I don’t like looking back or flipping through old photographs, period. I really don’t understand the big deal behind them. I know it bring backs a flood of memories of how cute we were or how blissful those times were. I understand how old photographs – maybe black and white, small… tiny actually, rounded edges, some hazy, some blurred, with lots of fingerprints on them – has us all reminiscing about old times, but sadly, not me. Call me complaining, but old pictures, according to me, should be where they are – in albums, all stored up in the box labeled “photos”, surrounded by cobwebs, deep down in the basement.
For me, looking at old photographs brings back a downpour of bad recollections. Don’t believe me, I can point out a number of reasons I stay away from “photographic nostalgia”.
Old pictures are filled with innumerable neighbors some long forgotten and some long lost. Every “picture session time” ends with my mum saying “You’re so selfish and cold, how come you don’t remember these people, these kids played with you in the colony park, these bought you presents on your fourth birthday, they lived in the apartment right across, they called you by your pet name, cried when we shifted to a new neighborhood and now, to listen to my own daughter simply forget them. What has the world come to?”
Then, there are the unmistakable “bad pose pictures”. For the lucky lot who never experiences such displeasure, let me divulge what that phrase means. “Bad pose pictures” as is obvious, is the perennial shot most likely associated with the some doomed un - photogenic lot, including me. Or is it that as kids, we pose in the most unspeakable manner there is to be. Whatever it was, it has me running for cover. There has to be a picture with oversized glasses, blowing off birthday candles (yes, that exact moment when your mouth is full of air), two ponytails standing like antennas, squinting in the sun or the classic shot wherein your aunt or whoever it was, dressed you like a lady, complete with sari, makeup and high heels and clicked away to glory. Looking at them now, I am all red faced, others around me are “Oh look at you, so foolish yet so cute”.
Oh, I could just go on about this, but don’t worry I won’t. Next time you flip through those captured moments, hope you don’t find reasons to abhor them like I do.
Also, I would like to take a moment to thank the architect of the digital camera. May you be blessed for having put the delete option… Amen