Randomly, in Chennai
Having spent several (ahem) years in Chennai, I have learnt:
4Never to speak on the mobile phone when I'm travelling in an auto in Chennai, because 1. It sounds as if I am riding a horse (ha-a-a-a-a-a-ai)/ speaking through an asthmatic wheeze (heeeeeyhn), 2. The person on the other side cannot hear me anyway and 3. Nine times out of ten, I leave the phone on the auto seat.
4That the best way to negotiate with driver of abovesaid vehicle is to quote a price ten-twenty rupees (Rs.100 from airport) lesser than his demand and then walk away (recommended nose in the air) as if you are used to walking from Triplicane to Velachery at noon.
4To ask for a fresh juice 'without' because these guys have a habit of dosing you with the entire country's sugar requirement in one glass of watermelon juice.
4That you no longer need small change on an MTC bus, because the fare, these days, is enough to clean your purse out.
4That it is futile to get an auto driver to say "Stella Maris" (Phonetically close to 'maa-riz') as opposed to "Stella Maris" (Phonetically 'maeris') .
4That how much ever I do not like the word 'Pombalai' and think it is demeaning for a woman to be nomenclatured so, it is constanly happening around me.
4That the best tea is almost always available at Iranis and is best drunk in a tall, dirty glass.
4That if the international arrival terminal corridor in Chennai airport smells of urine, it is just to make you feel at home, instantly.
4That a lane without a Vinayakar temple is an illusion.
4That the Nadaar shop at the corner is still your best bet for cheap, fresh groceries.
4The owner of the abovesaid shop seems to have been born with the once-white dhoti and once-white-half- sleeve vest he is wearing.
4That tar melts under intense heat. (Wrt: the road and the summer sun)
4That muttadosais should not be eaten anywhere but in roadside 'thallu vandis'.
4Learn politics and swearwords from drivers (preferably auto).
4That most of what Dinamalar's 'Tea kadai bench' says has, at most, half a grain of truth embedded deep inside.
4That the price of an item on Saravana Bhavan's menu is inversely proportional to the size of what is on the plate.
4NEVER ever to go for a first-day-first-show Superstar blockbuster, unless you want a fracture.
4That 'Thalaivaa' is not necessarily a leader and 'Captain' doesn't necessarily comandeer a ship.
4That great, albeit dead people, get buried on the beach.
4That there is no 'p' in Tamil, so you say replace all 'p's' nevermind where they occur to 'b's'. For instance, you must say 'busba' instead of the ordinary name 'Pushpa'.
4That people on the streets are really helpful because you just have to ask directions to get someplace and you will get four. This is really helpful, because after spending some time going in circles, you will eventually get there, while it is the moral support that ultimately counts and makes you feel loved.
4That Kodambakkam is not just a pincode, but a mini-city all by itself.
4That Josh Harnett sometimes looks like Brad Pitt in profile.
4That nearly a decade after we went Tamilised and became Chennai, the rest of the world still remembers and refers to the city as Madras. Yippeee.
If you can see an overemphasis on autos or food, it is not my obsessive compulsive disorder, just your imagination.
This list is by no means exhaustive. Please feel free to enrich it! :)