Tuesday, June 05, 2007

You Press The Button; We Do The Rest


Once when I was being photographed on a street corner, a man with a brown spider tattoo covering half his face, leaned out his truck window and offered to take me home. As far as approaches to getting a date go, this ranks up there as one of the worst. He kept yelling at me until the light turned green and cars honking behind him moved him along. Mr. Spider-Face Pants had an awful menacing aura, one that said I have a lot of bodies in my crawl space. I did not dilly dally on the street after that encounter. Taking and posing for pictures requires nerves of steel, and barring that, a few strong martinis. After all, you never know what's going to work and furthermore what will be revealed -- too much, not enough, something lovely or tragic or miserable.

Now I wonder about the tattoo, about where he got the design, and who had the talent and patience to fulfill his wish. I didn't know if he ever wanted to wash it off and start over, to be himself again without the vivid markings. But perhaps that's the point -- to let people know who you are without saying a word. Such is the power of a photograph. It tells people something that you cannot. We carry them around in our wallets, frame them in our homes. We put them on refrigerator doors pinned up by magnets from places we've been and may never go again, those tiny reminders of times that were joyous at least in memory.


Michelle's Spell of the Day

"Most dolls belong to little girls and live in houses. But this one was different. She lived in the woods. She didn't belong to anyone, but she had more friends than she could count." Dare Wright

Cocktail Hour

Drinking documentary suggestion: What Remains

Benedictions and Maledictions

Happy Tuesday!

7 comments:

rush limbaugh said...

the martini route never worked too well for me. Docs and meds, its the way to go.

kuroi kumo said...

Hi this is the first time I'm reacting here. But It's the pictures that drew to your blog. The writing is always a good read. And as for Liquid Courage. I Guess it depends on the situation.

Charles Gramlich said...

I wonder how often his pickup approach worked, or if the point was just to be obnoxious.

the walking man said...

tattoos and photographs do share a similarity of memory don't they? One you can always use a cigarette to burn an ex lovers face off of , the other you're stuck with the memory no matter what.

maybe if I had anything about me photogenic i would be on a refrigerator somewhere but the damn camera always breaks the same as when I say anything subversive about this administration I get temporarily booted from the internet the same as you got temporarily harrassed for being photogenic.

It is nice being the doll living in the woods.

eric313 said...

This is wonderful writing to witness, m. You flow so well it makes feel awsome just to read it.

Did you write this one right after you wrote the one yesterday? They flow so well together. I hope you are writing something huge with all this related material. Every paragraph you have writen in the last few weeks is something beautiful to read and underdstand and that's why I'm always praising you so much. There couldn't be a better teacher, and the example you set in writing every day proves that.

And you always look great in your pics, no mater what. Cool to see your use of the materila life throws at your feet by the curb.

I always loved the idea of photgraphy, setting a momment into concrete image forever, so even if you don't remember that day readily, you have something to spark your memory.

But even that's never a guarantee that integrity will be maintained by the mind over time. Memories and photographs can remain faithfull and clear, or they can corrupt and fade. It depends on the truthfulness of the subject to the eye of the photgrapher. And then on the interpretion of third parties. Then on the care of one entrusted with the moments contained on their glossy form, for the back pocket wallet maybe close to the heart of the carrier, but it is a death sentance for the paper component of memory.

Photographs are a boon to the heart of the beholder, and give peace of mind to those entrusted to keep them. But there is no substitute for actual memories that bolster the feelings communicated by one of these simple reminders that though every thing is real in the present, our past becomes less so every day week month year and decade that passes. It is good that people document the natural history of beauty both in their lives, as well as around them.
Your living words come alive and fly with the memory of your voice, but the photograph makes the connection flare into existance against the heavy folds of memory's fading light.

Take care, take pics, take your time and have fun. The grindstone is nigh for all of us, somebody should have some fun and hope that it's you for a change.

John Ricci said...

My Dear Michelle
Lovely post and view as always. It is good to catch up again. Men with spider tattoos are to be avoided and you were wise so to do. Good health champagne toasts more fuel economy and a vigorous Bravo!

Susan Miller said...

Ah yes, photographs. Images that speak volumes but sometimes render us speechless.