The ABCD in our home

The other day, Chetan and Vivaan were watching a Hindi movie. There was a fight scene, immediately followed by a song-and-dance sequence (it was a Hindi movie remember?). I was cooking and listening to their conversation at the same time. It is fun listening when it’s someone else answering his questions and not me. Here’s how the conversation went:

Vivi: Why are they dancing now?

Chetan: Because it’s bollywood.

Vivi: (referring to the actor in the song): Why is he not wearing a shirt?

Chetan: Because he is Salman Khan (a very popular actor notorious for his missing shirts).

Clearly, this boy has never lived in India. If he did, he would never ask silly questions like these. We come into this world knowing Amitabh Bachchan and Madhuri Dixit and the whole choreographed-dances-with-100-dancers-in-the-middle-of-a-fight-scene thing. In fact, we thrive on all of these. What does he know about it, he would-eat-cake-with-a-fork, please and thank-you saying ABCD who thinks blowing the car’s horn is not nice.

I should probably explain what ABCD means in case you have not heard it before. ABCD is an acronym for ‘American Born Confused Desi’. ‘Desi’ is a Hindi word that means ‘local’ or ‘from one’s own country’ and is used to address Indians and South Asians living abroad. Desis who moved to the US early in their lives or were born and brought up here are called ABCDs by the non-ABCDs.  Some people (the ABCDs) may find this term to be offensive, but that doesn’t stop others (the non-ABCDs) from using it.

Living with my son, who has been in the US since he was six months old, gives me plenty of insight into a budding ABCD’s psyche. As much as I want him to be a ‘normal’ child who has no confusion about his identity, I know that is not how it is going to be. I mean the kid thinks it is not normal for Salman Khan to dance without his shirt on. How can he not be an ABCD?

I will continue to share more about his progress. In the meantime, here is a song from Salman Khan’s latest movie that got the ‘nice song but weird video’ award. Enjoy!


9 thoughts on “The ABCD in our home

  1. Heard the term first time… and to certain extent it is offensive… I am sure it is a lot of effort to keep the kids connected to their roots…

    • Jaspreet – Really? I thought the term was very widespread. It even has a wikipedia page of its own. There’s some interesting stuff there if you want to check it out. Sorry you found it offensive. I have a weird sense of humour. Hope Vivi can understand and laugh at it when he grows up.

  2. By looking at the circumstances, it is perfectly fine if the kido doesn’t know about the Indian ideology about the Salman Khan’s shirt or the car’s horn. His situation is same as a person who has just landed in ‘Amrika’ and doesn’t know how to get hold of vegetarian food or how to reach the destination without asking for directions on the way… :-)

  3. ‘(it was a Hindi movie remember?)’, ‘Because he is Salman Khan’ and ‘Amitabh Bachchan-Madhuri Dixit’ were somethings so hilarious here… enjoyed going through the ‘ABCD in your home’ at the same time gauging the hidden element of our wish to raise our kids all the way through their roots to their future (I guess same is the case with all here trying to clear the confusions in these budding minds)… lovely song btw…:)

  4. ha ha …..ABCD …Cool term. well , i can’t say i can relate. But would love the insights…And its good to have a sense of humor ….eases up certain things in life ! :-)

    • Humour does make things easier Miss Komal. You can’t change what’s happening, but you can always laugh about it. I’m glad the post made you laugh :). Thanks for stopping by!

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