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May I know your good name, Sir?

In the good old student days in Pune when carefree meant dripping the feet in splash of water and flowing with the breeze splaying from one end to the other, I had a peculiar way of addressing people encountered for the first time. “May I know your good name, Sir?” The hair was pulled endlessly by the crazy people around me who broke into a cackle of laughter and claims, there is nothing good or bad about someone’s name.

Thinking that I made a booboo and asked whether something wrong was told, my friend laughed and said nothing wrong but I am adapting the Lucknowi tehzeeb to the English spoken during the old days. “It’s old English,” he told, not without adding that too much respect is not good for health. Ha! That didn’t calm me in using ‘good name’ while addressing people that was fun, quirky, jolly and humorous at the same time. There were many such expressions that I injected into my daily interactions which in turn made me the subject of conversation around.

Or, addressing someone relatively older to me by few ages as Sir made our coffee table chat funnier and everyone going berserk on what has fallen on my head. “By the way,” was another spicy thing that adorned my usually simple conversation and chirruping, “If you don’t mind, can I ask something?” No, we don’t mind at all Vishal, they chorused, for we have our own mind.  Such expressions were rarely used among the cool people that we were and the days when I would go dry without the priceless words ensured that my friend made it a point to remind that ‘good name’ hasn’t been used by me at all. The best friend would be like, ‘Good, good, good’ and I don’t know when I stopped using them.

There were many such expressions that harmlessly popped out of my mouth right from, ‘I’m telling you’ to ‘she’s flat on you’ and ‘outstation’ or ‘she passed out’ so much that someone thought that the ‘she’ has died. No! girl! I told her, she completed her grads that made this girl look silly for not reading through our funny old English Indian words that could actually kill a cool chick in no time. The words were my 2 PM instant Maggi noodle that provoked not just easy peasy laughter but gave gratification at my expense.

“You know what” or “Do one thing” are the other classic and funny Hinglish expressions that I keep using till date with “Arrey”, “Yaa” and “Haan” being part of my daily staple with fellow Indians on social media or the ones that I happen to cross path with. “What’s your good name, Sir?” You see I can be very vernacular with my expressions and sentences.





Work-in-progress, seeker, and bundle of contradictions. Stubborn and Refusal to grow up and constantly in search of myself, I blurt it out on my space. Drop in and share some love. Indian!!!

13 thoughts on “May I know your good name, Sir?

  1. This brought a smile to my face, specially the passed out thing. Coz once i nearly freaked out my roommates when I told them that one of our roomie’s had passed out in the room (fainted) and they thought i meant passed away. Oh god! Languages!

  2. Haha! ‘Your Good Name’ is one that has been laid to rest 6 feet under only to be exhumed out when you are in need for a good laugh! Good one, Vishal. Brought about old memories of an English that I has now been replaced with more emojis than words!

  3. Honestly, I prefer old charming sentences. Look at the way people murder language these days. I feel yaa, you know at the beginning of every sentence and other phrases show your unpolished manners. Speaking is such a fine art. Wonder, why people make fun of well-mannered folks. In their language, using such words is not cool, people! 🙂

    1. Yeah I know right! The respect is very important in the way we speak to people, particularly when meeting someone new. You so right Saru in saying speaking is a fine art and much like refined spirit preserved over time.

  4. All part of the charm Vish…
    I too break out into Hindi, my favourite is the mental “chutiya” or “ladoo”.
    PS, my good name is Kavitha.

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