Some of the attitudes in the write-up was just mean. Like this -- why was this description necessary, if not in an attempt to mock this woman? On her son's wedding day too -- how is she going to feel when she reads this article in the paper?
"The corpulent mother of the groom, her flesh spilling out of her sari, giggled as she barreled toward the arriving aircraft. Oh my God! she exclaimed. We are so happy!"
How is it relevant that she's overweight? Are they trying to underline some sort of message of excess? Given that the money acquisition was recent, it wasn't as if it had anything at all to do with her food consumption.
That just infuriates me. It's so awful, in fact, that I keep checking to see if it's some kind of parody or satire of this kind of article that I'm missing somehow?
Also, the example they pick, which I gather is supposed to illustrate how these people are blowing their money on ridiculous things like fancy helicopters and going broke, doesn't do so at all. They say the father of the groom had earned about $109,000 selling three acres of land. "He banked some of the money, renovated his house, bought a small Hyundai and purchased three more acres farther out to continue farming." Then he spent $13,000 on his son's wedding. Is it out of line to spend 10% of a windfall on a fancy family party? That seems entirely reasonable to me, especially given how sensible he was about the rest of the money. This article just doesn't make any sense.
What was this writer (Jim Yardley, a Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist) thinking? He's apparently their India specialist too, although mostly politics / economic topics, not cultural.