Monday, August 29, 2005

Most Eligible Penniless Bachelor

I have a brother. People say he’s cute. Me? I think he’s chomot, but then I am his sister, I’m allowed to say that.

A is already 29, and works proudly for the government of Malaysia in the Diplomatic Service. Apparently, in our quaint little kampung, the word amongst the makcik-makciks is that he is the kampung’s Most Eligible Bachelor. Perhaps. But Aunties, before you set out, trying to match-make him with anak sekian-sekian, let me just tell you, he is quite penniless and thus getting married is something he can’t pull off just yet!

I’m sure many of you have noticed the dramatically increasing cost of getting married these days. For Malay husbands-to-be, first of all, you have to set aside money for the dowry or what is called hantaran. These days, it is said that the "market rate" is at a minimum of RM6,000 and even that, apparently, is waaaay low, for KL standards. Then comes the issue of what to put on those trays of stuff. If you get someone who is very brand conscious, you’ll have to set aside more for Hermes/Gucci/Ferragamo handbags and shoes in addition to other gifts like watches and jewellery which is in addition to other wedding-must-haves like wedding rings, wedding dresses etc..etc. Then of course, there is the issue of the function or kenduri itself. The luckier ones, will have their parents sponsor or part sponsor..and those who are not so lucky will have to fork out the money themselves. So at an average, to get married in KL these days, one would spend probably RM20,000 at least. If you’re planning a hotel wedding then add another RM50,000 to that!

The problem is, we are expected to follow this tradition of dowry giving, market rates etc or else we "lose-face". Of course. Actually, if you think about it, all this hoo-ha over hantaran and stuff, has been blown way out of proportion by our society. It’s not even called for by our religion. Our Prophet once said, it is enough to formalize a marriage even with just one kurma. But heaven forbid if that were really done here back in KL. If the guy was rich and did that, then people would say “kedekut bonar jantan ni” and if the guy was poor and gave kurma as offerings for marriage, people would assume “they were up to something funny those two..and that’s why kurma also can!”. It's no win-win situation, is it?

We should spend what we can afford to spend on weddings. If you are rich, then go all lavish..but if you are not so rich, then spend within your means. AND people around you should not be allowed to judge by what’s given or not given for that matter.

Unfortunately, it is tradition and standards have been set. We can’t control what people say and as much as we hate it, we sometimes have to live with it. So, as for my poor brother (and I'm sure there are many young men out there like him), even if he wanted to get hitched, he wouldn’t be able to afford it, yet, what with his government salary and all.

Obviously, being concerned, we (that's my mom, dad, my baby sis and myself) figured that if desperate, the cheapest way for him to get married, would be to get married on one of his assignments overseas. Have a little doa selamat and makan-makan there and thus escape the issues of the trays of stuff and the hantaran money (assuming his future wife is okay with this!) and then later, we could probably have a decent garden-do, with fresh flowers, candles (he doesn’t know we’ve planned it already) for him back here in Malaysia. A small, pretty and cosy affair for close relatives and friends.. Then again, of course, if A gets married in 10 years time, he should have enough money to pay for a proper wedding with all the works. That is, if he doesn’t blow it all away spending on girlfriends and what not.

Oh A, I know you don’t know when you are getting married yet, but I am already dreading the day when I have to let my buchuk-chomot brother go to the hands of another woman. And now that the kampung makciks have named you The Most Eligible Bachelor of our kampung, I fear that you may soon be under attack and that dreaded day may just come sooner then I expect! But don’t worry about the costs and all, we’ll always have back-up plans. Anyway, I think all the makciks know already that although you’re quite penniless now, you’re rich in values and ambition and that you are on your way to great-great things in life. I just pray that you'll find a beautiful, smart, loving lady as your partner in life and that she accepts you with or without money.

With your upcoming "greatness" (I'm a proud sister) in mind, and if marriage does come your way, perhaps the makciks would consider taking a post-dated cheque as your hantaran? That should sort things out, shouldn’t it?

Image hosted by A and Nasar
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A better picture for KakTeh. The girls with him are our cousins, not his girlfriends!
ps. A, if you read this, jangan marah! You know I sayang you lah!


Blogger Family Man said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5:16 AM  
Anonymous apples4me said...

Ok not sure about the above comments, Anedra..looks like spammers..anyhow...there's still time for your bro....what about my bro? 37 still unavailable (I think) and he thinks he is penniless...because the market rate here is S$10,000 ++ amacam?:(

5:34 AM  
Blogger Kak Teh said...

anedra - u didnt do him justice - i think he is better looking than the pix you posted. but then i am biased.He is already 29????? wasnt it yesterday I changed his nappies and wiped his nose - and yours too?
and yes - anyone interested must go thru vetting agency. tak pa - mak cik dia blur!

8:13 AM  
Blogger aalborg said...

It's absolutely scandalous what people have to do to get married nowadays. I had no hantaran. Only the USD26 dowry, and one wedding ring that cost us RM250. And our kenduri pun...very very budget.

9:53 AM  
Blogger Maz said...

i wrote in my most recent blog about this guy who came to see my bro (father of the bride) himself with the intention of asking his permission for him to marry my niece. my bro quoted a price. but the guy said he'll have to come back next year since his savings doesn't quite match the figure quoted yet. but my bro took pity and asked him how much he has so far. the guy told my bro how much he has. my bro accepted his offer on behalf of his daughter. bulan depan kenduri. better bagi anak perempuan nikah dengan cara baik kawin dari di usung ke hulu ke hilir oleh lelaki bukan muhrim. dengan dia sekali dapat dosa. for him, murah or mahal is not the question. if the guy came to with a good intention, my bro feel that it is his duty to help the guy bina masjid.

9:57 AM  
Anonymous atn said...

1 word: hemsemla

10:44 AM  
Blogger torts said...

ur brother is one of the most good looking guy i've seen. perhas he's a little thin but that wud be taken care of once he's married, right? Then he'd be even above the league of hans isaac. :) Kim salam no..

5:39 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

apples: hello!!! yeah..spammers all right! penat delete one by one!! S$10,000!?? That's a lot! Memanglah adik I tak leh cari Singaporean!

kakteh: actually, I think so too. But I don't have any more of his pics!! I can't believe it too..he's 29 already..dah boleh jadi bapak orang!

ailin: scandalous alright! itulah we told him, kawin overseas jerr, the not much hassle ya?

5:57 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

maz: that's very noble of your brother. if everyone thinks that way kan senang? another thing I think, is for us malaysians to stop worrying so much about what other people think. As long, yr conscince is clear that people do the right thing, then proceed. Just like what yr bro did. Even if it meant bringing the "price" down, at least he knows he's doing the right thing. Alhamdulillah.

6:00 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

atenah: tenkiu, tenkiu (on his behalf). kembang akak dia..

torts: hmmmm..we're stuffing him now as we speak! he needs the addtl weight no? kirim salam?? OK! Tak de hal punyalah!

6:02 PM  
Blogger faux diamante said...

Eh laleng, takde donut pun kat kebaya tu. Good Job!

Is that hira next to A?

I agree with that garden do idea of urs. Simple mimple pimple dimple...

alah 29 is still young lah, let him make his mark in his pursuit towards greatness.

but don't we all love planning for weddings.

6:35 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

laleng nazrah: masa tu tengah suck in the donuts. (dah pakar bab-bab tu.) and yes, that's Hira, looking better than ever doncha think?

I've always told A to take his time..and it looks like he will from the way he;s working. But like you said, planning weddings is always such great fun!

6:57 PM  
Blogger OOD said...

I thought rukun nikah is, 1.andam, 2.hantaran, 3. all the dulangs etc?

Tell your bro to brace himself. Minyak price is up again, so i betcha jhantaran kawin will also go up, unless you dont serve nasi minyak.

But looking as good as that, a lot of girls will accept him for half a kurma!

he so good looking, u sure u are related? heeehee...

7:24 PM  
Anonymous bro.... said...

Hey!!!I have some savings!!!
Not much tho..=P
but i do have some...

Anyway... thanks sis... i kinda felt i had it comin after your breakfast with mom and dad...

8:13 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

ood: well, I was not born at Sg Petani I was not switched at birth. Neither was confirm lah we are related!!

bro: I know u do lah dahling..but you're gonna hafta save more!! Oil prices going up and all.. Don't worry, you've got a pretty good support system! And if what is written by the commentors is anything to be believed, half a kurma also can!

8:25 PM  
Anonymous nENn said...

AAhh, what a sight for sore eyes. Heehee. No wonder laa all the makcik2 kampung can't wait to get their claws (OP!) hands on him!

hee hee..

8:26 PM  
Anonymous lilie said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:38 PM  
Blogger aalborg said...

hehehehe...kahwin overseas? In other words, kahwin macam I? Then kena cari a country where the exchange rate benefits him.

9:50 PM  
Blogger Kak Teh said...

yes, that's my sayang mak teh! got yr sms - anytime A! Sapa yang kecik dalam gambar tu? and i dont mean the child!

10:21 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

nenn: hmmmm, I still think he's chomot! hehehe!

lilie: alamax..u know him? what a small world indeed! tell em to be kind to my bro ok?

ailin: when the time comes, and if u'r still in denmark then? u play host can?? jimat duit! hehehe!

kakteh: yang kecik tu, tengah penat tahan napaih!

10:30 PM  
Anonymous lilie said...

A je yg jual mahal kak..x caya, ask him then...muahahahha

11:15 PM  
Blogger AuntyN said...

Sayang anak dara I ni belum cukup umoq, kalau tidak dah pi merisek dah ni, hehehe.
It is not age that matter or the hantaran. Yang paling penting sudah kah dia bersedia untuk menjadi suami yang soleh yang dapat mendidik dirinya, isteri dan anak2nya menjadi umat yang Soleh. Do I sound like an ustazah? Sorry ye...

11:39 PM  
Blogger zaireen said...

Should be ok... lai..lai..lai...

1:07 AM  
Blogger OOD said...

There should be a new episode of Mencari Cinta with A as the prize. Anedra and Kak Teh can allllllll play the kepo sedara mara who MUST help A decide. Yes?

All the sms money can then be used as duit kenduri and hantaran and what nots.

2:15 AM  
Blogger anedra said...

lilie: ya ke?? Meh I cubit telinga dia sikit.. I think I know why actually..bukannya dia jual mahai..cuba lilie pulak tanya dia kenapa!

auntyN: betol tu ustazah (haha!) auntyN. I agree and that's what I always tell him. All the "material" side of it can be settled somehow..but most important is that he knows what it takes to be a husband and a leader of a family.

zaireen: oh..lai ya? tanya KakTeh dulu, boleh ke tak?? hehehe!

OOD: hang kalau pasai benda-benda ni memang pandai. Kasihani lah adik saya tu, to be subject to such an ordeal! Oh tidakk.... lagi baik kalu dia tak kawin if that's what he has to go thru to fork out the moolahs. Apa-apa pun, u are right, kakteh and I will be the kaypochee sedara mara, either in reality shows or real life!!

2:24 AM  
Blogger aalborg said...

kalau nak lagi murah, gi Germany ler. If Mak Nenek is still there, she can be the wedding planner and I will be the mak andam.

erm, sape nak bayar duit tiket????

4:49 AM  
Blogger atenah said...

i am sure you are the one in the black kebaya ha ha ha, right. ish cam mak datin la, or are you really one.

1:44 PM  
Blogger atenah said...

eh on la, match kan si lilheaven dgn A. lil ni mixed blood lagi, sure cun melecun he he he

1:48 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

ailin: I ok jerr..duit tiket I bayarle..(must save from now!sepuluh ringgit sebulan!!) hehehe!

atenah: hang ni merepeklah!! Datin ketot adalah!! but am in no other way a datin!! Kita orang biasa sahaja lahhh! Eh, so now you see why I need to go on serious diet? see how slim the rest of my clan are??

pasal lili tu..I'll leave it to them, since they know each other already!! how lili? can aaah?

5:17 PM  
Blogger Ely said...

aiyoh dena, very the hensem!

u know, sebesar wang hantaran dan belanja kawin will not guarantee a good marriage.

so whoever gets him, nasib dia baik!

8:33 PM  
Blogger shidah said...

A BIG HANDSOME! tak chomot pun :)

6:46 AM  
Blogger AuntieYan. said...

Anedra, my youngest brother punn masih single. At 37, he still looks much younger then his age.Nak kata tak de duit....rasanya tidak jugak...sebab dia dah beli rumah kat Ipoh(a semi-D), he owns two Hondas and he runs his own bisness. Nak kata tak least his looks is much, much better then Rosham Noor or Azwan Ali....
Nak kata tak de pelajaran...dia jugak lulusan dari luar negeri...
Hisy....nanti kita buat iklan kat sini baru dia tau!
p/s: Your Adik is good looking also...

9:40 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

ely: i agree (about the hantaran & belanja kawin). Hati mesti ikhlas and jujur and then only will a marriage work.

shidah: entahle..I've known him from his chomot days till now..he still looks chomot to me! heheh!

auntiyan: well, I suppose, we don't have to worry. My husband says that men are like wine, the older they are the better! So, let them find their match in their own time lah kan?

10:57 PM  
Blogger Lydia Teh said...


I got very sweet friend, boleh introduce to your bro? He's so tall and hemsemlah.


11:36 PM  
Blogger atiza said...

it's better for him to save and marry later than getting a Bank Rakyat personal loan just to get married..masa akad nanti macam cerita P. Ramlee la pulak..'berapa mas kahwinnya..26 inggit..utangggggg'..

11:39 PM  
Anonymous me, myself & i said...

lilie.. lilie... after 10 years... wat comes around, goes around... he he he...

12:58 AM  
Blogger anedra said...

lydia: hello and welcome! nak introduce yr friend?? that one must ask "tuan punya badan!". *A, want or not?* you see, he'd kill me if I made moves on his behalf!

atiza: my point exactly. what I am sad is that, our current society's standard makes it difficult for people to get married, when marriage kalau mengikut sunnah, patut dipermudahkan. ya tak?
(chewah..ustazah anedra bercakap plak!)

me, myself and I: I missing something here?

3:42 AM  
Blogger Ms.B said...

Hmm. Hengsem!! 29 masih ok lagi.. muda lagi.. banyak time lagi..:)

But I oh-so-understand the predicament of insufficient funds and savings, especially if the husband-to-be works with the government. I went through that jugak with my husband. Kesian dia. By the time we got married, he had been working in the government about 5 years dah and gaji tak sampai RM1.6k pun. Bayangkan? And at that time, dowry was RM5k. I told him tak payah, but he insisted (I think it's a male thing, but can't blame him, because at the same time, my family wasn't rushing to stop him either, sighs). Having experienced what I went through for my wedding and our tight financial state after that, I vowed to myself that I will do my VERY best to make sure that I don't put my anak through the same thing later on, no matter WHAT society, tradition or culture dictates. It's not fair to the newlyweds, and besides, all that matters is that the marriage is halal in the eyes of God, kan?

I also think that what you, your parents and sis are planning to do should lil bro decide to marry earlier is VERY laudable. Families should be able to sit down and plan something together like that. Count yourself extremely lucky that you have such a supportive and loving family network (KT included!!)

6:33 AM  
Blogger MamiJarum said...

Very hansem, manyak hansem... Nanti I bagitau my single friends of his availability and will send you their DATA... ;-D

7:13 AM  
Blogger Jade said...

ehem... urmm... when's the lunch get together again? urmm.. and make sure.. bring you-know-who yeah..

hahaha.. gelak guling2... dah termalu sendiri..

on a serious note, wedding IS an expensive affair. i dunno why people sanggup berhutang, semata2 nak puaskan hati org keliling. nanti lepas kawin, kita jugak yang sakit...

8:43 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

blabs: I so know what you mean. It's better to just make things easy fpr those that wanna get married. It's only the right thing to do. And yes, I'm always ever so thankful for our little-merry support system we have which works even tho some are so far away in Londra!

mamijarum: aaah...lemme check if he is still available first! heheh! but kalau mau kawan-kawan, anytime lah kot kan?

ladyjade:yup. so moral of the story, either u marry within yr means or suffer later! yes? lunch?? with me can lah..he's leaving soon on work assignment! :)

9:01 PM  
Blogger aalborg said...

wow, in tops nyer koment! 40 plus, mak! Takpe, kalau I kat Mesia, I volunteer buat wedding cake dia.

My dad, kata, it is more important to prepare for the marriage, not the wedding.

2:59 AM  
Blogger noresh said...

i had no hantaran when i got married to my husband. my parents refused to accept any form of money for my dowry from my husband. abah said, i'm priceless. no money could ever buy me. i just had the compulsory mas kahwin of RM80 (selangor).

after that, tongues started to wag coz my parents dare to ignore the traditional customs. all these righteous makciks told my mom that they (my parents) should be ashamed for not putting any price on me; a US grad in engineering which could easily get RM10k.

what did my mom tell them... "saya tak nak anak n menantu saya hidup papa kedana sebab hutang keliling pinggang lepas kahwin just because the husband had to come up with a hefty dowry to follow the traditional customs". terdiam sumer makcik2 nih... hehhehe...

so, that's what i'm gonna do if i ever have a daughter (sekarang baru anak laki satu). my husband and i have agreed to follow my parents' example and not accept any dowry for our daughter. tongues can wag for all i care. screw them!

6:35 AM  
Anonymous apples4me said...

hahah anedra, don't say too soon, nanti rezeki dia murah 20 ribu pun jadi. Siapa minah bertuah tu nanti eh?

Yeah but seriously the hantaran thingy is getting way too much.....:(

12:58 AM  
Blogger Jane Johan said...

Waaa.... like that aaaa??? I didn't realise it's been that much. I think my sis did hers for less than RM10K last 3yrs. It's just a simple wedding but everybody is very happy.

3:20 AM  
Anonymous lilheaven said...

yesh noresh. screw em ppl yg kepoh chi tuh. hehee..

personally, im gonna avoid any unnecessary expenses. ikut yg wajib saja dah la. dont really have to bother "tak manis", "nanti org cakap apa plak" etc.

3:53 AM  
Blogger anedra said...

ailin: boley!! no problem. lepas tu kena buat swirling cheese bread for kakak dia sekali!

noresh: yes! thats the way to go!! ikut yang afdal saja..and everybody untung in the end!

apples4me: goes overboard when people need to take loans and berhutang just to meet "other people's" expectations. not very clever is it?? kalau can afford tu, lain lah kan?

honeytar: mine was a simple one too, and we were happy with it.

lilheaven: yeah! screw em!!

6:11 PM  
Blogger Adnilsa Malia said...


Reminds me of my ocassion masa dirisik dulu. When my MIL and FIL tanya berapa hantarannya, my parents cakap suka hati lah, coz my mother's side, my late grandparents pun memang tak pernah letak harga. Even the issue on hantaran was only discussed between the parents. Well, of course there are those talking behind, tapi who cares! Kalau they all tanya my mum, my mum told them to ask me personally. Knowing me, memang they all tak berani....Heheheh...anak buah paling strict and firm... :-)

3:26 AM  
Blogger About Blogreader said...


I'm in the minority around here, I guess. I actually liked being given substantial mas kahwin and duit hantaran as a bride. My great friend and husband-to-be was not rich (and still isn't), but he was creative and resourceful in moving around the assets he had in order to make it all work. In return, me and my family threw a feast for him, his family and all our friends to complete the circle.

What is marriage after all but an economic arrangement? What is the wedding-day after all, but an ancient initiation rite to unite two worthy partners?

Go on, throw your tomatoes at me if you like. But these are also valid facts, ladies, and we glaze over them too often!

p.s. At the end of the day, the money goes back to him anyway. It's a great, big sleight of hand; husbands and wives are famously known to share things :)

10:33 AM  
Blogger anedra said...

adnilsa: thats probably the best way, let the guy offer whatever he wants to offer.

blogreader: it is all well and fine if it is within means of the individuals getting married and everyone is happy with it.

Only that, there are some situations here where people who can't afford to give out such hantaran etc have to take loans or delay getting married just to be able to afford the hantaran and in the end are bogged down with loan repayments which they don't need, Hantaran is not "wajib" in the eyes of the religion anyway. More importantly, marriage is supposed to be made easy for those who want to be married. These "unnecessary" hantaran and could put things on hold for some.

Yes, you are right, marriage is an economic arrangement but it should be a reasonable arrangement which can be afforded by the individuals being wed and the families and yes it is an ancient initiation rite to unite to souls, we should still have it, but for those who can't afford, it should be within means. And yes, celebrate! it is a great reason for celebration!

No tomatoes shall be thrown here. Your opinions are well respected, anytime! :)

6:23 PM  
Blogger Maya said...

Marriage is an economic arrangmenet? Did I miss out something...ummmm. Maybe we didnt come from wealthy families, like the Carringtons or the Forresters). For me, it was giving my by then overpowering lust some legitimacy. ;-> Seriously, we never spoke abt money even tho you know Indians have the notorious dowry thingie. We were so in love and the whole wide world could see that. (pssst I guess his need to vent his lust matched mine.) The parents realized we meant business and so gave us their bleasings. When we started out it was a single stove and a single-room house. We chose our struggles or vice versa and made the best of it and made some bucks along the way.

I am sure if your Brother met Miss Right, everything will come together, hantaran or no. My best wishes for the handsome gentleman.

PS. Hope you have recovered. Mine nose functions on one half only.

1:09 AM  
Blogger anedra said...

maya: I think yr story with Mr Maya is so romantic. That drive to Sg Petani and all..awwwwww and the walks along the beach! (woooohoooo!!) And you've come a long way and are still very obviously happy! I just pray that all of us turn out that way, money or no money huh?

my flu is gone but my throat is acting up. Couldn't sleep last night!!

8:38 PM  

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