The big black box:
Triinngggg… triinnggg… goes the phone, but hey I’m talking about my land line. Remember that typical huge device with a heavy ear piece; the device that had numbers printed in blocks, most commonly seen in black? Those were the days of land line numbers with their STD codes through which we would connect with family and friends occasionally as opposed to making calls from our ‘mobile’ phones absolutely any and every time these days. As amazing as it is to evolve with technology, let’s not forget the basis of our past. After all, the concept of ‘calling’ remains constant, with the phone being variable.
Land-lines and the trust factor:
Those were the days of trust and commitment! Remember those movie plans you used to make with your friends back at school? Responsibilities would be self-divided amongst everyone – ‘you book the tickets’, ‘you grab us popcorns’, ‘you reserve a table for lunch’…. Ok then, see you tomorrow!!! And you would all disperse pretty certain that all this would be taken care of without fail. Your friends would turn up on time the following day, having completed what they had taken up, that too without any follow-up, without exchanging endless text messages.
WhatsApp group – the basis of making plans:
The scenario has changed drastically! No longer are people vesting their trust in friends. I say so coz of the endless follow ups.
- The group is created: First things first, a WhatsApp group is created. This is what ‘starts’ the conversation, in a world where a real conversation is actually missing.
- Members are added: Who needs a face-to-face convo anyway when you can add participants to your group?
- The admin’s opening statement: Once all the members are added, the admin makes the opening statement: “Hey guyz… Movie tmw morn???”
- The reply-trails: “M game” comes the reply one by one, not to mention some spoilers who by default back off. The admin and active group members then bombard the chat group with hundreds of messages to persuade the not-so-eager group members to turn up for the movie the following day, imparting details on the star-cast, the number of stars it has been rated with and the intention of watching the movie together.
- Private messages begin: Individual group members then send private messages to one another to bitch about the spoilers privately.
- The final word: Finally some wise soul wakes up, “Who’s gonna book the tickets?” and that ignites a trail of convos with card numbers being exchanged, people simultaneously digging into to their wallets to check the status of their movie funding blah… blah.. till the storm dies down.
- Follow-ups resume: This doesn’t end here. Follow-ups begin the same night, “Dude, you sure you gonna make it tmw?” Like duh! Your tickets have been booked. People obviously are going to show up!
Why can’t people stop following up so much and instead just let be?! The genuinely interested lot will set a reminder and be there come what may. Those who don’t turn up, you will have to care less as they can’t steal your share of fun. Just go ahead, enjoy the show!
Friendship diminishing – recharge please!
Landlines or mobiles, technology or no technology – the fact remains that values define our friendship. Look at the land-line device. It stands for what it represents – sturdiness, stability and strength. Just when the youth of today condemns the older technology, somewhere deep within they know they are here today because of what was yesterday. Just when I realize how much I miss attending calls on my big fat land-line, my home phone rings out loud ‘triiinnnggg’… oh how annoying! I hear my Mum scream “I can’t, somebody get the phone please!””
It’s the thing about ‘trust’ that caused a very strong connect between friends earlier. Yes, it was also the lack of progressive technology back then, but we are primarily talking about ‘values and friendship’ right now. Vesting your trust in friends, common interests, a follow-up-free life (more like stalk-free life) and more was what the big black box at your homes back then stood for!
We are certain many households still have that box for the ‘just in case’ factor. How about you? Do you have/use a land-line too? We’d love to know…