Another complaint of the girl-who-is-not-an-animal was that she feels like cattle in the market whenever she attends a wedding. She feels the eyes boring into her, scanning her from top to bottom, evaluating her, and pigeonholing her away…
I think she needs a therapist.
Seriously, has anyone ever seen any of these Women in Black who stand on the side with their little notebooks jotting down details about every female of age in the room? I’ve looked and looked for them, but couldn’t for the life of me find any.
There was a point when I believed they must exist because everyone told me they did. However, they were so good at disguising their snooping that I couldn’t immediately pick them out. But I kept trying. It got to the point where I’d be talking to a friend at a shmorg and suddenly spin around, hoping to catch a Big Sister with her telescope still pressed to her eye or her little black book still out. But nobody was ever paying me any attention at all.
I was insulted. Every other single woman in the tri-state area has a dozen shadchanim scrutinizing her at weddings, but not even one deems me worthy of attention?
Then I thought perhaps I need to be more approachable, so I began smiling at strange women at odd moments. All I got were polite “who the heck are you?” smiles back. Another dead end. A heretical suspicion began to grow: maybe these women don’t exist.
So I started lurking around the edges of the room observing people surreptitiously, looking for the ones who were looking at others. But everyone always seemed busy chatting with their friends or stuffing their faces with expensive meat from the carving stations.
Eventually I gave up and concluded that they are a myth created by the establishment to keep in line the young women who might otherwise feel liberated and get a bit wild.
OK, mild exaggeration there, but seriously, I’ve only once seen a would-be shadchan at a wedding, and I’ve been to dozens and dozens. If I can’t find these ladies when I look for them, how on earth can this poor girl feel their eyes on her when she’s not? It must be in her mind.
Unfortunately, it’s in everyone else’s minds too.
Last week, while schmoozing at a shmorg, I tried hitching a post-chupah ride home with a neighbor. I barely knew the bride, and saw no reason to stay longer.
“Leaving so soon?” my neighbor was horrified. “You need to stay around, not go home with the old ladies!”
“No, I need to get home,” I insisted.
“You need to stay around a bit longer – good advertising, I tell my daughter.”
Now it was my turn to be horrified. What a backwards reason to attend a wedding.
“Not that you’ll wear a sign,” the neighbor assured me, seeing my face. “But just to… be seen.”
“My life goal,” I assured her crisply, “Is to do everything that is bad for shidduchim and get married anyway.”
She laughed. “And I’m sure you husband will love you for it.”
“I hope so,” I said. “So can I get a ride home with you?”
“No, no. You stay here and walk around.”
Must give those Women in Black a chance to see how nicely I stand around and look pretty.
I did get my ride home, but only after I put on my coat and stood outside demonstrating my willingness to get any ride home with anybody, since she was unwilling to do me the service.