The other day I was talking to my mother. And when we spoke about how some people manipulate a situation to their advantage by making fiction seem true, my mother said ,"mamiyare mamiyare mai ettukko madiri" which when translated means "mother in law, mother in law! Please apply Kajal/kohl" . This was one of the oft repeated proverbs I had heard as a child. The story behind the proverb is interesting . It is about an ailing old lady and her wily daughter in law. The daughter in law starves her. When the old lady's son that is the dils husband comes home from work, he asks her why his mom is looking famished. The daughter in law says that she tried her best to feed her but the old lady refuses and gets aggressive if forced. She tells him "I will go and ask her again now. You stay outside because you need to know how she behaves with me whe you are not around". She goes to the old lady's room in front of her husband. Then, whispers into her ears"mamiyaare! mai ettukarela ?" which translates as , "Mother in law! Will you apply Kajal in your eyes?". Kajal was the last thing the starving old lady wanted so she replies, "Vendam", that is "No!". Then the daughter in law again whispers the same thing. The old lady raises her voice and says vendam. When she again insists, the old lady shouts ,"how many times should I say no? "Then the wily daughter in law comes out and tells her husband who , sitting outside had heard his mothers refusals " see how she gets aggressive if I insist that she eats." The story is a humorous take for on how people can play with words and situations and have their way at the cost of others.