Gaamaa, Phajja and Pappu

Of course, its not the name of my directorial debut for FiLUMS ;), not Ajoka’s new stage play, and even not some famous personalities around me, but they are the “words” that are full of affection, care, warmth and friendliness. Most of the Lahoris use nicknames to call a person whether he is a neighbor or a passerby, just to show friendliness and frankness. Other than our rural areas, it only happens in a big city like Lahore that Fazal is called as Phajja, Mahmood is known as Mooda, Ghulam as Gaamaa and many others are known by other famous nicknames like Guddu, Munni, Nanhi, Pappu, Chota, Munnu and Chunno and lot more. Moreover, its not only the name but its the eccentric way these names are called with, a special tone with a tinge of interwoven musical notes, a Khalis Lahori Style (a true Lahori style). I still remember a kid Abid from Lahore, who was known as Abud :)

O ChoooouuuutttTayyyyyYYY :)

Media used to portray such phenomenon and Lahori style is always loved by people, when we were kids we used to copy Lahore Television’s most celebrated characters, specially the way they talk and their “takya kalams”, …….Pachanaaa, Nai Pachana?

Now unfortunately, these names have become extinct or may be the integral warmth related to these names has just vanished. Most of the new generation of Lahore has now turned into Sunny, Bunty, Micki , Jef etc. etc. Even the people from walled city now prefer to be called with their real first names, not with caricatured nicks.

I think we are going to lose “Gaamaa” and “Phajja” and associated friendliness, in fact our true style somehow, and as well, we failed to keep the essence of our style of communication so far, which we are famous for.

14 Comments so far

  1. Hasan Mubarak (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 2:15 am

    you forgot to add Ma’jha Pehalwaan

    Ma’jha = Majeed

  2. Pretty Simple (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 2:20 am

    Yes and also Meeeda and Feeeqa :)

  3. Hasan Mubarak (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 2:26 am

    Shahid = Sheeda

  4. Pretty Simple (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 2:28 am

    Exactly, and Ashraf = Acchoo :))

  5. A for [pine]apple (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 3:13 am

    Mazza agaya aye parh kay :>

  6. Ganpat Rai (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 4:47 am

    I typically enjoy the Lahori style of saying Bhai jaan.The other day i was coming towards my home sipping pepsi and came across two tired looking fellows and the way in which they asked me for direction made me first burst into laughter, ” Payan! (bhai jaan) saanu ess defence tuun baar niklan da raah duss deyo.Assi bhattay chowk jaana ae.Dedh kenta (ghanta) ho gaya ae saanu aethe khwaar honday”

  7. punjabi (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 9:49 am

    lahori style? isn’t it just “punjabi”? or urdu infused with hardcore punjabi? in my humble opinion, no pun inntended, its just the punjabi accent, and the mentioned nicknames are common all over punjab.

    @Ganpat Rai: seems like hearing punjabi is a matter of fun? in pakistan, there are four major languages beside urdu, how many you can speak? i’m sure not more than one.

  8. Sumbul (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 12:26 pm

    Lovely post!
    Dil vich thand pay gayi!
    Good goin!
    @Punjabi- you don’t have to be sore. (a) Ganpat Rai was specifically talking about the way Bhai Jan would turn into Payan amalgamating both Bhai and Jan (b) YES hearing Punjabi is fun, well why not? Hearing the language of your forefathers, the “trend” of which is dying out, it is a relief and a lot of fun to be transporting way down memory lane whenever you come across someone speaking Punjabi.
    As far as Lahore is concerned, the Punjabi here is different from all other parts of Punjab, just like the dialect differs from Potohar Plateau from the southern Punjab (Seraiki) one. Punjabi is a language with a big heart accepting all geographical differences into its various dialects, I suggest, don’t mess with its soul


  9. Ganpat Rai (unregistered) on May 13th, 2007 @ 2:37 pm

    @punjabi: Calm down dude.I was just amused at the miserability of the fellows due to misguidance by someone.There is no intention of making fun of punjabi or punjabi culture.In fact i’m a great fan of “real” punjabi culture(the one you find in villages and rural areas) not the urbanised punjabi culture.When i listen to some punjabi folk songs i do try to make out which area’s dialect is it? The true punjabi is slowly diffusing into an urban punjabi and words and phrases are fast becoming strange to the ears.I once listened to a Jagjit Singh song and couldn’t make out a word of it although it was in pure punjabi.

  10. iblees (unregistered) on May 14th, 2007 @ 6:36 pm

    i just want to add that language is the most important part of the culture, and punjabi (and things related to this language) is dying as result of heavy urdu use and english influence, people even are either amused by hearing somebody in punjabi or they think of “paindu”. Lahore the capital of punjab with such rich cultural heritage is nowadays more known to have urdu speakers than local punjabi.

    punjabi language along with its dialects need to be preserved and promoted as much as we can. (punjabi here is an example, this applies to all local languages)

  11. Red_Munk!! (unregistered) on May 14th, 2007 @ 8:41 pm

    Great post :).

    Punjab is a huge province in both India & Pakistan &
    due to its huge size & mixture of various races you’re bound to find different variations & dialects in which the language is spoken.

    Words spoken in Lahore might not be be easily understood in Chakwal & at times it might lead to a chuckle.

    Most of the times u wont find malice in it :).


    @ Ibleese: The adoption of one language is a golbal “problem”.

    As Punjabi’s we should be proud of our heritage & not let the stupid comments effect us.

    Agree with your comments of preservation & promotion though. I guess one can point to the lack of new literature for that.

  12. Karamti (unregistered) on May 14th, 2007 @ 9:48 pm

    Talking of desi nics reminds me of my friend Javed Raja whom we used to call Jaida lungda.Later he joined the army and started collecting accolades from bloody civilians.
    Yes we don’t see any fresh voices in punjabi literature these days.Has anyone of you study Ahmad Rahi? One heckuva punjabi poet.

  13. Pretty Simple (unregistered) on May 14th, 2007 @ 11:56 pm

    @Red_Munk: Thanks. Eh hoi na guLl. :)

  14. A for [pine]apple (unregistered) on May 15th, 2007 @ 2:09 am

    @Ganpat : “Payan! (bhai jaan) saanu ess defence tuun baar niklan da raah duss deyo.Assi bhattay chowk jaana ae.Dedh kenta (ghanta) ho gaya ae saanu aethe khwaar honday”

    GOD … I’m laughing my heart off at this … You wrote it so well – I enjoyed reading it aloud — lolz Payan

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