I don’t do New Year Resolutions. I don’t do Resolutions, period. I made an exception on 8th August 2011, the day I officially turned senile, the day I `sathiaoed’.
I had spent six decades, `giving a damn’ to people/things I shouldn’t have bothered about, while overlooking people/things that I should have. It was time for some course correction.
I wrote my first post `Resolutions at 60’ on `Mitti Pao!’. Basically, the now senile Harish Puri resolved to:-
· Stop believing that the world revolved around his magnificent aura
· Accept that life didn’t have an Undo key
· Junk all unequal relationships
· Make his days count
Now, three years later, I realise that I had not verbalised the most important of them all – to stop giving a damn. The world is full of idiots, and most people are not worth the trouble.
The problem is we spend our lives `giving a damn’ about far too many issues, and then feel outraged, angry or cheated when things don’t go the way we want them to.
Reserve your `damns’ only for things that really matter. Family. Friends. Purpose. The New York Cheesecake. The occasional heated argument or two.
But that’s easier said than done. Life has far too many trivialities and unimportant dramas that suck us in, and steamroll us into becoming inveterate `damn givers’. And boy, are we screwed!
So-and-so said such-and-such about you. Really? Aisa bola?? Salay ki toh main.. Your BP sky rockets, you picture dark and forbidding scenarios involving Mr so-and-so, and if he has really pissed you off, his mother and his sisters as well..
We live and die by the side notes and the distractions and the vicissitudes of life that simply don’t matter. We must learn to shrug. Learn to say `I don’t give a damn!’ Or a rat’s ass, Or a f@$k. Take your pick.
By no means am I saying `Be indifferent’. Indifference is bad. The opposite of love is not hate, but indifference. Just know who are the people you really care about, and who care about you.
The rest? Just stop bothering about whose toes you’re stepping on, or who you’re pissing off, as long as you’re convinced you’re right.
If you find yourself consistently `giving a damn’ about the trivial shit that life is so full of – a silly pique at one of your posts, how quickly the battery dies out on your new iPhone, how Homeland-4 ended in a damp squib, chances are there’s not much in your life worth a real damn anyway.
And that’s your real problem. Not her pique, not your iPhone, and certainly not Homeland-4! (An aside here. Are all ISI agents as hot as Nimrat Kaur??)
When you’re young, you have the energy and the gusto to really give a damn about any and everything. Did that hottie at the other end of the room return your `look’? Why has that PYT replied to your ardent sms with just a smilie? Is she into you or not??
With age come weariness, if not wisdom. You care less and less. Ok, even a smlilie is a response after all.
And once you’re past 60, you probably won’t even look at the phone. It’s probably an equally weary spouse reminding you to pick up the Toilet Rolls from the Canteen.
Lovers, friends or family, I have been `unfriended’ by all at some time or another - people I care about, mind you - for the silliest of reasons. Back in the day, I would have apologised abjectly, if not actually grovelled. No longer. Now, I shrug it off. I don’t give a damn. The loss, I say, is theirs! And it is!
Unequal relationships have been truly junked. Love me, and I’ll love you back. Intensely. Anything else, and I’ll be Rhett Butler to your Scarlet O’Hara. Remember moviedom’s greatest comeback line ever – Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn!