A switch off occurs when you go off the grid of social media connectivity whereby you go amiss in the digital social life of people who have you listed as their friend knowingly or unknowingly. Quite a number of people could care less whether you are around at the best of times. Unless if you are a kwaito star who has reached the nirvana of a staple diet wherein your devotees daily probing, poking and in-boxing of your person is their reassurance that they are part of the world we live in.
In the land of the Bunched Hunched up people
Ï watched my smartphone fall a short distance from the study table one evening during its charging ritual. A few seconds before, wanting to check messages, I’d sort of pulled it by the charging cord and, as the law of gravity would have it, its weight pulled it off the connecting point. It ceremoniously met with the ceramic tiled floor and the Lumia 800 hurdled towards permanent lights out. Heartbroken and instantly sore to the core from the thud sound I heard when the phone hit the floor I expected the worst damage as I picked it up. I could make out a few things on the screen for the screen was damaged but surprisingly not cracked… but the main buttons of Home, Confirm and Return were not responsive to my frantic fingerings. Something more in this harsh ordeal was that I could swear the screen was dying out for a dark purplish lava lamp like goo moved in slomo to blot out the screen. Bought for novelty’s sake than to fit in with the populace, this was a phone whose battery was non-removable; it possessed only two slots, one for charging and the other for the micro-sim. And now jammed into its spacious memory were important keys to my daily activities by way of a calendar, social media networking platforms, private documents, photos of where I have been or what interest me as well as an extensive address book of my contacts. A sad thought loomed in the background of this specter, I was being blurred out towards an erasure as the dark lava spread throughout the screen signaling the death of the device.
Continue reading “Presence in absence”