Thanks to a very dear friend from college who I finally caught up with after so many years, I am happy to inform you all that I am now an enlightened member of the Tam community. This very dear friend owns one of the best compilations of 80s IR music this side of the Atlantic and so when she invited me for dinner last weekend, my only condition was that she burn me a CD with the best of 80s IR (moi being in Retro mood and all). She agreed a little too quickly which should have raised a red flag but what to do? Moi's getting all old. That too it being April 1 and all. So anyway, I brought the CD back home, told Bill that he is about to hear some of the best Tam movie songs ever written and set to music and slid it into the player. Confusion, shock, disbelief. Two minutes into the CD, even Bill who obviously knows nothing about the language started laughing his head off.
"Like you understand anything"
"Like its necessary to understand anything with that kind of music. This is too funny. I like your friend. She is too cool man"
I ranted. For about three minutes. And then I gave in and spent the next couple of hours getting caught up with last 10 years of Tam "kuthu" songs. Getting an education, my very dear friend called it when I spoke to her the next morning. The last time I listened to this kind of stuff, AF and I were making a neat margin selling Old Monk in Coke tins. For the Mallu women from across the border enrolled in as many random PG programs as possible, we had to get in some imported stuff but for the women of the soil breaking their heads over Oppenheimer's Signals and Systems, Old Monk was good enough. So anyway, thanks to this re-education, now I am a socially aware person - for instance, I know what my five year old neice sings when my cousin asks her to show off her singing talent to all and sundry. And in the interests of spreading joy to the rest of the world and making you also socially aware, here are three snippets from these songs (they have all been carefully chosen because of their association with food in general):
"Your speech is tasty, your gaze is tasty
But do you know how to cook tasty food?
Yes, I can saute dal in fresh cow's milk!
What? I didn't ask for diet food, do you know how to make spicy stuff?
Yes, I make molagu rasam and molaga thokku very well
Yeah yeah but do you know how to fry crab and chicken
And to make goat leg soup?
No, but there's enough spice in (some) corner of my hips
If you manage to find it, you are welcome to it all"
"What's the point in filling your stomach alone?
If only you have a Manjula for lunch and a Vennila for dinner is there any point in your youth
If no one does any wrong, there will be no philosophy on earth
So in the interests of philosophy generation, go and wrong forth
...(and in case you were wondering what kind of philosophy is generated)
Running water gathers no moss
And if you give in to desire/emotion, you won't have any disease!"
"A cat that doesn't eat fish?
A bee that doesn't drink honey?
A man who hasn't touched a woman?
Shall I eat?
Lakhs of women have it
Your mole has it
Shall I count the number of moles?"
Touched, touched, touched what hasn't been touched before (which rhymes with)
It's a hit, its a hit, everything I touched has become a hit!
Yes, my five year old neice. Along with the whole of Tamland singing away in wild abandon. Cool, aren't we?
Oh, and before I go, the first one to find the original songs in Tam will get sent a copy of the CD autographed by my very dear friend.
PS: Yeah, Karthik, I know. This is your post. But what am I supposed to do if you are MIA?
 One can argue that I was in no position to lay down conditions considering that I was anyway promised prawn curry and vendakkai sambar and it was in my best interests to accept the invitation but one forgets:
a) One doesn't know anything about very dear friend's cooking skills. The last time I remember her cooking, the only Prestige pressure cooker in the hostel burst into 36 different pieces
b) Despite living next to the most well-connected tube station in the London underground network (Circle, Jubilee, Metropolitan, Bakerloo and Hammersmith & City. Try beating that, lets see) , it takes two hours and 41 minutes to get to her place which supposedly is in Greater London