Ten Years of Me

Posted: 18th March 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

I like photo screensavers. On my newest laptop I never bothered to set
one up, however, because of its comparatively lower hard disk space.
Now that I have a massive external though, I can easily afford to store
stuff there and keep one here.

So I set up a folder
specifically for screensaver pictures and, it turns out, video as well.
And as I was putting it together, and every time I see it, I realize
that it’s almost Ten Years of Me.

I had started taking
pictures with friends seriously one night in Jakarta when I was 16 or
so. Well, we had. One friend had thought to bring a camera with him to
a friend’s house party. It was still the old kind of film which needed
sending to a studio for development. Nevertheless on Monday and for the
coming weeks we loved to see those pictures. They’re probably lost now,
it was so long ago. But it started, at least for us, the idea of taking
pictures on our nights out. This became a lot easier with digital
cameras, but up until we were leaving those were still kind of uncommon
and expensive. There was no Facebook, Photobucket or any of these tools
either, so what we used to do was bring the photos in on a flashdrive
(which was new then too) and crowd around a laptop to go through them
together and laugh at what got captured.

think nights out run a little differently when you’re taking pictures.
Suddenly there’s EVIDENCE, so everyone’s behavior tightens up a bit.
It’s also on record. Particularly for us in Jakarta there was an
ever-present feeling that these were our golden years and we could see
the end on the horizon. We wanted to record it, so that it couldn’t be
entirely forgotten.

I didn’t take a lot of pictures in
Michigan. They weren’t my best years, and for most of it I didn’t have
a camera. But I still think about and care about the friends I made
there. I included my leaving pictures in my screensaver, and you can
see how it wasn’t the highest point of my life.

In Switzerland
we went a bit overboard. Everyone had cameras by then, but Facebook
only went international in my second year or so. And suddenly every
night was affected by what someone might put up on Facebook the next
day. And before long, there were a LOT of pictures floating around the
web of us getting trashed together.

And when my time in
Florida came up in pictures, I realized that since I’m turning 25 this
year, it’s almost 10 years since we first started. That’s 10 years of
documented pictures of me and the friends I’ve made over the years.
What a treasure, if anyone were to really care but me. Most people
don’t care too much about what they’re not actively participating in:
they like the pictures of themselves and people they know, but why
should they care about people they don’t?

It is, nevertheless,
always a guilty little fantasy in my mind to bring all these people I
love together in my life. Utterly impossible, but I always enjoy the
rare chance to introduce friends from one of my worlds to one from

It was a bit tempting to make a video project under
the same title as this entry, but it would be oddly self-serving.
Instead, there’s this blog.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Well call me cynical, but I don’t particularly think many people care. 😛 It’s something that is very me-focused. Probably only my family would care, and even then they’d probably wonder why it’s full of my friends. People tend to have terrific focus on things involving themselves, and a very short attention span for that which doesn’t.

    If I made a video, I wouldn’t want to make it just for me. My screensaver does that. It would be something I want to show, because videos are made for watching. You make the video for your audience, and I don’t think supply meets demand here.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the encouraging comments! 🙂 Maybe I’ll work on one, one of these days.