Did I ever tell you about my “hottie” car?
A few years ago – well, more like 5 years, actually – hubby dearest bought me a car for my birthday & a jolly thrilling birthday it was, too. For various totally unimportant reasons, we had to drive out to Panipat in Haryana to collect the car.
Now, there had been some secret discussion between my husband and son over the colour of the car, and the choice eventually boiled down to red or purple.
(Shades of “When I am an old woman, I shall wear purple with a red hat…”)
These 2 colours were, apparently, described in the car manufacturer’s specs as “haute red” and “haute purple.”
“Haute” – as it is invariably spelt here in India – is one of those imported phoren words that I love.
“Haut” is, of course, the masculine form of the French adjective meaning high. Add -e to make it the feminine form.
For some reason best known to Indian copy writers and editors, “haute” has become – well – a pukka Indian word, as chronicled here in some of my blog posts over the years:
March 2010 “haute wheels”
April 2010 “hauter”
August 2010 “haute handbook”
April 2011 “hautestepper”
So, yes, we have the feminine form of a French adjective now cheerfully used in Indian English to describe anything that is fashionable or glamorous.
Back to that showroom in Panipat.
The manager very sweetly gave me a birthday bouquet of flowers, and they had arranged a birthday cake for me, and the car had a big ribbon on it – and then the manager asked me whether I liked the colour choice that Himmat & Hari had finally made.
Did I like the “hottie” red?
And hottie red it has remained to this day 🙂
Which leads me seamlessly to my word of the day, as spied in the venerable “Economic Times” a couple of days ago:
My fave “haute” word?
Oh, definitely “hautesteppers” 🙂
If any of you have other haute words for me, please do share.