24 Jan 2013

The Forbidden Gadget


There are few sights more beautiful on a lazy morning than sleeping Girlfriend's visage. Aah who am I kidding, it's my favourite sight of all time: those few minutes of bliss before Girlfriend wakes up and becomes...well, herself, again.A vision so tranquil that I regularly douse her morning coffee with whiskey just to see those curtains come down again, however temporarily. Not that I'm some kind of compulsive coffee-spiking psychopath. Sometimes, I just pepper her pasta with finely powdered Paracetamol. One particularly lovelorn afternoon, I knocked her out with a rolling pin. Those tightly shut eyes, those gently cascading eyelashes, are the promises, the visions, all relationships are built on- the promise of calm and quiet, the hope that those sleep-gooey lips will not always chastise or criticize or order you to stop smoking during meals.

Since we started seeing each other regularly, I have always made sure I wake up a good five minutes before she does just to get a glimpse of those non-judgmental eyes. It wasn't easy in the beginning, what with my predilection for sleeping in, and Girlfriend's demanding job that requires her to don pinstripes and create PDFs or pour through Excel sheets or whatever it is real adults do for a living as early as 9 in the AM. But when you want something strongly enough, you're all sorts of resourceful. The solution to my little conundrum, I discovered, was fairly simple: I'd just have to wait for Girlfriend to fall asleep at night, and reset her alarm to a later time. Must be love.

Imagine my surprise then, when a few days ago, I woke up to find Girlfriend not just awake, but not even in  sight. I shut my eyes, telling myself it was just a dream, that I'd wake up any second now. I was jolted back to reality by the sound of the bathroom door opening, and out peeped Girlfriend's head. It banged shut again almost immediately, Girlfriend's head retreating like that of a startled turtle the moment she caught my eye.

"Girlfriend," I call out, "you ok?"
"Yes," comes her voice, cautious but steady.
"Did you forget to flush again?" I ask.
"I told you that was the cat!" she shouts back.
"I forgot. So what's wrong, baby?"

The door opens again, and out steps suddenly-nonchalant Girlfriend, clad in boxers and tee, her laptop in her hand. "Nothing" she says, defiantly. She places the laptop on the dresser, and busies herself in front of the mirror. "Baby," I say, "were you using your laptop in the loo?"

"What if I was?"
"It's a little...weird, no?"
"There's an entire stack of your magazines by the pot."
"I know, but they're paper. A dump is not traditionally a technology-friendly activity."
"A tech-friendly activity? Why is everything so complicated with you?"
"It's a slippery slope, that's all. Next thing you know, you'll be texting at the cinema, and playing fruit-chucker on your tablet."
"It's called 'Fruit Ninja'."
"Oh my god."
"What?"
"How do you know that? You don't know any sixteen year olds."

Aah, the calm before the storm. The lull before Techocalypse. That guilty-flirty look Eve gave Adam while biting into Apple.

"I got an iPad, ok?"
"What? But we're against mass-produced consumer goods."
"No, you are."
"But they cut off the poor little Chinese kids' fingers after they assemble those things."
"They build computers, not the Taj Mahal."
"But.. when did you get it?"
"Two weeks ago."

Modern life is rubbish. 

"Where is it? How have I not seen it yet?"
"Coz I knew how you'd react. I keep it at work. And in the car, sometimes."
"You've never brought it home?"
"Only..just on that night you were out with Fatboy."
"Is it bigger than me?"
"What?"
"Sorry, I anthropomorphized my fear of being displaced by technology. It's a guy thing."
"No it's not. It's a you thing."
"How would you know?"
"There's an app for it."

Icy Highs's Music Recco: Video Killed The Radio Star by Buggles, The Age of Plastic (1979)



This blogpost is part of a series called The Girlfriend Chronicles - which went on to form the crux of my second novel Mornings After (2016, Bloomsbury India). You can buy it here on Amazon












       

21 comments:

Francis Lee said...

You'll survive or put more whiskey in her coffee and throw it out the window when she's asleep!

icyHighs said...

Haha throwing it out the window does have a certain old school ring to it :)

Talitha said...

That song was a COPY???
Aaaargh...and that's my reaction to the coffee spiking as well.
But is whiskey tasteless so she doesn't realise you've spiked the coffee??
And about the techno-saga,you only need hold on until the I-Pad conks out!

icyHighs said...

Haha Talitha, I don't REALLY drug Girlfriend! Thanks for reading. :)

Girlfriend said...

He does, he SO does.

A Beer For The Shower said...

Just think, one day instead of having a magazine rack in the crapper, we might have an iPad rack. Seems much more sanitary than using the same tablet you might bring to the kitchen table with you while you eat...

Windsmoke. said...

Certainly is weird using your laptop or mobile phone in the dunny.

Revacious said...

Hmm. WHY would the Girlfriend link take me to all Fatboy posts? I thought you were being sarcastic, calling him girlfriend.. or were you? Does he have long eyelashes?

icyHighs said...

Girlfriend: You know you love it. :)

ABFTS - Definitely agree about the sanitary part.

Windsmoke - Thank you!

Revacious - haha thanks for telling me. fixed!

Juliette said...

Oh I love how you drug your GF! There's nothing wrong with iPads. Very soon you will be addicted and stealing it from your GF as she sleeps.

Bart said...

I'm jelly, cause i dont know what youre talkking aboot

austere said...

Cute.
Or, is this from the book?

icyHighs said...

Ha Juliette, I struggle with smartphones. I'm not crossing over to the other side, no way yo.

Bart, at least you have an opinion mate.

icyHighs said...

Austere, Not from the book, no. But Girlfriend's a whole fucking novel and a half. :)

Anonymous said...

...and I should like the first autographed copy please Mr Icy, just so that you know. And yes, will pay for it.

austere

icyHighs said...

Haha sounds like a plan, Austere :)

goatman said...


A rude awakening: We are not infact against mass-produced consumer goods.

Musta happened during the night.

icyHighs said...

lol these things catch you unawares, yes.

Anonymous said...

What you said was very logical. However, consider this,
suppose you typed a catchier title? I mean, I don't wish to tell you how to run your blog, however what if you added a headline that grabbed a person's attention?

I mean "The Forbidden Gadget" is kinda boring.
You could look at Yahoo's front page and note how they write article headlines to get people to click. You might try adding a video or a related pic or two to get readers interested about what you've
got to say. Just my opinion, it could make your posts a little livelier.


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Katy Anders said...

That first paragraph is all kinds of perfect. Twisting a touching sentiment into something evil is my favorite kind of twist.

Beyond that... Luddites can be perfectly nice people.

Icy Highs said...

"Luddites can be perfectly nice people."

Normal too, some times. Thanks for the kind words, Katy.