I Love The Ladies

…And God made women and blessed the world with Moms, Sis’, Wives of course, lovely Daughters who love their pops to the umpteenth level; Aunts of all sizes, doting Nieces and the pretty girls that make the tedious, gawky years of puberty more liveable, keep the middle age in check and old age in comfort, and in also greater check, as there is no fool like an old fool!

…And God gave both, man and woman the gift of articulate speech… and woman dominated it. I’ll go a step forward and say, enslaved it, kneaded it like dough under an angry Italian baker whose bellissima figlia has run away with a Frenchman. They have tossed it, flattened it like pizza bread, rolled it, chopped it and made a stew of it with other lingos. This is especially very typical of aapra Parsi banoo-o to the exclusion of the ghrast-o, who mostly cannot get their words in even edgewise. Who can forget Mamaiji telling Gangubai, “Amcha sara saporma divas hai to tu sakali jaldi avi-ne ghar saaf-soof paije.”

Or Jaiji on the floor above ticking off the doodhwalla, “Mare-re bhaiya tumara gai-bhains ko achcha khorak-pani deta hai ke nahi?? Tera doodh-to bilkul pani jaisa aata hai. Jara honesty-ke saath kaam karo, otherwise khodai ko kya jawab dega??? Kal achcha doodh lana. Hamara behesti Nadersha ka baaj ke liye oudh banane ka hai.”

Or to the butcher, “Karim bawa tumara nalli me se kuch nahi nikalta hai. Khata-pita gher ka bakra kaato.”

Why should the fisherwoman escape the massacre. Here’s Soonabai of the third floor, “Mui gai kale boi aapi gai te to bilkul ghaslet-ghaslet cha taste hota.  Sagli fekun dili!”

And the cliche-like instruction to the dhobi that has become almost a classic. “Chal dhobi, Luv-kar luv-kar under ja-ke luvkar luvkar kapra nikalo – mai aati hu.”

No one, but no one is spared. I can go on and on, ad infinitum about the linguistic adventures, rather misadventures of aapra Parsi banoo-o, but our dear editor too, must show off her knowledge of Latin too. She tells me “In brevi Darabsha, in brevi.”

 I pride myself in being a linguist of sort and I can’t stand our noble Indian languages torn asunder but inspite of all their follies, like in the song “I love the ladies, I love’em all, I love the ladies, married or free, They’re all the pretty girls to me.” all I can say is let there not be just a Women’s Day or a Week, but Women’s Years!.

And for the linguistic liberties taken by our Parsi women all I can say is…

O when can their faux pas fade?
O the wild verbal aleti-paleti they make
Of Hindi and Gujarati
A mish-mash of Marathi,
Oueen’s English to desi Hinglish
All said and done, but in the end
It turns out a savoury sweet blend!!

Dara M Khodaiji
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