I heard the light thud of my heels dropping into the plush carpeting. Layers of shimmering silk floated around me. A few wrinkled edges slipped off my bed. The long strands grew weary of dancing and fell asleep on my cheek. The freshly unpinned curls exhaled in waves over the ivory sheets. I slowly ran a finger down the length of a perfect curl. I watched all the bends stand up. I slid a finger over my lips. A hint of gloss smoothed my skin. The beauty was fading; but no worries. The pictures were already taken. I closed my eyes.
Why do we smile in pictures? Well, because we want to look happy. So when we look back at them we can convince ourselves that we lived life, not just existed. Why do we start fixing our hair or pulling out a mirror? We want proof that we look good. Why do most pictures have more than one person in them? We want to show that we have friends. That we are not alone and people want us in their lives, in their memories. We thrive on feeling worthy enough to be eternalized.
I know all of this and I still love pictures. My roommates have banned me from buying any more frames. Once a roll is filled I get my pictures developed right away. Sometimes even on the same day, and always with the one hour photo option. While I was analyzing a picture a few days ago, I realized something.
Each person that adds to a group photo represents another relationship in the life of the main subject of the photo. But it occurred to me that perhaps each person just gives another excuse to that person on how they can see themselves.
Wait, what? OK