I was in this extremely boring wedding today so I was doing all sorts of shit to keep myself occupied. I was eating paneer tikka with noodles and I was mixing orange juice with tomato soup and I was talking to the waiters and I was observing (as usual). I saw 15yo girls dancing, 18yo girls thinking about dancing and 38yo aunties breaking the stage with their devastating moves. Also, I saw everyone clicking pictures with their fancy cameras while all this was happening. 80 year old grandparents were asked to put the tilak once again because somehow the photographers couldn’t capture the moment well enough the first time. And the grandparents were doing it too, with smiles, big fake ones. Kids were clicking pictures with the mobile their parents’ mobile phones. Their parents had professional cameras. The professional photographers had the more professional ones. It was a circus. A complete circus. It seemed like the wedding was happening only for the photographs. They were capturing memories so that they could relive it. Relive, hah! To relive, you gotta live first.
It’s funny how most of the memories of our lives depend upon a small piece of plastic. If there were no cameras, I bet it would’ve been difficult recognising ourselves in our childhood pictures because there wouldn’t have been any childhood pictures. If we think about it, we have invented things so that our minds don’t have to remember shit. No memories of your past? Invent a camera. Can’t remember data? Invent a computer. Can’t remember meetings? Invent reminders. Can’t calculate? Well don’t worry dear mind, calculators are there. And thus, our minds started getting less occupied. And what do you do when you don’t have anything in your mind? You invent. You invent more useless shit to comfort your lives. For a fact, my family never had a camera. We never bothered to buy one. There are no pictures of me showing my small penis. I don’t have a reason to get embarrassed. There are no pictures of my parents having fun with my sister and me. We don’t have those big albums, which people tend to open whenever they have their discussions about their childhood. We don’t have any properly framed pictures of ourselves hanging in our old house. You might find thousands of pictures of gods hanging around, but you can’t find a single one of us on our walls. And what’s the point anyway? You aren’t going to forget who you are or who your sister was or who your parents are! I never understood this whole thing but I’m no one to claim that it’s bullshit. Until today, I never gave cameras much of a thought. I always knew, I gotta buy one someday. I always wanted to. But now, I don’t think we really need a camera. I mean we do remember stuff. If we can’t, then the stuff was probably not worth remembering. The whole thing of smiling and crying and smiling again after seeing the old photographs looks somewhat odd and ridiculous. I might never buy a camera. I don’t wanna capture my kids’ childhood. I don’t wanna cry looking at the photographs when they would go away to earn or to study. I don’t want that shit. I don’t give a fuck about what toys my girl played with when she was small. And I bet on my life, she wouldn’t give a fuck either when she would be twenty. Capturing a picture of your girl playing with those toys and reminding her twenty years later about how you cared about her says a lot about you. Well, I certainly won’t need validation from my kids. Also, I’m not saying that people do these things for validation. They might not. It might just be their thing to look at the old photographs and cry.
Anyway, so when the wedding got over, we handed the envelope to the groom and got ourselves clicked, for one last time. We were getting ready to go back home. I waved at the autowallah and he agreed to drop us home. This was kind of strange since people say that autowallahs are famous for saying ‘NO’. Maybe the whole thing is exaggerated. It was around 3 P.M and their was a lot of traffic. My mom saw this one woman trying to have a conversation with her little girl. The girl was around 10 and she was probably going back home from her school. It probably wasn’t a good day in the school as she looked upset. The sight was beautiful as her mom was making faces, playing with her and what not, just to make her girl smile. Seeing this, my mom started crying. Some memories flashed in her mind, maybe. Memories. I wish there were a device to delete the memories instead of capturing them.