ANALOG INDIA

Two friends, Anik and Barnak are writing in class whilst
talking in whispers.

ANIK
Seen Sacred Games yet?

BARNAK
What?

Anik stops writing. Looks at Barnak in disgust.

ANIK
Oh yes, I forgot, Doordarshan is
more of a comfort zone for you!

BARNAK
I told you, man… I’m not into all
these–

ANIK
What else do you do but cram stupid
notes all day?

BARNAK
It’s called self-study fool, ever
done that?

ANIK
Ever done that without books?

BARNAK
I don’t really prefer manuscripts,
thank you!

ANIK
You’re undoubtedly the worst
comedian I have ever heard of!

BARNAK
But you have heard of me…

1983_h

ANIK
So you do watch movies?

BARNAK
Occasionally.

ANIK
Talking of books, you can get loads
of that on the internet which you
can’t even dream of getting in the
market, what do you say to that,
Homo-habilis?

BARNAK
I don’t know if your updated mind
has come across this term, but we
laymen use a thing called the
‘li-bra-ry’, ever heard of it?

ANIK
Seriously? A library? You’re funny!
You think one library can match the
entire online database?

BARNAK
Maybe it can’t, but, if you had
been to one, you’d understand that
a library is more than–

Anik tries to cut in, Barnak gestures him not to interrupt.

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Just a storehouse of books, it’s a
place of meditation as well, which
offers tranquillity and
concentration! Tell me which of
your ‘websites’ does that?

ANIK
Libraries are currently doing one
thing, and that is digitisation!
Try and access Jstor sometime!

Barnak nods his head in acknowledgement and carries on
writing.

ANIK
Let alone all the web series’,
chuck them, they are just for
entertainment. But, don’t tell
me, the lectures and videos aren’t
helpful. They are done by the best
in the world. Admit it, you also
watch them.

BARNAK
I prefer a hands-on discussion with
my teachers, thank you very much.
Can your ‘best in the world’ give
you that?

ANIK
But you can at least check them out
Gestures at the blackboard
The one of differential calculus
was awesome, just awesome! I sent
you the link, you probably haven’t
even bothered to check it out.

BARNAK
Can’t take these–

Gestures at the blackboard

Down properly, and here you are
talking about more stuff. Pfft!

ANIK
As I said, they aid in your
understanding only–

BARNAK
As I also said, my home teachers
are perfectly capable of that!

ANIK
When did I say they are not? Come
on! E-learning is in demand bro!
They even offer certificates on
completing courses!

BARNAK
Nowadays they give certificates for
everything– someday I’ll hear
mothers handing out certificates to
their children for successfully
bringing dhania from the market!

ANIK
You’re tedious!

BARNAK
The point is, we’re ultimately
gonna toil night and day in some
corporate firm, so, what’s the
point of all this anyway?

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At this point, Anik comes out of character, breaks the fourth
wall and directly talks to the audience as an ad-hoc narrator
of sorts. Light focuses on Anik as Barnak is not seen.

ANIK
Eventually, after some more witty
repartee with Barnak, the bell rang
to mark the end of the tiring maths
class. Immediately, Barnak gets
called by, Shruti, another
classmate of ours, to solve- what
she calls- an ‘IIT level’ Maths
problem. For Barnak, this sounded
like a call for the show valour and
chivalry. He puffed his chests out
and went to rescue his damsel in
distress. It all looked very much
like a page from Walter Scott.
After a few moments, a dejected
Barnak quietly returned to the
seat, it is evident that he has
lost the battle of sexes. Not only
was he unable to solve the problem,
but Nayanika did it for him.
Shame…Shame…Shame…

Anik goes back into character as the lights now show both of
them.

BARNAK
Eh, Anik, umm, could you send me
those links today evening?

ANIK
Oh, there are loads, I have to
search for them…

BARNAK
Please man…

ANIK
Won’t be possible today evening, in
the night perhaps?

BARNAK
Are you busy this evening?

ANIK
Yes, have Roshni ma’am’s tuition.

fin

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