MBA in spouse management
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MBA in spouse management

The curriculum would include, besides routine classes, guest lectures by accomplished wives and women-lib activists in addition to presentations on case studies. Col Avnish Sharma (retd) writes

chandigarh Updated: Aug 20, 2012 10:20 IST
Col Avnish Sharma (retd)
Col Avnish Sharma (retd)
Hindustan Times

I, for one, am not a man taken to too many vices, if you call indulgence in an occasional round of golf and a tot in the evening, as one. Golf, I confess, is an addiction and the other one an inseparable accompaniment of the former.

My better half is a self-proclaimed sufferer of an insensitive husband, an exploited second fiddle, a woman with no demands, a balancing factor in the couple chemistry, a quiet worker and an improver of things (read husband). This is the way of life, I presume, most fellow victims experience around the globe.

The other day, when I sneaked in after an unapproved round of golf, one could feel a tempest brewing in the tea pot. She confronted me with a newspaper advertisement of a local private education institute offering management courses in fancy fields such as family management business, infrastructure and real estate management, health spa and resort management, media entertainment and film technology and such unheard of curriculum during our student days.

I nodded my appreciation for the imagination of the institute and waited for the bombshell! And there it was. "Why don't these institutes run an MBA in spouse management"?

It was kind of her not to suggest 'husband' management.

We got down to chalking out syllabi for this course. The challenges, as per my wife, to manage husbands, comprised a cache of subjects, like, huge improvement in listening skills, branding golf and other male-relaxing sport as a marriage spoiler, discourage drinking and smoking, enhancing compassion, no ogling at other women, shun viewing sports channel, ban stag parties, contributing towards domestic chores, becoming less mother centric, be oblivious of feats of other ladies, not complementing looks and dresses of wife… the list was endless!

Our daughter, who was engaged to get married shortly, expressed affirmation to the syllabi. She asked me to spell out the syllabi for management of the harassed wives, if at all it was required!

I started with a prelude that wives were the mainstay of a happy married life and that they lent grace to the society.

"I know you of 27 years and can sense the ingenuity of your dialogue. Suggest concrete syllabi to manage wives or we reword the course as MBA in husband management," she warned.

Gathering courage, I started, "Sweetheart, a single subject, if somehow dealt with, will suffice."

"And what is that?" she was getting irritated. I took a deep breath and replied, "Unpredictability."

If at all, we can work out a curriculum to deal with this single characteristic found in most women! The lady, a scholar of her days, quickly analysed the authenticity of this truth and convinced that to deal with unpredictability is difficult than even predicting British weather, walked off in a huff.

No wonder an MBA in spouse management may have crossed the mind of intellectuals but its syllabi would have rendered it a non-starter.

Stree charitram, purushasya bhagyam, devona janati, kim manushayam (How can a mere human understand, even the creator cannot predict the unpredictability of the complex mentality of a woman and the fate of a man).

Today is the third day after this discussion and I am still confined to the outhouse.

First Published: Aug 20, 2012 10:19 IST