Recently, someone shared a video in a WhatsApp group. It showed teens celebrating a friend’s birthday with two cakes. When the boy cut one, his friends pushed his face into the other cake. By the time they left, 80% of it lay on the floor and their faces, hands and clothes. Then a poor man appeared and ate cake off the floor. The video ended with statistics about how many people die from starvation every day.
I forgot to use my headphones while watching the video, which troubled my roommate with its emotional background music. As soon as I realised this, I stopped the video. The core message of the story was nothing new to me; I often come across such things and they have little impact on my life. With a full stomach, why would I be bothered? So, I can’t share the video saying “so relatable.”
I spend a lot of time on social networking sites and YouTube and get to see a lot of viral videos, insane trends and crazy stuffs. But yesterday, there was one video that made me think even after it finished.
The guy put random things in his microwave to see what happens, likely for the oddly satisfying experience. He already had a list of items not recommended to put in a microwave, some of which weren’t even food. The 10-minute video showed him burning fruits, CDs, coloring pencils and Barbie dolls.
I was fine until he put the Barbie and the coloring pencils in the microwave. I was filled with anguish when the video ended. Why? Was I overreacting to something funny? I don’t know! The thing is, as a kid, I always wanted a Barbie but my parents couldn’t afford one. Although I had plenty of cheap toys, owning a Barbie seemed too expensive for me so eventually I forgot about it.
The other thing is coloring pencils; painting was something that made me really happy. My pastel box usually only contained 12 or 24 colors at most—I wished for an entire set containing water colors, pastels and pencils with 50 different shades. Maybe my expectations were too high; mom never found out because if she did then she would have compromised her own needs (which are obviously more important). Over time those childhood desires faded away into dust. But when I saw a 40-year-old guy burn such an expensive set of colors just for fun, it didn’t feel entertaining or satisfying in any way.
This incident reminded me of the previous video. I don’t have the right to tell people what to do with their money, but it’s heartbreaking to see. When I saw a Barbie catch fire in the microwave, a part of me felt sad. Sure, it’s a luxury item, but food is one of life’s basic needs. If you can afford to buy food just for fun and waste it, please think twice—feeding someone who is starving is oddly satisfying too.
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