Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Found in a Photo Album

I found a photo album while visiting my family. It was filled with pictures of my parents and aunts & uncles when they were YOUNG. . . like my age. It was amazing and all I've thought about for the past month since seeing the album so casually placed in the living room next to the couch no one ever sits in.

In the pictures they all look Ridiculously handsome or gorgeous. Maybe it is a rich and privileged thing or maybe just that people were healthier in '78. I worry a little because of the pictures of my dad. He looks different in the pictures. He is darker than everyone in my mom's family; like he's another race. Like he's Jewish, which I honestly never really though meant anything till seeing all the pictures of young pure w.a.s.p.s. Their skin glows, they're slim, smile with white teeth, and their fair hair shines like the small waves of the lake as they sit in sail boats and play with irish setters.

Could I ever be that thin? Does my skin look clear? Should I grow my hair long, wear slacks, and hippy smocks from Guatemala? Did my family really play outside and smile all the time? Should I hire a professional photographer to follow me around in this prime ...before it's too late? They look so happy back then and they don't now. Does that mean they weren't really happy then? All the husbands and wives in the pictures are gone, all 4 of my aunts and uncles have been married twice. They are all currently divorced. My mom is the only one who married once and stayed married. Is this proof that it is stupid to get married or be happy or not be happy. Seeing the world in pictures 5 years before I was born was very confusing.

Now comes the embarrassing part: I stole 2 of the pictures.

They were just so powerful, each snap shot like a time bombs or a wild turtle...something I could stare at for hours and make up stories and theories about.

The picture at the top of this entry is of my uncle edward who died last year. I didn't get to go to his funeral and as a result I feel like someone broke into my apartment while I was at the grocery store and stole something important from me and broke my window. I miss him. He is not young looking in this picture, he has looked that good for the past 30 years. The woman on the far right of the picture is my mom. She is tiny, the dimple on her cheak the largest part of her body. I have the sweater she's wearing in my closet. She looks so happy in the picture...when I think about it now I realize that she has looked sad for the past 20 years.

This picture is of my Grandma. She's tough as hell and likes to make and do. I wish I could be like her.


Anonymous Justin said...

a wonderful update. i really enjoyed it - thanks for posting it.

10:38 PM  

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