The last week I was reminded of ‘without glasses’, one of the classic essays of Robert Lynd I had read in school. It was a rather more grave situation…my normal existence itself was in question.Anxiety was seeping into the cores of my heart with each passing minute.I was sad, angry ,confused and helpless….I was literally immobile.
No I didn’t have a paralytic attack or a catatonic attack and neither did I receive my credit card bill….I was without my mobile for a day.24 hours of pure unadulterated ‘immobile’ agony!
Flashback (Try to imagine it in black and white…feels more flashbackish)
I was trying to act a bit too cute for my age, attempting a ‘long jump’ across a not so tiny puddle decorating the centre of a road on my street…I did cross over a la Anju Bobby George, but my dear mobile had other ideas as it decided to take a casual little dive from my shirt pocket into the muddy waters below.
For a brief moment time stood still (as did yours truly), then with palpitations progressively increasing in amplitude and frequency, I ditched out my poor wet little phone from the evil sea (ok..puddle…but you must understand that the melodrama was quite suited to the context, considering the terrible ‘existential angst’ I went through in that moment of despair and by the way that ‘existential angst’ bit was borrowed from a friend who of course used it in a more spiritual context).The mobile was dead. As dead as a dead mobile can be.
The next few hours, I flitted between sanity and my true self, trying to figure out what best to do next.The brave person that I am, I managed to pull myself together to get a bit proactive.So now here I was holding a hairdryer in my not so sure hands waiting to revive my little baby.I had hardly embarked on the operation when I saw the LCD screen getting a bit wavy like a Salvador Dali abstract….Eureka!!!Apparently heat can damage LCD screens !! Well that was that …I had added insult to injury (or death ,I wasn’t sure ).So I decided to play it safe.I disassembled whatever parts I could disassemble and laid them under the fan for an overnight drying session.After all ever night is followed by a sunrise and all that crap.
Well the sun didn’t rise to the occasion this time. My reassembled phone refused to breathe. I would’ve tried mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, if I new which part of the mobile was the mouth. Anyway, I trudged to the service center and handed over the corpse to the morbidly obese guy behind the counter. His acromegalic face had a striking resemblance to the ‘great Khali’(and for the ignoramuses among you who don’t know Khali, tune into ‘Headlines today’ or ‘Aak tak’channel anytime, anyday )
“Had a bath with the little guy?”queried an amused looking Khali.The irritating grin on the guys face made me want to turn him into a corpse too.
“No,fell down..into a puddle”
“Hmmmppp…you should be careful.These are delicate things”
“Well..so will it live?”
Now Mr Know it all’s face was grim “Nothing can be said now..I need some time”
You’d almost think that he’ll also ask you to arrange some blood, and intimate all the near and dear mobiles.
“How much time?” My voice felt abnormally desperate.The last time I felt this was when my wife went home and I asked her how long before she’d come back.Of course then I was hoping for a lengthier duration!!
“Come back tomorrow ,same place, same time” The nutcase was seeing too many TV shows.
End of flashback (Back to Eastman color)
So that’s how I ended up in catatonic stupor, biting my nails to glory.It’s like Robert Lynd says in his essay (which is basically about how the author had to spend time miserably without his spectacles), you don’t even need to use your mobile, but just knowing that you can use it if you want to gives a kind of emotional security. It’s really amazing what all you can do with this little gizmo.
Well anyway miracles do happen…little ones at least. The next day I met the ‘Khali’ look-alike, he had a grin and some extremely good news to offer me.My mobile would live to ring, sing, sms and mms another day.