Dear XX YY, I first encountered you when you sent me a Facebook request five years ago. It was all so new. Hence you will forgive me if I thought that you only accept friend requests from people who are your friends. Or at least those who are fakely chummy enough with you that they would think you are stuck up and proudy about your English if you called them acquaintances. I know, very dumb. How did I think I was going to become popular by being so literal and satyavadi type I don’t know.
Anyway, then I got educated and now I accept all Facebook requests, although I hesitantly want to say, ki it has not made me more popular, and might have made me less popular, even though I strive not to speak my mind (too often). But well, lots of people wish me happy birthday so who can complain? The gift wrapping on their virtual gifts is much better than my non-virtual friends (what else to call them?) ka gift wrapping which is mostly newspaper with the excuse ki we are eco-friendly. I don’t know when you became better friends with Eco than with me I think but I don’t say it of course, because, well, dosti mein sacchai ka kya kaam?
Anyway, I’m digressing. I do that. You must have seen that one of the pages I like on Facebook is called Digressions, when you re-sent and I accepted your request, since now I accept every request. You may have been in a hurry and thought it was about and for sufferers of acidity. No doubt you felt closer to me because of this. What does it matter that I do not have any pictures of cute American or Japanese cats to share on my feed, like you do?
Maybe because of this feeling of closeness, you subsequently sent me a Twoo request and followed me on Twitter where my being staggeringly tongue-tied surely made us more intimate.
Ok, I was surprised when you popped up on Facebook chat to ask me — ‘hi dear, you der?’ I admit, I thought er, main aapki dear kab se ho gayi? But you admit it — I hid it well, right? (That’s a good basis for friendship, no?). Then I thought, well you have shared your pictures of cats and also chubby European babies in fields of flowers or clouds, so perhaps you do feel I am a dear.
So yes, I was flummoxed when you asked, “So dear wat do u do?” I controlled the urge to say — it’s written under About, fool. I also did not say, I thought you sent me a request because you like my work, because well, clearly that was not so, na? I also controlled the urge to say, didn’t your mummy teach you any manners? Because frankly it’s really time to stop blaming mummies for this, that and everything.
Instead, I casually went invisible on chat without saying bye. If you were ever to ask me about it, I would simply follow the new, improved How To Make Friends and Influence People and say, “Sorry ya, was DC” because, well, dosti mein sacchai ka kya kaam?
But I see all is not lost between us. Why else would I get a message saying “XX YY wants to be connected to you on LinkedIn?”
So what if I have not understood how or whether LinkedIn works? We are now connected on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn. Thank you for so
Regards from your friendly netizen connection.
Paromita Vohra is an award-winning Mumbai-based filmmaker, writer and curator working with fiction and non-fiction. Reach her at www.parodevi.com.
The views expressed in this column are the individual’s and don’t represent those of the paper.