Let Me Take a Selfie

Instagram Message: When I asked him if he wanted to help me with this week's blog topic, he took a selfie. 

Instagram Message: When I asked him if he wanted to help me with this week's blog topic, he took a selfie. 

My mom never took a picture of a tourist site without an actual family member posing in front of it. She told me that it was a waste of a picture if no one was in the photo. I remember standing in Kmart with my mom as she would go thru our pictures after they were developed. She would get so mad when she would see a picture with nobody in it because it was a waste of her ten cents. It didn’t matter that it was a picture with a view of the Grand Canyon, she needed to see a person in the photo as well.  Back then, I hated getting my picture taken.  I am certain that if selfie sticks existed back in 1975 my mom would be in her own pictures and our family trips would have been a whole lot easier.  The fights about standing in front of every single landmark or tourist site were brutal. In fact, if you peak thru our family albums you will see my sour face and resistant body language in front of some awesome venues.

On the contrary, it’s pretty safe to say that our youth - a.k.a. kids, tweens, teens and millennials - can NOT get enough pictures of themselves posing in front of ANYTHING.  And because it’s all about instant gratification, taking selfies is a way of life. Why look around for someone who can take their photo when they can do it themselves quicker and better than anyone else can? Selfies are so normal that people who don’t take selfies are considered abnormal.  The surprising part about the selfie phenomenon is that no one is considered conceited for taking selfies or posting them!  It’s like the opposite of being embarrassed to be in pictures nowadays. The more opportunities to take pictures of ourselves the better!

DJ Rick started Selfie Day back in 2014 and since then, every year on June 21st selfies are posted on social media all day long. I did a little research but haven’t found any real significance of Selfie Day other than DJ Rick wanted to have fun with selfies on social media. It may be a stretch but I think selfies are thoughtful pinches that we can give to ourselves. First, a selfie gives us the opportunity to be brave enough to take our own picture and boost our self-esteem.  And second, a selfie empowers us to control when and where to take the photo. In other words, the selfie cuts the middle man out of the picture (what a pun!) and the result is a pinch - independence. Oneself. 

My pre-school silhouette is one of the first original selfies I have. To me, it’s so sweet that I had it framed many years ago.  Even though you may not know that I was wearing a yellow dress with patches of green, orange and brown around the neckline and a white, long sleeve turtleneck underneath, I can remember it. Is there any doubt that my hair was in a bowl cut and my lashes were long? My teacher probably gave this selfie to my parents for some holiday or school event.  It’s over forty-five years old. There are companies that still produce these old school selfies. Pinch a selfie fan with one of these. It’s such a treasure.

The self portrait of my son is also a treasure because it is the second time he has had the opportunity to mix colors to depict his exact skin color.  He loved the process of going between dark and light paint colors to make his exact skin color.  He may not be the best artist but I look at this picture and I positively know it’s his self portrait.  There is something about his artwork that is so distinct to me.  This selfie will also be framed and hopefully be around for forty-five plus years too.

I took my very first cellphone selfie the day after my hub gave me my first “big girl” purse years ago.  Back then, I was way too self-conscious to post it on social media yet now here I am today putting it on my blog.  What changed?  Well, after I took more selfies, I realized that I needed to relax - not all selfies HAD to be posted on social media. And not all selfies are created equally.  Delete the bad ones. Think of selfies as a thoughtful pinch to ourselves because of what they represent -  a souvenir, a captured moment, a wonderful memory.  On Selfie Day, browse thru your “Selfies Album” in your photos app. It’s fun to review those photos because you made them happen and you are the star of the show. 

Now that my mom has a selfie stick, which I gave her for Christmas a couple of years ago, it’s too bad that she barely takes any pictures.  She never brings the selfie stick with her. Fortunately for me, when she does want to capture something touristy, my kids are more than willing to be in the photo. #winning. 

Pinches,

Barb

P.S. My very first vlog. Unofficially added to this post on 6/26/17.

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