Monday, November 28, 2005

Kallaatta kallapparuppaatta

Kallaatta kallapparuppaatta… We all are shouting together. It is a game, very interesting one. Very tricky too. We can play this game with any number of girls; the number just has to be even as we need to divide us into two groups. Sometimes we don’t mind having unequal number of girls, as we can not say no to any girl if the gathering happens to be an odd number in total.

Except our group leader we are all sitting on the floor, one behind one, stretching our legs straight. Wearing full-length skirt is very important for playing this game. We use the skirt to cover our legs fully. Our group leader comes to each one of us and hides that stone, between our legs and we have to cover it with our skirts. Sometimes my brother Senthil insists on including him in our game, then we ask him to bring a big towel and he spreads it over his legs, after sitting. The trick is that we should not let the other group know who is really having the stone, as there is only one stone. So, we all pretend as if we are hiding the stone. The group leader can keep the stone as well, which she does sometimes. She hides her hand by wrapping her skirt several times over her hand. She could be holding the stone, or the stone could be with anyone of us. Not even the group members know with whom the stone is, it is only that girl, with whom the stone is, knows about it. Then we all shout “kallatta kallapparuppaatta” together, moving our legs sideways, away, close, away, close. It is very rhythmic. It goes very rhythmically with our kallaatta kallapparuppaatta. As we play this game in the evenings, the darkness help us hide the stone better. The bulb in our street light has lost its last breadth yesterday, making our game even more interesting. The game is the other group has to find out the stone. If they find correctly, they get points. We will stand up and leave the ground for them to sit and start. If they don’t find the stone, we get points, and we continue the game. Of course the whole luck of the game depends on who starts the game. We decide that by playing pulling-at-the-line. Group leaders go head to head, stand on a line, pull each other (one leg at the back to gain strength). Whosoever pulls the other group leader to her side wins and gets to start the game. Kutti is our group leader, and she has won this time. So, we started the game.

“Lathapponnu…” We all had to pause the game and I go to aachchi. (one information is revealed that the stone was not with me). “Aachchi, I am playing”. “It is dark and getting late. Come eat and sleep”. “I am in the middle of a game. I will come once I have finished it”. “What kind of a game is that that needs finishing so importantly? Are you going to loose your head if you don’t finish?”. “Aachchi, I am not hungry; I am not feeling sleepy either. I will come once when I have finished the game”. “Who are you playing with”? “Kutti”. “Eeh, Kutti, come here. Aren’t you Rengamma’s daughter?”, “Yes Paatti”. Now Kutti is also standing in front of my aachchi, answering her questions. “Have you had food?” Kutti is worried. She scratches her head. I can tell that she is trying to figure out which answer is going to be a less-problem-bringing one. “No paatti”, her words come out of her mouth before her decision-making-thinking is finished. “Why are you playing in empty stomach”? She goes blank. “Go and eat. Let Latha also eat. You can play tomorrow”. “And, what is that you are holding your skirt so high like that, showing your legs?”. She had to drop the skirt that was wrapped around her hand. The stone was in her hand. Shit. Aachchi has made us reveal our stone. The game is lost. I turn my head towards Jaya, the other group leader, and tell her, “Jaya, we will do it again”. “We will drop Latha from our game. Her aachchi or amma or her chithi always interrupt our game and ruin the fun.” I feel like crying. I look at aachchi, “Good. You are not in the game anymore, so, you can come and eat first”. “Look, they dropped me from the game because you people interrupt the game all the time and ruin the game and fun for others too”. “Adengappa (an expression expressing sarcasm), what kind of game is that? Are you all playing to win a kingdom? Or, are you all going to bring rice for tommorrow’s ulai (While cooking rice in traditional method, water is boiled first and rice is added when the water reaches boiling point. The water boiled before adding rice is called ulai, which synonymously mean food)”. Kallaatta kallapparuppaatta.. Is it Jaya’s group? I can’t hear very well. Seems Kutti has lost the previous round.

22 comments:

Lata said...

"ay..ay...naanum varrenne...ennaiyum sethukkongappa...pleeeassse??"

Premalatha said...

Hi Lata,

You are included. bring a big towel, if you are wearing long skirt.

:)

Dubukku said...

Nice narration.
Similar story here will always be interupted by my folks at home during the game (not your game though ;P)

Premalatha said...

Oh, what a shame, you didn't play KK (kallaatta kallapparuppaatta)? :)
what did you play, may be that stupid cricket or that another stupid golikkundu (marbles), or pilla-kutti (rougher and older version of cricket).

sudha said...

hey,
nice, but as usual enakku paer origin + meaning puriyala.

Premalatha said...

Hi Sudha,

Kallaatta means "the cheating game". "Kallapparuppaatta" may be "the stupid game", or it might have been added just to go with the rythm.

I don't know the origin either.

Actually I wanted to post somethingelse. but, I am not sure should I go strong or should keep myself in this phase for some more time.

Nevertheless, it was one of those memories I enjoy remembering. :)

Premalatha said...

Hi Sudha,

it is also that although I am more than interested in knowing the meaning and origin of these things, this blog is not about that. I do welcome discussions on that, it is just, I may/will not post on that. If I do know, I surely will try to fit those kind of things in without deviating too much in the post itself. but, I surely welcome discussion in the comment section.
:)

Lata said...

Hi Prema,

KK reminds me of another game with stones (actually flat rocks) that I played with my friends those days... called "pittoo". It was fun watching Ash play that in Hum dil de chuke sanam (i think it was in the title song).

I like the way you narrate all these memories...

டி ராஜ்/ DRaj said...

Nice post, Premalatha. I am sure almost everyone (atleast from sub urban/ rural background) might have had similar experiences. Just that the games, the people might differ.

sudha said...

hi latha, i was just curious, avlo thaan. :-) please tell me its not tamil..tamil na enna pronounciation?

Premalatha said...

Hi Sudha,

It is Tamil.

Kallaaatta = Kalla + aatta (aattam) = the cheating game.

Kallaparuppu = groundnut/peanut
+aattam
= the stupid game (I think).

:)

Premalatha said...

Hi Draj,

When you say people differ, do you mean some may not like this kinds of games?

Premalatha said...

Hi Lata,

We play a game using that flat rock (flat pottery fragment, actually) as well. I think this is the game played in most of the rural areas with slightly different game-rules and method of playing.

sudha said...

ohhhhhhhhhhh..............

Premalatha said...

sudha, enna expression-nu puriyala.

:)

S said...

Hi premalatha...great narration...i've never heard of this game...but you bring it to life with your narration...

but i can really see aachi with hands on her hips ordering to go inside and have the "blessed meal"...LoL. been thro' that. Atleast it is not chithi, this time, with a bucket of water!!:-)

sudha said...

ila ippo than enakku pirinthathu ;-) effect of finally understanding it

Dubukku said...

I have played
"thoon pidichu" - swapping between pillars in a pandhal or kovil
"Jodi pura" - you have to hold the hands of a partner else the seeker will make you alone and you will have to seek the another.
Luckory - complex game can't explain it here.

ahaa you have inspired me for another post :))

Premalatha said...

Hi S,

Hi premalatha...great narration...i've never heard of this game...

That's why I posted on this. :) I did think people from other parts of Tamil Nadu may not know this game. :)
There are few other such games as well, I am going to keep them for some other time.



but you bring it to life with your narration...

Thanks. :)


but i can really see aachi with hands on her hips ordering to go inside and have the "blessed meal"...LoL.


:)


been thro' that. Atleast it is not chithi, this time, with a bucket of water!!:-)

Aachi is better than chithi.

Premalatha said...

Hi Dubukku,


I have played "jodipura" as well. But that game soon reveals who is whose favourite/best-friend.. and I often found myself alone. It was mainly becuuse of my folks interfernce that I did not have "best friends", which slowly led to my isolation. Also it got to my head that "I don't have friends". It got to my brother's head also to that extent that he still thinks that I am incapable of making/keeping friends. He beleives that his friends are the real friends. In my dictionary I wouldn't want to associate with such people as friends. but the moment I start talking about that, he diregards my words saying that I am incapable of knowing what friendship is...


:(

டி ராஜ்/ DRaj said...

//When you say people differ, do you mean some may not like this kinds of games?//

oops no. I mean it might be Premalatha in Kombai and a Shanti in Theni. :) I still recall my sister and our cousins playing such games. Unfortunately, all this only tells me that I am getting old. hahaha. anyway, thanks for the wonderful post.

kalai said...

LOL...nice narration! :)

first time hearing abt this game...as dubukku said we too played 'thoon pudichu" but we used to call that "four corners"!

have u heard of "crocodile crocodile" and "color color" ...similar games! :P