Why Kannadigas are Inherently Lazy

There is something about the weather in Bangalore. There is something about the weather in Bangalore that perks you up. There is something about the weather in Bangalore that most of the time you really want to do something, to be active, to go out, walk around, lead an active life and all such. The first few days I spent in Bangalore after my return from Gurgaon in June I spent literally jumping around. The weather was so uplifting. It filled me with so much enthu for everything in life!

So I was wondering why people usually classify Kannadigas as being inherently lazy. As one of the professors in my JEE coaching factory used to say “naavu Kannadigarige aambode mosaranna koTTbiTTre khushhyaagiddbiDtivi” (if someone gives us Kannadigas dal vada and curd rice, we’ll live happily forever, and we will forget about working hard). Basically implying that we are inherently not too ambitious, and that we are generally laidback about stuff.

Thinking about it, I was wondering if the wonderful climate of South Interior Karnataka has to do with this (people from North Karnataka and the coast are supposed to be fairly hardworking, and are not known for their laidbackness unlike us Old Mysore people). I wonder if this laidbackness is because our wonderful weather has spoilt us. Spoilt us to an extent that we don’t really need to normally fight against the odds.

So I was thinking about Gurgaon, the other place where I’ve recently lived in. Gurgaon has horrible climate. Maybe a total of one month in the year can be desccribed as “pleasant”. Most of the time it’s either too hot or too cold. Temperatures are extreme. When it rains the whole place floods up. If people in Gurgaon are happy it is in spite of the weather and because of it. And therein lies the reason why people from there are traditionally more hardworking than us people from Old Mysore.

Blessed with such wonderful climate, we don’t really need to fight the odds. If today is too hot, we can put off the job for another day when we’re sure it’ll be cooler. If it rains too much today, we know that it’s likely to be dry tomorrow and can thus postpone it. Essentially we don’t need to put too much fight. When the weather is good, we are all jumpy and enthu and do our work. Which allows us to wait and sit when the weather is bad.

The man in Gurgaon, or in Chennai, or even in Raichur, however, can’t afford that. The likelihood of him having a good day weatherwise sometime in the near future is so thin that there exists just no point for him to postpone his work thinking he’ll do it when he feels better. This means that he is culturally (rather, climatically) conditioned to work against the odds. To do stuff even when he doesn’t want to do it. To essentially put more fight. And so he avoids that “inherently lazy” tag which people like us have unfortunately got.

I’m reminded of the second case that we did in our Corporate Strategy course at IIMB, from which the main learning was that sometimes your biggest strengths can turn out to be your biggest weaknesses.

nODi swami, naaviruvudu heege.

7 thoughts on “Why Kannadigas are Inherently Lazy

  1. Agreed. The whole thing goes to an extreme in case of the hilly /snowy parts of India, where people do no work whatsoever.

    Additionally, the overall culture down south is more geared towards marriage, family, values, and stability… not adventure or aggressiveness.

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  2. In this era of air conditioned offices, does it really matter?
    The only way my laziness level is different in BLR than it is in Chennai, is in the morning when I am tempted to sleep for 20 mins more across the year. Ofcourse this 20 mins can become 40 in winter. Once you get past that and enter office – it is pretty much the same.

    If you are alluding to longer term development of laziness,where you grew up is a major component of how lazy you are, my argument is Ked.

    Anyway – I do agree to the NOTION that Bangaloreans are chilled out compared to Chn guys or Madrasis (as they are called).

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  3. Not a bad observation at all. The very same is true for most of California, the Mediterranean and south France (to where every slogger, slave and investment banker wants to retire), and the observation still holds. Russel’s “In Praise of Idleness” immortalizes that with its opening para: “Everyone knows the story of the traveler in Naples who saw twelve beggars lying in the sun (it was before the days of Mussolini), and offered a lira to the laziest of them. Eleven of them jumped up to claim it, so he gave it to the twelfth.”

    #2 randomly bringing in ACs – that is complete tosh. Controlled temperature and humidity does not exhaustively constitute good weather. Heck, we don’t even know _what_ factors constitute good weather, forget about setting them to optimal values.

    Also, could you please enable an option to delete one’s own comments?

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  4. Besides the weather, it has also got to do with the history of the place, i think. The Old Mysore region, governed by the Wodeyar clan, has largely had a peaceful history over the past 1000 years. Also, the princely state was known for its relatively laidback kings and benign administration. I’ve heard stories of huge dole-outs being given to the general public in Mysore city during Dasara festivities. So, it was definitely a somewhat pampered region.

    I’m reminded of Orson Welles’ remark in the movie The Third Man :
    in Italy, for thirty years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, they had five hundred years of democracy and peace – and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock

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