Just Bengali People things: Let’s laugh a little

Humor is an important and effective ingredient to spice up the dish of life. Looking at the funny side of life doesn’t or shouldn’t hurt anybody. The only way humor should hurt is by giving a low-key post abdominal-workout cramp, after a good belly laugh.

Much of the humor these days thrives on stereotyping, but stereotyping never results out of nothing ever.

Let’s face it- every community in India has its own idiosyncrasy and the Bengali people are no exception either.

Just like what Butter Chicken is to a Punjabi, so is Ilish Macher Jol  to a Bengali. Their obsession with Rice and Fish is not theirs alone. Even for the Malayalis, nothing can beat their love for well-cooked Fish and  Rice.

Humor is an important and effective ingredient to spice up the dish of life. Looking at the funny side of life doesn’t or shouldn’t hurt anybody. The only way humor should hurt is by giving a low-key post abdominal-workout cramp, after a good belly laugh.

Much of the humor these days thrives on stereotyping, but stereotyping never results out of nothing ever.

Let’s face it- every community in India has its own idiosyncrasy and the Bengali people are no exception either.

Just like what Butter Chicken is to a Punjabi, so is Ilish Macher Jol  to a Bengali. Their obsession with Rice and Fish is not theirs alone. Even for the Malayalis, nothing can beat their love for well-cooked Fish and  Rice.

Tasty Bengali Food

There is no written rule either that the dangerously delicious Roshogulla (mind you, it’s Raw-show-gulla and not Rasgulla) and Bengali go hand in hand. The Bengalis are about a lot more than just that. There are a gazillion other sweets like Nolen Gurer Sondesh,  Mishti Doi, Malai Chom Chom etc  which can make anybody feel tempted enough to cheat their diet. No wonder their sweets are the sweetest gift to the world!

Below are some relatable instances, all in good humor, which are unique to every Bengali. Well, you need not be a Bengali to connect to these posts. If you have ever known a Bong in your life, you will be able to relate to most of them.

  1. The million dollar accent- You know they are Bengali even before knowing they are a Bengali because of their accent which never refuses to leave them. ‘Safety pin’ becomes ‘Septi Pin’, ‘Maroon’ becomes ‘Merun’. You never know when V’s becomes B’s as in ‘Vegetables’ becomes ‘Bhegetables’. Just know that their diction is dibherse (diverse).
Bengali Funny Pronunciation

2. Stages of a Bengali Conversation- Hand them over a bhaar of chaa (tea) and cigarette and watch the switch from bonding to philosophical discussions to adrenaline-fuelled debates in the blink of an eye. ‘Aap chronology samajhiye’.

Chaa!!

3. Tea without Marie Biscuit is like Burger without Cheese- Who doesn’t love pakoras or fritters and everything oily with their tea, but the Marie ‘biskoot’ has a special place in the Bengali hearts. Your visit to a Bengali household is never complete without being served tea with these complimentary biscuits.

Biscoot

4. Saraswati Pujo aka Bengali Valentine’s Day- The Probashi Bengalis might not be able to relate, but the ones hailing from West Bengali are probably smiling at the statement. If you think ‘Pujo blessings’ and ‘Prasad’ are the only reasons why Saraswati Puja is awaited every year, then Sir/Ma’am you are very boka. This day the lovelorn Bengalis celebrate love to the fullest as every Single Bengali’s probability of finding true love skyrockets.

5. Always high on Boroline- God forbid, if the world is ever struck by an apocalypse, this green tube is what every Bengali would be running to save first. Ask a Bengali and they will proudly provide you with a whole new scope to put Boroline to use-from  a little hiccup to diabetes mellitus, and everything in between. Running out of this ‘magic potion in a tube’ is quite an intimidating thought in itself.

Boroline

6. Undying love for Kolbalish- The world might see it as just a hot-dog shaped body pillow, but for the Bengalis it is their Best Friend in a pillow form. Be it soul-crushing breakup or broken dreams or physical ailment , the Kolbalish has seen it all with it’s owner. Who needs a beau/belle to cuddle with when you have a Kolbalish?

Still reading? Want more? Yes we have a few more to keep you entertained!

7. Chanting of ‘Isshh’ at the drop of a hat- We can’t thank Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Devdas enough for making this catchphrase so famous. This little word is every Bengali’s favourite expression to convey a plethora of emotions, from disgust to embarrassment.

8. The Best Snack Award goes to Muri (puffed rice)- This humble Bengali snack tastes best when eaten out of a newspaper bag and tossed straight into your mouth with practiced ease. The Bengali people have come up with various combinations to supplement Muri, like- tea, water, milk, banana etc. Oops, not to forget, their reverence for the spicy adda snack- ‘Jhal Muri’ is unmatched.

9. Durga Puja is not an occasion, but an emotion- A Bengali’s whole year is planned around Durga Puja. Ask a Bengali for an explanation for the child-like emotions they go through in these 5 days, and we bet they wont be able to give you one. From welcoming Maa with wide arms and utmost happiness to experiencing withdrawal and  Monkharap symptoms as they chant ‘Aasche Bochor Abar Hobe’ while bidding adieu to Maa on Doshomi Day, is typical of every Bengali ever.

10. Gamcha (Bengali Towel) Love- The modern-day super-absorbent, ultra-sheen towels don’t stand a chance against the age-old, light-weighted Gamcha.

11. The Linguistic Dilemma- Jol Khabo. Hawa Khabo. Yes they ‘eat’ everything. Got a problem? Deal with it! By the way, many of us even ‘ drink’ cigarette, don’t we? Just saying!

Source Credit : Tenor

12. Ami Tomake Bhalobashi– the facepalm moment – Every Bengali has atleast once in his/her life been greeted/addressed with this clichéd phrase by a non-Bengali. *To the non-Bengalis- If you don’t wish to get a red mark on your face, not of lipstick or blush, but of hard slap, then just stop already, please!  

Source Credit : Tenor

13. Wondering why 13 is left blank? Coming to our next point, some Bengalis believe in ridiculously funny superstitions, one of which is avoiding the number 3 in any and every form. The talent lies only with the Bengalis to come up with superstitions like they will get horns if their head hits someone else’s head.

Source Credit : Tenor

14. Synonym of Cricket? Saurav Ganguly- Every Bengali cricket lover idolizes Saurav Ganguly. Bengalis are aggressively defensive about Dada, so much so that they can put you behind the bars for saying ‘Dhoni is better than Dada’, so be warned!

15. Borrowing  a leaf from the adorable Bengali vocabulary- These are a few from their daily parlance-

Fatafati- Go-to replacement for a generic awesome.

Nyaka- Imagine Poo from K3G. That’s what NYAKA is for Bengalis. Used to describe a person who is acting silly, whiny and annoying to seek attention.

Aashchi- Since ‘Goodbye’ has an air of finality in it, ‘See you again’ is a milder way to say it, which happens to be the English translation of Aashchi.

Gondogol-  Trouble or when you suspect ‘something is wrong’.

Kyabla – the exact opposite of street-smart.

Well, these were just the cream of the crop.

16. Daaknaam- Need we say more? –The shadow of the Daaknaam never leaves a Bengali’s side. You don’t really have a Daaknaam if it doesn’t have the power to embarrass you and shatter your ego in front of your crush. Piku, Puchki, Laltu- which one is yours? Okay! Okay! No more rubbing salt into your wounds.

17. The Secret Sauce of ever Bengali Dish-Shorsher Tel- This respect-demanding oil imparts the Bengali cuisines with their distinct zing. Maybe that’s why Bengali people use mustard oil not as a medium for cooking but as the main ingredient. Pun intended.

18. Bhaat Ghoom/ Lyaadh-Bengali people possess the superpower to sleep round the clock but nothing can beat the pleasure derived from their post meal beauty sleep after eating a fulfilling, hearty meal of rice.

Illustration credit- Rituparna Sarkar, Instagram- instagram.com/rituparna.

That’s all, you guys!

On a serious note, Bengali people are the smartest of the lot and excellence flows naturally in their veins. Their hearts are as big as their community- Bengalis are just everywhere, you know!

They are the ones who will always say “Sunte ki Mishti Lagche’ when a non- Bengali tries to speak their language, howsoever broken it is. You never really just meet a Bengali, they happen to you!

Since humor is subjective, we can only hope we didn’t offend anybody.

If even one of the above resonated with you and could tickle your funny bone, do not forget to share the happiness and show us some love. Signing off.  Nomoshkar!

Urvasi Jain

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