Remember when we were kids and how some of our siblings, cousins and friends used to raise hell whenever we scared them with a single BOO in a dark room. The boo did not hurt them, it just scared them, and they hated being afraid, even when they soon realized that the Boo was otherwise harmless. Unfortunately, nothing changes as we grow up. We live in perpetual fear of death, sickness, pain, injury and what not! I completely believe that all these supposed calamities are nothing but big scary BOOs. So, maybe the only thing we have to do is not care about our brat cousins or any other similar power in the universe. If you choose not to fear loss or pain, it might not be any guarantee against losing or getting hurt, but one thing is certain. If you stop being afraid, you will not be afraid. And won’t that be some life. I can almost hear some disagreeing voices, saying that it is not in their power to decide that they won’t be afraid anymore. I would simply say that you just have to realize your power. To those who refuse to realize this power, my answer is …….BOO!
Isn’t it time that we stopped trying to revolutionize something in which our total expertise depends on what we watch on TV and read in the newspapers. Shouldn’t we stop trying to change the shades of grey and start concentrate on the black & white, the things that are clear, the things we can actually do. The only revolution we need is in the way we perceive our own specific roles in life. The only thing we can change is our own thinking. Maybe we just need to be the best in whatever we do and we won’t need any other revolution. Maybe we don’t need to come out on the roads, maybe we just need to go to work, not just go to offices and schools and colleges, but really go to work.
I didn’t even notice that I was smiling, but surprisingly, Shuntoo did.
“You seem very happy about something,” he said and I looked up from my computer. “What happened? Somebody posted a funny picture that somehow gives you certain re-assurances that your life is good, that…….” he continued in his usual sarcastic manner.
“No Shuntoo!” I interrupted him, and my God! It was such an exhilarating feeling, it felt like sweet revenge, and I made a mental note to do that more often, to get him at his own game. “It’s none of that philosophical bullshit,” I explained, “it’s just that my page has 10,000 plus likes now.”
“Hunh!” Shuntoo exclaimed cynically and went back to concentrating on his cigarette and whatever he was posing to read.
“What do you mean hunh!” I was irritated, though I was trying really hard not to be. “You don’t think it’s anything to smile about!”
“What?” he said. “That there are more than ten thousand facebook users who clicked ‘like’ on the page you created on facebook?”
“That more than ten thousand people like my page,” I corrected him.
“Which you take to mean that more than ten thousand people like you!”
“No, I…….” I thought it over for a moment. “Well, yes……in a way! So what’s wrong with that? Does some part of your twisted mindset believe that it is nothing to be happy about if more than ten thousand people like me?”
He closed his magazine and I had that sinking feeling you get when you see a Shuntoo monologue on its way.
“Bacchay!” he began, knowing fully well that I hate it when he calls me that. “I have no problem with you smiling, or even laughing; all that is good. But just be clear about what you are happy about. That more than 10,000 people, which by the way is just about 0.00001 percent of facebook users, clicked ‘like’ on your facebook page. Since more than 900 million people have facebook accounts and all of them technically have access to your page, 10,000 ‘likes’ is just…..”
“Come on Shuntoo!” I interrupted him again and this time was even more fun. “That’s just lame. So what if….”
“I was just trying to put everything in perspective,” he didn’t let me finish. “I never said that you shouldn’t be happy. After all, that is what humans do. We are brought up in an environment where we want our parents to like us, then our teachers to like us, our peers, our bosses, all kinds of rewards are based on who likes you and who doesn’t. Eventually our whole life starts revolving around getting as many likes as we can from the world. If you get a like from your boss, you can get a promotion, which will result in getting a like from your social circle and …….”
“Now you are…..” I tried
“We want likes” he was the master of interruption, I guess I couldn’t beat him “from girls, from people in positions of power, from any random person we come in contact with. It is normal human nature. But somewhere in that race for likes we completely lose our fundamental values. We begin choosing to do the wrong thing if that brings us likes in life rather than do the right thing which might bore people and they might stop liking our lifebook pages. It’s all about cheap popularity, about attractive advertising, about letting people know that you are something, attracting them, making them like you and then ensuring that they hang on and God forbid, don’t press the unlike button.”
“Oh Shuntoo! Why do you have to take the fun out of everything.”
“Awww bacchay!” the bastard said, “Why worry? Put another of your pseudo-intellectual craps on your blog and you might get ten more likes. Then everything will be okay!”
He smiled and went back to his magazine. And I sat staring at my computer, not sure what to feel.
Always remember that people who seem to be having a better time than you might not necessarily be better than you. In other words, Aqal na hovay te maujan ee maujan.