The year was 1998, the boy band movement was sweeping the globe, and I was entering 7th grade. My hair gleamed with an orange tint, the result of the misconception, the magical spray in substance “Sun In,” could make your dark-brown-hair blonde. Nobody had digital cameras, no phone cameras, no facebook. The best way to take photos? A disposable film camera.
I met her in choir, she was as beautiful as her voice. When we started dating it was magic. Like drinking star dust from a disney cup, the thoughts and feelings for her exploded in my mind, leaving trails of sparks through the night sky. But like all young love, after 8 or so months, it was gone. Nothing left, except the sweet scent of Clinique Happy, that will forever remind me of her. I don’t even remember who broke up with who. But just to cover my bases, in the case she broke up with me, I would have said, “you made a big mistake you’ll never regret it. I’m going to be a famous photographer someday!” If I broke up with her back then, I would have said,”sorry, I just don’t see how we can work things out, given i’m on the 7th grade football team and you are a cheerleader. I mean…we ride the same bus to games. Things are getting too serious. We’ve got a championship to worry about.”
At this point you’re wondering where i’m going with this. Well, before digital camera technology, the visual traces of relationships were fleeting. They were glossy 4×6 prints, easily disposable via scissors, fire, or the good old fashioned shredding by hand. My relationship back then, was analog. No status changes, no endless photo tags on a timeline. Only small moments recorded on a glossy double print. You could fit a relationship into a shoebox.
Compare that to today, where anything and everything about relationships is out there. Hundreds even thousands of photos, tags, comments, and status updates. It’s never-ending. No longer are the traces fleeting, they are endless. With the advent of digital camera technology, our personal lives have become yearbooks, instead of small pieces of paper in a box. Is it good or bad? I’m not sure, but it’s something to think about. There is, however, one thing I know for sure. It’s easier to throw away a shoebox than to tackle the endless web called the internet.
Do you wish relationships were still analog (film based), or is digital better for keeping the love alive?