head that it does in mine, she doesn't show much outward sign of it. It's still kind of weird, though - we'll wind up holding hands on the subway, and it doesn't feel quite right to have the larger one, or she'll give me a quick peck and I feel kind of awful about not being the guy who she means to kiss. It feels nice to cuddle on the couch, though.

Bedtime gets weird, on the other hand. As much as I've gotten used to being out in the city by myself and not being scared, she's been staying over a lot, and the first time she saw Benny's sleeping bag she wanted to know what was up. I think I stammered something about winning it in a contest at work, but even though she's apparently modern enough to share a bed with her husband-to-be when her family is thousands of miles away, she probably wouldn't have been cool with Benny being there too. After the first time he barged in and freaked Kareena out (I think some excuse was made about him being drunk), I started leaving the sleeping bag in the living room unless she wasn't in. That's the signal for him to bunk with Jordan, which made him kind of throw a fit. As you might expect, he doesn't give one good small damn about whether Kareena wonders why "Jordan" has the couch and "his girlfriend Deirdre" has the bedroom. That hasn't happened in the last couple of weeks, though, after the night that it just didn't make sense to put on an act after the four of us stayed up until two-thirty playing Yahtzee (we are exciting!). I'm not sure what their arrangement is those nights, but I guess they can live with it.

She's been a fun addition to everything going on here, at least, even if it does mean that we're spending way more time pretending to be who we look like than we used to. Here's hoping we don't get lost in it!

-Annette

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