“frndship day is approaching….. send this to all urfrnds…no breaking rule….send to all true frnds n get to know what they feel for u. . . . . . wic color u choose fr me Red : You should improve Your nature.. Blue : You put a smile on my face.. Purple :i like when u tease me.. Pink : You are so beautiful n cute.. Orange : I Like You.. Green :i really enjoy ur company.. Yellow :i want You back..😍😍😍Black ⚫: i’m proud of You..😍😍😍😍😍Violet :its fun to fight wid you..😍😍😍😍😍White💟 :i love u..😍😍😍😍😍Brown ✴: i like Your charactr..😍😍😍😍😍Now reply soon- which colour for me……..😍😍😍”, my phone beeped. I screamed RIP and flight-moded my phone.
Now that Friendship Day has finally arrived, I am all in rage, random messages of “Mujhse Friendship Karoge” buffering in Facebook Messenger, as if I am waiting to have their wishes granted this so-called-red letter day!
Friendship Day in the 90s and prior saw beautifully designed or Hallmark crafted greetings card being sent personally or via the mail man, and quite often they used to be accompanied by calligraphy penned handwritten or typed letters, either anecdotally long or short and crisp!
Todays’ time reveals letters are almost non-existent and cards are usually showy and flashy with little substance in matters of message written and simply signed off with the name of the well-wisher or without.
Rather, it became a low version of Valentine’s day, where messages like, “Mujshe fraandship karoge?” is sent across opposite sex and is an indirect way for a boy to say, “Will you be my girlfriend?” to a girl and vice versa.
When the 1998 Hindi coming-of-age romantic comedy drama film, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (Something Happens), blurts out a scene where Shahrukh Khan hands over a friendship belt to Rani Mukherjee on Friendship Day, it kind of made credential authority of an official tag for us.
Friendship has become so trivialized that making friends or being surrounded by a large number of friend circle has become an ornamental societal need. The 90s practical adage “A friend in need is a friend indeed” doesn’t seem application when I opened my May Facebook notifications, “And I have an excuse for tomorrow-powercut!” tagged along a picture in my Facebook feed. Dark and a lone candle silhouette the massive readings for next day’s examination. Now, the picture was posted by a girl who was one of the huge circle of loyal friends. They eat, sing, ping together and everything seems hunky dory and rosy in their huge group, at least by Facebook standards. What made me wonder- why the need of posting such a lamentation when she can simply visit her friend and stay with them, group-study and sleep-over. I think that was how the deal was between the Archie’s gang when they used to help each other without any inhibition and condition.
“Friendship is always a sweet responsibility.” – Khalil Gibran
Sadly, they are all in written, not in practical practice anymore.
The word “friends” has long since lost the significance; the effect of intimacy is cast out to the winds as a lost case. And the other drawback about Friendship is its biased single-minded affiliation towards youth. The society sees friendship as a preoccupation between youngsters. And friendship happens in Facebook, for youngsters. They share intimate details of happiness, love, pain, ache and confusion via social media than in face to face rendezvous.
Childhood friendship is usually based on a halo of carefree innocence that often fails the time-tested bitterness of real and practical life away from social media. When marriage turns sour we hanker after friendship in the guise of colleagues or neighbour or when job squeezes our life out, friends are made for someone’s “beck and call.” Beyond the fake testimonials in Orkut, as promised in-the-silver-screen sitcoms and movies, the memory of friendship is expected to sail in smooth waves, but that never happens. And the reminder of the friendship day mocks at the obvious fallacious of our life.
Friendship Day has become commercialized; where we buy emotions off the rack at a token price and after exchanging the gifts we wash hands off interaction that is much more necessary for day to day social and mental peace than one day full-lavish of Friendship day!
But in actuality, these, for some people have symbolic attachment without the celebration of which they feel something void or vacant in their social upbringing. There is a whole industry backing this bullshit with commercial viability which ironically teaches us to value a single day without the celebration of life 365 days!
It’s a spread and brainwashing of us by the corporate hegemony yet for some people living and surviving in this time-constraint monotony, this holiday means a lot to take out time from their otherwise busy schedules to thank the people that matters a lot to them.
Important or baseless, you decide but involving in favouratism to honour a couple in lieu of all whose contribution might be smaller is something I will never suggest you.
Partha Pratim Barua
Image Source: The Viewspaper