The picture tells us my typical classroom during my childhood. Teachers used to wright by chuck on the blackboard. long wooden bench for 3 to 5 students.
Sydney, Boram, Nanny, I see you are smiling. Is this because you remember your own classroom days? Maybe you remember the friends you had. Today, I often look at my Facebook list,
A bright morning of summer when I was in class 11, I was sitting in the classroom with more than 100 talented, smart, brilliant classmates.
Ten minutes was significant for me from that morning.
Do you know why?
The class was super noisy because the teacher was late; I had been shooting my words with some of my friends.
I felt unstable, insecure, useless, and had been blaming myself upon a question from one of my friends.
I am sure that you want to hear that question.
My social friend asked me, do you have a Facebook account?
OMG! Don't you have one?
I think you should be more social to enjoy your life.
He helped me open a Facebook account, which was my first knowing about Facebook and have an account, although I never used that account.
However, I opened my second account when I was in the undergraduate 1st semester and have been using it since then.
Now I have a footprint on LinkedIn, Quora, Instagram, Youtube and so one.
I have over 3000 virtual friends.
Still, am I satisfied?
Still, am I social enough?
Am I professional now?
(I will give you the answer more details )
If you ask me who is your best friend among these virtual friends?
It's tough to find out because my best friend is not from my virtual friend?
But who among these are my real friends? What is friendship? To answer this question, I want to take you back to my childhood again.
At my high school, all students, including me, were terrified of our English teacher, Michel, sir.
He used to come every day in class with his 36-inch long rattan /rəˈtan/ stick by which he hit students who wouldn't complete homework. Every class, he assigned several English words for memorizing, and in the next class, he asked students. Suppose he pronounced a word, and we needed to answer the meaning. If anybody failed, he punished two stings by the stick for each word. Kind of your information number 2 was flexible, sometimes even more.
Sir: Fake? Stand -up.
Me: yes, sir.
Sir: tell me the meaning of compassion?
Me: mmm mmm hmmm.
Helal ( friend sitting on my backbench): whispering, Fake its "showing sympathy", ......" showing sympathy"
Me (loudly, Confidently): showing sympathy, sir, showing sympathy.
Me: mmmm ...
Jones: ( sitting my right side ): whispering, Fake, "doing something without preparation" ( but this time I didn't get him )
Me: mmm … "sir, believe me, I knew this word, I memorized it, but forget now."
Sir: Envisage? Ecstatic? Exuberant? Which one do you want to answer? (OMG, sir becomes angry, maybe he noticed of whispering my friends)
No whispering this time
Now times of punishment, I offered my palm.
( taken two stings on two hands)
(But I was clever enough, I don't want to take any more on my hand)
Sir, I can't take any more on my hand, please sting me here ( pointing my shoulder, it's less painful);
Now sir turned to my friends who were whispering one by one and asking more difficult words.
Sir: you were helping Fake even though you can't say the answer. Now take double punishment! , and he did that.
What a sacrifice!
It doesn't mean that sir could always be noticed, rather than we had been winning most of the time.
Someday we skipped school to have fun or go to the cinema, stage drama. Late afternoon when we had come home, my mother was furious. But my friend said, "it was not his fault I had influenced him to go with me". Supposedly mom didn't say anything. The same way I went to my friend's home, and all responsibility took on my shoulder the same way, we could avoid punishment from both families. But it didn't work sometimes.
I have thousands of friends now but still missing them and cannot compare them with virtual friends.
I am not even social like before, rather than most of my leisure time staying in my closed room with my only friend's mobile phone—feeling exhausted and bored.
What was it that my friends did for me? In my first story, there was a self-sacrifice. Friends are people who will help you, even if it’s not easy. In my second story, my friend lied to me. Friends are people who will keep you from getting in trouble
How many of your virtual friends can you say, do the same for you?
It’s the real friends who do these things. So let’s understand the differences and turn away from our screens, and towards our friends.
(Thanks for reading)
(One of my Speech on ToastmasterClub)