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The Last Larh – a Sikh man’s Kryptonite April 20, 2009

Posted by sikhsubculture in Pugh.

Every morning I wake up with one question in my mind – how will my pugh look today? Millions of Sikh’s wake up feeling the same way and are itching to get their hands around that warm, soft and clean cloth. It starts off very innocently. One by one I stack my larhs, each one coming out as clean as the last. Slowly as my pugh starts to take form I begin to think that this will be it…the best pugh I have ever tied! No wrinkles, no lines and a perfect shape. But like everyone else I always forget that a pugh is not done until the last larh is tucked.

I innocently finish my fifth larh and bring the remaining cloth around to tuck in. Then I see it, “the cave.” My last larh has essentially broken into two distinct pieces. I quickly un-tuck and try again. No luck. I blast my puni partner for not doing a good job and try and do a mini puni on the spot. I unroll the end of the pugh and try again. Each time I’m hit with a cave, uneven triangle, or even worse, a wrinkly larh. It kills me that no matter how good the rest of the pugh is, the last larh always rules. It is like drawing the Mona Lisa and then spilling paint all over it every single morning.

15 minutes later as I look at the clock and realize I’m sweating, I decide to give in and tuck in my wrinkly, caved-in larh. The last larh again turns out to by my demise.


PUGH LIFE February 24, 2009

Posted by sikhsubculture in Pugh.

Wearing a Pagri (“Pugh”) is no easy task. Everyday, millions of people get up earlier than everyone else to put on their Pugh (not to mention groom their Dharis). For the past three hundred odd years the Pagri has adapted and changed to fit the style of the day as well as to meet many practical needs of Sardars. For the young Sikh boy or girl considering what style they want to adopt, there are now a plethora of choices available.

Personally, I find the choice of which Pugh style to wear a very intimate and personal one. Most Sikhs wear their Pugh every day of their life and over time it becomes a part of them. Your friends, family and colleagues start to identify you with your Pugh style and it becomes inextricably part of your personality; as much as your height, weight and looks. To help those young Sikhs who are trying to figure out what is right for them or even for someone who has just lost their way, Sikh Sub Culture has made a comprehensive list of Pagri Styles. Like anything else, the list is probably not complete, I’m sure there is someone out there with a Pugh style that the world hasn’t seen yet. We can’t wait to see it. Enjoy.

Visor – Livin’ south of the equator? Can’t stand the sun? Play a lot of golf? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may want to go with the visor Pugh. The visor is usually a double Pugh that is angled towards the ground to give you some shade. While not the most stylish choice, it provides a much needed service for those who need it.


Business – This is one of the most common Pugh styles, especially among those in business or finance. Usually a single, the business Pugh is small, fairly neat and simple. Good enough to make someone look respectable, but small enough not to draw too much attention to. It’s usually just enough cloth to cover the Joora and is generally black or navy blue.


Nihang – no description necessary.



Shark Fin – Another practical Pugh, the Shark Fin can be identified by a sharp point at the top (think Empire State building). For those living in rough areas, the ‘Fin can double as a weapon. This style is not recommended for beginners.


Khalistani – We have all seen this one before. Khanda in the middle, maybe some Kirpans in the outlying regions, usually blue and orange or blue and yellow. It can most aptly be characterized as a practical Nihang Pugh. Like the Nihang, this is more than just a Pugh, it is a lifestyle choice.

Ear Muffs – This is the Pugh that covers up the whole ear. While not a terribly popular style these days, some people find it oddly comfortable. It is, for obvious reasons, more popular in the winter time.


Jatt – Sometimes gets confused with the visor Pugh, but is its own style completely. For a while, it was the most common Pugh and probably one of the original styles. It fell off in popularity during the nineties when teenagers were experimenting with “The Pretty Boy,” “Business,” and “The Khalistani.” To the delight of many, the Jatt is making a strong comeback in recent years (see below).


The  Lass aka The Cowboy aka The Quickie – Have you ever seen a cowboy lasso a calf and quickly tie it up? Imagine that but the cow is your head and you are the cowboy. This pugh is one that is put together in under 60 seconds.

Starch – Mainly seen in the older crowd, this is another Pugh of convenience. In the same way that we starch our shirts, people starch their Pughs. Over time, the starch sets in and it starts to form a hat like structure.

The Two-Face – Tying a Pugh can be difficult, especially getting clean lars. Getting the right side to look nice can be particularly tricky. This leaves some people having one side neat and other…not so neat.


The Cover Up – The Cover Up was designed as a solution for those suffering from a Two-Face Pugh. The Cover Up is when you cover one side of your Pugh with one lar in order to avoid having one clean side and one messy side. This is a clever way to give the allusion of neatness.


The Pretty Boy – We all know this one. There is always that guy who spends every waking moment of his life in front of a mirror perfecting his Pugh. Perfect shape, extremely neat, no lint and probably color coordinated. In the time it takes for him to do his Pugh I have vacuumed the floors, done my taxes and solved the world hunger crisis.

Female Pugh – Not to be confused with a Keski, the Pugh that women most commonly wear is distinct. While it is the shape of a Keski, it is usually thicker and neater and in the case of American Sikhs always white. Also, this Pugh is most commonly used with women who have good bone structure.

Big Boi – Not to be confused with the Nihang Pugh, the Big Boi is a well tied Pugh on par with The Pretty Boy, but double the size. What can I say, some people just think bigger is better. Let’s just hope they’re not over compensating for something.

African Style – Not sure what the origins of this Pugh are, but it is very distinct from the other styles above. The African Pugh starts by folding the Pugh the same way you would fold a blanket (flat) as opposed to doing a traditional Poni. This gives a very slim, layered effect (think inverted professional bicycle helmet).


Joora Pugh aka The Sunrise – Have you ever watched the sun rise? Well, imagine that the horizon is your Pugh and your Joora is the sun. With most people you just see the horizon, but with this Pugh you see the whole sun.

Keski – While the keski has gotten a bad rap these days (google image search: terrorist), it’s actually quite a stylish Pugh and does wonders for your ears. It’s also great for sports and outdoor activities. When the tensions in the Middle East ease up a bit, I’m sure we will see a re-emergence of the Keski.

Patterened – Well this isn’t really a style per se, but more of a color choice. Were talking polka dots, stripes, various patterns and sometimes glitter. These aren’t for the faint of heart, but they do make a statement.

Are we missing something? Let us know. Email: sikhsubculture@gmail.com

I’m a closet Patkasexual February 24, 2009

Posted by sikhsubculture in Pugh.

I know society finds it unnatural and jarring to see an adult, Sikh male with a Patka on, and I just can’t take it anymore. I never could wrap my head around a Pugh, which in fact wraps itself around my head. I know people say that Pughs are professional and stately, but the sleek, lean appearance of the Patka has its own benefits. It hugs the supple contours of my head and Joora, creating a feeling of athleticism and youthfulness that we all seek.

In opposition to the new regulations that this world is trending towards, I think we should abandon the rigidity of the Pugh, and deregulate. Why can girls wear Chunis and Keskis? How come it’s so offensive for a 35 year-old father of two to wear a Patka to the office? I think it’s discrimination. So, in protest, we should get out of the closet to tell everyone that we no longer wish to wrap our heads in that thick, heavy cloth. But rather we want to wear the beautiful Patka without fear of discrimination. And let’s bring back the fond, childhood practice of our mothers and aunties tying our Patkas. There ain’t nothing Oedipal about it.