In the recent past, it’s come to my notice, more surely now than a few months ago, that love, like all other human emotions and decisions is now being influenced, altered and majorly affected by the ease of technology. There’s always someone else to fall back on, a swipe right, a tweet here and a like there… there’s just no need for that extra effort these days. Those letters filled with yearning words, that spoke deeply of compassion and love. Before you mock, or pin me as the ‘classic romantic’, let me tell remind you that I’m not talking about a past where horse-carriages roamed the cobbled streets, and women went off to dances in barns hoping they would find their Prince Charming (no doubt, I wish I was born in that era instead… simpler times). I’m talking about a not-so-recent past. When there was a Man whom I wrote long letters for, who travelled hours just to see me smile. A Man I spent hours talking to, till the dark skies of the night turned to a reddish hue. A Man who had twinkling eyes and a dairy milk in his hand every time he saw me. A Man, I thought I would end up being with, till death do us apart. Alas, that love story ended abruptly; and while I have no regrets, no hanging ‘what if’ questions… I do just have one teeny tiny problem. That was the first and last time that I loved someone. Truly, madly, and passionately. Together, we were invincible. Every fight just pulled us together, and every letter only closer. What went wrong – well that’s another story. Where is he now? Living his own Happily Ever After with his Mrs. Right… (And yes, I’m extremely happy that he found someone) But in all of this – where does it leave me?
Ready to explore the new world of men out there? Yes.
Equipped to do so? Nope.
There was a time when it was merely just Fate that brought two people together. Today, Apps and various social media sites seem to be taking over. Gone are the days when you had to wait to be introduced to the boy next door. You merely find him (read: stalk) and swipe right or send a message. Chances are, he would have done the same in a couple of days too.
So where does my problem lie?
How do I explain this to you?
For someone who believes in a world of Prince Charming’s, a world of Fairy Tales and Happy Endings – Technology has become one of my worst enemies. I won’t deny that I have attempted to use not one, but two dating apps and have met a total of 6 boys. Where’s the problem – the same helping hand that I used to get me out of my situation, was the same one that pulled me down. No one has patience – Hell, even I don’t!
You don’t like the way the conversation is going? Block.
You don’t want to hear what the person has to say? Block.
You don’t like his Whatsapp profile picture? Block.
Block. Block. Block.
Swipe. Swipe. Swipe.
Block. Block. Block.
Swipe. Swipe. Swipe.
You get the point?
Now somewhere in this blocking and swiping – what if you chance upon someone… Someone who stops your thumb from swiping. Someone who doesn’t make you want to hang up. Someone who makes you want this coffee to last for hours? Things start brewing… 1 coffee, 2 coffees, a few drinks, some dinners, a kiss and then Boom.
A tiff. A lover’s quarrel – I don’t know, what do people call mini, nonsensical and entirely avoidable arguments lately?
So that happens. And then, the worst of it all…. Radio Silence. An ego battle for who texts first. The eternal dilemma with yourself- will I seem desperate if I text him first? Will she think I’m “too into” her if I text her first? Then comes more silence. A once hyper active chat is now making it’s way lower and lower on your Whatsapp screen. No more notifications that make your heart skip a beat. No more calls or spontaneous plans that leave you smiling. Radio Silence.
It’s been days, you decide you should say something… Or is it too late? In haste and anger you delete the E-Matchmaker, furious that it could have given you a hint of something so lovely, and at the same time turn you into this person.
Another day passes.
You decide to vent to a friend. Your mind is in a 100 places at once. Friends always have the best solutions or if nothing, will buy you some wine tonight to distract you.
You explain the situation to her.
She listens patiently.
Is his full name, “She recites it exactly.”
You freeze. A slight buzz in your head. You think you’ve nodded; you aren’t too sure.
Her answer proving that you did.
“Listen. He just swiped right to my friend two days ago. They’re meeting tonight for dinner or coffee I think.”
“Oh.” – You hear yourself, from far, far away.