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September 26, 2021

FOMO: The Day I forgot my Phone.

Hearted by and 12 other readers

I went to visit a friend recently and forgot to take my phone.

I wouldn’t be back until late evening, and there was no one at home to help, so my phone was staying where I’d left it.

Look, I’m no phone junkie—like, at all—but a significant part of one’s work and personal life revolves around a smartphone these days. That’s a fact—so, deal with it.

All day, I was vacillating between “living in the moment” and worrying about the many important calls and messages that I was probably missing.

Maybe the supreme ruler of my country—he who cannot, should not, and will not be named—might have called asking for help dealing with how to make India the next superpower?

Perhaps the opposition—whose nickname rhymes with “jappu”—rang asking for help on how to make a comeback in 2023? Not that I know anything about election strategies, but what’s the harm in thinking I could?

Or, by chance, today could be the day that an editor from a publishing house phoned to offer me a book deal? Maybe one of the stories I sent won something? Or McSweeney’s finally accepted my 27th internet submission?

When I finally got home and rushed to get my phone, I was so satisfied to see seven missed calls and 22 messages. Yes! I knew I meant something to the world.

However:

>> One phone call was from my friend whom I had just spent the entire day with, calling to make sure I had got home safely.

>> The other six were all unsolicited junk calls.

>> And all f*cking 22 messages were from my phone company reminding me that my bill was due to be paid on Tuesday.

Sigh.

The human mind deludes itself into believing that the world—maybe not the entire world as we know it, but the world immediately surrounding us—will come to an end without us.

Newsflash: Nothing stops. We are all dispensable.

We spend an inordinate amount of time thinking too much about ourselves and our importance in other people’s lives.

The bottom line is, no one really cares!

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