On being Marshall and Lily

Everyone wants to be thought of as cool. Yes, everyone. You might disagree. You might scrunch up your nose at the very thought and say “ Not me! I am not one of the wannabe kinds who are forever trying to do what the world deems ‘cool’. But me? Never! I have my own way of life, and I give a damn about what others think.” But.

But, the fact is that it is not the idea of being cool, or being thought of as cool, which you, or anyone is ever against. What you might differ upon, is actually the definition of the term cool.  For some people, doing something that has been deemed cool by a certain person, or group defines the term. Be it a magazine which says skydiving is cool. Or a movie, where all the cool protagonists go on a road-trip in Spain, thereby deeming that cool. And for you, ‘cool’ might be looking down upon all these deemed cool things with unmasked disgust. As simple as that.

Anyway, this post is not about the various interpretations of ‘cool’, though I wholeheartedly agree that I made it pretty much impossible for you to think otherwise. This post is about ‘How I met your mother’.

Yeah, the popular Sitcom, which I consider awesome, and which some cynics deem a copy of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. (I will vouch against it, I love that series and pretty much can mouth every dialogue in it, and they are NOT the same) and slightly repetitive (to which I say, seriously, go write your own screenplays with super-original lines that make everyone crack up, and then talk, ok?). Ok enough diversion, let’s get back to today’s topic.

The characters. If you follow the series, you will know who I am talking about. If you don’t, well, I hope the post gives you some idea. Now in this group of friends, I am going to do away with Ted, who I find an extreme character, tough to identify with. And I mean, that of the guys that I have come across in life, I have come across a ‘Ted’ just once. Always in search of Fairy tale love, dreaming of getting married, having kids, falling in love within seconds, earnest, clear in what he wants, and ok to go to any lengths to get it. That kind. Oh by the way, that ‘one’ guy reads this blog, so if you read this, yep, I am talking about you!

Coming to the ‘cool’ characters in the series. Definitely Barney and Robin. Why, you ask? Well, Barney is the quintessential Joey (with brains, evil brains, but in plenty, money, and funny lines!) who gets all the women he wants, and believes in having fun. No commitment, none of the mush, he just does his own thing. A super cool apartment, a screen which is basically one whole wall, and a weird job which pays him for all this luxury. Cool, if you may.

And Robin. The independent woman, with thoughts similar to Barney’s when it comes to commitment. Career oriented. Adventurous, sets out to see the world on her own. Hot, has men vying for her attention. Has her own studio in Central New York. Oh, and has five dogs. If this doesn’t define cool, I mean what does? And as if all this was not enough, the last season reveals that the two end up together! What a story! I mean, two people, who never wanted to be tied down, eventually give in to love and get married. Wow. Cool, or what!

And then, there are the protagonists. Of this post, not the show. Lily and Marshall. Now these two are the Monica-Chandler of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. But only because they are only with each other throughout. The characters are hugely different. There is no Monica’s OCD and Chandler’s incomparable wit.

What is there, is funny. There is cute. But the thing is, they are definitely not the ones you would want to identify with.They are goofy. Their story is way too straight forward. They meet, they fall in love, they want the same things from life, they have small differences which they take in their stride, and they end up where you think they would right from the first episode. Together. Their lines make you laugh not for their wit or sarcasm, but more in the “Oh God, they are so funny, they are practically duh!” way.

They make fools of themselves over and again. They are definitely not the best looking in the gang. They are average as people, and so is their story. The routine. They are considered the “boring” ones. The ones who would rather stay home and watch TV than go meet new people, or see new places. They have regular jobs, aspirations which have been sidelined for the more practical things, like mortgages, or planning a baby. They have troubles, I mean, come on, they actually buy a house with slanted floors!

They usually spoil the fun by being the sane ones. The want to grow up, cannot believe that they are growing up this fast, and then they don’t want to grow up. In the end the accept things as they are, and just let life go on.

And last Saturday, while doing a rerun marathon of the first few seasons, this epiphany struck me – That we , i.e. The Dude and I, we are Marshall and Lily. Despite what we want, what we think, or what others think of us, as a couple, we are them. Regular, average, growing older, with practical responsibilities, not very adventurous, lazy, loving our Saturday nights at home with beer, thinking of how to pay our next EMIs, doing our routine jobs, living our routine life. And honestly  it is tough to accept that the characters that actually match you, are the “uncool ones”.

But when you think long enough, what comes with routine and average and uncool is “real”. And content. And happy. Marshall and Lily do not have the most “fun” as the world defines it. What they have is each other. Like us. And with that, the comfort of knowing that whatever we do, we have each other for company. The relief of having the regular jobs which pay for the needs, which we deem important. The dreams and aspirations that we know if, and which we would work towards, when the time comes. The convenience of choosing to be home, and relaxing, while the world finds ways of having “fun”, because it’s not that we don’t want to have fun, it’s just that fun has a different definition for us now. Because, now, in a weird way, our routine is our way of enjoying ourselves, because after all, it is just ours.

And really, what could be cooler than that?


36 thoughts on “On being Marshall and Lily

  1. DI,

    Having read your blog to some depth, and having known you and The Dude now, I will definitely say you guys are Cool 🙂

    Totally with you when you talk of people who think ‘skydiving is cool’. Frankly, it isn’t. Who think ‘watching a Manchester United football game just because everyone else watches cricket is cool’ are actually not.

    Having a baby is cool! Raising a kid is cool (I can’t even wait for ours, though we don’t have a plan yet). Life is what is yours forever – creates memories and adds more and then some 🙂 not just 40 seconds of free-fall!

    Having that lovely dessert and then slogging out to burn those calories is cool 🙂

    Wife reminds me every Friday night that we shouldn’t be home doing nothing on a Friday night… but also comes back to hug me on Saturday morning for doing exactly that!

    1. Ooh, I SO get the Football bit! Come on! India is playing Pakistan in cricket, and you can think of some EPL match! 😮 Blasphemy!
      Also, thanks 🙂 but frankly what is “cool” for us today, is like I mentioned “so typically old and grown up” for the world!
      Amen to the dessert and workout bit! I have had people tell why in the world I would want to go workout, when it is pretty much just another way to do what’s “in”, but like I said, I guess we all write our own cool mantras! 🙂
      Very aww, the Friday thing 🙂 makes so much sense right? I mean, yeah, telling yourself you had a happening weekend because you went out is one thing, but frankly, how many people have the luxury of staying home AND having a good time!

    1. 😀 Bik, aap na, itne introspection wale post me bhi humour le aao 😉
      You have to watch How I met your mother, nice series!
      Hmm, first step to being cool, make note of what YOU think cool is 😉 Perhaps, not knowing what it is , is your way of looking at it, by which, You are the coolest! 😀
      On a serious note, I think your job is SO cool!

  2. Errr..Marshall who? Lily who? go on laugh away gah!

    See…I am so cool that I am not even feeling un-cool about giving away my un-coolness levels 😉

    I think I agree wtih Aditya..Having a baby is cool and raising one if I may add, is cooler 🙂

    and oh yes Aditya, I loved your comment…super cool that is 😉

      1. Arre! I need to start a promotional campaign for HIMYM here! Watch it people, you won’t regret it!
        And I agree, Aditto’s comment says it all! 🙂

  3. Lady, you got to choose your own wedding date!! What can be more cooler than that *wondering*

    I love Lily and Marshall for being plain – not overtly perfect and beautiful, they are just right, like any of us.

    You and the Dude are definitely cool 🙂

  4. I used to love HIMYM, but somehow it doesnt work for me anymore…basically since Season 4. Maybe its the mellowing down of Barney that didnt work for me.

    Oh, and I totally agree that every one has their own mantra for being cool. And sometimes, it’s just so easy to lose track of who you are and what you want just to blend in.

    And its awesome if you guys are Marshall and Lily. They are super sweet.

  5. why in the first place do you need to relate to a set of characters in a TV SITCOM, and then go on to put in perspective what’s cool and what’s not?

    1. For people like you who will read the whole thing and give their “valuable” opinions about it perhaps? Or, just because I have the time, bandwidth, an internet connection, and a blog to do it?

  6. I used to love HIMYM, then I grew out of it. I still watch it, but then the mystery around Mrs Ted got way too much. Now I’m more into Big bang theory. BTW Lily and Marshall are cool, the whole bunch of them are. Except Teg may be 😛 But I love each one of them. Especially Lily and Marshall because they’re so cute.

    1. :D:D I love BBT too! It’s awesome in its own way! HIMYM, well, I have stopped watching to know who the mom is, because that is like a mystery forever for me 😐 Now I watch for other timepass funnies that are so frequent!

  7. Errr, it might sound funny, but according to our friends, me and my boyfriend are like Marshall and Lily too 🙂 College sweethearts and he’s tall and huge and I’m tiny and all of that 😛 So, a hi5! I hope we both end up like Marshall and Lily i.e. you and the Dude too! 😀
    And well, about cool, I think having a baby and a home of your own is like, the coolest thing ever. Ranks way above getting drunk every night or taking off to Goa every other weekend 🙂

    1. Aww! Yay to more Marshal and Lilies? 🙂 Hmm, come to think of it, I am like a foot shorter than The Dude myself, but the tinier bit is more recent, hehe!
      Yep, hi 5 to our coolers selves! 🙂

  8. I love the show too…Although I havent watched the last seasons yet. And Barney and Robin end up together…spoiler..but thats okay..i was always expecting that….
    And so what if you are regular and all..as long as there is love..as long as there is fun….all is cool 🙂

    1. Oh Ho. Sorry, I should have put disclaimer about spoiler no?
      I was shocked when it happened by the way!
      And yeah, as long as there is fun and love, all is awesome! 🙂

  9. Radhika

    It’s easy to relate to HIMYM. Everyone has a story they can pick from either that or Friends. My track’s running close to Robin’s, currently. No dogs, no apartment- but the phobia of being tied-down and not quite okay with it.

    Since you’re quite a keen blogger, I was hoping that you’d want to be part of the India Is Global Photography Challenge 2012. All you need to do is go through http://www.indiais.org and blog about it. By doing so, in words or pictures, you’ll help our team map India visually- through your experiences! Add the essence of what you feel about India, let your readers know about this global initiative and help us showcase India at its best!

    Of course it’s got its benefits, like India Is goodie bags! Do participate in this initiative, and claim yours.

    Looking forward to you joining us!

      1. Radhika

        ‘Cool’-badge is mine! *fist pump*
        I hope you have gone through http://www.indiais.org, because the India Is Photography Challenge ends in 2 weeks. All you need to do is talk about the India Is initiative. Add your experience and what you think defines that one moment that makes India unforgettable. For you! Blog about it, and help us map India visually. Please send across the link to radhika@skarma.com (along with any queries you have, yo!), so I can get you on board as one of the official bloggers for the initiative.

        1. hey there! I did, but it looked like most last dates were over! In any case, I was away all this while and am just back, so let me try and make up for some bit 🙂
          Cool badge is totally yours! 😉

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