2018 Oct 5
Living in a world where word of mouth affects our mindset, be it a stern scolding from home or even harmless gossip at family events, we as Sri Lankan guys do not have it as easy as one may assume. Sure, we may not take everything too seriously; but there are certain things that we have heard one time too many that certainly have us rolling our eyes.
1. Amma’s “rasthiyadu gahanawa” lecture
I can guarantee you that even the best of mama’s boys on the island have had this lecture. In addition to this, I’m sure you know about the direct correlation that exists between the length of the lecture and how late it is when you get home. In fact, you get told off for not spending time at home, during which the mother dearest doesn’t seem to recall the days in between, where you indeed were at home. Good luck trying to talk your way out of that!
2. “Ai, bayada?” a.k.a “man up”
This is probably the one thing a guy never admits, that he is scared, for the sake of his ego. Funnily enough, this statement is usually answered with “Baya naa, eheth…” followed by an excuse. Being challenged on the spot is seen as an opportunity to “man up” and do something that you were having second thoughts about in the first place. The fact that your natural instinct was to think twice means you were smart enough to consider the consequences (whether it is safe or even legal?). This usually comes up when one of your mates suggests the craziest of things on his mind and absolutely refuses to take no for an answer.
3. “You’re getting a belly”
Why yes, thank you for noticing. Without a doubt, we Lankans love tripping around our island, having its exotic oil filled dishes and our boozy nights. At the same time, the majority of us are not blessed with a high enough metabolism to cope with this, leading to the possession of the commonly known “dad bod”. Let’s face it, going to the gym and following strict diets do not appeal to everyone. Therefore, the consequence grows quite obviously in our midsection, which apparently needs to be pointed out by anyone and everyone you haven’t seen in a while. Well done! I’d offer you a cookie, but looks like I would have eaten it by now right?
4. “How’s **** doing?”
Asked sarcastically to all the single guys out there, the blank varies from crush to the girl you’re match made with and sometimes, to even tease another guy, their mum. Finding yourself in an awkward situation and trying your best to hold a straight face you reply defensively along the lines of “I guess they’re fine, how would I know?” Consider yourself lucky if the subject is changed at that point, however it rarely is. Further questions are asked until you give in and amuse them by giving the answers they are waiting to hear you say. If you thought it couldn’t get any worse, wait until this is asked openly by a relative at a family gathering!
5. “We should get you a razor”
Usually coming from the elderly uncles and aunties, this line annoys anyone who is proud of the facial hair that they have had the patience to grow out and maintain. The generation gap sets apart the sense of style associated with having a beard. Coming from a culture where the elders’ gossip goes a long way in your mother’s books and having got away with countless arguments regarding this with her, if heard, you will be given an “I told you so” look from her so fierce that you look away immediately, as if her gaze was taboo. You smile back politely and proceed to leave the room with fear of the impending repetitive speech you know you are soon to receive.
6. “It looks like you two are in a relationship”
Unfortunately, no, this is not regarding a girl. I am quite certain that all you guys out there have that one guy friend that you are super close with and who always seems to be around, that people seem to think that the two of you are dating. The guy who opens your fridge and takes food as if it were his own, the guy who is responsible for most of the good laughs you’ve had – the literal “brother from another mother”. So yes, although it may look that way; fear not. You simply laugh it off and should consider yourself lucky you have said friend.