Sunday, August 31, 2014

How to Know the Difference between a Tamilian (Tamu) and a Malayali (Mallu)

The substantial and up-and-coming talent of the young Raamesh Gowri Raghavan (a Tamu, by the way) referred to one aspect of this post and the response was phenomenal on Facebook. I had posted this on Facebook first, not here, as I usually do. 

The point in question is "Not all people who speak fast “anda gundu” are Mallus" fifth in sequence below.


I have often been asked if I am a Tamu. When I say no, then they ask me if I am a Mallu. When they hear no, they ask me if I am from Andhra. I say I have spent most of my life in Bombay, so I think I am a half-Bombayite, but I was born in Kerala, so I am half-Mallu. I am a hybrid. Therefore I am essaying below a short treatise on how to make out who is a Tamu and who is a Mallu:

Not everyone with curly hair using coconut shampoo is a Mallu

Agreed Mallus use coconut oil in all their dishes, and also on themselves. So all shiny curly tops aren’t those of Mallus, some of them are Tamus also. The difference is Mallus apply coconut oil before bath and Tamus apply the oil after bath.

Not everyone with a dark skin is a Mallu

Yes, Mallus have dark skin but Tamus also have dark skin. Their degrees of darkness vary from district to district. Example: skin colour of a Mallu from Kasargod will be lighter than his cousin from Quilon. Likewise a Tamu from Nagarcoil would be darker than a Tamu from Erode.

Tamus make stars out of those from other states. Mallus like their stars home grown

MGR was a Mallu and Rajnikant is a Maharashtrian but both of them became big stars in Tamil Nadu. But Kerala’s stars are from their own soil – e.g. Mohan Lal and Mamooty. Kamalahasan made a brief foray into Malayalam cinema but didn’t succeed.

Tamus substitute “P” for “B” and Mallus substitude “B” for “P”

A Tamu will say “Pollywood” for “Bollywood” but a Mallu will say “Simble” for “Simple.”

Tamu: Pollywood poster
Mallu: Bollywood boster

Not all people who speak fast “anda gundu” are Mallus

Tamus speak very fast. That’s because the excitement of a Tamu meeting another is so great that they want to share as much as possible in the shortest time. Whereas Mallus are standoffish when confronted by other Mallus and would speak guardedly, meaning slowly.

The nurses in hospitals you have been admitted to are Mallus, however, the guy who designed your operating system will most likely be a Tamu

Because there are more nurses per square kilometre in Kerala than any other state in India. Also there are more programmers per square kilometre in Tamil Nadu than any other state in India.

Party affiliations

DMK, AIADMK, PMK, are parties in Tamil Nadu, ergo, Tamu while CPI, CPI (M), CPI (ML), Congress (I), Kerala Congress, Kerala Congress (Mani group), Kerala Congress (Joseph group) are parties in Kerala. I know, I know, Mallus are like protoplasm that divides and subdivides. When two Mallus get together there would be two political parties.

Hope the differences are abundantly clear. If you have any doubts please ask in the comments section. Hobe I have made the differences simble enough.

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