Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Machhi Khaabo Bhaalo Baashi!

Known for having big and beautiful eyes, a Bengali lady never feels the need to ask a man to look up when he talks to her. It’s also reason why Crime Master Gogo doesn’t pick on Bengalis. After all, “aankein nikaal ke shot put khelunga” does not have the same ring as “aankhein nikaal ke goti”. But big eyes are not the only physical feature by which you spot a Bengali. A bangali babu is of a short stature, so much so that it’s never difficult to spot Aamir Khan in a Kolkata crowd. With pale skin and a mustache gently fringing over his upper lip, the bangali wears a bush-shirt tucked in his trousers, hanging almost like he hangs on to a handle in the bus. He has a thin coat of hair on his head that remains stuck to his pate because of a healthy diet of fish and mustard oil. But the love for food doesn’t end there.

The reason why the bangali perpetually carries his roshogulla and sondesh in the mouth is not because it helps him pronounce that his favorite actor on Kophee bid Koran was Sholman Khan, but because there’s only so much you can stuff yourself with till it all brims up to the throat. Punjabis mostly mistake Bhaat, Maachh, Loochi and Jhal-Muri to be names of Monjolika’s children, but they’re only appetizers for a bangali, whose meal also includes a brinjal, half a kilo of peas, forty chunks of paneer and a pitcher full of mishti doi.

Like that wasn’t enough, your bangali will also tell you about another food item that he calls myoojik; because “myoojik is the food for the soul”. The bangali will scoff at YoYo Honey and Mika Singh’s tunes and tell you that Robindra Shongeet elevates the mind. He will talk at length about Geetanjali and a million other literary works that he’d have found time to read, instead of completing his office work. Because Chatterjee, Mukherjee and Banerjee aside, “Layjee” should’ve been added to the list of respectful Bengali surnames as it most accurately depicts the nature of a bangali, who loves to laze around in the beauty of art, literature and history.

The bangali sings praises of the goddess and that’s reason why you use that word for a female with the surname Sen. He fears his wife not only because she stands just as tall as him, but also because it is intimidating to hear a lady shout, “Aey, maachhi khaabo bhaalo baashi” at the top of her voice anywhere in the world. Durga Pujo has always been the bangali’s favorite festival. It ensures that he gets awesome food to eat for a week and also gets to ogle at women dressed in white sarees with red borders, clicking their tongues in celebration of the matriarchy that puts their culture ahead of every other in the country.

The bangali speaks a language that is easy to learn. He sha’s his sa’s and pha’s his fa’s, along with awwing his aa’s, making him the perfect person to make hand hearts and go awww every time that he sees a box that says “consume Bengali sweets on the same day”. He bhaalo baashi’s his lovelies and oodibaba’s the uglies. He khaabo’s the khaana as well as khaabo’s the paani. He calls a kurta punjabi; and a Punjabi he calls kutta. He expresses love in simple ways by saying, “aami tomaar, tomi amaar”; and knows that there are only four seasons: “shpring, monshoon, bintaar and samaar”.

He may come across as a lazy bum and a smoking glutton at the outset, but don't mess with the babu-moshaay because he will own your patootie at an inter-college debate. Also, you might want to get with a lady in his family. Not everyone is as lucky as a Bachchan. Or so did the sixteen year old me believe. 

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  1. Loved it! My roommate is from Calcutta, so I could so imagine him while reading! @@@@ for this!

  2. This was written for some Bong peeps who requested for one. You should've told me stuff about Bengalis no!

  3. Ok, haha. Although yes, the post is kinda stereotypical, but it's fun :P I have Bong roomies too and they talk about Maach and jhol and roshogulla and shondesh day in and day out -_- I could totally absolutely connect with the post :D "Robindra shongeet" is pretty good, y'know :P

    And dude, this IS EPIC: "The bangali speaks a language that is easy to learn. He sha’s his sa’s and pha’s his fa’s, along with awwing his aa’s, making him the perfect person to make hand hearts and go awww every time that he sees a box that says “consume Bengali sweets on the same day”. HAHAHA!

    I'm a jalebi-fanatic and this jalebi- @@@@
    I'm gonna be coming here to have more jalebis, you got yourself another customer saab :D

    P.S. Thanks for that comment on my blog-diary, I'm pretty late at responding, apologies for that!

    1. I don't personally have a lot of Bong friends, so I knew I had to work with general stereotypes. Can't really credit any of the characteristics to my own observation. Also, I have no idea what Rabindra Sangeet sounds like. But I think I can guess what it must sound like.

      Thank you for such a loooooong comment, you fanatic! :)

  4. very well done! though we dont do all of these things, but yes, i do many of them. @@@@

  5. This was adorable!! Funny but not demeaning :) @@@@

  6. Hahahahaha
    Bong jokes are my favourite!!
    I have an amazing bong friend, and that "aankhein nikaal ke shot put khelunga" part definitely applies to her, if nothing else!
    She doesn't mind punjabi songs - likes them, even - because all her friends are punjabi. But her family surely isn't a fan of ponjabi myoojik. XD
    And that art and music part is sooooo true! It's like they LIVE the music!
    I'm not so sure about the lazy part, though. And the maachh! She is allergic to it, ironically enough!

    Basically, I enjoyed this one thoroughly! Take all the mishti doi and roshugullas in the world! :)

    And the last line. Hmmm.

    1. Arrey, you should make me meet her! I don't really have a lot of close Bong friends. Ask her for more stereotypes and tell me. I might do a Bong Version 2.0 some day :D

  7. "Punjabis mostly mistake Bhaat, Maachh, Loochi and Jhal-Muri to be names of Monjolika’s children, but they’re only appetizers.."
    Did that just get lophing-my-esse-oph?

    My teachers, girlfriend and of course, friends, are Bongs. An interesting stereotype which runs within the bongs is of the Baangals and the Ghotis. (Baangals, of East Bengal or jeta-ke-aami-aador-theke-bolche Bangladesh and the Ghotis, the delicate West-Bengali bourgeoisie.) Among the two communities, the former celebrates their love for the Ilish maach, and for the latter it is the Chingri, or Prawn. And as much as you'd have already guessed, Bangladeshi people are more blithe and manly while our Mesho-Moushay Dadas and Pishis are mollycoddles.

    Don't miss how my classteacher used to comment as I walked into the room, "... you are paarpetually late to the class"

    1. I just love how you placed the mention of your girlfriend in between. You could'vegiven me some really cool points if I knew you before typing this down. Chal koi ni. Keep it coming, fellow blawgger :D

  8. @@@@@ Am a Bong and loving it!!! Awesome post...suggested to me by a Punjabi friend B-) just loved it...keep on writing such interesting stuff...:-)

    1. Thanks, Shatarupa. What a cool name you got there :)


If you had 5 Jalebis, how many would you give me for writing this post?

None = You don't deserve any >:O
@ = Soggy and stale! :(
@@ = Stale! :|
@@@ = I'll need a samosa to digest this with! :P
@@@@ = Sweet and Crisp! :)
@@@@@ = I'm opening you a Halwai Shop! :D