Saturday, August 30, 2008

Dear die-hard Hindi-speaking immigrant,

It's called Kannada. The 'a' at the end is pronounced. It is a language. It is spoken in the state of Karnataka of which Bangalore* is the capital. Try to grasp it. Do not get huffy when the indigenous population cannot understand your Hindi. It is not widely spoken here, just as Japanese is not widely spoken in Seattle.

These indigenous people are called Kannadigas. If you look closely at the two words you will see that they are in fact different. Please learn how to say them – it's only polite.

Now that you've migrated you've learnt that not everything south of the Vindhyas is Madras. In the same way, everything south of HAL is not Whitefield. Please learn the proper names of places so that those of us who do live in Whitefield do not have to have metaphysical conversations with auto drivers.

*You are here. No, it isn't a suburb of Gurgaon.

The people of Bangalore (who are really quite an easygoing, hospitable bunch if you would just relax and stop shoving us about, demanding chaat like mother makes it.)


Thom said...

Tell us about the metaphysical conversations!

Gargoyle said...

As Marathahalli comes into view he starts asking if he should go right or left at every turning. Once we cross the bridge, he wants to know if he should stop at any of the new buildings. As we approach the Kundanhalli traffic light, he asks if he should go left, while automatically moving into the left lane. I tell him no, he thinks he's heard wrong, he continues in the wrong lane. I insist in a very annoyed tone, he huffs and puffs and gets in people's way, making it into the right lane, complaining that I'd said Whitefield. I spend the time up to Siddapura explaining what these places are. Then he starts slowing and looking like he's being kidnapped and asks me if I'm sure it was "straight". By now I'm glaring at him so he only half-turns at Kodi and doesn't actually ask if he should go any other way. When we reach my place he says that the money negotiated was not enough because it was misrepresentation. I get back in the auto and tell him to drive to the corporation office where I can show him a map; alternatively, there is a Whitefield police station much closer. He mutters and takes the money. Then he asks me if he can reach Whitefield if he goes straight. I deduce tiredly that he means ITPL so I tell him how to get there via Hope Farm.

Similar thing happened twice.

Thom said...

Hahahaha! I like the bit where he looks as if he's being kidnapped. No doubt they're thrilled about how close they end up to ITPL.

Well consider that five years ago-- okay eight--if you'd said Whitefield, they'd just have snorted.

Gah! said...


Anonymous said...

..and the double meter thingy we were so used to..

Anonymous said...

Some of them still call us Kannadigs...I so hate those and Kannad! Where is the 'aaa'?!

Anonymous said...

lol...i m from gurgaon...I have stayed in bangalore for almost 2 years...and seen your blog for first time...i was actually laughing loudly :) are good...keep writing

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