Thursday, April 9, 2015

Arrey le lo, arrey nahi

Have you ever been caught in the seemingly endless game of "arrey le lo, arrey nahi"? It is that game that you must have played when your relative is about leave your house and furnishes a crisp note of five (or hundred) bucks.

I do not know how the tradition started but here is how it goes. The relative tries to give you money for being such a wonderful host, while (ideally) it is your duty to ward it off by any means possible. It is sanskari and something Alok Nath would approve of.

Now the way this is played depends on the gender as well. While your tauji/mausaji will just bellow at you and demand you to keep it, the foofa might give you hard cold "psuedologic" like "arrey jab kamane lagoge tab nahi denge!" (why is it needed in the first place, I wonder?) or as simple as "Baat suno rakhlo beta."

If the male relative is too tired or the other half just relishes this exciting game then you will find her frantically pacing around her temporary room, searching for notes from different corners of her bags, purses and that red mini blouse-purse. She will come up with a wonderful logic of her own, "Shaadi hogi tab tumhari bahu ko denge" (I am ten years old?!) or as simple as "Isse chocolate le lena".

As compelling as these arguments may sound, remember, pretend that you do not want the money at all! Pretend! Please give dialogues such as, "Yeh to bahut zyada hai <relatives's relation with you>ji" and then ever so slightly move away from them. You might want to send a quick smile to your parents as well, signalling that everything is according to their plan, while they stand ten feet away, proud their child refused. He is now a mature man. He is not. The art lies in making sure the relative tries again, "Baat suno, le lo", "arrey nahi".

The third party in this entire episode are your parents. After carefully negotiating with the relative you also need to be able to make sure that they understand that you tried to your fullest and The Adarsh is gushing through your veins. If you are at an expert level, you may experiment making a sad smiley face and exclaiming to your parents, "Yeh to maan hi nahi rhe", while ever so slowly immersing the new wealth in your pocket. A good act can make them empathize with your pathetic condition and may bring the entire episode to a close.

On the other hand, if you let it linger for too long the parents can lodge a strong protest bringing down amount you will kitty.
"Chaliye de dijiye lekin itne zyada nahi". The dialogue still haunts me.

After playing this intricate game, you may want to touch their feet and send them home with a warm smile, wondering when they will come back! 

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