Monday, July 13, 2009

DUDE OR DUD?


Do you belong to the PRE-DUDE or POST-DUDE generation? At 36, I firmly belong to the generation which used the Dude-word sparingly, using it to describe boys who had real, genuine, rebellious ATTITUDE.

But this century manufactures attitude along with Yankee baseball caps (worn wrong way around), low-slung jeans (worn with chaddi compulsorily showing), and cheeky-slogan T-shirts. And so, we have a serious case of DUDE-CLONING. Every male under the age of twenty-five is either a cool dude or trying to be one. And the funny thing is, these clones do not appear to have distinctive names of their own, they are all called, you guessed it, DUDE.

Sample this: standing at a slow-moving queue at an up-market garment store, I observed two such clones talking to each other. They were carrying shopping bags full of, presumably, even more slogan-tees, low-waist jeans and baseball caps.

“Hey, dude, didja get good stuff?”
“Not really, dude, these sales are a total rip-off.”
“Y’know, dude, you’re right, dude.”
And so on and so on …blah…blah…blah…Dude…blah…blah..Dude. Period. Dude.

Till they came to the payment counter. Then the smartly-dressed shop assistant suddenly became a clone as well, because these young dudes called out, “Lemme take my card out. Dude. Why’s the line so slow today? Dude? Can you pack that separately, Dude?”

The dictionary tells me that the earliest Dude was spotted in 1883 in New York. That limited-edition dude was a “man extremely fastidious in dress and manner.” Well, today’s dude has made fastidious sloppiness his fashion statement. And, he has two more added qualifications – an extremely limited vocabulary (consisting mainly of dude, and a dozen or so words like, cool, yeah, chill, and the like), and a tendency to forget first names (otherwise why will all the Raj-s and Rahuls call each other Dude?). In fact, so linguistically-challenged are they that I was almost convinced that the dude-species must have evolved from Dud. Or D-u-h?

P.S: Any Dude reading this post can dismiss it as the rant of a typical Aunty. Aunties and Dudes, divided by gender and generation, have always been on opposing sides, and never the twain shall meet. Hopefully.

29 comments:

Nona said...

I belong to "Pre-Dude" era. You are correct on the limited vocabulary! And the dude keeps on finding a way into the conversation every 10 seconds or every 10 words (which ever is shorter).

Never like the "dude" word since I always though this indicates a lower level of intelligence. (Dude(s)... forgive me.. It is just me talking!)

Priya said...

hahahahhaha......along with the name calling another thing that gain my attention is their "Body-Language/Gesture"...too funny at times and are often mistakenly marked as "Attitude"... :D :D..

"Cool" post..Dudette.. :D :D

Ugich Konitari said...

For a country with so much variety of native dress, amazing textiles, and an overpopulation of languages and dialects, this extremely fast leap , trying to match up with the rest of the western world, has resulted in these dreadful so called communication-disabled clones who keep calling each other "dude", and referring to their father as "my old man", all the while performing a walk with scraping chappals or sandals, trying to keep up their sliding pants. Whoever thought showing your chuddies above the pant waist was fashion...

You can tell I belong to the archives as far as the Dude generation goes. I was going to say, that my mother would have said there is nothing a good dressing down with a stinging whack cannot cure.

But dressing "down" also means something different today .....

Aparna said...

Dont forget there's also the "dudette" which is the female version. Spaghetti straps with transparent bra strap showing, and the low waist jeans with the a portion of their butt showing when they sit down.
The hair colour is undecided, hence various shades of orange brown and gold. Over sized bags and matching shoes complete the ensemble.
I live in eternal fear that my almost 14 year old is going to be one of them and I have to listen to words like 'take a chill pill mom.' Horror.

magiceye said...

WELL SAID DUDE! :)

Peter Rozovsky said...

"Dude" probably has a more interesting and varied social history than many similar words. My earliest memories of it are of the amused dismissiveness embodied in the "dude ranch," a ranch in the American West I think from just before my time where city slickers from the East could spend their money and their vacations pretending to be cowboys. Then came the "dude" of your time, then the "dude" of slacker lexicon, which has evolved into the almost-meaningless, all-purpose use of today.

I must confess that hearing young Indian dudes calling each other dude would be a highlight of my life.
==============
Detectives Beyond Borders
"Because Murder Is More Fun Away From Home"
http://detectivesbeyondborders.blogspot.com/

Vivek Patwardhan said...

Interesting and well said.

Another word which is used very often is 'boss'. I have seen bosses addressing their juniors as boss! Anyone can be addressed as boss in today's world!!

And finally you are the only lady I know who has declared her age on a blog! Do you really think we believe it to be true?

Vivek

Vivek Patwardhan said...

Interesting and well said.

Another word which is used very often is 'boss'. I have seen bosses addressing their juniors as boss! Anyone can be addressed as boss in today's world!!

And finally you are the only lady I know who has declared her age on a blog! Do you really think we believe it to be true?

Vivek

kavita said...

First time i heard this word in a cinema -hall in USA ten years back..... IT WAS sALMAN calling SRK dude in KKHH...the crowd went crazy for the next few minutes...i belong to pre-dude era...but i have no problem with it...even if i have ,who cares...NICE POST...thanks for visiting me ... i am meeting some very beautiful people...thanks to blogger world.

Sucharita Sarkar said...

Hi Nona,
Ten seconds is the outer limit, I think.

Hi Priya,
Thanks for calling an aunty a dudette.

Hi Suranga,
Dressing down downright scares me!

Hi Aparna,
Same fear here. Also that of a dude-type son-in-law in the distant future.

Hi Magiceye,
thanks, but, no, thanks.

Hi Peter,
Drop in anytime at any Indian metropolis and you will get an earful.

Hi Vivek,
You are having the age from the mare's mouth, boss!

Hi Kavita,
Now salman and SRK_wannabes are saying it all the time!

ZiLliOnBiG said...

hehe, this is so relevant. My boss and i were speaking a few days back , and in between he called me DUDE. I was Like aaaah?:)))

sujata said...

I am ancient when it comes to things like this..i prefer to remain in my idyllic world and sort of erase the dudes and dudettes away..but cannot ignore the students in my girl's school, the slouch, the frown, the unkempth hair, the byfords showing and the concave stomach, they look sick in the brain these dudes!!

the only dude i liked was fido dido!!

SGD said...

Pre-dude definitely!!! And I just cant understand the clone lke generation where there is homogenity in looks, talk, wal, vocab everything!!!

And another thing which irks me no end is when sms language is used in emails and letters!! Why cant they write 'I want to' or let's see and instead write...'wanna'....'letz c'
I sometimes get this extreme urge to just shake them !!!

These days generation gap happens every 10 years!! or less....

Double-Dolphin said...

Chill Dudette. It's just...like...a way of addressing people...yeah? Nothing to read so much into! He he ha ha!
I belong to the era where everyone wore a black cap with "Friend" written on it, thanks to Maine Pyaar Kiya (I think). Dude happened when me and almost all my friends started watching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
But seeing how it originated in 1833, I'm probably post, or am I?

Pradip Biswas said...

I belong to pre to the power infinity dude era where we used to hear guys an dols. Now-a-days I hear "boss" universally. Things should change with time and they changed.

Sumandebray said...

To some people this “Dude” attitude or whatever one might call it comes naturally.. Other tries to imitate... I am kind of allergic to these imitations. They try to get it forced unto them and the resultant product is quite repulsive!
The original ones are cool …… even though I belong to another generations. I guess we all did shake a few elders from our earlier generation with our attitudes and acts!

Nancy Yos said...

You could try shocking the young folks. One-up them by describing everything positive as "boss." I am dying to bring back this (idiotic) word of my '70s childhood. We used it indiscriminately to mean cool. A local home beer brewing group has named itself B.O.S.S., Brewers of the South Side, and you can be sure that these middle aged guys picked the acronym for a reason.

PURN!MA said...

HHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAA...I can very well understand. have guy friends who call each other DOOOD. and No, i don't like it. But neither do i make efforts to... erm...change their DOOOD callings.

and if you are talking abt the chaddi showing fashion, i saw a guy yesterday...TOTAL EWWWW! i guess I should blog about it. :D

lopamudra said...

Hilarious! We cringe when desis here do that.It seems out of place, something shamelessly borrowed.To Vivek...I can vouch for Sucharita's age.

Meira said...

Even I belong to the pre-dude (or dudette ) era. I cringe at the dudes that seem to be multiplying geometrically.(Boy...that makes me soooo ancient). And I'm ready to imitate them...the day my kids turn to me and tell me to 'chillax' !

Pesto Sauce said...

May God bless and give some sense to the dude generation....they all appear fake, cloning yankee doodle doo

Pinku said...

cool post dudette!!!


U are so right, I cant stand these conversations either. why cant they just drop the pretense of english and speak whatever be the mother tongue? ...atleast they will know a couple of more words for sure.

Peter Rozovsky said...

I got called Dude! on Twitter yesterday ... by someone who is around my age, and I am decidely post the current dude wave.
==============
Detectives Beyond Borders
"Because Murder Is More Fun Away From Home"
http://detectivesbeyondborders.blogspot.com/

indyeahforever said...

I am of the dude era..(I think) but I am not too fond of the word neither do I dislike it:)


plus I think words undergo various changes as far as their meaning is concerned..so 'dude' today is more a general word used for every other person:) it has no 'attitude connotations anymore..

(Though I am sure all the dudes think otherwise)



LOL@the last line! :D

manju said...

Ha! ha! Great post!

I belong to the pre-pre-dude generation, I suppose.:)

It's funny the way today's kids seem to be just clones of each other- dressing, talking, addressing each other in exactly the same way...

Sucharita Sarkar said...

@Zillionbig,
Rejoice, you have been given the key of youth!

@Sujata,
And my hand itches to pull them up (pants and all).

@SGD,
SMS-lingo is detroying what little English these dudes knew.

@DoubleD,
Sorry, this is just the rant of the prude against the dude. Ignore at will.

@Pradipda,
It is a matter of a generation gap, or a crevasse, or a crater.

@Suman,
Imitation is their way of identification.

@Nancy,
Take the goat out of the dude, you mean? But are brain-dead dudes capable of recognising irony?

@Purnima,
As my daughter says: YUCKY!

Sucharita Sarkar said...

@Lopa,
We go a long way back, right! Especially in these commonalities.

@Meira,
Yes, yes, its just my middle age hormones being J.

@Pesto sauce,
And i just want to yank their greasy hair.

@pinku,
Proper names and proper grammar belong to the dinosaur age, it seems.

@Peter,
You've just been given the elixir of youth. Enjoy!

@Indyeah,
You are the perfect example that young does not always mean senseless.

@Manju,
Do you think our eyes are jaundiced?

workhard said...

I know how some people use the word 'dude' funny thing, they cant even pronounce it right and looks so unnatural..... that is so annoying...
Seems like they trying really hard to be cool, and it just doesnt suit them...

Nice blog u have.. will return to read more..

Work from home

Moushumi said...

I think I belong to the fossil era in this respect. But this was a hilarious post.