Bombaiya: A lexicon of delight - Part 1

Posted by neelix Sun, 02 Sep 2007 18:44:00 GMT

Bombay or Mumbai is city with representatives from probably every part of the Indian nation. As one can imagine, a phonetic resonance and dissonance occurs when all of these people start talking to each other. India has 15 major languages and over 200 dialects, so what we have in Mumbai is a language "kichdi" that is evolving each day. So where bombaiya is at today?, I don't know. What I do know is that the speaking in bombaiya with a fellow mumbaikar, is a unique experience , which even today delights me to no end. I am no linguist. Nor am I an language historian. I simply want to record what I have heard in the hopes of preserving my memories from times unparalleled.

Bombaiya, to my knowledge is heavily influenced by two major local languages:
1) Marathi, the state language of Maharashtra, where the city is located
2) Goanese, a sort of dialect spoken by anglo-indians Of course there are many more influences, however these, as far as I know, are the biggest contributors.
To make it easier for me to write this article, i think it might be prudent to dive straight into certain phrases that I think give a preview of what's to come. I might chose to re-organize/re-edit it later. Also my words might not render justice to explanations of certain words or phrases and it might be good to solicit your comments so I can edit appropriately.

1. 'lukha': pronounced loo-kh-ha
- Not lazy, but choosing not to work
- Without work or tasks. Idle.
2. 'Chalta hai': pronouced Chul-ta-high
- It is going ok
- It will work out
3. 'Phundoo', 'Fundoo': pronounced Fun-doo
- Simply fantastic, great
4. 'Apun': pronounced Aa-poon
- Me, Myself
5. 'Yeda': pronounced Ye-da
- Dimwit, nitwit, not in senses
6. 'Yeda ban ke peda khata hai'
- Pretending to be dumb but taking advantage. Sentence literally means: Pretending to be dumb in order to get sweet treat to eat. Peda is a type of milk-based sweet, distributed during religious festivals.
..... To be continued

Posted in language | 1 comment | 34945 trackbacks