A lot has changed from how love was expressed in the 90s as compared to the present day. Love in the 90s was all about the anticipation and waiting. Mobile phones were not so popular, and teenagers had limited or no access to mobile phones.
Every time the land line buzzed, a small flutter used to run through my heart. Is it him calling? Is he not meeting me tomorrow? The race to pick up the phone before my parents did was nothing short of a mini marathon. The local PCO had a thriving business; now there are hardly any to be seen.
I bought my first mobile when I got my first job, with my own money. It looked like a small walkie talkie, no doubt. It was a huge bulky piece, a Nokia phone, which had huge buttons and a small screen.
But before the advent of mobile phones, couples used to meet by keeping up to a designated time and place, decided much in advance. They memorized each other’s numbers and had small pocket sized diaries to note the numbers of their friends. Today we have backup memory cards, and lots of failed relationships.
The ache one faced when waiting for the phone to ring had its own charm. The delirium of waiting to meet someone was exquisite. The moment when you saw them, you forgot the waiting time. Now the anticipation and the sweet pain of waiting are lost because you can predict exactly what time a person is going to arrive. We are never truly alone now due to our mobile phones and internet.
Sometimes I wonder how the world coped without internet and mobile phones. People used to have meetings without constant reminders; they fell in love and managed to keep their love growing by writing secret messages, to be passed to them by their mutual friends; they reached destinations without maps; they remembered birthdays without various apps. My father wonders if my son will ever be able to remember ANYTHING; he feels future generations will be dependent only on ‘external’ memories.
But the best part of falling in love in the 90s was the space one got from one’s partner. No ‘last seen’ indicators; no online/offline statuses; no late night chatting on phone. Instead, we had couples who used to try to gauge the sincerity and the depth of their relationship by facing the other, and not hiding behind emoticons. Falling in love was easy and staying in love was easier because one had to talk to a person and not make assumptions and deductions from the various social media status updates.
And one certainly did not have to make false aliases on social media to see if ‘he’ would make friends with the fake alias and ‘flirt’ with them or ‘propose’ to them. I guess ‘dating’ and ‘proposing’ have evolved, for the worse!
~ K and Farrokh
Also published on The Anonymous Writer .