The Uncivil Wars of the Internet

The last of the men cowered behind the penis-shaped rock. Some lay panting with their back against the wall, exchanging haggard stares. The strain from days of defensive blogging and twitter trolling lay heavy on their faces. Braver souls peered around the stone balls into the darkness to see if the feminists were still pursuing them. The sky was still being lit up by the occasional opinion piece but the thunder of tweetiques sounded distant enough to allow for a short respite.

The Standup Comedian took stock of his ammo. Only two sexist jokes left – that wouldn’t hold the onslaught for long. You had to be on elevated ground for them to be of much use, anyway. The last skirmish had depleted much of his supplies – he had been lucky to get out alive, despite using up all his don’t-watch-it-if-you-dont-like-its and learn-how-to-take-a-jokes.

“So, this is it.” The Meninist wheezed.  “The end of men”.

“CISMEN”. A speaker thundered somewhere overhead. The political correctograms were the first thing the Social Justice League installed when they seized power.

“Darn it, won’t be long before they find us now. Will you shut up, please?”

“Fuck you, Ad guy. I’m not going out whispering”.

“Keep talking and the next Op Ed will land right on your head.”

“You really think you will safely make it to Reddit if you keep quiet, do you? Like fuck you will. Who knows if there is anyone left over there now?”

“Let’s give ourselves a fighting chance, shall we?”

The comic spoke up. “Stop bickering. Who are we kidding? There is no escape now. They should have been stopped when they invaded Twitter.”

“It is true. It’s too late now. First they came for the standup comics. Then I did not speak out because I was not a standup comedian.”
“And not because they came for the comics who trivialized violence against women?”.

“Then they came for the advertising industry. Then I did not speak out because I was not an ad guy.”
“Maybe because they came for the ads which compared used BMWs to women who were not virgins?”

“Then they came for the Jews.”
“Not really”.

“Then they came for me – and there was noone left to speak for me.”
“There’s a chance it could have been because you tweeted rape threats.”

“Did any of you hear that disembodied voice? Who’s sub-tweeting me?”

“It is I.” A shadowy form dropped down the shaft of the rock formation.

“You! Traitorous bast..”

“Don’t take another step. I have a tumblr pointed at you which I won’t hesitate to use. You can all lay down your weapons and get on the floor. And yes, I identify with the feminist cause, if you haven’t figur..”

Before the feminist could finish his words, the area was suddenly lit by the blinding glare of multiple think pieces. An aggressive tweet blared:

ALL OF YOU! THROW AWAY YOUR HETERO-NORMATIVE ASSUMPTIONS NOW!(1/53)
AND SLOWLY DROP TO YOUR KNEES WITH YOUR ARMS BEHIND YOUR HEADS. (2/53)
I RETWEET, HETERO-NORMATIVE ASSUMPTIONS AND PRIVILEGES ON THE FLOOR! NOW!(3/53)

As others dropped to the floor in terror, the feminist took a couple of tentative steps forward and tried to make himself heard over the din.

“It’s all under control”.

“Sir, please cast your weapon away.”

“I have. The tumblr on the floor was mine. Everything is under control.”

“Sir, I repeat, please drop your weapon and fall on the floor.”

“I don’t have any weapon, everything is under control. These men were fleeing but I..”

*BAM* *BAM*

“Base, I had to neutralise a threat. He wouldn’t put his mansplaino-matic away despite repeated warnings.”

I Am Doomed to 14 Years of Bad Luck

Yes, I am. Because I didn’t forward the divine mail I received, to 27 people. In fact, horror of horrors, I deleted it. I wish I could have done more, though. Hopefully they will invent a mail client which will allow you to manhandle your messages. And then I’ll haul the mail out and stomp on it, 27 times. Waiting for the happy day.

Few things on cyberspace irritate me more than one of those mind-numbingly stupid forwards. The luck-letters are top of the shitpile but the petitions to ‘make an effort to stop the murder of dolphins in Timbuctoo’ , to ‘condemn the treatment of Indian PoWs in Pakistan’ and to donate 1 paisa towards the treatment of my inflated head’ come pretty close.

Even fewer things baffle me more than the objectives of people who create/propagate these. What do they stand to gain from passing on the misfortune to 27 more people – Some people overdo the requisite <Insert-random-number> and send it to their whole address book. I mean if you are gonna do this, you can at least do this properly. 😀

Anyway, my point was, why do people forward these ?Is it because

  • Unlikely as it sounds, they actually believe sending/discarding will bring you luck/bad luck? Oh please. We are all healthy youngsters here who are perfectly capable of creating  our own ‘luck’. I am sure we can manage the hard work of screwing up our own lives without the blessings of Gmailmaa or Yahoo Bhagavathi.
  • Duh!! Who believes in them? But you know, to be on the safer side? Why tempt fate, eh? Again a minority, but a sizable minority. I know people who belong to this school of thought. And it is a valid line of reasoning. If you are braindead. In the unlikely event that the president of Argentina received this mail, it is even more unlikely that he read it and unlikeliest his son died hence, do you think? – For the record, the president of Argentina is Christina Kirchner so it’s a ‘she’ and She has a son Maximo who’s very much alive. False claims!!! who would have thunk? 😀
  • I like forwarding mails and I forward anything and everything .  I am not a forwarder and do not take kindly to relentless forwarders unless it’s a rare awesome-joke-you-haven’t-heard-before or a must-check-out-bro-NSFW 😉 Forwarding is NOT a way of saying you care, folks, it just means your address book includes me. And I’m sorry it does.
  • I am a patriotic Indian/animal lover/kind heart and I am making a difference. Yes, You maybe and No, You’re NOT, respectively. I am appalled by the disrespect shown by the terrorists and I am bothered about the little panda missing its mother but that doesn’t make me clutter the cyberspace with just another useless piece of junk that goes nowhere. Assuming the ‘petition’ reaches the Pak Army Headquarters, adding your name to it in violet Monotype Corsiva with 36 font size is not a helping hand, it’s just an eyesore.
  • Noone, repeat , NOONE tracks the number of times a mail gets duplicated to pay Rs. 500383.78 for the little girl’s surgery. I told someone this recently and his reaction reminded me of a kid being told Santa is a myth. Honestly!
  • I thought you might be interested in knowing your horoscope. Yes I may be, but not 3456 times. And my star sign is the same since the last time you checked. I am still a Virgo and I am still as Dominant in relationships, Conservative, Always wants the last word, Argumentative, Worries blah blah…. – as the last time you sent me my horoscope. AND Horoscopes are stupid. To quote Sheldon Cooper
  • It’s a mass cultural delusion that the Sun’s apparent position relevant to arbitrarily defined constellations at the time of your birth somehow affects your personality.

Totally.

Motives galore and not one of them makes any sense. Not to me, anyway. I hope some of my tormentors take note and desist from sending me luck anymore.

You may feel I made a mountain out of a trivial thing, but try getting one of those when you are eagerly waiting for an important mail/sms. Yup, that’s what triggered this post though this has been simmering in my mind for some time.

And now you’ve read this post, and there’s no turning back. You’ve to forward this link to 17 friends or you will have 17 years of bad luck.

*EVIL LAUGHTER*