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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Thoughts on History, Movies, & Photography

I don't belong here.  Have I mentioned that here before?  Maybe; I can't remember.  I might just be getting myself all mixed up with every other time I've ever mentioned the fact that I'm all wrong for this decade.  Well, all wrong, except for an addiction to the Internet.  And a growing appreciation for hip-hop.  And a great sadness when I think that, if I were twenty or thirty years older today, I might not have watched Supernatural from the beginning.  And think of all the hot guys I wouldn't know about!

Then again...think about all the hot guys I've missed out on.

Anyway, history was always one of my favorite classes in school, all through my years from elementary to high school.  Drawing from my vague knowledge of certain time periods in American history and what the movies have told me, I've narrowed my possible destined locations to two decades: the 1940s and the 1980s.

I know war is hell - not from firsthand experience.  It's just something you know is wrong and we should probably be trying to avoid at all costs.  But the World War II era is just so intriguing.  I don't really know what it's like to go without.  I don't know what it's like to have a sweetheart overseas, someone to write to and pray for.  I want to dance at the officer's club to swing music and join the armed forces as a nurse, or work in a factory.  Or play baseball, like in A League of Their Own.  As terrifying as it must have been to live through that, it also seems incredibly exciting to have been alive in such a time of change and upheaval.

But I don't know if it's something about the romance of that period drawing me to the '40s, or the whole decade.  Whereas, with the '80s, I'm sure I would fit right in.  The bold colors, the music, the movies, the celebrities, the TV, the fashion - I have died and gone to shoulder pad heaven just thinking about it.  Who knows?  In another time, I might be the East Coast's answer to Cameron Crowe.  I could have run off to Hollywood at the height of the yuppies and made a name for myself in a John Hughes film.  I might have been in Top Gun (or, at least, swaying with my well-coiffed boyfriend to "Take My Breath Away").




No matter how much I love a movie, I'll find something about it to mock.  It gets worse when it's my dad and I together in the room, and it's a movie we know and love.  Nothing is sacred.  We usually watch sci-fi/fantasy together, but God forbid I try to introduce him to (read: force him to watch) one of my favorites, and it gets a little silly/sappy/girly/human.  It becomes a competition, to see who can rip the director, the actors, the entire plot a bigger, newer asshole.

We watched Pearl Harbor today, as a family - my mom, my dad, and I - because it was just kind of on and none of us had anything better to do tonight.  Then, my mom left the room for a little while.  You can imagine the terrible, terrible, terrible things that were said.

I love watching movies.


No matter what's going on, I become the photographer of the group.  Usually, it's just because I'm the only one who remembered to actually bring a camera.  That means I'm not in a lot of pictures, which bugs me, sometimes.  So, sometimes, I tell other people to bring cameras.  Or I just "forget" to bring mine and pray someone else thought to bring theirs.  I know I'm making memories just by being there, and by being behind the camera, I have a huge amount of control over what we remember later and what we let slip.  But I still need to rep myself on Facebook, y'know?  Pics or it didn't happen, and all that.

What's really great about me and my camera is that I don't need a huge group of people around me to go on a photography excursion.  When my friends and I do go somewhere heavily populated, I like taking what I like to call "creeper pics" - crowd shots, quick pictures of cute kids, people in love, the usual.  I can't help it that they just look perfect!

But I like wandering around by myself, too (I'm very independent - that's what Mom always said).  In Boston, I used photography as a procrastination tool, and as an excuse to get out and enjoy a beautiful day.  I would walk everywhere and anywhere, glad for the sunshine and the exercise.  Sometimes, I just had a need to get out when it was snowing, when it looked like it was about to rain, when I had a paper due the next day that I really needed to get done.  And whenever I came home for vacations, I'd make sure to run to local parks to get my fill of wildlife shots.  Now that I'm home until September, I'll be getting out there with my hipster Nikon as much as possible.

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