I am a telugu.
I really am. I wasn’t born there in teluguland but last I checked, I was born to telugu parents and most definitely raised one. I swear. Ask my mom. How about reading my Sankranthi post, or just ask me a question in telugu and I’d reply, in telugu too! Yes, I do know tamil too, and I think it’s a fine language and I can probably cuss in it as well, but no seriously I am a good ol’ telugu woman at heart.
I don’t look like one?
Yeah, I know, I must have been swapped at birth I suppose, I mean, after all I was a chubby baby with fat hanging off my cheeks and equally large round eyes threatening to take over the remaining space. Though I did ask my mother and she insists I am her natural born child, what with the unmistakable dad’s curls and skin color and her almond eyes.
So you must believe me, I may stick out among the telugus, but I surely am one.
I wish I could stay and convince you longer, but I must jump the fence and convince my telugu sisters too, coz they don’t believe me either.
When God was distributing the talent/gift of the ‘comeback’, I was lazing away somewhere under the tree, staring at how pretty sunlight was fading into the night. By the time I realized and sauntered over, there wasn’t any left. That pretty much explains why I am left staring open mouthed when I get faced with thoughtless comments that seem to haunt me everywhere I go. I stand there shocked in complete disbelief at the moment that’s transpired, and after the frozen moment’s passed, beat a hasty retreat.
I read Usha’s post this morning and she had this nice collection of comebacks, slightly chubby, ample, prosperous looking women could use when the stick-thin models grill us. She’d covered all of them one can possibly think of, except that there’s apparently a regional influence onto how the fat cells distribute themselves. I was recently made aware of that and this is how the story goes.
A few weeks ago at Costco.
I was there digging through a pile of ski gloves for the kids, minding my own business. Out of the blue, a lady taps me on my shoulder and goes
I turn around. I can vaguely recollect her from the distant past. Recovering I smile, hoping she wouldn’t quiz me on who she was, her name, gotram and her child’s school. There had to be a child in tow somewhere, I thought. On cue, one brat looking like a miniature version of her, skirted the corner and ran bang into my already crooked knee.*wince.
She goes on “How long it is since I’ve seen you?” Pauses.
“Oh yea, quite a while.” (refusing to quantify the time elapsed) “How much your son’s grown?” (grin stupidly)
“Yeah, I wouldn’t have recognized you at all, until he told me it was Rads’ aunty.”
“Ah, children. Such memory they have.”
I then realize I know her from some friend’s friend Navratri golu thing and we kept bumping into each other all through the evening, more like an acquaintance. More such insane small talk that I am dying to weasel out of, and hoping to escape as with a grace of a waddling rhino.
A svelte expensive figure in a fitted turtleneck and an equally expensive looking jacket turns the corner. Am still gaping at the neat cut, when the face came into view and lo behold it’s another lady from the past. This time, more recent past and a bit more friendlier, one I can actually recall the name and a little more detail. .
New lady exclaims “Omg rads, lovely to see you!”
I exclaim with equal enthusiasm, hoping she’s my last straw out of the whirlpool I was sinking into.
She continues on looking warily and apologetically at the other lady “No Rads, it’s been a crazy year..” lapses into telugu quickly.
We nod and she rushes off.
The lady with the toddler, looks back at me and says “She’s a telugu, and you speak telugu too?”
Before I could explain, the brat managed to skid and fall on his butt and needed some TLC. Thinking this was the perfect time to escape I wait for her to face me, so I could politely leave.
She hauls the fellow up and looks up at me and continues on “These Telugus I tell you, they look so slim and thin trim. It’s us Tamils only who look like this.”
After that statement, my mouth fell open and I refused to stand there anymore and explain to her that
1. I was a telugu alright, just not slim and thin trim.
2. Tamils are a fine lot by themsleves, thank you very much!