The Likes and the Comments

The Likes and the Comments

“There is a possibility of thundershowers and intermittent rainfall for today and for the next two days.  The weather will remain damp and cold with sunshine, expected to return from the weekend,” announced the newsreader.

This was the first time he was free on the weekdays after the leaves which he applied for about 6 months back finally got approved and was eagerly looking forward to traveling to the new part of his town, soak the sun, and making some great memories, putting every little thing he could get hold of and digitally spit it out on all social media handles like all his friends and acquaintances.

The uncomfortable feeling, he was forced to endure seeing his friends bombard their social accounts with photos, videos, and quotes was still bearable, but seeing them on a vacation, especially an overseas one was like a nail on the coffin stuffed with body that may still be alive.

“Do they even work or spend their life vacationing,” he would think while reluctantly liking and commenting with repressed feelings of being left out.

“Wow, splendid; you must have had a great time; you both look so great together; that’s a heavenly place; couldn’t wait to be there myself.”

And today he had the opportunity to post something of his own; a picture, a video, a candid photo of a child, or of a new meal he could try out at one of the new restaurants, mushrooming the outskirts of the town and hugely popular with the recently moved residents and especially the youngsters.

 The old residents of the town, however, abhorred this new place.

Imagine a beautiful garden you created decades ago; plucked every weed and thorn with your hands, cared for it all your life, and suddenly, a new garden emerges somewhere else. You pretend to ignore it for some time, under the belief that no one will notice, but then the stress starts to build up as you witness people flocking to admire it, instead of flattering the hard work that you have put in, and that too when this new place is actually fooling them, making use of the latest technology, the machines, and newer tools to enhance its beauty to attract them, with no individual or community effort of the humans to show its splendour.

“It’s just the crowd, not the connoisseurs,” people would whisper referring to the ones making a beeline for the part of the town which always remained under the shadow of the traditionally accepted city centre but has now gained an overnight reputation of being ‘the only happening place’ of that city.

Sam, like the others, also wanted to announce the cutting of the umbilical cord and the final declaration of where his loyalty lies, though an old hag, having been born and brought up in the older part of the town, he like others his age, couldn’t stand the social pressure of declaring his allegiance to the ‘new spot’.

The weather, however, played the spoilsport as he reluctantly abandoned his bed, dragged himself to the bathroom before finally taking the first sip of the morning coffee.

He pulled the curtains aside to peek outside and was greeted by lightning and loud thunder; cursing his luck again, he closed the curtains and shaking his head resumed drinking his morning coffee, even though it showed 12:30 on the clock.

There were decisions to be made though, and the most critical at this juncture was to decide on whether to take a shower or not.

The repeated deafening sound of thunder though made it easy; he decided against any form of contact with water.

“It’s going to rain heavily, why to bother with a shower, I will rather spend the entire day here, cocooned inside this soft bed,” he decided, vowing to only eat, drink and sleep for the next three days.

The coffee was finished and as he wrapped himself in the quilt, the thought of cooking something for breakfast hit his mind. 

“Let me just lie down for a moment,” he thought and looking around, decided to rest his back before having the first bite of anything.

Time moves in a strange way when you lie down on the bed and here too, the clock suddenly moved as if in a hurry; the needles looked as if under some esoteric influence as they raced to complete their circular motions and as Sam opened his eyes after a few blinks, he had to literally jump out of his bed to confirm what time it was.

“What,” he shouted from the pit of his stomach, his mind unwilling to believe what the eyes showed.

“This can’t be true,” he murmured; a sense of acceptance slowly began to creep in as he double-checked with his mobile.

The long needle was at 6 and the smaller one at 5.

“How did I sleep for this long; could never sleep like this even at night,” he murmured inside his head.

His right leg though was aching and as he tried recollecting his sleeping posture, he realized what might be causing it.

As he lay on the bed, his feet were resting on the floor initially, which he brought on the bed and folded before finally turning himself into a foetus inside the quilt and placing his legs in an awkward manner, he forgot to even turn once during the sleep. 

What followed was excruciating pain, and unable to think of anything, he popped in the pill.

The evening light of the setting sun was now filtering through the curtains and as he limped towards it, he found the sky bereft of any cloud.  The day must have cleared while he was still deep in his afternoon nap.

“Missed out on it and now this,” Sam stared at his leg, holding it with his hand from the knee.

“I will be going for the walk tomorrow,” he resolved and ordered the food deciding against cooking anything himself.

The day was gone and he picked up his mobile and started going through the social media feed. The evening had given over to the night and he now stared at the moonless sky and the empty plates after pulling aside the curtains to see how it looked like now.

His leg was still aching but hopeful of a better and sunny tomorrow, he decided to sleep but ended up scrolling through the phone and without any conscious awareness of when slowly dozed off.

The crisp sunlight warmed his face for a long time as the curtains remained open and he realized it after seeing the sun falling directly over him.

“Wow, no rain,” he muttered and was about to get up when he couldn’t feel his leg.

“What the heck,” he muttered and pulled away the quilt to see his right leg resembling that of an elephant.

Scared, he immediately called the doctor and, as he was checked upon, realized he couldn’t move for the next 3 days and now had to stay in the bed, though this time it was not out of choice.

Images of the picture he was planning to post online, fluttered through his mind before suddenly turning blank.

“And yes, keep that curtain open and enjoy the sun, it’s good for you,” the doctor suggested, before putting a thick bandage on it, and waving goodbye.

The fingers ran through the phone again and as he tried to put it down, accidentally clicked a picture of the heavily strapped leg; before he could do anything, the random click suddenly got posted online.

He, however, had no idea what he did and decided to watch some TV.

A few moments had passed by when he began to feel hungry and as he unlocked his phone, multiple messages and notifications greeted his otherwise gloomy day.

The number of likes and comments on the photo of his bandaged leg surpassed what he could even fathom.

A total of 35 likes and 6 comments, the highest, he had garnered in all his virtual life.

The face suddenly broke into a smile as the mind now began to think of a few more novel ideas.

“I need to do something with the other leg too,” he thought.

And that day, Sam tried everything possible to replicate the way he slept the previous day.

He is still trying and hoping for a bandage on the other leg too. Likes and comments after all need effort and are cherished by everyone living in this virtual world.


14 thoughts on “The Likes and the Comments

  1. Haha! The least expected can often be an eye-opener. He got his likes and comments and a great idea. Hope he doesn’t push himself too far. Wonderfully narrated with the mood of the protagonist evident and very relatable. Hope to read more from you soon, Deepak. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s