I am someone who simply loves stereotypes: I love it when people assume that I love fish and sweets because I am from Kolkata, I love it when people assume that I am in HR because I am a girl from SCMHRD with decent soft skills, colourful clothes and a shiny handbag and I love it when people assume that I am dumb because I am a girl from Kolkata who studied in SCMHRD and works in HR. Ok, the last point was a cheap shot at anon, who no longer reads my blog.
But coming back to the point, stereotypes simply enthrall me and breaking them, even more so. So my favourite stereotypes are:
Regional stereotypes: I am not fond of Sardar jokes, but I strongly believe that you do carry the traits of the place you come from, no matter how cosmopolitan you become with time. So yes, I AM the quintessential cheap Bengali and I have no qualms about it. Similarly, I DO associate my Mallu friends with alcohol and Mutton Biryani; Tam friends with a strong left brain and Punjabi friends with a big heart and bigger bangles.
Bollywood stereotypes: While I am an ardent fan of offbeat arty movies, I still believe that some things in Bollywood NEVER go out of style. For instance, the heroine in a white wet sari or the item number from nowhere or the eternal love triangle where the boring, traditional bharatiya naari ALWAYS gets the guy are classics in their own way.
Corporate stereotypes: Being a minority in many ways in my three years of corporate life and someone who doesn’t tow the conventional line for ‘being successful’, I have been a victim more often than not, but at the same time I have quietly observed the familiar patterns across firms. Interestingly, “successful” people exhibit uncannily similar traits no matter which company they are in. So yes, bring on the jargon, the three-piece suit and the meeting-friendly souls, and you have managed to keep me amused through the length of the meeting.
Socialization stereotypes: Being the Paris Hilton of the technological world, I am unfashionably outdated when it comes to social networking. But that doesn’t stop me from enjoying my space on Facebook as I happily browse through wedding/honeymoon albums, long status updates and minute details of the “awesome fun” my “friends” are having, so much so that they HAVE to share it IMMEDIATELY.
Relationship stereotypes: Being brought up in a gender neutral environment, I have never given much importance to social protocols. So yes, I do not subscribe to the established notions that women should never make the first move or that men are commitment phobics. But having said that, years of experience/observations/agony aunt columns later, I am tempted to believe that may be there is SOME truth in those archaic views. In some cases, old fashioned ideas never go out of style.
There is a reason why stereotypes become stereotypes…