Recalling those dreadful days through humour in social media

The news of the deadly virus spreading its tentacles all across the globe started trickling in since January last year creating scare. However; the reality hit us really hard when the nation-wide lockdown was imposed on March 24 bringing life to stand still. It has been an exceptionally tough time marked by panic and anxiety, not just in India but all across the world as governments everywhere imposed lockdowns.

As millions across the globe faced the coronavirus induced lockdowns, there was a massive shared experience. Holed up in their homes, people took to social media in a big way to burst stress by sharing jokes, memes, witty one-liners and funny videos. Online humour emerged as a kind of collective therapy for the humanity providing respite from the grim situation, though temporarily.

The period was bleak but humour in social media was at its best. As people turned to social media for beating the pandemic and lockdown blues, WhatsApp, Twitter, Facebook came to be flooded with all kinds of jokes-subtle and sarcastic, endearing and wicked. Interesting was the way in which the content of online humour changed as the lockdown inched from one phase to another. Now WFH is normal but initially when work from home was yet to gain momentum, many jokes of the new trend started doing rounds.  Remarkable was this cartoon with panic-stricken passengers on an aeroplane. “This is your pilot speaking. I’m working from home today.”

Ever since the outbreak of the pandemic, there has been no dearth of self-styled experts giving unmasked advice on treatment of the virus. All kinds of cures -allopathic, homeopathic, ayurvedic, naturopathy- have been going round the social media. Let me recall a funny post, “I have just finished my post-doctorate on corona virus treatment from WhatsApp University.”

Many posts were quirky and slightly snide wordplays. An amusing cartoon read, “Villagers in Punjab are still wondering who the hell is Soshail Distan Singh (Social Distancing)?”Another one, “Xi Jinping’s message to the world: No Ming Ling” was equally interesting. A widely-shared one-liner with pun intended, “Corona virus won’t last long because it was made in China” In contrast to the dark jokes, there was an endearing one-liner, “Dear God, please reboot 2020. It has a virus.”

Weeks into the lockdown, a post read, “I have lost all count of days and dates. I don’t know if it is Sunday or Monday, March or April.  There is neither any inflow nor outgo of money. I have risen above materialistic pursuits. Have I attained salvation?”

Lockdown locked couples 24×7 for months without any break which became a subject of many husband-wife jokes. “I and my wife are working from home. I think we will kill each other before the virus does!”Another crisp one-liner read, “Couples in lockdown are in a dilemma if they MADE for each other MAID for each other.” All hell broke loose in most middle class homes in India when the domestic help stopped coming. The absence of maids during the lockdown became a subject of many killer jokes, viral memes and deadly pun.

When liquor shops opened, lovers of Bacchus were found standing in long serpentine queues that became a theme of many WhatsApp jokes as to how they were putting their safety at stake with the noble intention of lifting the economy. There was this cartoon depicting a wife objecting to her husband’s non-stop drinking that stole my heart. The distraught husband was shown pleading he not be stopped as he was an economic warrior consuming liquor to salvage the sinking economy.

Despite rising Covid cases, when lockdown restrictions began to be eased because of economic compulsions since the month of May, I was astounded to find a witty post in my chat-box brilliantly summing up the scenario. “In a way Corona is like your spouse, initially you try to control, then you realize you can’t. And you learn to live with it.

Well ! This is the reality. Lockdown is not a practical solution. but the pandemic doesn’t seem to be going soon .Hence we need coping mechanism, Covid appropriate behavior and vaccination to deal with it.

(Published in Momspresso on 23 March 2021)

22 Replies to “Recalling those dreadful days through humour in social media”

    1. Thank you so much .I am glad you like my posts , though I would have been happier if I knew who the person is .

  1. Very interesting article Rama…the ugly and the boring pandemic narrated in such a brilliant and amusing manner.

    1. Thank you so much Mrs Dhawan. it is an honour to me that you read the piece and found it enjoyable. Thanks to social media in general and our vibrant WhatsApp group in particular that kept us connected and entertained during the most difficult time.

  2. You have beautifully testified the comment that testing times sometimes bring out the best in human beings. Thus the Pandemic brought out the sterling qualities of some and the humour surrounding it made its effects bearable. The crisp one liners and the jokes doing the Pandemic were truly an antidote to its distress.

    1. Thanks Praveen . Absolutely , humour associated with the pandemic and lockdown did provide some respite from the grim reality.

  3. Brilliantly written Rama. Though you have picked up the jokes from social media, this is a masterpiece. Enjoyed it through and through. You are right. We can’t control it, we have to learn to live with it.

    1. Thanks Alka for all your encouragement . All credit goes to social media that provided us with some lighter moments in most challenging times .

  4. Enjoyed reading your blog. Rama you have a wonderful way of putting across things in such a simple way and yet very well expressed. Well done once again

    1. Thank you so much Shubha. Glad you found the post enjoyable . In fact, I too enjoyed writing it -compiling all those funny anecdotes , jokes and puns shared on WhatsApp groups.

  5. Rock on Dear Rama. Such a great depiction of unusual pandemic time. Very brilliant way of expressing. Keep writing dear. Stay blessed always ❣️💕

  6. Wonderful expression dear Rama. You related everything that was relevant to Corona time through what was put up in social media. I am impressed by the expression and the methodology used by you. Happy writing. 😊

    1. Thanks Sanjiv . Glad you enjoyed . I have just compiled the jokes pertaining to the lock down period . The credit goes to humour on social media that gave us respite during those dreadful days.

  7. Excellent
    Due to some personal preoccupations, l could read the extremely well written article, full of matchless wit and humour today only.
    Due to revival of corona trauma, it is equally relevant and enjoyable these days, too.
    A very welcome dose of tranquilizer, tonic and stimulant, rolled into one.
    Eagerly looking forward to reading more in similar vein.

    1. Ma’am , this is such a pleasant surprise. I feel so blessed.. Coming from my own teacher, I can’t tell you how elated I am !Thank you so much ma’am for reading and giving your feedback. My joy knows no bounds..

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