Are bookshops and online stores turning your book-buying into a dropdown menu? Are they making books feel like toothpaste racks? Month’s stock. Tick. Saved time by going straight to section phalaan phalaan. Tick tock. Pause.

To me, reading is not an act of nervous ticking multimedianess, nor a hashtag to-do list, but going into my mental dappled afternoon zone. I slow down. I revolt against this act of reflection being turned into a samosa snack.

For, wasn’t the charm of real world browsing all about leaving with something completely different from whatever you may have walked in looking for? A combination of the bookseller who knew your tastes, some chit-chat, lazy categorisation and books lying randomly around – leading to delightful discoveries.

A pleasure that is now being hijacked by this GPS like convenience of perfect slotting. Each one yelling, choose me, choose me, in a suddenly only one-way conversation. I was walking around such a bookstore the other day when I realised that I felt… nothing. Waves of categories winged past me like jets in a video game, and I exited the store to breathe.

One of my favourite modern philosopher’s – Paul Virilio - words came back to me. Contact but no contact.

So, here’s how book categories in today’s bookshops could easily be re-labelled.

Bestsellers: Books you can read as movies.

Biographies: 90% bad guys. 10% world changers. Hitler, always available.

Books on sale: Proofing and printing error copies.

Children: Books that grown-ups lovingly buy for kids to teach them values they forget to practise themselves.

Crime: Stories which kill. Your nails.

Drama: Check the movies section.

Education: Dummy guides to mugging.

Fiction: Spun a yarn, somebody got hurt, some awards happened.

Graphic Novels: Dank existential sketches with a head but no tale, and other arty mini-movies.

Horror: From ha to bwahahaha in that blackish green tint.

Indian literature: Indians writing and getting published.

Myth & History: Unlikely place in India where these sections actually talk to each other.

Non-fiction: Somebody else paid the writer’s bills.

New Arrivals: Buy me, I have industry pressure.

Professional: How to do a multi-million dollar anything.

Poetry: Neruda, Tagore, and anthologies of other forgotten folk.

Queer: Love, interrupted.

Romance: Ishq-kiya. Enter ex, sex or self-pity.

Science & Technology: For those who get it.

Self-help: I'm screwed and no one gets it, not even me.

Spirituality: Books picked up on bad days by those who diss real spiritual practises.

Sport: Books not written by the best sports columnists.

Translations: Great books in languages you don’t know, loser!

Travel:  Guides to the postmodern epidemic of somewherelseitis.

And a section which doesn't exist, but should, with an entirely appropriate exclamation mark: Oh! I saw this author at that lit-fest.