Because it's fine to splurge! Isha Ambani's wedding releases us from the guilt of riches, and ups India's soft power
Money is good. And there's nothing wrong with that!
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No one will ever tell you that showing off is good. Oh, but think of the unfortunate, they say. Humility, they say, is what makes us humans.
Yet, we’re all just toiling and toiling on to make lives a little bit better for ourselves every day. If a ‘humble’ life is all that we really aimed for, why are we in the rat race for that promotion?
But that is not even the biggest paradox we, homos sapiens, house in our mind palaces. There’s the viler, sour-grapes syndrome. The one which pounces on, gnaws at and tears apart anything that is not in our arms' way, or beyond the realm of our understanding.
The Isha Ambani wedding spectacle is a case-study in that.
At the onset, let me just say that no way in a million light years can we replicate this. Isha Ambani’s wedding is going down in history as the event that pretty much declared that the Brits can keep the Kohinoor, we have the Ambanis. (Just kidding, hand over the Kohinoor now, please.)
No, but seriously, we simply cannot get another one like this. The only man who can out-do Mukesh Ambani is Mukesh Ambani himself, perhaps with Akash Ambani’s wedding now.
But we shall cross that bridge when we get there.
Over the weekend, Beyoncé performed at a private wedding in India. pic.twitter.com/3O3Areo1MQ— Karen Civil (@KarenCivil) December 9, 2018
The spotlight has been on this ‘Gujarati Coachella,’ as it were, for having Beyoncé perform at the ‘intimate’ sangeet ceremony and getting the mighty Salman Khan to be a background dancer. When Beyoncé headlines Coachella, people queue up longer than The Great Wall Of China for tickets. And Bhaijaan is the most-human human there ever was.
John Kerry and Hillary Clinton dancing to Bollywood music with Shah Rukh Khan in India2018 is weird. pic.twitter.com/tVPcmkqKB2— Sameera Khan (@SameeraKhan) December 12, 2018
But Beyoncé and Salman weren’t the showstoppers here — the bhangra-pumping Hillary Clinton and John Kerry were. Ya, ya, Mukesh Ambani is apparently one of the many benefactors of the Clinton Foundation, and over the past twenty years, Bill and Hillary have been photographed with the Ambanis several times, proving their close association.
Then there was something that even Baba Siddiqui couldn’t do — bring Salman and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, along with Abhishek Bachchan, under the same roof. Udaipur witnessed the trio dancing, perhaps in different clusters, but on the same stage, nonetheless.
You know your dad is rich when he can afford to hire Beyonce to sing at your PRE-wedding party. What do you do for the actual wedding -- pay someone to resurrect John Lennon? https://t.co/lc1AbIFyjq— chris morran (@themorrancave) December 10, 2018
The erstwhile ‘Your mama’ narrative has made way for ‘You know your dad is rich when’ on Twitter, with memes cropping up on our timelines. Yup, it was a spectacle. Nope, it’s not over yet. But pray, tell me, what’s wrong with it all?
If we are supposed to cut our coat according to our cloth, why are we so overwhelmed that Isha has cut herself a Priyanka Chopra MET Gala-esque trench coat?
What did we really expect? Should Asia’s richest person apologise for being, well, the richest?
If we were proud of our ‘Indian-ness’ on Twitter when Mukesh Ambani made it to The World's Billionaires 2018 list by Forbes magazine, critiquing him for splurging that wealth now is quite hypocritical, no?
In fact, if you weren’t so blinded by Isha Ambani’s lehenga, especially the artwork on the blouse, you’d perhaps notice the sheer number of myths the wedding busted.
That India is only a poor country.
If the USA can have their recession and the credit bubble burst and still house Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg (2cnd and 5th on the same Forbes’ list), we can strike a balance too.
That ladki ka baap always has to be vinamra.
Hell, no. Here’s a proud father throwing his hands in the air, and a mother literally letting down her hair and just celebrating their rani beti ki shaadi. The Jamai isn't the raja alone.
That Indian soft power is all about shaking hands with dignitaries.
We will shake a leg, and a shoulder, or both, dance away till the sun goes down, then light up a million diyas and keep dancing.
After all, Hindi cinema has narrated entire plotlines through song-and-dance sequences — can’t we now change the course of the nation through one?