Parsiana at its best

May 04, 2016, 06:01 IST | Malavika Sangghvi

"When I proposed this idea to Meher (Marfatia) so many years ago, she coincidentally had the same idea along with her friend, psychiatrist Dr Parveen Dadachanji. So it was a book that was meant to be," said filmmaker and photojournalist Sooni Taraporevala, about Parsi Bol 2...

"When I proposed this idea to Meher (Marfatia) so many years ago, she coincidentally had the same idea along with her friend, psychiatrist Dr Parveen Dadachanji. So it was a book that was meant to be," said filmmaker and photojournalist Sooni Taraporevala, about Parsi Bol 2, a delightful compilation of insults, endearments and other Parsi Gujarati phrases, which in a new format contains Parsi Bol 1 (published and compiled by Taraporevala and Marfatia in 2013 and about 350 fresh phrases, along with an audio CD which has actor Boman Irani, along with others voicing the evocative phrases).

Meher Marfatia, Rutty Manekshaw and Sooni Taraporevala
Meher Marfatia, Rutty Manekshaw and Sooni Taraporevala 

"The phrases we've run with are mad, crazy, colourful – yes – but they also have amazing archival value because this kind of colloquial, picturesque, typically 'Parsi Gujarati' may soon die out if we neglect showcasing and celebrating them," said Marfatia.

And if you want to revel in such idiosyncratic locutions as 'Futteh kuro (Be victorious)' or 'Tumeh tumahroo foree lev' (You do your own thing) or giggle over the rib- tickling visual interpretations of these phrases, or just want to exult in all things Parsi, then hotfoot over to where else, but that paean to all things bawa, BKC's SodaBottle OpenerWallah where the authors, along with such Parsi icons as Bachi Karkaria and Cyrus and Ayesha Broacha, will be enlightening the world about delicious Parsi expressions as hej vej, oopra sapree, hureem dhureem and omtoo gomtoo!

And no, we don't know what they mean – but they sound hilarious nevertheless!

Cut-throat competition?
The world of fashion designers is a deeply competitive one, full of cloak and scissors competition and fierce jealousies.

Ashish Soni, Shantanu, Nikhil and Rajesh Pratap
Ashish Soni, Shantanu, Nikhil and Rajesh Pratap

And so, when his peers and rival designers turned up en masse to celebrate the launch of leading menswear designer, Ashish Soni's new store in the Capital on Friday, it did not pass unnoticed. So, you had Rajesh Pratap who wore his heart on his sleeve arriving in a Soni suit, and rival designers Shantanu and Nikhil also showing up to demonstrate their loyalty. So, is all the love and air kissing for real?

"Don't be silly, darling," said a Delhi fashionista. "It's for the paparazzi and the public. From tomorrow, it's back to cut-throat competition again."

Turban legend
Foodies across the country owe an enormous debt to Jiggs Kalra, the erstwhile journalist (he was Khushwant Singh's protege when he worked at The Illustrated Weekly) who threw it all up to pursue his passion for food. It was Kalra who way back in the eighties began to search for, and nurture hitherto uncelebrated cuisines, and his discovery of Awadhi cuisine, especially the Galoti kebab is part of urban folklore.

Jiggs Kalra
Jiggs Kalra

So, when on Saturday, Kalra went up on stage to receive the best restaurant award for Farzi Cafe, founded by his son Zorawar, it was not surprising that he received a standing ovation from his community of chefs, hoteliers and restaurateurs. "He's a true turban legend," quipped AD Singh, whose own restaurants Olive and SodaBottleOpenerWallah won prizes in two categories. "In many ways, he is the father of the foodie movement in India."

Look who's cooking
Who says too many cooks spoil the broth? Word comes in that to welcome UK's chef Stephen Gomes' Chemistry 101 to the Kamala Mills Complex, chef Thomas Zacharias of the next door Bombay Canteen sent across his signature Eggs Kejriwal.

Chef Stephen Gomes and (right) Chef Thomas Zacharias
Chef Stephen Gomes and (right) Chef Thomas Zacharias

And to reciprocate this gesture of goodwill, Gomes sent across his Dr Strange (his take on deconstructed anda bhurji). And the bonhomie does not ends there either. "Chef Gomes and Bombay Canteen's agent provocateur, chef Floyd Cardoz, also share an age old and warm friendship," said a foodie source.

Deconstructed anda bhurji
Deconstructed anda bhurji

So, for those who thought that the Kamala Mills Complex would be a battleground as master chefs cook up a storm, there's news: All is well in Mumbai's premier foodie neighbourhood. "All three chefs believe the more the merrier is the true spirit of food brotherhood," we're informed. Nice!

Capital capers
At a recent high profile wedding between two of the Capital's prominent families, the presence of four leading politicians, each a legend in his own lunchtime, was unsurprising. After all, both the boy's and the girl's side were extremely well connected, and had been so for years. But not all politicians are equal. And so guests were treated to an interesting sideshow, a sharp comment on 'kissa kursi ka'.

"Whereas the politician from the current ruling party found himself surrounded, and was continuously coddled and cosseted by hosts and guests, the contrast with the other three was quite marked: amongst these three though it was observed that the debonair former minister of the UPA still managed to collect a coterie around himself, thanks to the fact that he is very social and has deep inroads in to the biz community," said a source. "However, the urbane dashing former minister from Mumbai from a party out of power, and his Delhi counterpart, were not looking very pleased at all," said the source. "In fact they were smarting."

Another talking point from the same occasion was the attention attracted by a celebrated femme fatale who was the belle of the ball according to the source. "She had every male present hanging on to her every word and this did not go down well with the women present. There were even some cattish female voices overheard saying 'let's throw her expensive handbag in to the fireplace!'"

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