Have you ever gone to a boring amusement park and wondered, ‘ayye ithilum koodthal amusement ente veetil indello!’, know that you were never wrong. Our households are more often than not amusing. After all, it’s all these little things too that make our house a #home.
This is not an article where we say Malayalis do this, Malayalis do that and hence they are not poli. These are a few subtle instances that are common to almost all Malayali households. And the subtlety lies in the fact that most of us Malayalis are clueless as to why we do all this. These are some of those ‘oppiyedutha edukal’ from the life of a sharaashari Malayali.
Hoard Cutlery & Bedspreads For That Fancy Guest
You haven’t had a proper Malayali moment if you haven’t discovered your parent’s secret stash. You know, the cupboard or suitcase where they keep these exquisite and new bedspreads along with fancy glassware and what not. If you dare to ask them to ‘maati pidikkal’ the same threebedspreads all around the year, what you probably get is a cold glare and a comment ‘Aa ath edukkaar aaumbo edkka!’. A statement as mysterious as the action itself.
Even if Queen Elizabeth comes over for lunch, don’t get your hopes high. No guest is so great to deserve your parents’ hoardings. In case, she ever decides to use them for any particular person just understand that that person is worth his/her weight in gold to them (Nah probably not you, maybe the marumon or somebody!) Some parents even have a spare mixer-grinder also because, well, we Malayalis do a lot of things that we’re clueless about.
Charama Column Scanning Since Eternity
Personally, there is no legit reason why people scan the obituary so sincerely every single day as if they are searching for somebody out there! Of course, obituaries are out there for a reason. They convey the demise of a person because the relatives would not have time to let everybody know of it otherwise. This is understandable.
But grandparents, parents, and children scan them with such glee that the whole mood of the very page is lost. Grandparents look at how many people they have outlived, parents look at how many children each of them had and whether the number of ‘marumakkal’ is proportionate to the ‘makkal’. The children just want to keep a record of how many people hit a century each day!
‘Kari Vaari Thekkal’ because dhrishtidosham!
Have you had a situation where you went to a maternity ward to see a newborn baby and then come to their 28th-day celebration, wondering what happened to the baby you saw days back? They don’t look the same. While this might not happen in all Malayali households, there are quite many who follow this tradition of literally painting a baby’s face in kari. Guess they couldn’t wait for the kid to grow up so that they could do the verbal version of kari vaari thekkal, huh?
Also Read: Birthday Culture: Yayy or Nah?
While a small black dot (or pottu) is commonly believed to ward off the evil eye, there is no explanation as to why they have to paint a little face with so much kajal. While homemade kanmashi is popularly used to paint a baby’s eyes, forehead, cheeks, etc. (basically, any exposed region of the face!), what people generally overlook is the risk of infection from unclean fingers.
Advice And Opinions For Free
Whether it has something to do with you or not, comes a meek secondary to people when they give out their opinion from the ‘light of their experiences (anubhavathinte velicham, you see)’.
It’s useful and assuring when you get an elderly person’s opinion when you genuinely go ask them for it. But nosey-parkers who get titbits of the information from here and there, processing it in their sweet manner and then delivering opinions without any ‘ulupp’. See, the difference between paalpayasam and your opinion is that I ASKED for paalpayasam.
This is definitely ones of the things Malayalis are clueless as to why they do it. And if you ask them, well, they’ll say – Sheel aayi poyi!
Celebrate Weddings Like There’s No Tomorrow
Though this does not apply solely to Malayalis, we are not very behind either! ‘Decorating the bride’ is a more apt phrase than ‘getting the bride ready’ most of the time. Work hard all your life, double hard if you have daughters, save up tons of gold, take a loan to cover wedding expenses and then say tata-bye-bye to the daughter. Aaha anthass!
Celebration is fun and a happy commemoration of an event, but why only weddings? Why don’t we celebrate graduations, PhDs and the launch of your new startup like this? Surely, these took a lot more effort than getting married, didn’t they?
Appearances Can Be Deceptive
You have not been in a Malayali household if you have not mistakenly put ‘malli podi’ into your milk instead of Horlicks! No container ever goes to the trash in a Malayali household. Like a typical ‘plastic bags in a bigger plastic bag’ scenario, chaayapodi in milma tins, achaar in Horlicks kuppi are a normal sight in every kitchen cabinet. Now one might wonder ‘Dude, why is this clueless, isn’t this smart? Ever heard of the 3R’s huh?’. Duh. This is not clueless. Although Nescafe coffee comes in a glass bottle, have you seen it been emptied inside a former coffee bottle because new bottle=new use? No? Okay, sane household.
Also Read: What We All Wanted to do When We Grew Up
There are a lot more points that could be added to this right? Look around you right now and let us know those things that Malayalis themselves are clueless about.