Pseudo Birthdays

Today is my Didi's pseudo birthday. A pseudo birthday is that birthday date Indian parents (mostly fathers' idea) put as their child's birth date instead of real one and which is a few months or years later date and in some rare cases it can be a few months previous date. The mentality behind this practice is that the child will get extra years at service which means extra money. It is also done in case of those children whose actual birth dates fall between school session like in October,November etc so that they get admission instead of wasting one year. Then there are some unlucky ones like my Dad. He was a naughty child and always playing outside. He caught the local school's headmaster's eye and the headmaster suggested my Grandpa to put him in school. When Grandpa said my son is not yet of the school going age, the headmaster said nothing to worry and promptly increased my Dad's year of birth by 1 year and admitted him to school!!! Poor Dad. Maybe thats the reason he was influenced to change my Didi's birth date by 6 months!! Not even a year! Its like done with a mind that wants to do it and also doesn't. Then there are some like one of my colleagues whose parents made her birth date 25 July instead of using the actual 10 July because 25 July is their marriage anniversary!! Talk about saving expenses!!

But there are so many consequences of this silly practice!!! The repercussions range from mere explanations to dealing with red tape.

1. Those who have dual birth dates tend to hide this even from their closest friends because after all its illegal and to save themselves from Q&A session.

2. Poor fellows do not get to celebrate their actual birthday and people wish them on the pseudo birthdays for years whereas they are not feeling the joy. They even receive cards & gifts on the wrong day. (But that shouldn't hurt right?)

3. People (having read Linda Goodman) may form false impression about their actual nature and traits as they appear to belong to a sun sign and may get themselves into trouble. Like people may mistake my Didi for a paradoxical, flirtatious, talkative, breezy Gemini whereas she is a reserved, intense, mature, stubborn Scorpio. Their friends even read out wrong daily horoscopes from newspaper for them. Some friends may even chart out horoscopes and come out with wrong predictions!!!!

4. I don't want to sound biased or generic [Amit plz note :) ] or accusing anyone, but decreasing the age used to be quite common in Biharis, UPites and MPites (don't know about present situation).There are so many uncles who have become so old (You may decrease the age but you can't stop/delay the aging process) but are still in service. And others make fun of them or may be jealous of them.

5. And then some get retired early or get sucked in the Education System early.

6. Last but not the least, the amount of running around and bribing it takes to make a duplicate birth certificate (because the original is submitted during admission to Class 1) showing the pseudo date and Ministry's signature for Visa and Work Permits purposes especially for Europe; causes high blood pressure, sleepless nights and hypertension and you really regret the day you lied about the birth date.

So don't do koi jhol jhaal
Mat chalo koi chaal
About the janm tithi or saal
Warna karna padega babu ko mala-maal
Tab jaake galegi aapki daal
Aisa hai jhooth ka jaal
Mat rakhna koi shikwa mere naal
Goodbye to aaalll

[I got carried away by the poetic/rap urge :D]

Anyway,Didi, your birthday today may be pseudo but my wishes are always heartfelt.
Happy Pseudo Birthday!!


P.S. Don't worry guys...Mine is real i.e. 22nd June :D

Edited to add: This poem is an original Rimu and subject to copyright laws.

19 comments:

mashedmusings said...

Hey, wish your sis on my behalf too. :) I have heard of this practice earlier as one of my friend had the same problem. He used to bang his head on his real birthday about which a very few like me knew.
And I don't have any bias. hehehe. I just heard all that from people around me.
Not relevant to the post, but after staying in South India for 2 years I have come to know of a few interesting things like - The South Indians consider the "Northies" to be spendthrift, loud and bitchy types. Such generalizations are quite amusing. :D

Reema said...

:) I just wanted you to know i m not being generic like u had pointed out that I become so. I didn't mean u had any bias :)

Thx for ur wish!

Swathi said...

Hey reema...nice post, and sadly even i have 2 birthdays, one real one , other legal one!!! and it is all because one silly mistake by my dad. we used to stay in bihar when i was little, so while getting the school transfer ceritificate, my dad wrote 5(may) instead of 4(april) and with the same details have been carried on since now :(( .. as its only 1 month, so i dont make big deal..but i had this funny incident just 1 week back when i went for blood test here in US, and nurse asked my DOB before taking blood, i told my legal DOB and she said hey tommorrow is ur bday..for a moment i was stunned..then i realised its may month going one..i gave her a nice grin :))

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Good topic to debate upon...

Usually school headmaster/mistress use their power to assign birthdays...

Another thing to note=in most of the cases date is kept intact and only month is advanced. Like if actual bday is say July 10, it is brought down to April 10

Reema said...

Welcome Shrinidhi to my blog. Thx for ur comment

Vaibhav said...

Hey wish u sister on my behalf as well.
Ans yes i know my mom's and dad's birthdate is a pseudo birthdate.Even their parents nor any of their siblings remeber the correct birthdate and year as no one was educated enough to note it. The birthdates that they have is the day they joined school less 3 years.
Cheers!

Reema said...

thx on my didi's behalf

Reema said...

not one comment on my hinglish poem. :( its too bad even to comment :(

geekwrestler said...

LOL! Happy psuedo b'day to your sis! My brother has the same day except two years ahead so he could get his driving license.

That rap is hilarious!

Ps. Your b'day is just one day ahead of mine! :D

[Hopefully third times the charm. I typed this thing the third time. Blogger and my connection ain't compatible!]

Reema said...

Thanks Ashish!!

talkingtails said...

Hahehaha!

Yeah... lots of my batchmates had 'psuedo' birthdays too! It's fun.. I wish it could mean 2 cakes.. and 2 Birthday bumps too! :D

Suda said...

My elder brother too have two birthdays :D
In my friends group,, a person needs to give a party on each birthday :D
it does not matter whether its his/her legal b'day or not :P

Poonam said...

Hey, happy pseudo birthday to your sister!

I have met only two people in my life with pseudo birthday. One is my mother, but fortunately in her case, day is fine only year is forged. So she has tough time calculating her age. Her parents increased her age by two years to get her admitted in school early.

The other person with pseudo birthday is my friend, due to the birthday confusion, I could never rememeber his real birthday for years until now.

Nova said...

God!!! Yeah this is so common!!! A good post on this! :)

Thanks to my parents, my sis and I have just one birthday! :)

Reema said...

@Amyth Welcome to my blog and thanks for ur comment

@Suda Now thats a good way to take advantage!When I was small I used to make greeting card and give Didi on both the bdays

@Poonam Welcome! Thx on my Didi's behalf. Thankfully I have only one person in my life yet with 2 bday dates.

@Nova..welcome! and thanks for ur comment.

lallopallo said...

Happy Birthday to Didi!!!

Reema said...

Thanks lallopallo!!

Didi said...

Thank you for your wishes, pseudo or otherwise, and thanks to all the blog readers too who have wished me.
But I hate having two birthdays, and I cringed with consternation reading this post, but well, nice to see the funny side of this thing.

Reema said...

Welcome! Sorry for causing consternation :D