I was walking to the market the other day when I saw a bunch of teenagers huddled right in the middle of the road. Like anyone, I thought there had been an accident and I rushed to help. But there was no one on the road. Nothing real at least. The people were trying to catch a Snorlax. That’s a Pokemon.
For those of you who still have a life, Pokemon are virtual characters that are a part of a mobile game. You can catch these characters and somehow it is very important to do so. Apparently while doing so you end up stopping traffic in the middle of the road, but who cares about that? Because otherwise you’ll never be part of the cool gang if you don’t have the Pokemon Go app in your “smart” phone.
I realise I am stuck behind a car that wouldn’t move even on a green light. Upon looking closely, it became evident to me that the two girls in that care were executing a very important task. Getting the perfect selfie because “oh wow kya lighting aa rahi hai face pe!”. *Shrieks of Excitement*
Now, an important question – Where are you supposed to look while crossing the road? Look right, look left, look right again, and then cross. Right? Wrong! You’re supposed to look down in your phone and text while crossing the road. Oh don’t worry, the incoming car with the driver who’s on the phone with his girlfriend will probably stop in time. Probably. And if the car gets too close as it stops, just give the driver that nasty look and say “dekh ke nahi chala sakte kya?”
A group of friends goes to a restaurant. They have a look at the menus and order their dishes. Selfies are clicked for 20 odd minutes while they wait for their food. Oh man! having conversations with friends is so 2007. As the food arrives, the front camera is flipped to the rear camera with a tap and the food becomes your social status.
Once they finally get the perfect picture of their plates, it’s immediately posted to every social networking website possible, one by one. #Yummy #Healthy #FoodIsLove #LiveToEat. 15 minutes later, as they patiently wait for the magical words “upload successful” they finally start to tuck in. First bite in their mouth and they call the waiter to complain that the food is cold. *Eh*
You are sitting at the dining table with your family. Your mom offers you some rice, but you don’t hear that because there is a very interesting conversation going on in your WhatsApp friends group. Or you have to comment “amen” and like a photo on Facebook and tag 10 other people or else you’ll get bad luck for life. Meanwhile mom offers you food again and you snap at her. As you snap at her, your dad snaps at you. And now you’re thinking…. Did I just tag 9 people instead of 10 on that post? Is that why this is happening? *Aww damn*
Getting bored at work? Let’s check Facebook #BoredAtWork. Waiting for my coffee to arrive. Let’s Tweet about the same #CoffeeLove. Stuck in traffic. Let’s post a picture on Instagram #UgghhTraffic. At a dinner party with friends. Let’s tell the whole world about it on Snapchat #MyFriendsTheBest. Taking a dump. Let’s check Facebook again #PoopGoesTheFood.
Oohh family get together. Must use #FamilyScenes. Late night drive, oh my car has autopilot! Let’s Snapchat with the speed filter #GediShediMaiNashedi. Pee break at work, did I check Facebook in the last 20 minutes? Must check again #Psssssss. Can’t sleep at night, let’s see if my messenger buddies are up too! Out for the movies, must put a check in on Facebook! At the hospital, #SurgeryTimeWoohoo! At the temple, #GaneshJiIsSoCute.
Bumped into an old friend at the mall, Selfie! #ThisCutieAfterSoLong. Met new people at the party, must stalk the cute guy on Facebook. How else do I talk to him? Can’t just go and say Hi, right? Soldiers laying their lives for us at the border and what are we doing? We are liking photos because “1 like = 1 salute!”
What is wrong with us? Have we forgotten what it’s like to be a human? A small preliminary study conducted by British Psychologists shows that young adults use their smartphones an average of 5 hours a day. That’s approximately 1/5th of your entire day spent staring down at a 5 inch screen. I would be lying if I said that I didn’t spend a considerable amount on my phone as well.
Look up, interact with people, read a book, relish your food, soak in the beauty of nature; through your eyes, not your phones.
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