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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Munh meraa dhulvaayaa aur rickshaw uskaa le gaye

Like Hrishikesh Mukherjee a few posts back, this time Gulzar makes his debut. The line featured is from the movie Angoor. This 1982 movie was based on Shakespeare's classic play - Comedy of Errors. Of course the entire film is full of situations where one twin is mistaken for the other and that gives rise to situational comedy. The fact that there are two twins makes it doubly hilarious. The film has great lines like

"जो घुटनों को ज़ानो कहता है वो अशोक कुमार को किशोर कुमार कहता होगा"


"तुमने मुझे नंगा देखा है??"

Both delivered in that impeccably original style of Sanjeev Kumar, who plays the role of the two Ashoks in the film. One Ashok is married and the other is not. The very premise is hilarious, is it not?

The specific situation here is such that one of the twins (the unmarried Ashok) goes to the auto rickshaw stand early in the morning. He goes to the first auto rickshaw and asks him if he is willing to go Hotel Imperial. The driver says that since he has just got up, he would like to freshen up. Ashok agrees. While he is waiting for the driver to come back, a jeweller (who mistakes him for the married Ashok) forcibly hands him a precious necklace. Ashok tries his best to give it back, but the jeweller just runs away. In the heat of the moment, Ashok hails another passing rickshaw and leaves. Just as he is about to drive away, the driver who had gone to freshen up, comes running back and utters this line

"मुंह मेरा धुलवाया और रिक्शा उसका ले गये"

The literal meaning here is that "I washed my face and you have gone in someone else's rickshaw". But the figurative meaning is that I did all the spadework and when it was time to reap the fruits of my labour you have conveniently decided to give the fruits to someone else. A funny equivalent of this could be

राम स्वरूप ने चोरी की और फलस्वरूप पकडा गया

But on a serious note, there are many situations in our life, where we do all the initial spadework in getting a deal or closing a sale. The prospect understands all the finer points from you, but when it comes to handing over the cheque, he goes and gives it to a competitor. If that happens again, you could say

"मुंह मेरा धुलवाया और रिक्शा उसका ले गये"

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