Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Confessions of a WhatsApper



As I was introspecting on this li’l app, called WhatsApp, I felt that its relation/impact on our lives is quite similar to that of a marriage!

It may be love at first sight for many and maybe an arranged/forced marriage for many more.

In the beginning you are shy of WhatsApp. You want to be a part of it, yet apprehensive about it! All your friends have it.....so you have to too! You have decided to give this relation a try; you decide to be a silent observer, to decide whether this new app in your life deserves your attention.

You are awed by the speed of the replies and responses - the quality and quantity of matter being circulated astound you! You play your coy new-comer part with hesitant rare and restrained forwards.

Suddenly it’s your birthday, and you are overwhelmed by a jaw-dropping response from all kinds of acquaintances wishing you a happy birthday - all day long! Cakes and bouquets abound, vying to seek your attention! People have also started appreciating your profile pic. That's when it hits you! You are in love with this app!

Now that it’s clear, that you are in love, you go all out wooing it. Regular selfies become a must and profile pic updating a pressing need! You read and forward all uploads on WA to the right and relevant groups or persons! To add value and derive more response to your forwards, you undertake intensive research on the net, scrolling through forward-worthy jokes and articles. Fun, trivia, information, education - all under one roof. You even manage to pull it off as a useful communication tool by creating office WA groups! Your thoughtful forwards sometime elucidate prompt responses which thrill you, while a lack of it, depresses you.....but not for long.....your young love is not so feeble that it can’t pull you out of such trifling trials. You are now addicted to this app and you decide to commit yourself to it wholly.

You are an established WhatsApper now and like in any marriage once you have impressed your partner enough to make him/her yours for life, gradually, things fall into routine.

The relation shows signs of depleting sheen. Symptoms include reduced urgency to send forwards. You don’t feel the desperation to deduce answers to all the quizzes that come your way! The early morning flowers and inspirational messages are becoming a drag! Your profile pic is the first indicator - you have stopped uploading regular selfies, they are replaced by other family members/friends, inanimate objects, quotes.....etc......complacency replaces the earlier urgency!

The next phase is rather sad when the very same app that had you so enamored and in the grip of its palm, can no longer hold your interest! Instead you now find the jokes and forwards boring and repetitive. The profile pictures of your contacts seem so artificial and made up! You are disgusted with this app, but have to put up with for social reasons. Your contributions have dwindled from a steady flow to a feeble trickle! You slowly start disassociating yourself from it! You block certain groups/persons, leave groups, then you block out your last seen, distancing yourself from any responses - generally making yourself invisible and unavailable.

This phase is very uncomfortable and most-likely a masochistic one! You find a lot of time on your hands now that you don’t have to read through all the Santa Banta jokes. You are very happy that the travails of clicking the perfect selfie to upload as your DP are a part of your immature past! You have time to reflect that life without WhatsApp is good for your professional output.

Days, months pass by in WhatsApp-free existence - you are practically invisible to the world. You now contemplate an entire life ahead of you living as a social outcast, unaware of the latest gossip, political coups; God knows whatever new happenings in your limited circle of acquaintances! You are becoming an ignoramus and you don’t like it! What to do.....you wonder.......simple.....you lay aside any qualms and decide to ping the WhatsApp group/contact that least offends you!

Thankfully, a commitment for life doesn’t let go of you so easily! People and society rallies around you to get together the estranged partners. Your reach out (cry for help), doesn’t go un-noticed. You are reinstated in the groups you quit, people start taking active interest in your day to day happenings, your profile pic and forwards are responded to with a lot of enthusiasm and emoticonism! Society demands commitment and encourages quitters to re-commitment through re-enlistment!

Suddenly it dawns on you; you have been given a second chance with your relationship, to rekindle the romance and charisma that lured you in the beginning! You are back in the groove, thirsting for newer jokes and interesting facts. What is the point of your new hairdo and outfit, if it’s not seen and liked via your DP. All your small triumphs and manifold defeats seem respectively, bigger or smaller when you share them!

You also know that newer versions will tempt you over the years, but you will take that in your stride. These social networking platforms WhatsApp, hike, we chat, twitter etc. are just Avatars of the original progenitor Facebook!
Woo one...love all! Yes, you realize, this is truly your partner for life.....there for you through laughter and tears.....to cheer, inspire, educate, warn, and feel loved and wanted for life!!





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