also posted at http://actionheroes.blanknoise.org
Being stalked is not fun. Even when you know that it is not dangerous and harmless. Or maybe it seems like stalking only to me. For many others, including my “stalker”, its trying to woo or flirt. Maybe even being caring and protective. No wonder the whole school was surprised as to why I wasn’t madly in love with my stalker as yet. That was Jabalpur for me. A small town trying to get big. I was the newcomer there in 11th and everyone wondered which guy’s ‘girl’ I would become. Ofcourse it didn’t matter whether I even remotely liked the guy or not. Having come from Nagpur, (which by no means was a big bad city) Jabalpur, and then studying in K.V. felt like a culture shock of sorts. Suddenly talking to the guys of the class without any mission to be accomplished was too forward and reflected badly on your character. Openly going out with someone (NOT the stalker) was a matter that the principle brought up while talking about participating in a science fest, no wonder all my dates used to be at 10 am when for sure no one would see us together. I hated the town and its culture for all of this. But after a point you stop being the rebel outsider and just fit in somewhere at the extreme end of the crazy culture, and actually start taking notice of the zillion subtle things happening.
In any small town, your two-wheeler is your true BFF. And yes a major chunk of your social life and activities revolve around it. At one o’clock when the senior school gets over, you’ll see girls and boys spilling out of schools and line up along the road in groups. This is the 5 minutes that they’ll be getting for any sort of interaction. Looking straight at the guy you like/are going out with is not what good cultured girls do, therefore shy and coy glances are exchanged between the two parties by looking into the tiny rear-view mirror. Notes are exchanged in the form of ‘stray’ crumpled balls of paper that was obviously meant to hit a friend but hit the love interest ‘by mistake’. And if the note is read and not just left lying there or not torn up after reading, it means that the girl is yours. Immediately she is his girl and he is her protector. He’ll ‘drop’ her from home to school. From school to home. From home to the zillion coaching centres. From the zillion coaching centres to home. Day after day. And during all this smiles are exchanged through rear-view mirrors. Conversations happen only at traffic signals. If they are lucky, cellphone nos. will be exchanged. In order to not forget the no. both will be chanting it till they get home, and by this time they know the no. so well that there is no need to write it down any more. And then its love!
What happens when the girl ignores the crumpled ball of paper, or tears it up? She is still ‘his girl’ and the most important mission is to ‘win’ her. He still becomes her ‘protector’ (read stalker) follows her around and ensures that no one else dares to play catch with crumpled balls of paper around her. Orkut, email, and social networking makes stalking a little bit easier. And oh so sweet forwards spam her mail box and scrapbook. I always felt that the funda behind doing all this was ‘hate me or love me you can’t ignore me, (and soon enough you’ll love me)’ [ someone had actually written this – “sorry for without permission - entering your profile but if i say hi.......u may say whoz this.... if i ask for chat....u may say why??.... if i say i liked ur profile......u may say im flattering…” ]
And what happens when you read and don’t tear up someone else’s letter? Hell breaks loose. Fist fights, punctured tires, suddenly empty fuel tanks, strange fake orkut id’s, etc is what you will be subjecting your new lover boy to! Not to forget a fresh torrent of lovey dovey forwards in your mail and very serious warnings about the honesty and integrity of the new lover boy in your life [someone had actually sent me a cell phone snap of my new lover boy talking to some other girl!] and all you can do is hope that this testosterone fuelled obsession dies out soon enough. If you are lucky, it dies out within 2-3 months of the entry of new lover boy. If your not, you may still be getting mails like – ‘thanks for accepting my rqest ...dear !
or kaise ho.....? pics to bohut saari hai par kuch hi dekh paya hu....u are really enjoying thr....may i know ur usual loggin tym......take care !’
Even after 2 years of having left school, moved to a different city, and graduating to facebook from orkut J
Wow!!!It's amazing how much action goes on underneath the facade pf the 'goody goody' traditions and culture we have here!!! Thanks for sharing . It must be tough to study in such a place. I fortunately had a better school, but faced this kind of an environment in my PhD college! Seriously! So it is not just the adolescent testosterone it is a 'way of perceiving women and dating'. And strangely enough, most marriages in India are arranged! All this appears so chaotic to me!ReplyDelete