Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Inside Jokes

One of the most wonderful thing about any family are the inside jokes. Nobody outside the family understands them and they probably aren't even funny, when taken out of context. But they probably hark back to an incident or a time when they were funny for the family involved.

Like, for instance, my dad and uncle had taken a fascination, years ago for this very sidey govinda number called "what is mobile number". At that time they sang it all the time whenever someones phone rang. Even though it has lost its frequency (thank gawd for that), they still occasionally burst out singing "what is mobile number, what is your style number" when someone mentions the words "mobile number" or something similar. Most people would not find it amusing that 2 men of 47-57 are singing (and i use the term loosely here) govinda songs. But its still very funny for everybody in the family. We roll our eyes and scream loudly and create a din to drown out the song.

Another one like this, is a dialogue from the anil kapoor-madhuri-anupam kher starrer Khel. Its a crazy movie about 3 con artists. In this movie there is dialogue which madhuri says to prem chopra which goes something like this : "I love you balwant uncle, you know it!" And its said in a very musical voice with a nasal twang. And my dad and I still identify this movie by this dialogue. So if someone were to say Khel, we would suddenly scream out " I love you balwant uncle, you know it!". This is when the other people would silently move to another corner of the room, and conspire on how exactly we should be taken to get treatment. But the fact is that for us Khel would always be the movie in whcih we love balwant uncle and you know it!

Another one involves a prank played on my cousin Aditi. Let me set the context here. It was Gudi Padwa (Maharashtrian new year). On this occasion the Gudi is hoisted is every house for the day. Now on one particular Gudi Padwa, my uncle was removing the Gudi at the end of the day. My cousin was standing nearby. So my uncle tells her, that part of the tradition is that she must take the Gudi along with the pole, hold it upright in her hands (like a flag) and circle the house on the outside, with it 3 times. Since my uncle tends to come up with ideas like this often, she didn't believe him so when our aaji came out, Aditi asked her. If my uncles a prankster, my aaji was... well...the mother of pranksters. With a perfectly straight face, she tells my cousin, that not only is she supposed to circle the house, but she must also chant "Jai Gudi, Jai Gudi" as she walks. Not one to doubt the granny, in all solemnness, Aditi holds the gudi upright, and will all the seriousness befitting a commander of defence forces, she starts marching forward, screaming "Jai Gudi, Jai Gudi!!" at the top of her voice.
She had walked an entire length of the house, before she turned around and saw aaji and uncle doubled up in laughter.
Ever since that day, whenever Gudi Padwa is mentioned and Aditi is around, the whole family in one voice starts chanting "Jai Gudi! Jai Gudi".

I guess the closeness in our family is symbolized by the number of inside jokes.

The jokes I've written about might not seem very hilarious to readers, but what can I say, they are inside jokes.

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