Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Yeh Dosti Hum Nahin Chhodenge

As i seem to be relying more and more on virtual friendship i feel i am more than satisfied. Then i begin to question if i'm on the right track? And this questioning leads me to the pros and cons of both. Or as to why this sudden need /shift.
One thing for sure no man is an island and no matter how introverted we become we definitely need some one other than family.If not for anything but just to be heard and to hear more on the same as is my case.
Then again is it right for me to generalise if i have been pricked by one thorn that came along with the rose?Should i dismiss roses to be bad and to be done away with?
Disillusioned and a bit angry with myself for being so weak and so vulnerable i go on this vendetta against these roses that are actually the real friends i am talking about.
Why all this talk about roses and real friends is because this SMS arrived this morning and it goes on like this.
"It's madness to hate all roses coz u got scratched by 1 thorn.
To give up all ur dreams coz 1 didn't cum true.
It's madness to lose faith in prayers coz 1 wasn't resulted.
To give up ur efforts coz 1 of them failed.
It's madness to CONDEMN all ur frnds coz 1 betrayed.
Not to believe in luv coz sum 1 was unfaithful.
Remember dat another chance vl cum
A new frnd
A new luv
A new day
A new life...
Never giv up.''
i know SMS Texting gets on my nerves but this one i read many times... over and over again.It comforted me.

Now this SMS is from a friend whom i haven't met after we parted that is in the 10th std.We connected thanks to internet and talk over the phone once in a while. And her enthu on this thing called friendship is amazing.While i sit down angry and hurt at my friends reconnected and immediately asking for favours from my husband and wondering if this reconnecting was okay, this ol' pal of mine seems oblivious of everything.
She is not bothered about anything but just connecting.Kudos to her take on this.No loss no gain just simply happy to connect.

Whereas i would rather stay away from such reconnections where one fine day you say,''Hello Shivani! how are you girl? Can u guess who i am?...Nandita here ...So where are u placed...What are u doing?...What does ur husband do...?...."
And the very next morning you get a call from Nandita who is asking for a favour from my husband. Which i pester and plead to get done and later have regrets and remorse.
What is this confusion?
Is it not the duty of friends to help?
But help...which has been demanded of you because you happened to know her in school. After all she took all the pains to take the first lead.So she deserves to be helped. Rather it could be her right as a friend. So
my real friends have resurfaced in my life say after 30 years or more for the facilities...privileges that i provide.BIG QUESTION MARK.
Am i being mean and small in my thinking.Another very BIG QUESTION MARK.
Question marks popping like sores because i am blessed by good samaritans like my husband who says,'' If it is in your capability and affordability then you should help out and just forget about it.Neki kar dariya mein dal  which means have no expectations... Gulabo...and don't brood too much about it."
My prayers then for the day has yet another one on the list and i start pleading feeling guilty of my smallness... to be like him...generous and so cool in his demeanour.
Another and easier alternative is to bank on your virtual friends.So i start weighing the good and the bad aspects and how to make a good deal out of a bad bargain.

                                                                                                                                                              Bright side

a) It feels better to look a friend in the eye and talk face to face.                                                                                            
b) Easier to ascertain thus, if the friend is sincere or fake.                                                                                                            
c) Then once certain you can trust them with your secrets.
d) Real friends are loads of fun if you can manage these get- togethers with fun and food or perhaps go on an excursion together.
Dark side

a) Chances of familiarity breeding contempt more and also some becoming too sticky to give you enough   space.
b) Very difficult though to fine genuine friends who remain sincere to you.
c) Chances of losing sleep and thus your calm if one is lost or goes away from you.
d) The get-togethers are not easy as many shy away from taking the lead so far as organising one is concerned. Patience versus time being the essence here these get togethers are much fun only when all friends are financially well placed to pool in their resources and employ an event manager for all the fun and frolic.

Bright side
a) Easier to access.
b) Brings like minded people together.
c) Less demanding and very easy to say no.
d) Instant friendship.
e) Relaxes you, de-stresses you.
Dark side

a) Unknown people and not meeting them face to face places you in a situation which is akin to risk taking.
b) Don't know all parts of your life and hence are not suitable enough to give you real advice on all your problems.
c) You may however become intimate and later land up with remorse and guilt.
d) Blooms instantly and dies an easier death and so not dependable at all.
e) There could here be a tendency to flirt or being flirted with.

The most disturbing thing about having real friends is that you are more susceptible of being USED rather than finding someone you can use because if you are a person who has this sense of self -pride you'd rather suffer quietly and look for solutions than asking your friend to bail you out of crisis whether it is financial or emotional.
Plus you may land up having one or many whom you will silently curse as ET TU BRUT.
Virtual friendship has it's dangers in the form of these appalling cyber crimes we get to hear these days and you are always doubting the true intentions of a virtual friend.The next thing you know is CBI/FBI turning your well kept house upside down and torturing you with inhuman interrogations.Or worse still a psychopath stalking you and making you schizophrenic.
My sincere effort to suit myself led me to this which i found informative as well as well written.

Even then the sentimental fool that i am i would not rest till i found something that spoke of what lay in my heart ready to pour out and then this said it all.

The thing is, once smitten twice shy i am still looking for friends because i consider friendship to be distinctly different from networking. Sadly today both seem merged into the other.This verse by another school friend of mine puts it so succinctly

"Dude i shall help you out with this but can you finish that project i was working on ?''.
It's like getting even on everything we do.Even the lunches and dinners between friends are now an evened out affair. Rather i dread to go to any such , where fancy, out of my reach cuisines are offered to me amidst much pageantry and show when in my heart i would like to get down on the floor enjoying a simple saapad (meal) with a friend and share some fun and laughter.
At the moment i cannot even think about friends with a positive frame of mind because sometimes if you are too close to a particular group chances of losing out on your individuality runs deep.You begin thinking like them and behaving like them.Even here i would love to be a maverick of sorts not adhering to one particular group but being friends with everybody. That is if i could. But for this to happen as you wish, is one herculean task. Someone somewhere will always be sore with you and will definitely call you,"Thali ka baingan"( a rolling stone) if you failed to make yourself clear which side you are on.
Filhaal ( at the moment) i have this ringing in my ears which is so apt although i know i will soon get over with it... i hope... because i hate being a negative person.

This in no way means that i'm off friends.Actually once again i'm seeking something of this kind.Some friendship of the sort where each is having his own idiosyncracies yet so much respected by the other.No pre-conditions but pure friendship like what they show in Seinfeld.

Maybe i should stop being so traditional in my approach.Maybe i should continue to nurture good thoughts about friendship and stop being so sensitive.Maybe i should first try and be my own best friend only then should i be able to let things pass without feeling so angry or hurt about it.
After all what others do is none of my business.And in between if i chance to find a real friend i shall consider myself lucky. i guess true friends these days are like those delicate,elegant French laced kerchiefs that you don't see anymore because people have shifted in their preference to using disposable tissue papers.
Meanwhile it is Dionne Warwick,Stevie Wonder,Luther Vandross and Whitney Houston in, "That's What Friends Are For".

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  1. Hmmm....I know what you mean when you say "used"...know it too well to go back and get "used" to it. Nothing to add except that Seinfield is awesome. I could watch and rewatch and rewatch and it will still feel like new. Friends ho to aise. Enjoyed the song. What about Veeru and Jay's infamous deut ?

  2. @leblogs thank you so much.So plus one on my virtual happiness.Love Seinfeld the same...and each time Elaine speaks i feel hungry...something about the way she talks maybe...funny.
    Yeah thought of Jay Veeru immensely but none of the infamous ones pleased me enough to crowd the already choked blog.:)

  3. Good analogy on friendship. Virtual or real - as long as you can connect with them without any strings attached. Thanks for putting the Sienfeld clip, never get tired of watching it, each character is amazing.

  4. That's some analysis I have done a lot of times. But the 'dark sides' of real friends, in your post, mostly apply to acquaintants who become intimate but not friendly. We may hang out with them for lack of better company, but they never become real friends.
    On the other hand, when you meet some of the cyber-friends, you may get surprised. Not because they have lied to you - we take that out of our discussion here - but because they have unknowingly conveyed an image of themselves what they want to be, not what they actually are.
    I'll be back for more comments on this post :-)

  5. friendship is a beautiful relationship Shivani. In my experience it rises beyond the call of filial and familial ties. So don't weigh too much...gather the most from face to face as well as virtual friendships.

    As your sms poem beautifully expressed - its many fragrant roses against once in a while thorn prick.

  6. Shivani, I believe, if we manage to have one good friend in a lifetime, thats being blessed uniquely by god himself.

    Reality though is that everyone needs a good set of friends to vent, share joys, concerns and joke around with.

    Does it truly make a difference whether that group is online or down the road? Let's take a look at the pros and cons of online friendship.

    •You probably meet these people through a group or board where you have things in common
    •It doesn't matter what you look like to meet up and chat.
    •You can vent to them about people around town and have no worries that they are going to go tell the person behind your back.
    •You get to know online friends for who they are, not their outward appearances

    •You never truly know if the person you are talking to is telling the truth about who they are.
    •It is hard to actually get together and do something, especially if you live in different places.
    •They don't know who or where you are talking about half the time.
    •There is a certain type of bond that occurs when you go out and do things with people.

    Looking at these pros and cons doesn't really define much, so let's move on to what I like to call the real deal.

    Speaking from personal experience, online friends can be some of the most supportive people on the planet.

    They have no vested interest in your situation and if they don't want to be around they can just turn off the computer.

    Online friends can definitely be a risk. There are stories all the time of people being scammed by people they meet online.

    We should all use caution when giving out information to anyone, online or in person, but there is no reason to discount the possibilities that online friendship offers.

    With a little patience, you can have a group of friends from all over the world. Maybe you will even get lucky enough to meet up with them one day. I sure hope I do.

    As always, a thought provoking post.

  7. Virtual friends are never really good friends until you've met them (or at least spoken to them). At least that is my perception. Well analysed. :)

  8. @Preeti thank you dear friend for being there when i had to vent out and also analyse.The thing is we DO need friends and thank God i have one in you.
    Yeah and Seinfeld...happy to see and feel that unique bond that each share...never get tired of watching.:)

  9. @Raja thank you for telling me more and waiting for yet SOME more from you.
    Virtual friends are new phenomenon for me and like i said the so called aquaintances who are not real friends have actually left me in the lurch so my need to a certain level of being able to communicate...with no strings attached has kept me satisfied for the time being.
    Maybe i am too hopeful and not really bothered if they are lying or truthful.
    But yes i get ur point...will definitely be careful if that's what you are warning me about.
    Come back quickly and tell me more.All ears for you.:)

  10. @Tandarin THANK YOU and you've said it all.Yeah Cautious i shall be and patient too for i believe good to happen if i am good.
    Tell you what one of my virtual friends is just so near to me and maybe we might meet and go bonkers talking about our nature discoveries because this one is a Naturalist by profession.Look at me he is already my friend now when i still don't know if he considers me worthy enough.
    Wish me luck that i don't bore the daylights out of him later.
    Thank you once again for your sincerity in letting me know more about the pros and cons.:)

  11. @Sabina Thank you for telling me the best.Yeah will do as you say...gather the most.
    And thanks for your composition well said in such meaningful words that it fitted the best for my post.:)

  12. @Anirban thank you for reading and yes i agree to what you have to say on trusting virtual friends.
    But who knows one or even more can be a blessing than a bane.
    Let's see... and yes i will be cautious before taking a deep plunge into unknown waters.:)

  13. @Aakaash Thank you and yeah Seinfeld...wish we could have friends like that...true companions and giving each other enough space in a way that no one tries to influence the other to his /her way of thinking.:)

  14. Shivani, reading your blogs,more than that enjoying all the audio clips.U have done a great job by researching and educating people like us.Great job,keep it up and thanx.

  15. @Anonymous Thank you dear friend that u appreciate what i do.i know u would've loved the nature related clips and i feel rewarded with ur comment.

  16. Bhabhi just read your blog.You should write more often.The SMS on roses and thorns was amazing.I also read it umpteen times n feel relaxed...n not to give up.

  17. Thank you Vineet and yes that SMS calmed me too.Will try and write more often.Happy that u find it worthwhile.:)