Today’s post is a Valentine’s special, brought to you by a member of one of the coolest blogging groups in the history of Indian blogging—the ‘Sanki Six’! You remember the ‘Sanki Six’, don’t you? Those crazy bloggers who planned an equally crazy bloggers’ meet in Delhi, through that yahoo messenger chat box on my blog ages ago! (Read the post linked above if you don't.)
Yes, well, today’s Valentine special post comes from one of those very same ‘Sanki Six’ – Parv Kaushik.
Parv has raised himself as a rebel, and has been training himself as a revolutionary since his birth in May 1987. He has a deep interest in politics, religion, literature, writing, spirituality, poetry, world affairs, practicing voodoo to bring Genghis Khan back to life, and also in conspiracy theories, UFOs and aliens. He dreams of planning mutinies to topple world regimes and promote mayhem mischief and mass confusion to bring down the social fabric of society. Besides the Calvin-and-Hobbes-like day-dreaming, he writes poetry to celebrate love and feminism, and shares positive energy through his observations of the world around him.
And today, he writes about the tyranny of Facebook PDA (Public Display of Affection). Over to Parv now.
“Facebook PDA” ruins your happiness in just so many ways. A vicious circle from where you can never emerge. Following are the 5 stages of Facebook PDA that we see in a PDA life cycle:
STAGE 1: IN A RELATIONSHIP WITH
It starts when you are in School/College. You see a whole bunch of your Facebook friends/acquaintances/rivals start rubbing salt to your singlehood wounds with a simple innocuous relationship status update “in a relationship with…”. The literal writing on the “wall”, in bright neon lights, stands for “I have a boyfriend/girlfriend, you lowly creatures”. Then there are some higher beings—“cool” by all parameters. They have seen life and grown wise with their ups and downs. Their status would always remain “it’s complicated”—a synonym of “I am a player”.
STAGE 2: PRE-MARRIAGE “PROFILE SHUDDHI”
After a few years, when college life ends and people start reaching the Indian marriageable age, a new phenomenon of “profile shuddhi” starts emerging. As college romances fail to leave the college campus and prospects of new relationships or arranged marriages start emerging, “profile shuddhi” is initiated. Relationship status is expunged. Couple pics and status updates, professing true eternal love, quietly disappear into bits and bytes of data, eternally stored in the servers of Facebook in US.
STAGE 3: FACEBOOK MARRIAGE TSUNAMI
Now is the part when a massive onslaught of Facebook marriages start. Every single time you log in, you find a friend married. Your Facebook wall starts resembling a long wedding album, with just faces and names changing, but, the theme remains the same—“red”. Girls looking like RadheMaa, guys looking lost. Before your own moist eyes, your old flames/friends/exes/crushes/girls-on-hit-list getting hooked and you staring your mobile/computer screen making tough decisions:
(a) Should I go through the entire wedding album of 84 pics?
(b) Should I press the “like” button? She has already got 178 likes and probably will get another 100. So does my “like” matter?
(c) What did she see in him? Damn. I should check the guy’s profile.
All this doesn’t break you down. What breaks you down is the fact that your own best friends leave such comments on your ex’s wedding album:
“My Favorite couple”
“Rab ne bana di Jodi”
“You look perfect together”
Where’s that angry emoticon? I send it in bulk to my friends on whatsapp.
STAGE 4: WE WON’T LET YOU MISS OUR HONEYMOON
Your friends don’t want you to miss anything private in their lives. They, unfortunately, couldn’t take their Facebook friends along on their honeymoon, but, this doesn’t mean they won’t let you know what happened in your absence, because keeping friends not informed about your honeymoon is just so rude. Some go as far as to updating their friends on a daily basis, creating day-wise albums (Day 1, Day 2, Day 3…), just in case you couldn’t make out which selfie was clicked which day! Honeymoon albums are usually uploaded when you are tucked in bed and checking your FB timeline for the fifth “last time” before going to sleep. It makes me wonder: What exactly do these couples do on their honeymoon before sleeping?
(a) Click pictures all day
(b) Sort pictures to be uploaded
(c) Edit pictures prior to uploading
(d) Write picture descriptions
(e) Upload album
(f) Reply to comments
When do they do what they are supposed to do during their honeymoon? Hmmm...
STAGE 5: ANNIVERSARY ATTYACHAR
A time comes when you get immune to the “shaadi” and “honeymoon” updates on your timeline. This is when the big balloon of “eternal love” bursts on your timeline and anniversaries start exploding like a violent volcano on eruption. The things that I have so far inferred from the happy anniversary (1 month, 6 months, 1 year, 2 year, 3 year…) updates of couples on my timeline:
(a) Time has “flown by” since your spouse has come in your life (I wonder if, after marriage, you get a time machine to fast-forward life.)
(b) You have had the most awesome months/years of your life. (Before marriage, you were living the life of a Syrian refugee.)
(c) Apparently, all of you have found your soul mates and claim to have the best husband/wife in the world (Marriages are indeed made in heaven! I’m so relieved to hear that. So where the hell is my special one?)
(d) You don’t talk to each other at home and only communicate through FB status updates. (Why can’t they say these things over a candle-light romantic dinner with red roses and some bubbly?)
(e) “Lucky” ~ this is how every married couple on my timeline describes themselves. (Nobody wins a lottery though. Ever.)
Thank you, Parv!
And thus, the tyranny of Facebook PDA continues, bombarding you incessantly with visual or wordy snapshots of the seemingly “blissful” world of “love” and “relationships”, of which, you, obviously, are not a part of, because you are still single (“you miserable scum of the Earth”), and sinking you into the deepest and darkest abyss of depression, from where you will never see the surface again, as long as you're on Facebook.
Happy Valentine’s Day, people! If you are "with someone", then be a willing contributor to the corporate industry that waits all year to get rich today. And if you are still single (like me), then also be a willing contributor to that same corporate industry. Gift yourself that giant teddy bear or that big box of Ferrero Rocher or a bunch of red roses for your bedroom, (or, better yet, all three of them!) and convince yourself that you are too "independent" to need a spouse/gf/bf to celebrate Valentine's Day.
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