If language were a cuisine, Delhi would have been serving the spiciest, tangiest and most savoury potpourri with surprises in each bite. And bite the tongue (literally and figuratively) you will, dare you not enjoy their verbal feast. So here we are blowing The Indian Trumpet in Delhi’s sound bite with an invitation to all and sundry to jibe along or gibe away… as you like it.
Delhi is so ‘amazing-shamazing’ that you can never get ‘enough-shenough’ of it.
Remember the word ‘Shrimaan Ji’ from Hindi applications and letter formats we learnt in class 3? The word was too long so ‘Delhi’ shortened it to ‘Abe’! Don’t get offended when you hear Oye followed by Abe; it still denotes respect.
B: Bahar Mil
The full significance of this phrase can be read between the words and felt outside your comfort zone. The literal translation ‘See me outside’ won’t impact you as much as the Delhiite’s way of speaking it. 99 out of 100 Dilliwale say it with a neck movement signalling towards outside. The 100th one will probably be a pro who will communicate the threat through his eyes.
Chep is the most used word in the city. On Samosapedia the definition of Chep reads as: Someone who sticks around needlessly despite being unwanted and is a desperate attention seeker. The horror of the word lies in its female connotations.
D: Dimag ka Dahi
Delhi people are an impatient lot and the moment someone tends to be irritating or repetitive or even close by, you will hear them saying – ‘Dimag ka Dahi matkar’ (Loosely translated: Don’t bug me!). Go by your gut feeling and don’t dare to ask them how the brain can be turned into curd. The answer would be a whole new dictionary of expletives and infuriating words.
E: Ek Number
Delhiites have high standards; everything from their lunch to Metro crowd and even the boss’ secretary has to be Ek Number, especially the girlfriend.
Faadu (Loosely translated: Crappie) is a motivational slang; you play Faadu cricket, deliver a Faadu presentation and even carry yourself in a Faadu style. Forget its literal translation but keep your ears open to hear Dilliwala’s compliments like ‘Faadu Banda’.
Movies and parties are often described as Gadar (Loosely translated: Killer). Something that exceeds their scale of fun and imagination is Gadar.
H: Height Kam, Fight Zyada
Delhi is chauvinistic and believes in strength. (Punjab- Haryana effect) ‘Height Kam, Fight Zyada’ – that’s how one gets mocked if he builds up a fight with someone without first building his 4-pack abs (at least) and chiselled body.
I: I Know
Delhiites seem to know everything or that’s what they believe. From Kejriwal’s victory to Modi’s budget and to Virat Kohli’s century, their ‘I-Know’ syndrome is often followed by ‘I-told-you’ when their predictions or judgments come true.
The word impossible is not in the dictionary of Dilliwalas either (Just like Napoleon)! Rather they went a step ahead and added the word Jugaad (Loosely translated: innovative x or simple work-around) for everything you or me find impossible. Even in a packed Feroz Shah Kotla, you can manage to be seated in the first row or even meet Sachin Tendulkar personally; all thanks to their Jugaad. But boss, Jugaad does happen at some cost so be ready to shell out a few (or more) bucks.
This is not the Bijness done by Jignesh… This is the Car-o-Bar that needs a Merc or Jaguar. Delhi loves to drink and recently, they have fallen in love with taking a drink or two in the coziness of their car. And if a cop happens to stop this ‘whiskey on wheels’ party, the favourite dialogue comes – ‘Tu Jaanta Nahi Mera Baap Kaun Hai!’!
What Punjabis refer to as Vehlapanti, the same schedule is referred to as Lukhagiri in Delhi. Generally, the college people spare some time for Lukhagiri (Loosely translated: Chilling) from their busy schedule and bird-watching (checking out girls) is their favourite Lukhagiri activity.
Main is how they define their favourites! ‘Kadi-chawal’ is their main dish in lunch just like ‘Saket’ is their main place to hang out! Notice how main gets fitted in their Hindi sentences – “Comedy Circus me Guthi wala part hi main tha kal” – what a chutney-fication of language!
N: Nikal Padi
From winning a lottery to winning a girlfriend’s heart or getting a job – Delhi people express good fortune as ‘Nikal Padi’. Any guesses for the best ‘Nikal Padi’ moment – None other than having a rich, doting and beautiful girlfriend!
O: O Teri
Aamir Khan does owe many thanks to Delhi for giving him this phrase. Dilliwale say this many times in a day and with prized emotions and expressions every time. No wonder, the National School of Drama was set up in Delhi.
That’s how a great-looking female is described all over North India. Delhi Tadka to this phrase is Aunty Patakha ( rework) – a phrase for the beautiful mother of their friend/girlfriend.
Delhi is a cosmopolitan city with many ethnic groups and cultures. Several languages are spoken here but a typical Delhiite speaks the ‘Delhi lingo’, one that it is a symbol of unity in diversity!
Yes, this new word post-Kangana Ranaut movie is quite common amongst teenagers. Delhi terms those girls Queen who prefer to stay single. And then, every show-off girl is often nicknamed Drama Queen.
R: Rehne De
When it gets enough, the ‘Rehne De’ look and phrase appears. Especially said when the counter person is bragging beyond boundaries. This is a magical phrase – it carries a different meaning when said as ‘Rehne De Na’ or ‘Rehne De, Rehne De’ or ‘Rehne De Yaar’!
S: Senti Mat Maar
When a girlfriend addresses her boyfriend with sweet nothings while he is not a mood for such silly stuff, he would often cut her short by saying ‘Senti Mat Maar’ (Loosely translated: Don’t play the emotional card). And you think Bollywood coins its lyrics and dialogues on its own!
A cop is called Thulla, but why so? While you may think the word has something to do with a beating but actually it’s a reference to their brown sack like uniform. Fair enough, isn’t it?
U: Ullu Ka Patha
A majority of Delhi parents (especially of Punjab origin) refer to their children as Ullu Ka Patha. Son of an owl – the literal translation; this one it times is a mild curse.
Vaise is how Dilliwale begin their conversations. Vaise is how they establish relationships with benefits. Vaise is how they ask (or get) what they want. Vaise is something that you cannot understand at all. By the way, Vaise means By The Way!
Dilliwale are good at appreciating things. Their large- hearted Waaooness for a concept or person cannot be better explained than AAP’s stupendous victory in elections. 67 out of 70 seats. That’s Delhi’s Waaoo! What is happening post the mentioned victory is another story.
Delhi is always in a rush hour so everything is served crisp. university becomes uni and obviously becomes Obvio! Killing language, xactly!
Delhi is friendly and embraces everyone in its uniqueness. So everyone is a Yaar, from an autowala to a BMW wala!
Z: Zabardasti Hai Kya
You can’t force Delhiites to do something, if you even try, their oft-repeated answer would be – Zabardasti Hai Kya (Loosley translated: Is there a compulsion?)! No wonder, all those phone calls for insurance policies and 2BHK at rarely succeed in fooling Delhiwalas.
Yes, Delhi is so ‘amazing-shamazing’ that you can never get ‘enough-shenough’ of it. Don’t we all ‘love-shuv’ every single word about the city? Yes, we do!
Keep blowing the Trumpet! This & many more stories await in the pages!