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Sunday, December 22, 2013

grapefruits and mullets...

Although I’m extremely pooped and need to put my old head on my pillow, I’m compelled to respond to TLC’s questions about my questionable backgrounds in the two old photos of her in her preceding post: twinsies.

First, let me take this opportunity to go back a few years—about 49. I was probably about ten years old when I became a kid who wished she had a camera. There were all kinds of cameras back in the Stone Age. I don’t remember “disposables” making an appearance until I was probably in high school—or early college. But there were cool cameras marketed for kids and I always wanted the latest model.

Cameras were a gift you tried to finagle out of your parents for your birthday—or for Christmas. The problem with asking, and receiving, a camera was the future cost of film. And then the processing of said film. And it wasn’t just the actual processing—but also getting your film to the person or place that was going to process it for you. That required transportation. Gas. Time. In short? Cameras could be an ordeal. Therefore, I didn't know much about, or own many, cameras until my early married years.

Apparently I wasn't born with an "eye"for what would/does make a good photograph. (I was destined to be quite nearsighted and maybe that's why I have issues with depth perception?) I never took a photography class. Never bought or borrowed a book on photography. Guess I should have tried harder, TLC. I think you would admit I've become better at noticing what's in the background. (I do adore my iPhone camera. I can take twenty pictures of Little Leighton and delete eighteen of them with the speed of a 40-year-old!)

The picture of TLC “standing on her head?” With the lovely box of grapefruits in the background? I’ll just say it took me two full days, while stranded during Icemageddon last week, to locate this picture. (It was a complete accident that I finally found it. Be grateful, Ms. TLC.!)  I’d love to retake that one. (Actually, I’d love to retake thousands of pictures I took during the first twenty years of our marriage. I’d also like to have the money back for all of the pictures I’ve ended up throwing away. On our first trip to Hawaii, in 1978, I took thirteen rolls of film. I had to process them one at a time (due to the expense) over a period of about six months. I threw half to 2/3rds of those pictures away about six years ago when I discovered them in a box at the Barn apartment. There were endless shots of the same sunset. The same flowers. Ocean. Scenery. Sheesh.)

The picture of TLC standing by a water faucet and Junior’s (our Basset Hound we loved for ten years) water bowl? Again, I concede, this was not a pretty place to take a picture. But the expression on TLC’s face? Priceless to me. The fact that I know that was Junior's bowl? Touches my heart.

You Younguns simply don’t understand how lucky you are to have so many options available to you as you document the stories of your lives. Fantastic cameras, including video cameras, in your cell phones. Editing abilities. Phone Apps that make your pictures look like a professional took them. Photo Shop. Instagram. Shutterfly. Wonderful, helpful, FABULOUS tools to insure you won’t have a picture, in your future or your child’s future, that has unwanted grapefruits, a water faucet and/or a dogbowl in the background. (Not sure I can guarantee your child won't have a mullet! TLC was hair-impaired for so long, I was thrilled she finally grew some. Wasn't about to have it cut until it was completely necessary. And I don't believe we had, or I knew of, the word "mullet." Teeheehee.)

As pitiful as my photography skills were in these two pictures, the memories mean everything to me.

Now, go take a picture of a cherished family member. Or a friend. Or a sunset. Or some flowers. You’ll be laughing with someone ten, twenty, thirty years from now about that picture. Maybe crying a teensy bit, too.

(Less then three days until Christmas! Wwhhhaaaattttt? Less than nine days until 2014! Unbelievable. Seriously.)