Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Namasutra

Who would want to get into a Creative brain-storming meeting filled with 'cool' 'dudes' with aattu daadis, punk style kudumis, Devdas daadis, introduce himself as Lakshmi Narayanan knowing very well that he would never get "noticed" even if he shared an award winning idea? But in the same meeting say "Hi am Luckii" instead of Lakshminarayanan and check out the number of Pakkis noticing you. No wonder in the advertising fraternity, Padma Kumar became Paddy and Anantharaman - Undee (Ok I made up the second one, but am sure there exists one in the ad gumbal). 

The most embarrassing moment in college for me was when the whole college  got to know of my nickname thanks to a Senior in college who knew me even before I had joined college. Ok it was more a pet name than a nickname. Felt odd listening to first bench pazha types calling me with this nickname. And this continued in my first job as well when one I-exist-therefore-I-annoy-you type's sole aim in life was to bug me addressing me with the nickname loudly. Thankfully I moved to Bombay where no college/ school/ first job type soul followed me but still people probably thought my name was very uncool. My surname was surungufyed with a 'zzzz' added (How do you think #Thalarockzzz came about here?) and that became my nickname of sorts. But only a close friend was allowed to call me that.

Doing nick-naamakaranam to people is an art. It doesn't involve hours of brain-storming and all. It is one Eureka moment in which that nicknamee has annoyed to so much that you would want to do something good to her/ him by choosing the nastiest of names for her/ him. That.. that super duper feeling once you've cracked the right nick name cannot be explained in words. 

Our day at home begins with husband requesting me to ask 'Musudu Maami' to make him the morning coffee .  Musudu Maami is our morning grumpy #PoheUpme cook who munumunutthufyes for a full 1 1/2 hours in Marathi. (Ya ya we are being mean  . What to do? These are simple pleasures in a housewife's boring life ).Ask her for coffee, tea, water, breakku, fasstu , breaddu - everything has a Munumunuppu as a reply. If the morning cook is Musudu Maami, the evening one is Asadu Maami. Don't even get me started on Asadu now. 

Years ago, at work, it was increasingly getting difficult for my friend and I to talk (ok ok b*!ch) about makkal in office (We worked in Bombay). So we started nicknaming people. With one number toongu moonji of a guy staring right at us, we could talk about him referring to him as 'Settha Paambu' . You could slap him, beat him,  fire him and this guy would still not have Soranai and hence 'Settha Paambu'. The problem was that the tribe increased and we had to name people Settha Paambu-1Settha Paambu-2, Settha Paambu-3 and so on. These kind of nicknames came in handy when we discussed Azhagi, Vella-p-paniyaram, (would come urundu odifying to grab food from someone else's dabba), Keengeen Keengeen (annoying voice), Kengaing Kengaing (yet another annoying voice topped with being a nag), Parrot Gupta (would repeat whatever his boss told him to do to his team with no input whatsoever from his side), Dhadiyan (A thug in every sense) , Saroja Devi  (Aascar level nadippu) etc.

NTR - This has by far been the best nickname for someone in office. NTR was in my team and every day I had to put one mandatory "Hello, how are you?" to him which was more for As-a-boss-I-have-been-told-to-be-a-good-listener-empathize-sympathize-with-team-crap  and as a reply he would whine and whine to discuss animatedly on how it was traffu@cked in Bombay (when wasn't it?), how his morning train was crowded (deeei!), gory details on his Aunt's surgery or his Appendicitis , Gaees trouble etc. Why NTR? Once during his appraisals we had (as usual)  our disagreements on all aspects. And every time, I'd put a rating which he was not ok with, pal would get up, lift his hands in sheer NTR style like here and here (watch it please please) and talk about his parambarai, his dreams, his maaman, machan and hence his right to a better rating than the one I gave. After listening to him during the entire appraisal session which lasted for 3 1/2 hours, all I could do apart from cutting his damn overall rating down was, nickname him NTR ! 

Another fellow should've been called Rasagulla or Roshogollo (as Mamta Di would like to say) but we nicknamed this yet-another-Bangali in office Bonda. Not just because he was rolly polly , it was also 'coz he was not someone I wanted to work with. With a plate full of Masal Vadai, Onion Bajji and Bonda, for me Bonda was the least preferred. In fact I would chuck Bonda in the dustbin just like I would this guy. (Shall write about Masal vadai a.k.a Eye candy on another post) 

Me giving nickname was one thing. One maha waste nicknamed himself and it suited him to the T . I  have little respect for these "Call me by my nickname" types. If your official name is Kollangudi Karuppayi, why would I call you Kaps? I would want to call to Kollangudi or Karuppayi.  "Hi , am Abhijeet - you can call me OB" , he introduced himself on his first day at work. True to his nickname 'OB', right from coming late to office giving silly excuses to palming his work off to someone, he was the baap of OB adikkardu.And worsht fellow, his twitter handle is also on the 'OB' lines only.

When it comes to self-patta-p-peyars, advertising gumbal takes the cake, kheer and payasam. More than the Amits it is our South Indian makkal that do pult with their "Call me Bugs" (Bagavadeeswaran?) 
"Hi, I am K" (must be Kumaraguruparan) , "Yo, I am Mandy" (Maanga Madayan me thinks). 

And a lot of these people put their nicknames sandwiched between their first and the last names . Imagine a Paravai 'Pops' Muniamma or a Jambajar 'Jammy' Jaggu. And these names appear on linkedin which is supposedly a social network site that will get you jobs. Wonder who will hire such people with such pult-ish names ? I guess it is very cool not to be called by your Appa-Amma-Thatha-Paatti vecha peyar . 

Saw a person named  'Awarded Copywriter' on one of the social networking sites. Yes, that's the name. Was it his real name or nickname or Shenbaga-p-Pandiyan vecha patta-p-peyar? Your guess is as good as mine.

12 Responses:

arun said...

some in my college -'aapicer' ananth, 'protocol' paandi, 'peetha' prem, 'gaja' ganesh,'vasu saet' vasanth and 'aandi' muruga.

Deepa said...

My friend Chokalungam Palanisami aka chuck Pal is offended.

Anonymous said...

An Anantha Padmanabhan in office preferred that he be called as Ana (sounds like English name Anna). Once, was told by a team member to meet Ana for a clarification and i kept looking at all the women folks on our floor until someone pointed it out to me who Ana really was!

Anonymous said...

LOL

Anonymous said...

Four friends being nicknamed as "it,bit,tit& shit" was the best one i have heard - IT - cudnt make out with appearance a boy or a girl, BIT - small and thin, TIT - (....), SHIT - talking nonsense all the time..

Anonymous said...

velmurugan was nicknamed murgi!!!

Chitra Divakaruni said...

Blogeswari, Love your sense of humor here. Thanks also for the follow on Twitter. Tried to tweet you but as you might know Twitter is having bug problems & it probably didn't go through.
Chitra Divakaruni

Ganga said...

ungal peyarai sollave-illaiye...

Niranjani Ravi said...

Dear Blogeswari,

'Nicknames' is a nice theme for a blog post but saying not-so-nice things about your (ex)colleagues on a public forum is unprofessional.

Paavai said...

I thought our family excelled in giving nick names - seems like we have company

Sujesh said...

Abhijeet must be another bong and everyone must be calling him OBhijeet :)

Karthik Sriram said...

I liked MVM the best!!