Monday, August 27, 2012


I have a hate-hate relationship with cameras. I hate the pictures they take of me, and I hate taking pictures. And I hate it when someone says, “Oh, that’s a good picture of you!”

Seriously? I look like that?

I think I peaked, photogenic-wise, in my kindergarten year. Oh, my wedding photos aren’t hideous, but really, who can resist baby teeth smiles and curly blonde hair?

Because of my dislike of photos of myself there are precious few of them in existence. Fewer photos to hate, of course, but also fewer chances of that rare good one to appear. Someone got a decent shot of me looking up adoringly at my husband, back when I thought he could do no wrong, even when he acted more like a boss than a husband. He’s a recovered bossy husband now, taking it one day at a time, but sometimes he says, “Remember when you had me on that pedestal? I miss those days.” Cling to those memories, honey. Those days are O-V-E-R.

I’m not a fan of taking pictures, as I said. When I was a child my dad manned the old box camera, taking pictures of distant, squinting children in a wiggly row. When I got married I naturally assumed my husband would follow suit. And he did, if you can call shots of little girls in backwards dresses with uncombed hair photography. On major holidays I’d come down the stairs with a hairbrush in my hand hunting snarly-haired little girls, and John would greet me with, “I took their pictures. We’re out of film.”

So I took charge of the camera.

My kids accuse me of forgetting the camera for every important event of their neglected, sad little childhoods. It’s easy for them—those smartphones are never farther than a pocket or purse away. In the old days we had to remember to bring a whole ‘nother piece of equipment. And be sure we had film. And flashcubes. And get the film developed. And we had to walk uphill both ways to the photo lab…

I’ll stop. You get the picture.