Kids these days don’t know how good they have it with all these crazy photo-taking moms, like yours truly.
Since January of this year, I have taken 1,172 photos with my cellphone. One of these days my kids will appreciate my dedication, right? If they don’t appreciate the SD cards full of backed up photos since the day they were born, perhaps they will appreciate the stacks of scrapbooks I have slaved over since their father and I began dating in 2010.
Folks, I’m addicted to photos.
Photos weren’t always so easy to come by. Back before Facebook albums (or should I say My Space albums?), there were real photo albums. If your parents had really good intentions, then there were boxes and boxes of undeveloped film stored away in the back of closets. I don’t remember what all of my childhood looked like, but I guarantee there is some film tucked away in a box somewhere in my momma’s house that can. Honestly, I’m not even sure how one goes about developing film these days.
A couple of weeks ago, I called out to my friends and family for their best film stories.
My husband, Chris, wins the game with his tale.
In the sixth grade, Chris went on a field trip to the old state jail in Wheeling, WV. During a demonstration of how they used to execute prisoners, he decided to snap a few photos of the dummy hanging from the rope. Harmless, right? It was until his mom took the film to be developed many, many weeks later. The photo police were calling asking questions about the photos. Chris had honestly forgotten what he had taken a photo of that had everyone stirred up. My mother-in-law says that the whole thing is funny now, but at the time, it wasn’t funny at all. The photo center was tempted to call the police until she explained the situation.
One friend shared with me about the time they used an entire roll of film taking photos of their cat only to get a stack of blurry photos back. Those little Kodak cameras never did have a high tolerance of movement.
Blinking in a photo had a whole other repercussion in the days of film. There were no retakes because by the time the film came back, you had already washed off the super cool eyeliner design you spent hours perfecting.
You know what I think I miss the most about those little film cameras? The photo limit. Let’s be real folks, you only had a limited number of snaps before your film was empty. In elementary school, my class took a field trip to Washington D.C. My mom gave me a little pink camera and two rolls of film. You better bet I thoroughly thought out every photo I took that day. Prioritizing goofy faces with my best friend over the Washington Monument wasn’t easy, but back then, sometimes the best choice wasn’t always the easiest one to make. Heaven forbid someone snatch your camera and waste a photo.
While I love my cellphone and its endless photo taking abilities, I do sometimes miss those film days. Opening up an envelope of freshly developed photos was so exciting. You just never knew what you were going to get.