Yesterday a friend from Bihar was pulling my leg and another friend who is from Gujarat said – Pay me to bash him up and I will. And we all burst out laughing. A Gujju telling a Punju – born and brought up in Haryana to pay to bash a Bihari? Wouldn’t I be making my state proud by simply bashing both of them up and then also taking them to the hospital since they happened to be friends?
No offence to any state, please. I love my friends and we have loads of fun with these stereotypes attached to us.
And I suddenly remembered how it was to grow up amidst fathers calling their sons – Ullu ka Patha and mothers calling their sons – ‘kamina’… one of our neighbors couldn’t even talk to their pet dog without using MC and BC at least once every two to three minutes.
Abusive words or gaalis as we prefer to call them are Haryana’s and Punjab’s best gift to the world apart from agricultural and dairy products. Yes, I am proud of the ease with which all of us can and have used abusive words without feeling ashamed or embarrassed. That reminds me, my mom used to call me ‘chudail’, with love of course:-) As for that matter, she had different gaalis for different kids. One of my cousins was always a ‘haraamkhor’. My dad had a softer approach – all boys were and are still ‘khotas’ and all girls – ‘nikammis’.
All this is a matter of laughter for people who don’t know the true essence of being from Haryana. They imitate and have their fun because they truly believe that a gaali is meant for abusing. But we, the people from Haryana, can use gaalis in many ways. Gaalis are love at times, gaalis are scolding at other times, gaalis mean friendship a lot of times and gaalis are anger too many a times. Intimidated by gaalis? Consider this, my neighbor who called her dog MC and BC every now and then would refuse to make breakfast for her son many a times because she would be busy feeding her beloved dog. In his younger day, my dad has addressed every kid he has met in his dental and opticals business as either ‘khota’ or ‘nikammi’, depending on their gender, yet made friends with them and their parents. The same kids who gave hell to their parents before visiting would easily get their eyes tested and milk tooth extracted if he would be around.
One of my older friends and I still greet each other – saali, kutiya, kamini, haraamzaadi… SKKH… strictly in that order. Yet I know and she knows that we may live apart yet we can talk like that and we will stand by each other always…
But all this can really intimidate other people when they visit Delhi and bump into Haryanavi Hawaldars and Bus Conductors.
Apart from the free flow of gaalis, our walk and talk too can be intimidating for a lot of people. Add to that the fact, that we are not the people who believe in keeping things to our heart and not giving a good one to anyone who we think deserves it, can be a pain in the ass for a lot of other people.
What really differentiates people from Haryana from anywhere else is their pride and a belief that they are strong. In an argument, whether we are wrong or right, we say everything with so much of pride and confidence that the listeners can easily doubt themselves despite being right.
All said and done, people from Haryana come across as people with certain toughness in them.
So, in defense of the state that I would probably never go back to again, I can only say that what most people miss out on seeing is that people are from Haryana are impulsive and emotional to the core. They love and hate like the downpour of extreme monsoons. It is this extremist attitude that people mistake for aggression a lot of times and do not get complete essence of Haryana.