Remember those days of carefree indulgence back in college or school or even the womb? You could do whatever you wished without anyone bothering you or asking you irritating questions. Life was so beautiful, with little misery to discover and a lot of fun to explore. Then, some jackass went and invented the mobile phone.
It’s bad enough to have one phone, but when you try to adhere to statistics (India has almost a 200% cell-phone penetration), you get stuck with two phones and a very short fuse. Constantly trying to please every one of the 900-odd contacts on both phones, most of whom just give you a missed call hoping you consider them important enough for you to call back, can be quite a challenge if you’re not taking anger management classes. Since my anger management involves some highly charged romantic moments with my girlfriend, whom I shall diplomatically call a bombshell, and since I can’t meet her as often as I would like to these days (due to our respective careers and not anything else), I am almost always one phone call away from losing my cool.
This morning, I had the (mis)fortune of running out of balance on my prepaid number and reach the end of the month’s grace period on my postpaid one, and at 9 in the morning, I was ‘temporarily disconnected’ from the entire world. It was such a beautiful feeling – I became nostalgic and went up on the terrace, placed both my phones in front of me and danced around in my underwear singing ‘It’s My Life’ and screaming,
“You can’t ring and ruin my life!
You can’t ring and ruin my life!
I control you, fuckers!
You can’t ring… You can’t ruin my life…”
Just as the chorus built up a bit and I became more and more animated, one of the phones beeped. I stopped mid-sentence, “I control you fu-” and stared at the pair of life-ruiners in front of me. One of them definitely had beeped. Was I dreaming? I went closer, slowly, hesitantly, and saw that my Motorola phone was flashing “I New Message”.
How could this be? I knew for a fact that there was no balance in either of the phones. I couldn’t receive messages! This was not possible! Then, it struck me that if this phone could receive messages, then what’s stopping it from ringing! I let out a guttural scream of pain, grabbed both the phones and ran inside. When I flipped the phone open, the message was from a client of mine and it read, “Nikhil, can’t reach you. Please call.”
I felt like a piece of shit as I stood in line, trying to recharge both the phones, a few hours later.
Image Courtesy: Slate.com