I’m in the middle of a fight. My mother and I can’t agree on who veteran actor Rajesh Khanna shared a toothbrush with back in his heyday. Was it Tina Munim or Anju Mahendru? “Google it,” my sister intervenes.
Yesterday, I couldn’t remember what singer Kailash Kher looked like. “Google him,” my colleague told me. Even when I’d lost the recipe for Nigella Lawson’s chocolate cake, my cooking buddy’s answer was simple — “Google it”.
Two words. It’s become as simple as that to find the answer to most of life’s questions. Hit Google and you’ll know the answer to everything under the sun. You could find out, for example, whether there is life after death, or why the sky is blue. Or Kareena Kapoor’s age or even why your boyfriend is mean to you.
Google has answers to everything. You don’t need to go to a shrink anymore, the search engine can provide you with the ‘sanest and best advice’ anyone’s ever given. Some even believe that Google is the closest thing to God. In fact there’s even a Church of Google that believes that Google is all-knowing and therefore divine. It’s true, Google thrives on the absurd.Don’t get me wrong. I love Google. In fact, I don’t think I could survive without it, especially at work. But the search engine has taken the fun out of a fight and the anger out of an argument.
There is no scope for speculation any more — Google has ruined all my chances of being right on a bluff. Which makes me wonder how we ever made it without this search engine, or, for that matter, even the Internet.
While it’s only been 11 years since we’ve had Google, it’s the big 4-oh for the Internet, this year. Four decades of virtual knowledge that have changed the way we remember, forever.
While it has tamed my enthusiasm to memorise everything, it has given me the ability to know all about things that I love. I don’t think, at 29, my father could rattle off answers to how to groom a horse, or what the best headphones are, or what hedge funds are, all in one breath. I am fairly certain my grandmother never even imagined that I could be taught how to make payasam or prune a bonsai without direct human intervention.