18 May 2011
I've always have it in my mind that a man referring to his wife as karud (literally 'female buffalo' in my dialect at least, and 'sow' in many Kadazandusun dialects) is very rude. But it was quite a common practice some years back. I remember my father's friends referring to their wives as that. For some reason I never heard of my father using that term. Perhaps that's where I got my idea that it is a derogatory word.
Apparently not everybody thinks so as I've just learned a few days ago. I was told that in some Dusun villages, karud is used as an endearment. A man's referent to his wife. Which makes me seriously think why is it that a female buffalo or a sow is associated with a wife? Is it the breeding aspect? Or the loving nature of the mother animals? I certainly hope it's not because of the expansion of one's body after childbirth.
Somehow, I still think that it is weird being compared to a sow. If ever my husband refers to me as one, I'm sure I'll give him the cold shoulder for a few months!