Disclaimer: References to real people are true to the best of my knowledge. The views and visions here are my own. Of course I am aware it's a newspaper's blog. I am going to be responsible to be the best of my ability. Yet if anyone feels her or his sensibilities have been hurt, shoot me a mail, text message or call me at the office. Basically, let me know. I would do my best to address your concerns. In the end, never forget that in order to find Neverland one must first get to be friends with @katewinslet.
Intervening night of December 10-11, Friday
@dearreader, I am afraid we will have to get used to the @ from now on. I have been tweeting. I have recorded 467 tweets till date. Till yesterday I was at 100. Hope you'll understand. Allow me to be honest just for now. Please. I really feel like talking to you right now. I promise that by the time you read this I am going to be as sober as it gets in this day and age.
A single moment of misjudged intimacy is good enough to screw the life of a young man for at least a week. Then his friends around him are laughing - at him mostly - and getting on.
One night about two days ago, Gul Panag had to stay up longer than usual to calibrate her body clock for night shoots or some event of that sort (I am not too sure but we can always check with @gulpanag).
She was online and wanted something interesting to keep her from sleeping. What could be more interesting in the middle of the night than stories of love?
She tweeted asking people what was the craziest thing they had ever done in love. She started the #crazythinginlove tag. Her tweet was instantaneously broadcast to her 31,085 followers including yours truly who, at this point in time is shamelessly mawkish and hopelessly honest. So before we get on with the story, why don't you and I tweet about twitter for a paragraph or two?
@Twitter is the latest social networking fad. You have no friends, only followers on twitter. Sign up and it's not going to get you good looks or a good job. It will not help your business grow and as far as I can tell, it can help you get introduced to the pretty girl at the other end of office but sooner or later (let's say five tweets) she will know you for the loser that you are and then you will be free to broadcast your inner most misery to your followers. I assume, of course, that you will have some followers.
Day after day, you will get to work, switch on the computer, go to www.twitter.com, log in (you can't save the password as it's an office computer) and read other people's tweets. Someone is eating gajar ka halwa near Babulnath mandir, someone else is celebrating his or her 10,000th tweet, Rajdeep Sardesai (Sorry Sir) and Barkha Dutt (Sorry Ma'am) are lamenting the state of the nation, constantly tweeting so you don't miss the 9 pm debate on their respective news channels where political celebrities will lament the state of the nation!
I know I am indirectly calling you a loser, @dearreader. Forgive me. Like most sensible tax paying 'Jai Ho' types I too hate myself when I realize I am speaking nothing but the truth. Believe me. For a journalist this can be even more painful than realizing what one says and what one implies are really two different things. I know you're touchy about the office girl. Who isn't? I know your pain (Await my post: Office Prem ki Gajab Kahani). Let's just say if you're a loser offline, you're a loser on twitter as well.
Now that's something you're not told when your friends invite you on twitter. It's a revolution, they say, forgetting to add that revolution needs losers too. Thousands and thousands of them who will do nothing but follow!
Thankfully, dear reader, I am not like you. Calling me names are you? Teenager? Frustrated journalist? Do that it if helps you deal with it. I am afraid you will still be a loser when you read this.
@mayankis thanks @sigmundfreud for thinking up superiority complex
Okay for your sake, I'll run myself down a bit. Here's what I have just tweeted.
"Why do I get so emotional at 4:25 in the morning? Is it because I am beginning to have a serious doubt about this piece? Is it because I am ashamed of my writing?" You get the picture, I think.
I signed up on twitter because Priyanka Chopra is on Twitter. She is one of the few people who can make me feel 15 again. Another is @melissabell, who thinks I am insane. Like her millions of fans, I too have always hoped that in the end she will reject everyone else and choose me. So when the twitter bomb exploded in tinsel town, I thought that perhaps I have a chance. I signed up and began following @priyankachopra.
Now, my feelings for @priyankachopra are pure which is why I am not ashamed to admit that I while I expect her to choose me over everyone else, I skip most of her silly films. My point is: I can watch What's Your Rashi, in which @priyankachopra plays 12 characters, but can't I watch Kaminey 12 times instead?
I asked @melissabell in the evening today if it was okay for me to say I was in love with her publicly on the twitter timeline. She categorically reminded me (Direct Messaged me) that love declarations on twitter don't count. It's a place for losers. Basically. Unless of course, you are @melissabell, @gulpanag or @priyankachopra.
Everyday I try and reply to at least one of @priyankachopra's tweets. If she says she is tired, I wish her rejuvenation; if she says she is missing her parents, I reply saying I miss my parents too and that it will be okay and I re-tweet her tweet so the world can share her longing and perhaps in that process ease it a bit. I can go on and on about Priyanka Chopra (Await my post: An open letter to Goddess Saraswati) but the important point here is that she never responds. Never.
So, three weeks ago I decided to do something.
Enough is enough: Mushkil waqt commando sakht! (Commando is most alert during a crisis).
I decided to apply formula number 44: YFL begets YFL and last week, @dearreader, I started following @gulpanag.
I followed @gulpanag because like @priyankachopra she too is an FYL -- Young Fauji Lady and according to formula number 44 devised by Kadar Khan way back in the 80s --- YFL begets YFL.
Two days ago, when I saw #crazythingsinlove on the twitterb timeline I sort of got my chance.
Could I, in 140 characters or less, say something really crazy, clever, plain, stupid, frivolous, timely, and topical yet full of love and the stupidity it leads to and get @gulpanag to follow me?
A few days of sincere tweeting and perhaps she will agree to a long freewheeling interview? The one that helps an actor's career you know!
And then one day perhaps she and I will hop across the Colaba causeway to some ball in some brigade or air division or naval fleet where we would bump into @priyankachopra and the naval, air or the Fauj band will surprise us with the title track of Salaam-e-ishq.
Now let's cook up a #crazythingsinlove.
I thought and imagined and dreamed but came up with no #crazythingsinlove story that I thought could impress Gul Panag. I could ask around, I thought, but twitter doesn't give you that much time. For all you know, by the time you're chatting up buddies on gtalk, #crazythingsinlove is trending and someone else is impressing @gulpanag who really doesn't care all that much about @priyankachopra. There wasn't any time to waste. I refreshed my time line and saw no replies to #crazythingsinlove. If there was chance, it was now.
By the way, you think I am the only one? There are other donkeys like me out there as well.
Sample a tweet by someone who I fondly call joker.
@kjohar25 Unfollowing you... Monologue for me... I respect you... may be smday again will follow you.... :-)
It appears @dearreader that this joker is friends with @kjohar25 (Who indeed is Karan Johar) and is now parting ways with the promise of someday following him back.
The same joker also issued a similar tweet to Gul Panag.
@gulpanag Unfollowing you... Monologue for me... I respect you... may be smday again will follow you.... :-).
I don't know what's the scene but if this joker is a friend of the two then I am in august company for just two days ago he began following me and like a European orgy ritual, I followed him in return. However, if that is not the case, then we're sailing in calmer seas.
I took longer than expected but I came up with the truth. "I read the mandal commission report in under three hours." Stupid-thing-to-do-in-love when you're talking to a celeb. She asked me why so much reading and I told her that I was a journalist. She then asked me if the woman in question was a journo too (She assumed it was a woman. It's so pre- post Article 377)?
I said no and that was that. I waited and watched but she never re-tweeted my tweet. Instead she was re-tweeting stuff like "on my husband's 29 th birthday I gave him 29 gifts. I started with garam masala and ended with a watch."
I bitched about @gulpanag to myself before I went to sleep that night. Who gives a four-letter word about commissions in this country anyways? Mandal or Liberhan? Can you tweet that please? Arrrgh.
Then at night while I was sleeping, I think, @priyankachopra came in my dream and explained to me how I was being a 15 year old. "Perhaps people would have cared about Mandal a tad more if 30-year-old journalists stopped behaving like teenagers showing off half baked knowledge!"
I was contrite.
She added, like the school principal I always imagine her to be, that everyone's #crazythinginlove story is important and @gulpanag cannot be expected to react to everyone. It's true. @gulpanag has more than 30,000 followers. I chided myself for not knowing my place. I should be happy with what I got, I said to myself but the voice that came back to me said that I should try one last time.
The next day, I caught Gul Panag online as soon as she was starting another hash tag (#). I asked her if she would like to tell us her #crazythingsinlove story.
She said that when she thinks of the crazy things she did when she 'thought' she was in love she is immediately transported to a marriage fantasy. To be sure she didn't use the word fantasy.
I said I was prepared to take that for an answer and requested her to make something up to keep the thread going. She said that that would lead to unnecessary and avoidable (I am adding she didn't say) gossip. The way she wrote the tweet sounded as if she is already married.
Which is why I think two or three minutes later she tweeted saying she wasn't going to get married anytime soon. I then quizzed her about her choice of partner and asked whether he belonged to the Army. She replied that her partner or fiancée (she didn't specify and I don't want any gossip) was a doctor. I tweeted back saying if she could tell me his name I could perhaps file 400 words about our conversation? She never tweeted back. I was heart broken and a little more.
Here was my stairway @priyankachopra and I clumsily fell off the first step. Why couldn't I be like @Farhanakhtar in Luck by Chance? Idiots get what they deserve, I told myself. I was sad. Guess what happened just then? Someone retweeted a tweet by Celina Jaitley. She was tweeting about her brother being promoted to the rank of a major! Talk of Twitter closing one window and opening another! I have started following @celinajaitly now!
Pray for me!
@dearreader do let me know what you think!