You are screwed. Whose fault is it anyway?
Quite accustomed to the blame game, you are bound to look both ways when she says “I am pregnant.”
You may reply with a startled “Oh fuck” followed by an evasive smile to reassure that you’ve taken the news well, while your insides they cry, “Never using Durex again.”
In a world designed for absolute comfort, we as humans have shown this relentless affinity towards dissatisfaction. No matter how easy or convenient things get, one would always whine about the things that don’t work.
“Oh, my fingerprint scanner won’t work. My life is so doomed!”
“The coffee was bad. My day is ruined.”
“The cab I ordered online halted a few blocks away. I had to walk all the way (barely two minutes straight up) to get it. Ugh!”
Walking around the house, sipping on some good watermelon juice on a scorching Sunday afternoon, I was whinging about the heat burning down humanity, even though I was not under the direct impact of its death-rays. I spot my grandpa, however, with a look of imperturbable calm. He was smiling at the distress he found me in and said, “isn’t it a fine afternoon to be alive?”
Took me a while to take that in. How could this shriveled human be impervious to this bake-fest of a climate?
“In our times, sitting under some shade, sipping cold drinks was a luxury, son. These are good times, my child, are they not?” he told me.
I sat down next to him. His wrinkled hand patted my back, but the old man didn’t speak. Just smiled. I just wondered, how long would it take me to reach the ‘Calm as Grandpa’ level?
Convenience for convenience’s sake is dangerous. The fact that we have so much of it and yet we cry about it, is a proof of the danger it has posed on the current generation.
I guess this is what has fucked up a generation like ours. I can swear to have seen my uncles chilling by the beach like some calendar girl model, not a care to give. All I see these days is an anxious bunch of humans, staring at phones, scuttering around to meet deadlines, pleading authorities for extensions, and all of that.
E-mails, texts, phone calls and people rotating 360° with their phones held high (presumably capturing another “Story”), people barely seem to find the old-school ways of interaction to be anywhere close to interesting. Everything these days need to be “LIT” to happen. If not, it’s boredom agog; end of the world in sight.
Find yourself beaten up by the trials of “the now”? How about shutting down your phone for a while. Pretty sure the world would suck equally so even after you put it back on. You can afford to smell the coffee once a while.
If anyone (or anything) is to be blamed for you current vexed state of mind, it is nothing but your incredible ability to care. You have allowed people to mess with you in the name of convenience. Shrouded under Facebook posts and filter-coated status updates, you aren’t sharing what you are up to. You are just asserting that your life is “just as amazing as others.”
That you lack not even a sliver of fun others are having.
To make things clear, I do not suggest to leave everything down and go vagabonding on the streets (though, for some odd logic that evades me, it is in trend these days) but take responsibility for things that matter. Worry about your bills but not to an extent where you start venting it out on your wife. She clearly didn’t sign up to be a punching bag when she said the I do’s.
Take action when your action will garner benefits. Worrying about the future only ruins your ‘now’ adding on to the pile of regrets you already carry.
I am all in for technology or else my thoughts would find no medium to reach out to you as it does now. But sometimes, life could probably be about the little things. Not EMI’s, not loans, not property rates, stock market fluctuations, InstaLikes, Facebook reacts — it is more than all of this.
A game of catch with your neighbourhood toddler, a brief talk with mum, a swig of beer with dad while ya’ll watch the Indo-Pak cricket finale, hurling curses like you guys go thick as thieves.
You see, these little happenstances don’t need the presence of a smart phone. De-stressing can happen without nicotine and coffee.
Looking back now, my shriveled ol’ Grandpa sure had a jolly good time.
After which he died. Smiling.