Sunday, October 04, 2009


Just a small incident…

I am telling my friend “wo mail bhej naa…”

I get reprimanded “bhej naa nahi bhejo naa bolo. Thodi respect do yaar” :D

And I agree. While talking in Hindi, calling someone Aap, definitely sounds much more elegant than a tu or even tum. Else it sounds just complete Bambaiya language.

But, strangely this is so language specific. Calling someone tumhi, is a tad difficult in Marathi. Simply because it does become too formal instead of being elegant like it becomes in Hindi. I remember a time when in one of my projects there was such a mixture of all Hindi and Marathi talking people that there always used to be a lot of switching between languages. And I would call the same person Aap in Hindi and tu in Marathi. And each time when I would realize I am doing this, I would become even more conscious about this. But then it has to be like this. My Hindi used to be so strongly sprinkled with Marathi words. I would just not find a right word in Hindi, in flow of my speech and my colleagues used to laugh like anything each time. Still remember those happy times with all of them. Well, my Hindi is not improved much still and I still make the mixture of words and the use of verbs, and get reprimanded.

Coming back to the point though…

I have this distant Uncle, quite elderly to me. But the way he had been swindling and behaving with his family that it is just so impossible to have any kind of respect for him in mind. I still greet him properly but that’s just a formality really.

On the other hand, I have this guy in office. Quite elderly to me, but it’s somehow impossible to call him Tumhi in Marathi or Aap in Hindi. If at all we get talking in Hindi which is rare anyway it goes completely Bambaiya. “Tere ko ye pata hai kya?” But, I respect this guy immensely. To get at a position and to get the knowledge he has, it takes lots and lots of hard work.

Mom. How many people call mom with the “Adarathi Bahuvacahn”. One of my cousins does. He will say, “Mummy tame darshan kari avya ke?” Nothing wrong with it, technically that is. In fact good that he is showing respect to his Mom like he would give it to his father. But somehow used to the “a mummy” and “aho pappa” it sounds very strange to the ears. Of course, we respect mother but some how this salutation just makes her feel closer, to hide behind her when stern papa is scolding you.

Interesting, realizing that Marathi and Gujarathi doesn’t have one in between Hindi form…

Tu mail bhej. Tu mail pathav. Tu mail mokal.

Tum mail bhejo.

Aap mail bhejo. Tumhi mail pathava. Tame mail mokalo.

Apan mail pathava would be again similar to Aap of Hindi.

Well, after a long analysis of a small thing, point really is… The right form of verb and salutation would Show the respect you Have or rather supposed to Have. However, the respect you Have or Give to a certain person is not dependent on that.

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