Four on Friday: Just for Laughs

8 Jul

IT’S that delicious part of summer, when dull winter coats and snow-slushed boots seem like a thing of the past, and belong to a remote future, when free concerts and movie screenings and other outdoor events abound, and when you never have to walk more than two blocks for a scoop of chocolate ice-cream. In that frothy spirit, here are some fun amuse-bouche to start you off for the weekend:

Samosapedia screenshot

Samosapedia screenshot

1. Samosapedia.com: I don’t know when this website popped up, but I am so glad I discovered it! It’s a witty compendium of South Asian slang, from “lau” (Lau, not Dau), “Kiney” for Kinetic scooter, and “monkey cap” (oh, how that brings back memories of camping trips from school!). Here’s the meaning of “Lau:”

Originally derived from the digga pronunciation of the English word “love”, it has now wholly eclipsed the English word in usage and meaning.

Now it is a Kannada slang word meaning “romantic intent” but carrying more suggestive overtones. Road-side Romeos distinguish this word from a similar yet orthogonal word dau which means “lustful intent” and is more anatomical in execution.

The gap between lau and dau is the saga of frustruated youth in Bangalore.

And an entry on the necessity of ordering a “gravy dish” when eating out:

Apart from the obvious division of dishes on Indian menucards (vegnon-veg), there’s the more subtle dry and gravy distinction.

If you order too many dry dishes, the waiter will grow increasingly concerned for your health and safety, and will gently suggest “gravy dish, saar”. A gravy dish is considered essential to a meal, and unnamed, horrible things happen to diners attempting to eat rice or rotis with only dry dishes.

If you turn down the waiter’s offer, his eyes will widen, he’ll start shaking a little and there’ll be tears in his eyes as he implores, “No saar, gravy dish is a must. Cancel one dry dish?” He’ll gesture towards the ladice and children at the table as if to say, “How can you treat them so?”

If you’re pushy enough to persist, he will bring you the dry dishes, and then triumphantly set down gratis bowls of “gravy”. “To have with naan, saar.”

Gravy dish is a must.

Delhi Belly poster

Delhi Belly poster

2. Speaking of language and its usage, I have to mention the new English-Hindi movie Delhi Belly. If the title doesn’t offer enough of a clue, let me be very clear: if you can’t handle scatological humor, stay away. The use of language, local idiom, and Hinglish slang in the film is pitch perfect, with the characters peppering their conversations with gaalis and desi-isms. Sounds like something you’d overhear on a college campus, except wittier. I’m not going to summarize the plot here, or write a detailed review, or discuss whether the film captures Delhi, or any of that. There are weaknesses in the plot; the ending requires a bit too much suspension of disbelief, and I had about run out by then; not to mention that the Aamir cameo at the finish needed much cutting, but would I watch it again? In a heartbeat.

3. One of the trending topics on Twitter today is #againstIndianCulture. That’s just an invitation to snarky comments about inquisitive aunties, cutting lines, and Rajnikanth. Here are a smattering of my favorites (sorry, I had to remove the Twitter handle as it got too confusing and there were so many RTs):

Having a low-key marriage without calling the whole neighbourhood #AgainstIndianCulture

Buying software #AgainstIndianCulture

So true !!! Staying in a hotel when your mother’s cousin’s brother-in-law stays in the same city. #AgainstIndianCulture

BE PREPARED! Today, Arnab will probe the fact what was there in the hashtag #AgainstIndianCulture that led us to go complete nuts???

SO true! Not asking salary of someone you just met. #AgainstIndianCulture

bollywood dances without pelvic thrusts #againstIndianculture

Not wanting to attend your uncle’s brother-in-law’s son’s thread ceremony is #againstindianculture

Removing the plastic seat covers of a new car #AgainstIndianCulture

India vs Pakistan during World Cup and people not bunking office/school is #againstindianculture

Taking signboards seriously http://twitpic.com/5my7jt #againstindianculture

4. Beautiful photographs of Sudan, on the eve of South Sudan becoming an independent country tomorrow, July 9.

2 Responses to “Four on Friday: Just for Laughs”

  1. Jayshree Bajoria 8 July 2011 at 3:42 PM #

    Haha. Perfect post for a summer friday. Enjoyed it much. And you included my tweet about pelvic thrusts. yay! But moi wondering why you didn’t choose to include this one “Cellphone ringtones not set to Bollywood songs #againstIndianculture.” Mea culpa??? (grin!)

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