Sunday, September 21, 2008

Whats in a name anyway?

No, i will not start this post with the trite 'A rose by any other name would smell as sweet' . My intention through this post is to highlight the absolute incorrigible demeanour of my peers and (Sheepishly)mine.

If you happened to read my earlier posts, you must be well aware of JK. Yes, I am referring to Jagapathi Kondragunta , my famous friend who also happens to be a quiz and a talk show host. Somehow i too suffer from this name-condensation fixation as do innumrable others around me. PradeepKumar Prajapati, for me, is 'Pappu'. The person in question happens to be an enterprising guy in my team at work. Trust me, it does get extremely embarrassing at times for both of us when , during important presentations,I inadvertently or out of force of habit blurt out "Ey pappu, woh projector theek kar na".

People around usually employ a standard algorithm to slaughter the names of their near and dear ones. They just crop the name to its nearest identifiable form and attach a 'u' ,an 'a' or a 'y' to personalize it. This phenomenon is not deficient of any exceptions though. A Sandeep being baptized to a 'Sandy' is not unusual but why people would call 'Shobha' as 'Shobhu' is beyond my comprehension.

The very few bengali friends that i have are constantly irritated by the names that their folks or extended families address them with. Debobrata Mukherjee is a beautiful name. Legend goes that when Deb was born, pandits from all over the land were called for. Probable vowels and consonants in 'Bangla' were listed. A considerable amount of deliberation was put in just to establish that the name would not prove inauspicious for the child. I am told that Deb's aunt had come up with the name 'Mrinmoy' (anything made out of mud). Though it was unique, it was rejected outright (because of its meaning , i assume). You must be wondering why i am delving into this level of detail about someone you don't even know. Here comes the mind boggling piece of information - Debabrata is 'lovingly' called boltu by his parents.Just for the record, Deb's younger brother, Nilotpal is referred to, as laltu
.I can almost see the perplexed smile on your face; I am as clueless as you are.

Throughout my college life, I alongwith a number of my close friends were addressed by our last-names. I am sure you would agree that this is pretty normal. The consequence was that a few of my friends did not know my first name till the third year of engineering. There are times when many of my pals have sported a puzzled look when someone asked them about 'Nikhil'. I too, have been on the wrong side of this phenomenon. On one occasion, I had invited a certain friend of mine to my residence. You cannot imagine the pickle i found myself in when I had to introduce this guy to my parents (It is not good decorum to introduce someone only by his first name)." Dad, Ma, This is ... err... ahem... ".... "Hi Aunty, I am Vivek.", he jumps in and helps himself, much to my relief.

Paucity of bandwidth and motivation,alike, have always popped up and prevented me from rambling on about something. This happens to be a case on the same lines, wherein i have to be content with the justice i have done to this topic and allow JK to take over and distribute some of his pearls of wisdom.

JK.. err... Jagapathi Kondragunta tells me that i have been a fool to choose this topic to ruminate. He has now, thrown an open challenge to me, in that, he wants me to use his full name every time i refer to him in my posts. I humbly decline to accept this challenge of his saying "Well, JK , I would rather prefer to be incorrigible. Whats in a name anyway?"

1 comment:

Pagan Winter said...

You have MPD, don't you? There's no JK in reality...

Very good topic. Here are my 2 cents worth...
I disagree with "...and attach a 'u' ,an 'a' or a 'y' "
Why not all of them? I have had my name distorted in more ways than one.
Among friends - Vaidu
Office - Vaid
TCS office - Vaidy
Some others - Vaidya
Illiterate ones - VaidyanathAN

Then there's also Jackie (no, not a dog, but an anglicized version of JaiKishan) who' brother, very unfortunately, is called Tikkam Das, for you see, his parents believe in numerology and couldn't think of any other name starting with 'T'.

Of course, not to forget 'Ajju, Keeru, Thothu and Bada Karthik' all referring to 4 persons named Karthik.

I might keep adding comments here still... because I already have a post with that name.