I smiled as I set a bowl of warm seafood bisque on the table and took my seat. I smoothed a napkin across my lap, crossed my ankles beneath the table and stirred my soup with a spoon.
"Well, what are you doing these days?" My Aunt's Husband's Stepmother asked. "Still in school?"
"No, I work in public relations."
I took a bite of soup.
"I work in the press office of [Organization Name]."
She seemed very impressed.
"Well, I have a nephew – actually, TWO nephews," her eyes filled with excitement as she spoke. "They are both very nice."
I politely listened, trying to fill my mouth with soup and salad and avoid having to comment.
"Yes, one works in computers. He's one of those network guys. And the other is in the software company; I think he's pretty high up. They help people install tax software."
"That sounds really interesting," I replied before chomping on another bite of salad. The more she talked, the less I wanted to have to respond. I don't want to be hooked up with this family's Men to Marry Off anymore than they want to be hooked up with me.
"Yes, they are very hard workers," she said.
I smiled and took another bite of soup. It is always best not to be negative about potential familial fix-ups, but I had a feeling that if two eligible single men existed in this extended family (not related by blood at all), my Aunt would have mentioned them. It's such a double-edged sword. If you like the family's fix-up, everyone stresses about the relationship and puts undue stress on it. And it becomes awkward. If you don't end up dating the person, then you constantly have to explain why you didn't like Nephew One and Two. And you can't say anything about wanting a boyfriend, because then everyone says, "But what about the Nephews?"
"Honey?" The Stepmother turned to my Aunt's Husband's Father. "Where did they have that apartment? Where do they live now?"
"I don't play matchmaker," he said and went back to eating.
"Well, they do sound very nice," I said politely. "And technology is an ever-growing field."
And I shoved a piece of bread into my mouth.