General ramblings

Desi Connection

I’ve realized that majority of the Indians are the same everywhere, be it India or the US. In fact, US brings out the worst in Indians. My first experience with an Indian couple, in fact, was on the very first day I came to the US. It so happened that I was getting late for my connecting flight and being new to this country (just stepped out from the plane that brought me to the US from India) and the system, I was in need of some desperate help. I made the mistake of talking to the Indian couple behind me. This is how the conversation went:

Me: (Really worried and tensed) Hi! I have a connecting flight in less than 30 minutes and this waiting line for the security clearance is very long. Do you have any idea what I should do?

The husband (typical Indian) replied: No.

Yes, that’s it. That’s all that he told me and that too in a very rude tone. His condescending tone was too much for me to take. I really got pissed off. Spoke to an American Airlines employee and then got ahead in the line and managed to catch the connecting flight.

Lesson Learned: Ignore all Indians in the US henceforth. Don’t even look in their direction.

I guess almost all the Indians who come here have similar experiences with other fellow Indians. The end result is that we prefer to stare at our shoes instead of looking at an Indian’s face. Even if you come across a desi by mistake, you need to act as if you didn’t see him/her. And never ever smile or say “Hi!”. Greetings are reserved only for Americans here. You can continue to be your usual rude self in front of other desis. And you have the full freedom of being a kanjoos too. Tip a little less in Indian restaurants. Who cares what other desis think? Correct?

What made me write such a sarcastic post? That’s incident no. 2! I was going through some classifieds because I really need to buy some household items. A desi was selling a very nice vacuum cleaner for a good price. So, I called her up and ask her for a picture and some specifications. She took roughly 50 minutes to email me a picture- something that should have taken only 15 minutes, at the max. I can hear you saying that maybe she couldn’t find her digital camera or maybe she is not very comfortable with the camera! Okay, her being late can be discounted. What happened next can’t be discounted! I called her back and told her that I’ll be there at her place in an hour to pick up the vacuum cleaner and that I’ll pay her in cash.

I got ready and was about to sit in the car when my cell phone rang. Usually, I don’t answer my cell phone, unless it’s a professional call. Thank God I answered it. This is how the conversation went:

She: Hi! My name is XYZ and you spoke to me sometime back regarding the vacuum cleaner.

Me: Of course, I remember. How are you?

She: Fine, thank you. I just wanted to let you know that the vacuum cleaner has been sold.

Me: Sold? Yes, to me right? In fact, I’ll be there at your place in 15-20 mins. I’m about to leave.

She: No no…I mean…someone else came now and they liked the vacuum cleaner and took it.

Me: Took it? What do you mean took it? I thought I told you that I’ll be there at your place in an hour’s time?

She: I thought that you’re not too sure…so I gave it to them.

Me: (Temper rising)- That’s very unfair of you. I was just about to leave for your place. You could have at least called me up once before giving it to someone else.

She: I’m sorry…I really thought that you don’t want it.

Me: Don’t want it? Then why would I tell you that I’ll be coming to get it? I don’t have all the time in the world to do window shopping at your place.

She: I’m sorry…

Me: Thanks a lot. No problem.

(Literally slammed the cell phone).

Lesson learned: Nothing ever changes Indians. They are all the same. Just put them in charge of the US and see what’ll happen to the professionalism level and the corporate structure of this country.

Maybe I’m being very general in my observation, but that’s me. Dealing with a desi here makes me feel as if I’m back in India. It’s only when I enter an Indian restaurant and eat a really horrible plate of pav bhaji for $5.99 that I realize that maybe…I’m not in India. The Indian food here just doesn’t taste the same. It tastes too “home made”. Instead of pav bhaji buns, I was given hot dog buns. WTF?! If only the Indian food level here would improve…


82 thoughts on “Desi Connection

  1. SAD 😦 I thought its only with Mallus.. now….. we are all Indians..

    Haha..nothing to do with Indians from a particular part of the nation. Btw, what happened to your blog? I’m being taken to a parked page. Did your domain name expire or something? – Ruhi

  2. I agree with Nita and disagree with Ruhi to some extent.
    Ruhi, you sound like now you think ALL desi people are like this. I know you don’t mean it, but it sounds like that. Your experiences are really horrible. They feel horrible because you are now used to US’s professionalism. 😀 Thats why we always say COME BACK TO INDIA so you will no more get irritated with stuff like this 😀

    Nita, you are extremely right. Indians are warmly loving people if you learn to ignore their rude language sense. 🙂

    Yes, it is a generalization Suda! But refusing to make eye contact or being extra rude is not a generalization. That’s how Indians here are. Maybe it gives them a sense of power…I don’t know. Maybe it makes them “feel” better, I don’t know that either. – Ruhi

  3. PO Box says:

    I agree with what you’ve said for the most part! However, I’d not generalize and say “Stay away from Indians” coz I know there are nice ones out there (Like me :P). I agree with the “Kanjoos” thing; I know people that throw a hissy fit when I tell them I tip $7 for a $13 haircut. Well.. that’s partly due to my hair being really messy and all that.. but.. whatever.

    The food has to improve a great deal. It’s catered to the people here. An American that I work with was recommending this Indian restaurant to me and said it’s always filled with people. I asked her if the people were Indian people or American, because if it was not Indian people, the odds are the food is “customized” and I wouldn’t like it. However, there are a few nice Indian restaurants. I don’t know about you but I live in CT and we’ve a Saravana Bhavan in NJ & NY :-).

    My first time here & a nice read. I think I’ll be a regular.

    PS: Why in the world would you not pick up your cell phone if you got a call?
    PPS: A “Comment Policy” – Never seen that one before. I read it and I don’t think I’ve violated any of your rules. We’ll see!

    Hi! Thanks and welcome to my blog. Yes, I am generalizing quite a bit. Really got pissed off! That’s the problem. 🙂 At least businesswise, I prefer talking to an American because they know what customer service is all about. The poor level of Indian customer service persists in the US too. And btw, $7 on a $13 haircut is a little excessive, no? $4-5 …I can understand. Heh. Anyway, it’s a very personal thing.

    And you are right about the food. They cater to the Americans primarily. Even yesterday, when I was eating pav bhaji, there was just one another person in the restaurant- an American woman, who was looking at the huge wide screen infront of us with an amused expression. The restaurant owners were playing Jhoom Barabar Jhoom movie. Haha. Re: cell phones, is it necessary for me to be free at the same time when someone else wants to talk to me? 🙂 That is why we have voice mails. I get more work done by returning calls later, instead of being interrupted every 15 mins.

    Re: Comment policy- I didn’t have one for a very long time and it was difficult for me to moderate some comments. So, I decided to have one- to make mine and the visitor’s life easier. : You haven’t broken any rules and you are most welcome to come back again.


  4. I never had experience with Indians in the US, coz I have never been to the US. 🙂
    But I do have had experieces with Indians ‘from US’ here.
    One is my much older cousin who was a very sweet person, after he spent around 5 years in the US, I met him when he was on a holiday here in India.
    Cousin “Hey”
    Me “hi”
    Cousin “Its so hot in here, dad aint got a.c at his place”
    Me “oh”
    C “The traffic here is horrible”
    Me “yeah. it is”
    C “I wonder why they cant just drive decently. THe politicians are worse, the roads are pathetic, there is frequent power failure”
    Me “….”
    C “In the US, we dont have power failure”
    Me ” (blank ”
    C ” In the US, we have good road, sensible drivers… In the US……..we got …..that. …..its better…….”
    Me “What else do you have IN THE US?” it was really pissing me off that I wanted ask him ‘Why the hell did u come here’

    It turned out that, the sweet cousin I knew 5 years ago has completly changed, blaming everything around him, consider everything here to be pathetic.

    May be nothing related to the post. But this is the experiece I had with an Indian from the US.

    Looks like you haven’t read that forward that lists the top 20 symptoms of all desis- asking for bottled water, commenting on the pollution level, asking about the temperature in Fahrenheit, forgetting how many zeros does 1 Lakh have, talking about gas in gallons, wanting AC 24*7, complaining about the invasion of privacy, the spice in the food etc. Hehe. Funny how a couple of years abroad make people so nit picky- Ruhi

  5. Ruhi:

    Like in many other spheres of life, it is the raw material that matters!

    I have seen enough examples of both nice/ kind/ likeable desis and truly horrible desis around several countries, but that is no different from my experiences in 8 cities in India. e.g. I found enough awful Bengalis, Marwaris and Punjabis in Calcutta but the nice ones were the ones who showed me 48 Pooja Pandals in one day, invited me to family gatherings and picnics, took me to CCGC etc, and made my stay very interesting and happy.

    I would however tend to agree that desis abroad generally make no eye contact, rarely acknowledge other desis, and if they do either, are terribly rude/ intrusive/ abrupt. However this is usually my experience with 1st generation desi migrants, and not their progeny. It may have something to do with how secure they feel in their surroundings. As I mentioned to you recently, I think there are some variations across regions even within the US which may be a corollary to the above. There is a tendency to view other desis with suspicion and fear that they will embarrasse the rest of desis abroad with their behaviour – the fear is often well-founded. But refer once again to ‘raw material’.

    I have always found all this puzzling but hey, if we too make no eye contact, stop acknowledging other desis and become rude and abrupt, are we rising above those whom we criticise? Just a thought. 🙂

    PS: I am surprised you did not get any ‘coconut’ remarks yet! 😉 I get plenty of those but I do not have time to care for the approval of those with whom I may not have fraternised, were we in India, so just the fact of their having been transposed is not going to change that.

    shefaly, you are quite correct. People are the same everywhere. Doesn’t matter what their geographical location is and we certainly can’t make generalizations. This post was the result of the evening vacuum cleaner incident. I’m surprised that I got so pissed off. I’m quite prompt and professional and it pisses me off if the other person is not. This post was on desis abroad more than anything else…some traits that they have in common or some nuances that most of them pick up. And yes, variations across regions might be possible, even though I haven’t really seen that happening much. A desi in NJ or a desi in Chicago pretty much reacts in the same manner. I am talking about the First Generation immigrants of course.

    By refusing to make eye contact, no, we are not rising above them. 🙂 I have this inner wire that tells if if this particular Indian is going to just ignore my presence. If his body language makes me think so, then I certainly don’t want to make a fool out of myself and I don’t bother saying Hi or anything.

    Re: Coconuts- sure, get hoards of them! I wish I had the time to retort back/make them known my displeasure. Then I feel…why bother? Let them keep harping. 😉 – Ruhi

  6. U r absolutely right..US brings out the worst of Indians..

    I have started a new blog where you can show your creativity and sense of humor to others. Please post your comments in my blog:

    (This is not a spam comment..This is also not a porn blog.)



    I saw your comment on Ish’s blog too. I’m letting your blog link stay here, for now. Please don’t comment henceforth only to make me visit your blog, which, by the way, I did. Thanks for stopping by.- Ruhi

  7. Hmmm…not sure about this. I have quite a few friends who are Indians working in US. All I can gather from them is that working in US makes you very professional. And, oh, yes…the amount of time it takes to say Hi increases from 2 sec to 10 sec. 🙂
    But we Indians have always been like this, so your experiences dosen’t surprise me. And obeying 1000 rules in a foreign land dosen’t make us any sweeter. 😉

    “Making” you professional is the key word. How professional are they really? I’ve worked with Indians here and I don’t know why the majority of them still operate acc. to IST and think that it’s okay to be late or to not finish their work on time. They are improving, yes. The Indian Laziness is a little difficult to shake off, I guess. What I was talking about were two incidents here, which were quite unpleasant. I don’t know what they would have lost by being a little more reasonable. Of course, this doesnt mean that all people are like this – Ruhi

  8. hmmm… I don’t know.. I don’t fully agree.. your post sounds like a generalization to me! Two incidents and you stamp them FAIL?

    Balu, many more incidents. This post, like I mentioned, is more of a generalization. I have found Indians here to be not very professional either. It has something to do with the Indian blood. And this vacuum cleaner incident just pissed me off! You need to be here to really know what I’m talking about-Ruhi

  9. Looks like u have gone through a string of bad experiences with nris..
    On the other hand, dealing with nris is not that easy for locals too. Looks like on both sides of the seven rivers dealing with the nri bunch is a difficult proposition 😉

    frankly u cant generalize…
    I agree with nita who has a very mature comment

    Actually, I have had all sorts of experiences. I have tons of Indian friends too. This post is more of a generalization, like I mentioned. It’s in no way rational or grounded in reality. But on average, I have found Indians here to be quite rude…esp. the ones whom you don’t know. It’s just the way they change. And the funny thing is that we are not rude to Americans. We smile at them and say “Hi”! -Ruhi

  10. I don’t believe in generalizing, especially in social and behavioral contexts. May be you are plain unlucky to encounter the people you mentioned.

    Yes, like I mentioned, this is a generalization! It was meant to be a sarcy post. I guess it didn’t come off that well. Sorry about that.- Ruhi

  11. Nita’s Comment (Got deleted by mistake by Me):

    I somehow thought that desis once they got there became professional and efficient and polite. That is the impression they give. At least the ones I know never fail to tell me how they (the desis) in America are so much more refined and polite than the locals here! Well, once I told my friend, it’s probably superficial!
    Over here any shopkeeper caring for the customer does not exist. I think its a hangover from the socialism days because shop-keepers are mostly rude and will not bother if you ask them anything which is slightly out of their normal ambit of experience.
    Now take my blog. I have got the rudest comments from Indians. If a foreigner is say rude, it’s about the topic at hand, and not to me personally.
    However Ruhi, I believe that if you scratch the surface Indians are the most warm-hearted loving and giving people in the world! The politeness and efficiency one sees in the western world is often a veneer. yes, I love Indians despite their rudeness! 🙂

    Nita, I’m very sorry; I thought that I’d clicked on the Edit button, but deleted your comment instead. 😦 I have pasted what you wrote from the backup email that I received.

    My post here is really quite one sided, I agree. I was quite miffed when I wrote this post and didn’t mean to generalize. But who remain rational when he/she is pissed off? Haha. India has never placed much imp. on good customer service. Nobody tips much either. Most shopkeepers take this as an excuse. The customer is the servant! We are the ones who need to buy stuff for our house, so we need to bend. 🙂 It’s really sad and I hope this attitude changes.

    And yes, you are right about the foreigners. So many times, they ask “Hi how are you?” without really wanting an answer. It’s just a statement that’s used to greet. Earlier, I used to try to respond. Now I’ve stopped. I know when someone is just trying to be polite! Indians are quite warm hearted compared to people from other nations, I agree. I’m an Indian after all and that won’t change. 🙂

  12. I cant fault you. We all have certain experiences and its up to us to conclude as we please. I do have views from the other side too and it isnt pretty either. So I gathered that it has nothing to do with INDIAN, its just individuals and their attitudes.

    Here are a few ground rules in this country, that I found helps- If you have questions related to Ticketing(of any kind), Banking, Immigration, Jobs, Security, Taxes, Accounting etc. you would be better off asking someone who is in a UNIFORM around you or look for the Nearest Information Counter(this country is very well equiped with that) or the Internet or the Phone Directory for services.

    You are 100% correct. I’ve learned it now. Any trouble- I ask the designated authority personnel instead of talking to any person around me. And yes, these problems are not restricted to people from any one country. Since I’ve dealt with a lot of people from my country, I wonder if it is an Indian problem. Thanks for your comment and for stopping by.- Ruhi

  13. oops, I forgot to mention a few of my experiences. The first year I was hear, most every desi that I made eye contact with wanted to talk to me because they wanted to sell to me the AMWAY scheme. So the rule I learned, unless its a desi that you have met via work, dont make eye contact, its very likely that he/she wants something to do with “pyramid schemes”. At airports, they talk to you, only so that they can have you watch their Luggage while they go about their jobs and sometimes take so long that you get called to the Gate and there you are sitting with their luggage wondering what you should do.

    Hahah! Funnily, I’ve had no one selling me Anway/Tupperware products. But I know that there are lots of desis who do this as a side business. See what we end up doing- refusing to make eye contact! 🙂 Most of us get conditioned to ignore each other. I try not to look at an aunty’s direction at an airport because I’m scared that she’ll tag along and want me to baby sit her because she doesn’t understand English! And it’s happened a lot of times. I find it difficult to refuse or to ignore an elderly person because of my Indian upbringing. – Ruhi

  14. @ Ruhi
    “But who remain rational when he/she is pissed off? ”
    Fully agree 😀
    I take back what I said, you are true abt Indian customer service part.. Sometimes I wish we had laws like in US.. which lets one sue a firm for poor customer service.. not that its not possible in India.. its just that the legal tangle is too complicated

    You are right; it is too complicated for sure. I think, even the public needs to be blamed because they don’t believe in tipping for a good service. Obviously, if the waiter knows that he won’t receive a good tip, then why should be put in some extra effort? 🙂 There were some restaurants where I was a regular and used to leave a good tip and the waiter always used to be give me very good service. It’s cause and effect to some extent. – Ruhi

  15. LOL, like you I find it difficult to ignore Elders due to my Indian Upbringing and it has got me into some situations that are hilarious when I look back now. I couldnt call someone I knew was Older than I was by their Name and in this country “Sir/Madam/Uncle/Aunty” will get you into really awkward situations. So I save those terms for the Indian community and have to play the COCONUT with the others. What a Hypocrite, I have become(giggling). Now I cant ever accuse someone of having Double Standards. All in all I should say this country has changed me in ways I didnt expect myself to change.

    Oooh! Thank god I never used Uncle/Aunty. 😛 But yes, I know what you mean. I think that I’ve changed in subtle ways too. For eg- When I talk to an American, I need to mellow down my Indian accent because I know that he/she would prefer it that way. With desis, I talk in my typical Indian accent. 😛 – Ruhi

  16. lallopallo says:

    Ruhi, your conclusion ( desis never change, they are unprofessional, not helpful etc) is the source of the problem. I mean, like you, most desis abroad have similar experiences with each other & hence they try to pay back to other Indians ( as it happened to you) the same way, without realizing that they are further tarnishing the image of desis and contributing towards the vicious circle.
    I think we should keep perspective & not make these bad experiences as an excuse to deal nastily with new desis we meet or deal with.
    Take it easy..:)

    Lallo, this post was an after math of some sheer frustration. Don’t take it too seriously. The sarcastic tone didn’t come out very well. Of course, not all desis are bad. I have some very good friends here too. We’ll always have a mixed crowd everywhere. 🙂 And I totally agree with you about the paying back nature. I’ve seen that happening in front of my eyes. It’s always easier to be nasty! – Ruhi

  17. Siva says:

    i would totally disagree with you….i had a short stint of staying in US for 6 months…and i found many desis….(this would include pakistanis too) who were very helpful ….ya i had few bad experiences too but those were the experiences that would happen anywhere with such people….so don’t judge people by their nationality….just judge people by their character and to generalize that Indians are mean or not helpful would be wrong…..

    Hi Siva! No, I’m not judging anyone by nationality. Like I’ve told at least ten people before you, this post is a result of sheer short temper and nothing else. Probably my regulars know me and trust that I don’t mean half of the things in this post. There are all kinds of people everywhere. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. 🙂 – Ruhi

  18. PO BOX says:

    I know $7 is a bit too much! But I don’t get a hair cut every day and if it makes someone happy, so be it! Besides, I like multiples of 5 🙂

    At least you can get a hair cut for $13. I need to shell out at least $25 before tips, and that too in a mediocre beauty salon. 😦 I never used to have such long hair. I miss the Indian beauty parlors. They were SO cheap! – Ruhi

  19. I have had bitter experiences with Indians in US, and also with non Indians..but I know sometimes Indians can be really bad when you approach them, I am not sure what it is, what insecurities we have, why do we think twice before helping

  20. yaake says:

    This is so hilarious!!
    er… er… I mean, its sick… how can anyone do such a thing!!!?
    u know, i learnt some valuable “desi” lessons when i was in buffalo…
    1. No matter what the economic condition of the country is, we desis are always cheap!! I know ppl who buy beds and sheets from walmart just because someone is coming over to temp stay and return them to the store after the guests leave!! Ugh..!!!
    2. Indian restaurants in buffalo suck ass big time! 😦
    3. I just came from my bank and the difference in service is so amazing… in buffalo, HSBC took a maximum of 10 minutes to process my checks and deposits and stuff… Canara bank here, made me wait 2.5 hrs for a withdrawal..!! Grrr…
    you’re right… we suck! 😀

  21. @ Ruhi
    True that people tend to provide better service when a tip is in sight but for some don’t give a damn even if you give a generous tip.. I have had a lot of issues with waiters at cafe coffee day and many other coffee outlets.. but hey I am also generalising here..

  22. well,you sound too harsh on indian 😉 ..cant agree completely with you,..can just say you have been unfortunate to come across those type of persons…
    just because that guy gave a curt “NO” to u doesn’t make all the indians there like him..

  23. @ Ruhi:

    “So many times, they ask “Hi how are you?” without really wanting an answer.”

    On reading this, I consider it my duty to point you to this ditty by the American poet Ogden Nash, one of my few favourite poets, whose works I can recite from memory (mainly as you can guess for his dry wit and word play):

    Do not tell your friend
    About your indigestion;
    How are you? is a greeting,
    Not a question.

    That said, if you desire that your answer to the question be heard, come to mainland Europe. I found that saying I was fine when I clearly was not upset my clients, who were keen on knowing about my welfare before transacting work.

    If you have wondered what the right response to the blank ‘how are you?’ is, it is ‘how do you do?’. End of. Proceed to business. 🙂

  24. Rambler-Thanks for your comment and welcome to my blog. 🙂 You nailed it- Insecurity! It’s as if everyone who is coming to talk to them is going to rob them of something or the other- robbery doesn’t have to be of anything tangible. Might be intangible too- such as time, energy, those two extra hours with their kids etc. There is only so much time to wash dishes, vacuum the house, do laundry. Nobody wants to take anyone else’s botheration.

    Yaake– Returning comforter sets back to Walmart? 😮 OMG! That’s the pits. I know that there are lots of people who buy dresses and return them after going to that prom or whatever.

    Balu– CCD/Barista…freakin’ crazy places. Don’t expect anything there! I’ve had the worst customer service experiences in CCD. It’s always too over-crowded and too loud. Too many kids wanting to look ‘cool’. Poor waiters also want to act ‘cool’ towards the customers. 😉

    Arvind– No, not everyone is the same. 🙂 It’s more of a generalization, I know. But these two incidents are very typical actually.

    Shefaly– Very apt lines. Exactly my thoughts (and language) in the form of poetry. 🙂 I have started using the “How do you do?” line actually. And it completely works. It’s all business, of course.

  25. hmm… but still u sounded pretty harsh … 😛 ..

    I am Miss Mini Hitler. 😛 If you don’t believe me, then you need to talk to my friends here. – Ruhi

  26. @ Ruhi

    Yes, I lost it.

    Sad news…… I will have to register new one and start fresh. The domain was registered thru someone else’s account and I do not have access and we have some problems going on between us. I do not want to take the risk again. So, I would register new one on my own .. no staff account nothing…..

    Its sad really sad .. Its like, close to 3 years of blogging .. 😦 I do not have the xml file for all the posts.. but I do have the mysql databse, which I can try importing at new host.. give me few more days… I will be back.. you can suggest a new domani name 😉 just drop me an email…

  27. bloody nazis.. these guys have blocked my blog :(( ne idea what to do

    so sorry to hear that. Why did they block it? You can email support and talk to them about it. They are open right now.- Ruhi

  28. i am blocked from even using that… 😦
    all i want is that i could retrieve my old posts.. its 3 years of very hard work

    Ankur, the support is temporarily closed. What I would do is make a temporary blog, go to the Forum and write a post about it. And say that you’re not being able to reach support and that you have no back up of your content. Plus, you can mention that you at least want to know why it has been suspended. I know that another of my blog friend faced a very similar situation. Someone had put up an obscene pic on her blog, after hacking it. she contacted support and they reasoned with her and she got her blog back. they are generally quite helpful and I think you can at least talk to them and see if you can get a back up, if not your blog back. Let me know how it goes. – Ruhi

  29. i am taking it as a sign that i need to change.
    no more stocks, blogs or parties for me 🙂 wow i have no idea what i am going to do with so much free time

    Oh no! Nothing of that sort. does have very weird rules. Talk it out with them and I’m sure you’ll get your content back, at least.- Ruhi

    P.S- the support is now open. Want me to email them on your behalf?

  30. I just not only commented to visit my blog..I also post a comment about your article too..after that I requsted you to visit my blog…so it was surely not a random comment..I do read ur posts regularly and i like them that’s why I requested you..but ur reply was rude!!!..but tht’s OK…

  31. I agree, Indian food abroad sucks. Had the misfortune of finding myself in Japan a while ago… yes, I did find tons of Indian restaurants… but oh my gosh the fortune I squandered in the search of a good plate of butter-chicken. Well you get the idea 🙂

    Hey thanks for your comment and welcome to my blog. I have even been guilty of walking out of a restaurant recently when I found the food at display to be unappetizing. 😛 Yes, finding a good place needs a lot of time and money! I don’t like to experiment with food. That’s the problem!- Ruhi

  32. ur true, ruhi
    indians treat fair skinned foreigners extra good even if they are cheap and stingy
    i witnessed this in kerala..
    but i think it is a skin color thing

    Well I have seen Indians in India totally ignoring whites too. But yes, generally…Indians love to suck up to the goras. The colonial mindset is here to stay for a long long time, I guess. – Ruhi

  33. Prax: Indians also treat their own kind better if they are fair-skinned! 🙂

    Read any matrimonial column – we did, for fun, when we were in college and rejected _all_ boys – and you would think a dark girl is never going to get married, never mind the ‘groom’ looks indistinguishable from an upside-down ‘tawa’ (griddle on which chapatis are cooked).

    Fair skin signified, at one time, that the person did not have to manual labour or work outside in the sun etc. So it came to be associated with upper castes and wealthy folk. It may be irrelevant now but who cares, eh?

    Shefaly, funnily…An average gora does more physical labor compared to an average Indian, who relies on his servants/domestic help brigade. I think we as a bunch are two faced and hypocritical to the point of being quite fake…if not greetings-wise, then mannerism-wise for sure- Ruhi

  34. @ Ruhi: This is not a good week for Indians with you, is it? 😉

    Shefaly- This has been a very good week actually. As long as I don’t see desis, I’m very happy. 🙂 More in the email later.- Ruhi

  35. An average gora does more physical labor compared to an average Indian
    Tell me which freaking gora is a [future] Emperor of the world? 😛

    I dare say, no one 😐 Don’t want to get beaten by you.- Ruhi

  36. I first went to the US as a student in the mid-80’s… I am in an Indian store in Chicago and said “How goes it?” to a Gentleman and his wife and the guy thought I was hitting on her… “kyo bhai why do you want to know?”…. That was the last time I made ANY eye contact with desis… (lived there for 7 years)…

    Sad but true…

    Hi Vijay! Thanks for your comment and welcome to my blog. I don’t know what desis think and don’t think. Perhaps, the latter is true- no brains to rationalize. And everyone bears the brunt! And then we have people telling us that we shouldn’t behave like this. 🙂 Can it really be helped? – Ruhi

  37. booboosmamma says:

    I totally agree with you. and its with indians everywhere. and have you come accross so called friends who meet you after a long time and first question is “where do you work” how much do you make…..we never change.

    Hey thanks for your comment and welcome to my blog! 🙂 I saw you at Priya’s blog. Do you blog too? And yes, I know what you mean by those “patch up” sessions. Nobody is really interested in knowing how you are etc. All they want to know is whether you are sitting at home tending to your kids or whether you are out in the workforce raking in the moolah. One of the reasons why I feel that the past should remain the way it was. Why spoil our memories by trying to re-kindle old relationships? People change anyway!- Ruhi

  38. GetReal says:

    Get real! First you want to beat the line – like you did in India. Always looking to beat the system and get unfairly ahead of others. Then you want to think a person should close shop so you can reach their place and be told how the vacuum cleaner lacks all the features and should either be sold for a cheaper price or you don’t want it. These tricks work in India. You are used to it. Now welcome to the new world. US means fair treatment – stay in line for your turn, and expect the seller to sell on a first come first served basis. No netajis or big talk to get ahead. Otherwise return to ownhome!

    I’m not deleting your comment because I want everyone to read the piece of crap that you’ve left. If you aren’t brave enough to leave a genuine email address, then don’t comment. I’ll block your IP address henceforth. And what the hell do you mean by get real? We are all very realistic, thank you. What tricks are you talking about? Doesn’t look like you even read what I wrote. US means fair treatment- exactly! Which means sticking to your words and honoring your commitment. Probably you are like that woman too and find the need to justify a past action. Thank you for your enlightening comment.

    P.S- Don’t bother commenting again. It will be deleted.


  39. great observation shefaly..
    i fully agree
    ur comment reminded me of the comment on tv of karunanidhis wife about her son m k stalin and she said ohhhh all this electioneering has gotten u so dark
    it was amusing cause the whole politics that party is into is based on Dravidian superiority

  40. @ Ruhi: I shall look forward to the mail. 🙂 I was just pulling your leg by the way.

    @ Ashish: Emperors do no labour, ergo none… 🙂

    @ Vijay: I think different cultures have different ways of acknowledging others. British people are distinctly not friendly and uncomfortable, rarely greeting each other. Americans make some eye contact and are overly effusive in their ‘how are you?’ with emphasis on ‘are’ and then comically proceeding to other stuff (which you must have experienced). Apart from a half-smile, almost teased out of pursed lips and no upturn at the corner of the eyes, I rarely acknowledged other desis in shops when I was in India. Even allowing for the fact that I am a girl, I do not expect that to change much if I meet other Indians outside, do you? Just wondering…

    I think we are just too touchy and take everything personally too quickly (see some other comments here). Don’t you think so?

    @ Prax: Thanks. That observation made me laugh out aloud! So Indian-ness transcends racial and political divides among Indians. Great news that, no?

  41. “US means fair treatment …”

    Prax: Sorry but this one made me laugh more than your DMK joke… 🙂

    No no! The best is “Return to ownhome” part. 😛 My not deleting this comment did make you laugh. Good utilization of my blog space!- Ruhi

  42. I think people are the same everywhere though. Some people are good, some not so good. From all races, religions, nationalities.

    I’m dealing with a phone company at the moment, and everytime I ring up, I get someone different, and better or worse.

  43. ohh comeon…
    i went to korea a couple of weeks ago. the indians there r more than happy to help you. they sometimes go out of their way for that.

    maybe what you observed was 1-2 isolated incidents.

    Not really isolated. Many more. I can write an entire thesis on it. You’re lucky- Ruhi

  44. PS: i registered a new blog.. but i do not think i would be writing anything anytime soon… 😦

    Did the support people contact you? What did they say? Your forwarded jokes might have landed you in trouble- Ruhi

  45. I read this story:

    A guy(X), new to the town wants to ask for directions. He sees a localite (Y) but immediately feels he is a dumbo. But still, asks for directions. Y thinks X is so dumb to ask for directions that are so obvious and wants to pull off a fast one on X.

    Still Y guides X towards north, when he really should be going west. Y also asks X to post a letter for him since the box would be on the way. Basically trying to get some work done.

    Now X, being the smart ass he is, goes south since he thinks Y is an idiot. And on the way, he opens the letter Y gave him hoping to find something of use.

    That’s what things have come to…

    Haha 🙂 Everybody is too smart for his/her own good. I shall remember this story the next time something similar happens to me. People should just get a GPS otherwise. ;)- Ruhi

  46. Shefaly: @ Ashish: Emperors do no labour, ergo none… 🙂
    What about the effort of conquering the world? Plus daily administration of the state, punishing people, eating, quelling rebellions, eating, making decrees, eating… I tell you, being Emperor is no easy task. 😛

    I’m your humble subject. I know what you mean..heh.- Ruhi

  47. @ Ruhi: Some cities in India do not have street maps. Whither GPS, sister? 🙂

    @ Ashish: I think you are too influenced by Romans (in which case you forgot eating, puking, eating more, puking more…).

    It is more royal however to be a baby than to be an emperor. Even an emperor has to wipe his own bottom!

    But Arthur Guiterman said it much better (Ruhi: this is another of the few poems I can recite from memory):

    No matter what we are and who,
    Some duties everyone must do.
    A poet puts aside his wreath
    To wash his face and brush his teeth,
    And even Earls Must comb their curls,
    And even Kings Have underthings.

    I was responding on a global scale. We don’t need a GPS in India. Just stop by a pan shop and ask 😉

    Re: the poem, very impressed by your retention power. Not so impressed with the poem though. 🙂 – Ruhi

  48. no support never cared to reply to my emails. Anyways its kind of good now I have 1 extra hour every day. and I can also go for a vacation ( I shall be going on a 9 day vacation in another 6 hours )

    Can see that you got your blog back. Looks like your 1 extra hour plan just got ruined. 😉 – Ruhi

  49. Hey

    I am sure you have faced something really similar. But, somehow this post seemed like a harsh retort to me… I am sure the situation is not THAT bad…

    After all, we do tend to not trust verbal commitments much. You cant blame that lady for not having trusted if you would come down. This happens in India a lot… that people say they will buy something and they dont!!!

    Yes, it is indeed a harsh retort, written at a time when I was quite pissed off. But I do believe that I can fully blame that lady! Verbal commitments here are taken very seriously and I’ve sold stuff on Craigslist/Facebook very often. If someone promises you that he/she will buy the product, then 99% of the time, they always show up! I’m yet to come across someone who told me that he would buy my stuff and failed to turn up. It happens in India, yes; but this is not India and people need to leave their Indian mentality back home. 🙂

  50. Shefaly: The Romans? I’d choose the Norse over em. 😛 And choosing between a baby and an Emperor, I’d go with the Emperor. Babies don’t get to play God of War do they? 😛

    And even Kings Have underthings.
    ROFLMAO. Allow me to steal the poem.

    And I better run, because I think I have violated Ruhi’s policy of not deviating from the topic. lol.

    I think the policy has been broken way too many times. I need to edit my comment policy. 🙂 – Ruhi

  51. Pingback: Random Act of Kindness « Time and Again

  52. Ruhi, I have done this twice times on my blog. I mean deleting someone’s comment by mistake! The way I fixed it was pressed the back button, copied the comment and email id, then went to the post, copy pasted the comment, filled in the email id and the person wouldn’t even know as only I can see the IP address! 🙂 So next time you can try that but hopefully it won’t happen to you the next time. These things happen to me as I always click click click. Once I had even clicked my delete blog button. 🙂 Luckily they asked me if I was sure I wanted to delete my blog and I almost screamed in fright. Now whenever I see that delete blog button I get the jitters thinking I might press it by mistake. In fact I am tempted to do it again, wondering if they will ask me again or this time they will say…no second chances!! Its the same feeling one gets when one is on top of a mountain, right on the edge and one gets this strange magnetic pull of the bottom!

    Nita, actually…even I have done that in the past- copying the comment, email address etc. from the back up email. 🙂 And you’re right- the commenter doesn’t even realize it. 🙂 I wish they would leave that “Edit” button separately, instead of embedding it in the user name like this. I’m so used to the old dashboard, that I don’t realize what I’m doing! And please don’t delete your blog- people will die of shock. 😀 You can try to do it again…they do give you a warning. If you do it for a thrill, then take a screenshot for me 😉

  53. @Nita There is an option called EXPORT in our dashboard. Use it for backup purpose. And generally, every software system always confirms “delete” action. So go ahead and press the delete button (only once)!! 😀

    Yep, the export button is cool. I need to start taking a back up of all my lovely posts. – Ruhi

  54. @Suda,Nita: Export only generates an XML file that has information on what to import, from where and the basic structure of blog. So, even if you delete and import from that exported file, you won’t be able to resurrect your blog.

  55. Suda, I don’t think I will try that option again, not when I am in my senses at least. And thanks for the advice on export but I won’t ask my blog to delete itself…who knows it might take khoonus and actually do it. Anyway in case my blog does disappear you know what happened to it! 🙂
    Btw, I even had a nightmare that I got up one morning and my blog had gone!

    And sorry for the typo I made in my comment. I meant just “twice” and not “twice times.’ I was rather horrified when I read my comment! I had first written couple of times and then changed it to twice, but not properly. 😳

    Nita, the blog “export” file is a very nice idea. In fact, I was talking about this in an email just a couple of hours ago. You should take a back up and keep…what with your fingers itching and you going click click click. 😀 Re: the typo- it’s quite all right. I make many more typos and don’t even realize 😳 – Ruhi

  56. @ Anshul:

    I think you’re wrong here. The XML file has ALL your posts, comments and tags. I have used the export file a number of times- when I was importing all my posts to the self-hosted blog and then when I re-started this blog. As long as you have an updated copy of the XML file, you’ll be fine.

  57. Ohk…does it have images too, coz, I thought my images were being imported from my blog\

    Yes, they are still hotlinked to your old blog. The images have to be manual uploaded to your new blog. Quite annoying…I know. 🙂 – Ruhi

  58. When you reply in a comment, I don’t get to know about it. However, In WP 2.5, there is an option to import attachments which imports images too, but the image links in posts point to old urls only. So, I don’t have to manually import.

    Also, there is one search and replace plugin that can be used to change paths of images from old to new ones, but for it, the new path has to be uniform which is not, so that is a bit painful.

  59. Chucks says:

    i totally agree with u. u r in us and i m in aussie land. it sucks all the more. here, if u work for an indian or a fiji indian or as a matter of fact, an desi, u r literally screwed. i ve heard my friends saying that the bosses make passes, some have been really unfortunate etc etc. they are not paid well (i ve experienced that). for very less amount, u r made to work like a donkey and things which u might not have ever done before. the place where i used to work, i actually found myself cleaning the toilet pot, and actually rubbing it well, so that it shines!!! lol.
    and they are so bloody mean. o this list can go on and on and on…

  60. @ Anshul:

    Yes, I know…sorry about that. I find it easier to edit a comment and reply. I’ll keep that in mind though. I was using WP 2.3.1 and this wasn’t a feature then. It’s great that they have decided to add this. 🙂 Makes your work easier.

  61. @ Chucks:

    Hey Chucks! Thanks for your comment and welcome to my blog. 🙂 Must say that you have a lovely nick name. So sorry to hear about your bad experiences. The lewdness and the level of perversion is quite annoying. But I don’t understand how they are not paid well? As far as I know, there are strict laws that prohibit such acts, right? Why take up a job if it’s paying you less? If you are a legal resident, then you can seek action or just leave the job! If the employee is an illegal immigrant or is working illegally, then there is nothing that can be done. And about the toilet pot cleaning, we have all gone through our shares of odd jobs, I guess. 🙂 Some of my friends have washed dishes in the kitchen too. It’s all a part of learning experience. That’s what I tell myself. If we get stronger at the end of the day, then good for us. 🙂

  62. Indian says:

    @ruhi….It is depressing reading all these blogs criticising indians……i am new to this blog thing….and it makes me sick….how can a person say bad things about there own people……try being postive in life and think in a postive way then india mit be in a better place and not as it is now treated by the goras abroad……they listen to peepz like you all and decide about india without meeting true indians…..for the person whom u spoke at the airport he really must be not knowing and could be his first time also….or must be tensed about something else….why do u want people to pay tip….itz there hard earned money they will pay how much they wish too and not to show other people….they have already payed for what they have eaten and the person who served will get his pay……thz a diff thing u r a millonaire and wish to pay tips pay for the other people tooo….the lady who was gonna sell u the vacum cleaner atleast think she called u before you left home and not when u reached her place…she must be in a hurry and needed the money could not wait for an hour also…….conclusion…be postive and think postive….dont give gora a chance to think we r bad …..and indians r not bloody indians nad they r bloody goras…..i am not a racist …but i cant change what goras think of indians….there is no community in the world that likes indians….

    @chucks….if u r working abroad dont think you dont have to do anything you have not done in india ….if u dont want to clean the toilet do not do the job….i was asked to do it but i said no so it was clear….so itz yr choice and if money is what you want then you got to do it……work for a indian or fiji indian it your choice they r rules by govt complain do somthing about it but f u want the money and job no one can help u or your frendz……

  63. pobox42111 says:

    @Chucks – You really don’t seem to be enjoying wherever you’re. i don’t know your situation but if I were you I’d get out of a place I didn’t like. I hope things improve for you!

    @Indian – I can’t help but laugh at yout statement “I’m not a racist”. Your whole comment says otherwise. Other than that, I like what you’ve said about taking things positively – “Maybe the guy was pre-occupied; maybe the lady needed money ASAP”. But I’m not sure how practical it is to be positive all the time.

    @Ruhi – Go easy on this one, will ya? 😛

  64. Indian says:

    @ pobox42111….whatever …do i care 🙂 …..depends on u if u wanna be postive…..or just keep cribbing about everthing thaz happening around you….if u postive u r happy…..i was not trying to be racist just tell how indians like other people other then indians and feel they r right an all indians wrong……just try understanding them…..and see mit make a diff…..

  65. Dear Indian,

    Thank you for your comment. Your typing skills made it quite difficult for me to read everything that you’ve got to say. Agreed that the guy at the airport might have been preoccupied (Even though he didn’t look that way) or the woman was in DESPERATE need of money (Which I think is not possible…who can’t wait for 20 mins? It’s not like it’s an emergency or anything). But not paying a tip? Your mentality shocks the hell out of me! And you live abroad, right? I pity the people who serve you…sigh.

    And please refrain from using words such as “Bloody goras” and “Indians are not bloody indians” and then saying that you are not a racist. You do realize that you are contradicting yourself, don’t you? And who told you that no community in the world likes Indians? Please don’t make statements that can’t be supported by facts, else I’ll have to edit/delete your next comments. Thanks.

    @Pobox, Just did. 😉

  66. Pingback: India - the Des Des* « La Vie Quotidienne

  67. amreekandesi says:

    I have been through this..and felt the same way. Actually i too wrote a similar post wondering why Indians hate other Indians.

    Looking at the number of comments here (couldn’t go through all of them) i suppose this topic does touch a nerve with people.

    Only a desi knows another desi well. 😉 That’s why they dislike each other. Thanks for your comment! – Ruhi

  68. Pink Imp says:

    Interesting post 😀

    I am sorry to read of the experiences that you’ve had :-/

    I think your line “the US brings out the worst in Indians” holds good to the extent that you define What Indians (educated or not 😉 ). I’m sure not all of the diaspora here in the USA is as evil and mean 🙂

    Etiquette is the fruit of good breeding and so no spatial or temporal shifts along time can induce or increase well-seasoned civility levels 😉

    You might like to hear of some funny desi hinglish (Bad English and this college town have hereby been declared as man and wife 😀 )

    Desi Boy (DB): Email me when you will came to school.
    Desi Girl (DG): Are you IN job?

    Have a fun weekend!

  69. indianpat says:

    I have been 4 years here in the United states of America.

    2 years for my Masters in US and 2 years working. Yes, I have been dealing with Desis. Let me list you my encounters.

    a. The first day i entered the airport, Desis (Indian student association) were waiting to pick up. A gujju senior rudely asked me are you more or alone. I said alone sir, He said OK wait here. No response for the next 2 hours. Finally a desi senior arrived and picked me up and told me we generally dont pick up single guys but you are lucky today…RIGHT.

    b.Arrived in the campus, I had booked an apartment from India. We wanted to know the address. A couple of desis were walking. My senior stopped them and asked the address. They replied Rudely No idea and told today is sunday so forget anyone else helping. My senior laughingly told me “WELCOME TO AMERICA and welcome to experiencing Indians in America”

    c. OK Roommates, the less said about the desi Roommates the better. A couple of them kept fighting with their parents day and night and speaking such language i would not use it with my dog. (Anyways its their life right?). Roommates, one of them was quite abusive (I mean he hit me badly 4-5 times in 1 semester i remember). Anwyays I managed to get very few desi friends and thankfully I was happy with that. (though i did manage to make a lot of Chinese and american friends who surprise surprise were nice people).

    d. Out of college and back to work. In work I had a Telugu lady as my Boss. She was 30 something, Had an american accent, drenched in body perfume (the ones ou know who wears), and was a huge flirt. Apparently I and she didnt tick off from day one (I guess she realized I wasnt interested)…For 2 years I had the toughest time of my life and she played games giving promotion to people who came an year after me or so…

  70. Indiapat- Thanks for your comment! I’m sorry to hear about your experience. I know what you mean about weekends- they are precious and mostly reserved for house work etc. But this doesn’t mean that we need to be THIS rude. I’ve spent lots of Sat/Sun helping people who needed some sort of an assistance. But yeah, given a choice, I would have stayed in my bed. 🙂 I’m fortunate that I don’t have any desi bosses at work. I don’t like working with desis much…when it comes to dealing with other desis, they forget all about professionalism and get down to regionalism. 🙂 Someone told me “To work in US IT Industry, you have to know Telugu!”. I was like, “Uhhh…WTF?? What did you just say?”

  71. Pingback: Andrea Schamoz

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s