Monday, January 22, 2007

Yours, randomly…

I am being spammed. Not by the usual Viagra suspects, or masculine meanderers, or sex gods and goddesses, but by a rather well-brought up boy with good pedigree, excellent references, and a happy childhood. He, ironically is my serial cyber stalker.

How exactly did I earn him? Okay, some history here. Around a year and a half ago, a smug-married couple (friends of mine, incidentally), oh-so-envious of my singledom, tried to set me up (he was the best man who didn’t show up at the wedding). An introductory email was written, copied to both of us, and thus, email addresses were exchanged. He lived in a different city; I obliged with basic email courtesy. And so the story began.

At first, it was like an email diary. Then they turned to essays. Soon followed photo-essays. “AB (okay, just two random alphabets) has shared photos with you!” my inbox would read. Earlier, it was him and his big fat, Punjabi family, and weddings thereof .

At which point, I started gritting my teeth. More followed. Trips to Ladakh (yes, pretty), or Sikkim (oh, how colorful!) and Nepal( sorry, but I hate looking at other people’s pictures)

One day, he wrote to say he was moving to foreign shores, and I did a little dance. Aha! Out of sight, out of mind, I thought. But the logic didn’t apply, as he was never in sight, anyway, so things were pretty much the same. Insulated by cyber land, he wrote…and he wrote. The problem is, he doesn’t know he’s spamming me, despite my direct and indirect hints. The direct ones: “I never read mass mails. Even when they are official. So don’t bother…”

The indirect ones: “Why write 1000 word emails? Might as well write….”

And the point is, he is not a terrible writer, and he can occasional be funny (at least when I read the first two or three in the series, which I thought were directed to me (ah! cyber-camouflage, the wondrous, leave no-trace of other recipients tool)

When I complained to the cupid friend, she said, “Have a heart. He is on a sabbatical; you know how traumatic it can get when you have been a banker for eight years and suddenly discover that you are a writer.”
I tried distracting him by giving him writing assignments with the magazine I worked with. But the emails continued…
Wait. It gets better. Now, my inbox reads ‘Edinburugh, Stirling, Monaco, Austria and Sicily’. Or ‘Venice/Verrona/Milano/Como/Munich/Hinterthal’, Or ‘Cupping Juliet's Right Breast,’ or ‘Main Hoon Don (Corleone)’ , or ‘Bongiorno da Sicilia’, or ‘Firenze never ceases to leave one breathless,’ and such like…
I AM A TRAVELLER!!! It screams…and I asphyxiate even further.

And surprise, surprise! In all these eighteen months, I didn’t end up meeting Mr. Cyberdebonair or hearing his voice (he did switch to sms mode briefly, but my sms-proofness was invincible—and that’s another column). But I do know that most men who suffer from print/sms diarrhoea don’t always make for great conversation..(ah…one more)

I tried requesting google and yahoo, but even they seem to consider him a suitable boy and have thwarted my rejection. No, he is not sleazy, nothing in the contents of his emails is personal or objectionable, except that they are just too long, and mass-produced. And I deal with enough print in my life anyway. Maybe I should just give him the benefit of doubt. And let him be. And write.

But I still wonder. What makes people send a part of themselves to the universe every single day without expecting anything back. And the answer was—They probably don’t!

I hope he, or someone he knows reads this piece. Else, I will be forced to write, “agar himmat hai, to same aa…”

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