Bangaloreans and their slang

BANGALORE: Bangalore, like every city, has its own set of slang words. Nobody quite knows how they  originated, but they have been in use over the years and have become party of the daily

Published: 07th February 2012 08:19 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th May 2012 05:51 PM   |  A+A-

BANGALORE: Bangalore, like every city, has its own set of slang words. Nobody quite knows how they  originated, but they have been in use over the years and have become party of the daily conversation.

For instance, if you are new to Bangalore and come across a Bangalorean liberally using the city’s unique slang, you wouldn’t make head or tail of it. And if it takes time for the meaning to dawn on you, you are likely to be called a “tube light”, for the time it takes for you to get “enlightened”.

And if you can’t stand this lingo anymore, you might want to say “right”. No, it’s not a word in approval, but it means “time to go”. It’s derived from bus conductor’s signal to the driver saying “get a move on”. And if his bus is a rickety old one, you’d find a  Bangalorean call it a “Dakota”, apparently derived from the old DC3s that used to drone lazily over the city, well beyond their “best by” date.

Slang isn’t limited to English words, but given the city’s residents’ tolerance to all languages,  there’s a fair sprinkling of other languages too. And so, the politician is all “naraaz” as the law finally catches up with him and has to go “andhar” for his crime. And the sycophants, who tail the politicians wherever they go, are given the name “chamchas” while for the police constable who escorts the disgraced politician to prison, the title “tigne mari”, or bed bug, sits prettily like his hat.

And if you are reading all about the beleaguered former leader in the papers with your thick  spectacles, you will run the risk of being called a “soda”, someone, whose reading glasses are as thick as the highly refractive soda bottles.

Food is never far from the true Bangalorean’s thoughts and his favourite dishes are given

unique titles.

The patented Bangalore speciality bisibele bath, is more popularly known as “concrete”, for its semi-liquid, semi-solid state and its mixture of ingredients while the perforated Mysore pak, another Bangalore sweet, is “concrete block” to many.

— vijaysimha@newindianexpress.com

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