Ho! Ho! Ho! Merry Christmas!
We hope your Christmas preparations are in full swing. And by that, we mean the typical Indian joyous tradition of celebrating Christmas desi ishtyle, a.k.a another day at office spent cursing the boss.
Nonetheless, we are INDIANS! The most awesome aspect of that is how we celebrate all festivals, whether or not it even belongs to our own religion. So, celebrate we shall!
But I repeat – we are INDIANS. And the one thing we love most, after Cricket and Bollywood, is INDIANIZATION. Yep, give us all the Chinese food or German cars you want, we will still find a way to Indianize it. Hell, give us Bill Gates for a month and we’ll make him Billu Guitarwala! And so, it is no surprise that we have managed to create a Christmas edition of our own too. The firangs might not be too impressed, but who cares anyway. Here’s 5 ways how Indians celebrate Christmas differently from the rest of the world –
1) Dinner Time
Traditional Christmas dinner is a lavish, sumptuous affair on Christmas eve. The turkey, the beef, the mashed potatoes, the pumpkin pies, the fruitcake… suffice to say that Christmas is a festival created for a typical Joey.
The best part is that the joy of the dinner isn’t just limited to the dinner itself. The festivities continue well into the night, with wine, music, carols (and often snow) filling up the streets all over town. Because that’s how a God’s birthday is done justice, isn’t it?
Cut to India, and what do you get?
In India, the only thing we get is a tharki, not turkey! With a routine aalu-bhindi ki sabzi for “dinner”. With a glass of Pepsi just to signify that it is indeed a “merry day”. If you’re “lucky”, you may be served some pizza. Cold. 1 hour 45 minutes after you order it. Because as a great saint from the Dominoes School Of Lame AF Excuses always says, “Sir thoda internal issue tha…”
And then off you doze off at 11 p.m. Gotta catch that dreaded 8.32 local again tomorrow, as usual… #WretchedLife
2) The (m)art of Gifting
Traditional Christmas implies giving – selflessly. Everyone gifts everyone a present (or is it “presents a gift”?). In fact, it is customary to keep gifts for everyone under the Christmas tree and then have a gala of a time on Christmas morning unwrapping it together.
And the best part – those are no chindi gifts given just for the sake of it, unlike the Indian counterparts. Indians treat Christmas like their Diwali – “ye Sharmaji ne Diwali pe diya tha. Isko Guptaji ko dede abhi tak khola nahi hai”. We Indians have in fact, created a festive gift-chain of our own – the gift of Diwali is a pass-on for Christmas to another, and vice-versa!
Also, does anyone in India even hang a sock at the window, unless it’s to keep one for drying? Our kids are too genius to fall for the Santa-chimney hoax…
3) Coz there ain’t no cosplay!
Ask an Indian what “Cosplay” means, and chances are, you’d be met with an expression as quizzical as Joey’s smell-the-fart-acting
Well cosplay refers to dressing up as characters and acting like them. And so, you have people in the west all dressed up as various Christmas-y characters, such as Santa Claus, Rudolph The Reindeer, Elves,etc.
Dramas depicting Jesus’ story, various folktales etc. are a hot favourite in most of the Western world. Some parts even have charitable drives, where people readily donate to the artists voluntarily for a cause.
Our Indian version?
The same old routine repeated every year – set up a Christmas tree in a mall, and make a guy stand in an inflated santa costume, whose only task is to wave at children. Besides getting hit by them, of course. Because that’s how a fun game goes in India – when it seems fluffy, hit it to see how much pain it can withstand! Indian kids are geniuses I tell you…
4) Holidays? You mean those mythical things like unicorns?
The equation is simple in the West – Christmas = Holidays. No work, all play, make the Jacks and the Johns and everyone make the most of a truly merry Christmas! Companies, even the big ones, give almost a week’s off, and they make the most of it by decorating their houses with lights all over. Hometowns are visited, families are re-united, snowmen are made and destroyed every day… even as you, a poor Indian, are still forced to work everyday. Your Amrica–waala cousin uploads all those cool photos on FB, and all you can do is scroll with envy and anger like
What’s worse? When the foreign client you were working with calls you and says “Hey, I’m going to be off for the next week, so just work on the files and mail them. I’ll check them, like… whatever. Merry Christmas! See Ya!”. And off they go from the radar to enjoy, leaving you with tonnes of work that destroys not just your Christmas, but even your New Year!.
Yep, that’s the Indian way of “celebrating”.
5) Kissing under the mistle-toe? Chi chi chi anti-national!
A common tradition, followed in the west since centuries, is to kiss under the mistletoe, which is a type of a plant. It is the perfect way to usher in something joyous with your loved ones, or so it should be. Could be…
But indian sanskriti bro! How can a boy and a girl… in front of everyone… corrupt anti-national trying to erode Indian culture! Nope, un-imaginable in a country which has produced 1.2 billion humans…
Seriously, be a true Indian! Sanskar-ize yourself!
Suffice to say, Indian’s have one of the most joyous styles of celebrating Christmas, don’t you think? Call it sarcasm, but we still do a better job of creating fake copies of a foreign product than China atleast? Maybe it’s not the festival of 80%of the population, but we Indians have still managed to imbibe it into our culture and our economy and done a pretty good job thus far. So Merry Christmas everyone! Keep loving the festival, keep loving the country, and keep loving The College Fever too!