This morning something strange happened. It shook me to the core and forced me to hide under the covers for a very long time until the episode repeated in my own room and threw me into a blue funk.
Donning my new walking shoes that I vowed to use till they wear off, I set out on the trail around the many blocks of the apartment complex I was staying at. Although I start out fast, I usually begin to slow down as the surroundings come alive with hollers of playing children and screams of tantrum-throwing toddlers. But nothing of that sort happened. The evening climate was perfect, the lighting was good, and I was waiting; yet, not one human came into fore.
During my third round towards the playground, I got exasperated and turned my eyes towards the bench in the shade and saw a boy hunched over. He wasn’t moving. My curiosity propelled me to explore.
I slowly walked in his direction and noticed that there were two more kids—one boy and a girl—seated by his side, stooping in the same way. Then when I moved my eyes towards the figures standing behind, my heart dropped to my feet. There were two ladies, probably the kids’ mothers, standing in the same position. I decided to investigate and moved closer.
‘Um, hello,’ I said, hesitatingly.
I cleared my throat and tried again.
‘Hey!’ I wrung my fingers in nervousness.
Five angry faces turned to face me and I scrambled from the spot like lightning.
I went in to find the room where I was staying with my cousins empty (for the sake of anonymity I’m gonna use only cousins in this article). I hopped on the bed and draped the blanket around my body like a mummy, trembling underneath.
The bathroom door clicked and I was relieved that I would have someone to share my horror story with.
Out came another stooped figure mechanically gliding on the floor like a spectre. The scream that came out of my mouth thereupon shook the whole building and virtually split my eardrums.
It’s not a virus. It’s not a parasite. It’s a small contraption that has been made by humans and is controlling their brains now.
Here is the device that’s guilty of starting a pandemic.
We all carry smartphones these days. We can’t imagine a day without the device let alone our lives.
But we have let the machines control our entity to such an extent that we have become the living dead—drifting away aimlessly, eyes on the screen; hands holding the shiny glass instead of being entangled with the partner’s fingers; mind pondering about the next message to type to a friend staying 5000 miles away rather than concentrating on the conversation happening with the person who is two feet away.
Phone zombies have become so rampant that I’m scared to step out or even stay in for that matter.
Cousin 1 sits on the chair holding the phone attached to its charger. Can’t afford to lose a second even if there’s a possibility of the battery heating up like a volcano, thereby destroying the phone.
Cousin 2 walks back and forth from the charging point like I do an emergency walk from the bathroom and the couch when the former is occupied. Charging your cell phone a hundred times would only deplete the battery, you moron!
Cousin 3 forgets manners and courtesy when at relatives’ place and checks Facebook notifications. In the end, all you’ll be left with are virtual friends.
Cousin 4 barks like a rabid dog when you disturb him/her while chatting in the whatsapp group. Bite me!
The means of an end to this apocalypse is literally in our hands. We just need to realize it before it’s too late.
Drop the phone. Prop your face.