This week hasn’t been a total loss. I finally got together all my old photos and shipped them off to a photo scanning business. They’ll probably send them off to some third world country where political prisoners will scan them into a computer along with subtle hidden pleas for rescue from durance vile. Silly political prisoners, Americans don’t do subtle.

Oh, okay, I’m sure no political prisoners are used in the scanning of my photos, so I don’t have to feel guilty, except for the amount of money I’m paying (and I avoid libel charges). The end result though is that now the photos will be stored in the cloud and not left behind when we have to flee a wildfire or rampaging wild bears. Not that any of that happens often, or actually, ever, so far. But one should be prepared as Mary points out every week, kind of like a semi-deranged scout leader. Only semi-deranged, honey! Not full-on crazy! Man, I am going to be dealing with lots of ticked off people when this post goes up.

Anyway, the photo scanning project had been a long time in gestation and only completed now because I ran out of other, less onerous to-do tasks. There is a natural limit to the number of times one can reorganize their tool collection, apparently. On the other hand, going through all my old photos is kind of an eye opening experience. Like, was I ever really that young? Well, obviously, but why am I so old now? I was in West Virginia once? Why? Were platform shoes and silk patterned shirts really cool? Again, why? Who are these people in the photos? Three quarters of the people I took pictures of, people I worked with, partied with, engaged in death defying escapades with, and laughed in the face of certain doom with, have names I cannot remember. This shouldn’t be construed as meaning that these particular people are lost and forgotten, unlike say West Virginia. I just have the world’s worst memory for names.

So along with pictures of people whose names I cannot recall, when looking through my photos I am also forced to confront the fact that I take really crappy photos. I mean, the kind of photos that a three year old with a Fisher-Price My First Camera would have no problem bettering. I don’t just stink at taking photos, I should probably be forced to give up all devices that have photographic capabilities of any sort, to spare myself and future generations from the dreadfulness. I have numberless pictures in my albums with badly out of focus or over-exposed shots. And just how does one get an overexposed shot on an Instamatic? I don’t know but I did it, and not once, but over and over.

Today, I am familiar with the concept of the importance of lighting while taking a picture. In the past, it appears that I only took photos on days when the weather was dreary, sunless or drizzling. Perhaps the weather during most of the Seventies and Eighties was like that, though it seems unlikely. As to photographic subjects, well let’s say, that even with a terribly jaundiced eye (my own), I cannot find anything interesting to say about what appears to be fifteen rolls of film of antique cannons at the Tower of London and, for some variety, Edinburgh Castle. All I can say is that, as with so many things from my past, it seemed like a good idea at the time.


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