Blog post by Venkatraman Subramaniam
Nee yenna periya Kamal Haasan-aa? A line which a lot of people may have heard in their lives. Can’t blame them. Kamal Haasan, or rather fondly called as Kamalagaasan by the nammalavaa has ventured into so many zones that at times it’s tough to keep count. There is a possibility that you may want to do something and you realise he has already excelled in it. There are stars. There are actors. And there are those who fit into the union of both these sets in a Venn diagram – Kamal’s name definitely features over there.
This Iyengar chap has been the apple of the eye of ‘nammalavaas’. But some don’t like him because despite acting in ‘swamy padams’ like ‘Anbe Sivam’, ‘Dasaavathaaram’ & ‘Vishwaroopam’, he doesn’t believe in Umachi. Some don’t like him saying – seriyaana Manmadhan aakkum… niraiyya Leelai pannirukkaan… avan ‘MUTTAMizh Kalaignan’! Some don’t like him because for them Thalaivaa translates only into Rajinikanth and for them, no place for two swords in one sheath! And then… there are others who are crazy bhakts of Kamal Haasan.
And in their journey called life, when they attempt to ‘try something new’, they get to hear, “Nee yenna periya Kamal Haasan-aa?” The situations are endless. Presenting 5 scenarios… coz Panchathantiram.
- “Appa, nekku actor aaganam!”
“Yen daa, nee yenna periya Kamal Haasan-aa? Avanodu talent enna, training enna… nokku suttu pottalum acting varaadu. Inniki acting pannanam solluvai… aduttadu enna, Indian maadiri kazhavan vesham-mum, Avvai Shanmughi maadiri pomblai vesham pottundu vara poariya?” comes the taunt.
And just when the actor in you thinks, “nalla idea vaa irukke, ida yen naan mudalla yosikkalai?”, a flying chappal misses you and goes over your shoulder.
“Nadikka poaraana, nadikka… rascal!”
- “Appa, nekku director aaganam!”
“Nee yenna periya Kamal Haasan-aa? Padam pidikka poara moonji-ya paaru!”
And I think, “Padam pidikkaravan moonji paakka azhagaa irukkanam-nu yaaru chonna? Unless you want to quit direction and get into acting.” (won’t name people, the list is endless)
- “Appa, nekku Bharatanatyam kattukkanam. I am not interested in going to Paatu class. Bharatham looks so interesting. Can I please…”
“DEI! In our family, Bharatham has always been pursued by girls. Unakku experiment pannanam-na go learn violin. I will also say engaatta Ambi yum Ambi Subramaniam maadiri vaasikkaraan.” Plus comes the snide remark from a ‘well-wisher’ in the family about how Bharatam will make the boy effeminate. Avalavudaan!
You try to justify saying, “Kamal kattukkaliya?”
And pat comes the reply, “Nee yenna periya Kamal Haasan-aa? Kamal even played the mridangam in Apoorva Ragangal. Anda role-kku avar mridangam vaasikkavum kattundaar, teriyuma? Poda… pesa vanduttaan.”
You may ask how does that justification even make sense… but let’s not forget… they are Thoppanaars & Thaayaars… they don’t need to make sense.
- “Appa, naan ennodu Kavithai publish panna poren.”
“Ellaraaliyum kavithai ezhuda mudiyaadu da… nokku enna Kannadaasan-nu nenappa?”
“Yen pa, Kamal ezhuda aarambikkaliya?”
“Nee yenna periya Kamal Haasan-aa? Avar ezhudina kavithai ellam censaar la ban pannaraalaam. Neeyum anda maadiri kavithai ezhudaporiya? Kandraavi!”
- “Appa, naan kovil-ukku varalai”
“Yen da? Today is your nakshatram porandanaal. You are supposed to go to Kovil!”
“Ivalavu varushama poyi oru prayojanam-um illai nu purinjaachu. Naan Kadavul-a vida Pagutharivalar-a nambarein”
“Appo, bhagavaan illai nu chollairya?”
“Illai-nu cholla varalai… irunda nanna irukkum-nu chollaren…”
Tuni onattara kambu comes flying at you like a javelin with the words, “Badavaa rascal! Nee yenna periya Kamal Haasan-aa?”
And It’s not just the ambis, but also the anguchis who get to hear: “Nee yenna periya Kamal Haasan-aa? Avan aamblai di!!!” Well… think again!
Picture Courtesy: Lakshmi Priyaa Chandramouli
P.S.: Meanwhile, in another household, a boy was getting ready to go for Kabali show with his friends wearing veshti & sunglasses according to their Thalaivar-padam viewing tradition. What followed next was the Thoppanaar’s high pitched retort, “Kapaleeshwarar Kovil-ukku kuda Veshti kattikaadavan, Kabali padatukku veshti kattikariya? Karuppu kannaadi pottundu pora moonjiya paaru. Style-aa daa adikkarai? Nokku enna periya Rajinikanth nu nenappa?”