Autology 101

Written in



A while back, ATP called for the Auto Payyans School of Fine Etiquette – a world class institution whose global mission is to educate the middle-class on how to behave with Chennai auto drivers. And since any self respecting school needs a syllabus, I designed one here.

Course subject #1 is Autology – an introduction to the basic philosophy and guiding principles of the world of Chennai Autos. As I stated in an earlier post, there are 4 spiritual branches of the Auto world.

Rigged Veda

The most popular of the vedas, the followers of this school of thought are experts in the advanced non-linear physics of Soodu (Hot) Meterology. Savvy customers who prefer fixed prices instead of relying on meters whose velocities come close to violating fundamental laws of physics, are handled by the followers of this Veda using a method best highlighted by an example.

Customer (near Tidel park): Thiruvanmiyur

Rigged Veda disciple: (conducts detailed visual inspection of customer and thinks – “Hmm. ID card. Jaalra cellphone. Must be software”). 120 Rs saar.

Customer: Kya. 120? Rombey Jaasthi. (too much)

Rigged Veda disciple: (Otha Indi-gindi pesaraan) Saar. traffic jyaada. Tumko draap kartha return nahi miltha. Tiruvanmiyur la kahaan?

Customer: Valmiki Nagar

Rigged Veda disciple: Udhar one way honaa saar. 120 Rs minimum.

Customer: Bahut jyaada bol rahe ho…Auto!! Tiruvanmiyur (calling another auto. Cardinal sin)

Rigged Veda disciple: (smoothly shifting to Tamil). Indi payyan. 120 sollikiren. Nalla etthi sollu (He is a north Indian. quote higher than 120)

Another RVD: Saar. Valmiki nagar no return available saar. 150 Rs.

Customer: Kyaa? Damn.

Original RVD: Main tumko bola naa. 120 rs kam hotha. Baito….

The end. Indi payyan is fleeced 150 ultimately because he failed to specify the exact avenue in Valmiki nagar ahead of time.

Ager Veda

Followers of this school tend to be, on an average, at least 50 years old. In addition, they will need to have at least 3 kids (One son and two daughters) to gain membership into this school. The reasons. “Saar . I have 2 sons saar. School fees and college fees saar. Daughter marriage also coming saar. Don’t think of 20-30 rs extra saar. It is nothing for you. For me, it is everything.”

Samma Veda (as in “Samma Haat Machi”)

The youthful brigade that makes up this offshoot of the Rigged school is, on an average, 16 years old. They do, however, tend to possess driving licenses that prove them to be 32 years old (with a beard as well). This ultra-orthodox, rigid school, while following most of the Rigged Veda edicts, have a few more strict rules that the disciples need to adhere to.

  • The driver must place his posterior only on the absolute edge of the seat. Rest of the space on the seat can optionally be occupied by friends and colleagues.
  • Once a day, the driver will need to stop the auto and whip out his Reliance mobile phone and talk to a 98.1 Radio Mirchi host and request for Thalaivar’s hit song from Baasha.
  • The “No space left behind” law which forces every inch of the auto interior to be covered by Ajith, Vijay and Superstar posters.

Other Venaam Veda

The unwanted outcasts of the Chennai Auto world. These are non-Tamil outsiders who have the gall to charge reasonable rates. Followers of this school tend to stay away from Auto stands where followers of the other vedas hang around.

Plis to be notings: Original image credits to Creative Eye and KoshyK.


12 responses to “Autology 101”

  1. Rambodoc Avatar

    In honor of this enjoyable post:
    โ€œA young driver of an auto
    Won a prize from Lotto
    Told to retire with all the money
    He said โ€œthat is very funny,
    But driving people crazy is my motto!โ€
    BTW, this is an original work of mine, no part of which may be copied without giving me a paid coupon for an auto ride from Chennai airport to the autopsy room.

  2. maverick Avatar

    The only time I was in chennai was for my visa interview. I think i fall into the first category as i can barely manage with tamil.He charged me around Rs.40 frm rly station to the marina beach, tht was 2005 ofcourse. Is tht high?

    btw thx for stopping by my place.

  3. krishashok Avatar

    In today’s terms, 40 Rs will get you into the auto but you will have pay extra for it to move.

  4. Maverick Avatar

    then Iam assuming he didn’t charge too much ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Bikerdude Avatar

    Yay what you fellows are complaining about I say? You have lovely electric trains, Pallavan bus and all that. Idhukku mela auto vera kaekkudhaa?

    The blore autos are marginally more reasonable but thanks to hordes of out of towners coming in and asking “Malleshwaram evalavu?” and “Koramangala kitna lenge” these fellows have gotten into the habit of quoting prices instead of turning the meter. The latest of course is to refuse to go anywhere and just sit there all day. Nice weather no, what to do. Why simpky drive auto and all that.

  6. Marc Avatar

    Awesome post.

    Bikerdude, the last line is pretty much what my friend would say if he drove an auto.

  7. Arunk Avatar

    ๐Ÿ™‚ Hilarious!

    Also perhaps samma veda school members sing while driving too?

  8. mahendrap Avatar

    Hilarious! ๐Ÿ™‚

    In all my trips to Chennai, I’ve missed out on this auto universe as I always had the company car…now I feel I missed out on so much fun!

  9. Karthik Sriram Avatar

    Super Doode!

    Amazing classification!


  10. krishashok Avatar

    Thank you

  11. sj Avatar

    nice- wish i could relate but i did live in chennai as an american lost but loved it and the autos were an experience for sure. we have a similar site name -let’s stay connected.. great writing btw.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: