This picture has been retweeted at least 7000 times. It was taken at a premiere of the film ‘Black mass’. OK, so maybe trying to capture Johnny Depp (digitally at least) and store him on your phone justifies this phone-induced frenzy. Admittedly, if I’d been there I would have been pointing my iPhone at any scruffy-haired, sun-glassed individual only remotely looking like Johnny Depp.
Take a closer look at the photo. Do you notice the lady with the pink glasses? She’s capturing the moment too, but in her brain, letting the scene quietly sink in. No low-battery-hysteria for her. Although – knowing my mom versus technical equipment – we could be romanticising this picture, and the lady just wouldn’t know how to bloody work a camera or smart phone to save her life.
But still, this event reminds me of an ex-boyfriend who went traveling through Peru and Bolivia for months and didn’t bother to bring a camera (there were no smart phones then. Though I doubt if he has one now). True, he’s Irish so maybe he just forgot to pack one or was too skint to buy one ;-), but he wasn’t worried about experiencing special moments and not having anything to show for it.
When I’m on holiday, photo-fury sometimes takes hold of me and can interfere with the vacation experience. It’s a drive, an obligation almost to take photo’s and to take them well. I’m always feverishly looking out for great shots, already thinking how they’ll look on my Facebook page.
Today, it’s like moments not captured on camera never happened at all. It sounds like an ironic variation of the old philosophical question “If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”. Which I always thought a ridiculously human-centered question by the way.
And don’t even get me started on selfies. All I can say is, with full respect to friends and relatives of the selfie-related death victims: there will be a lot of contestants for the Darwin awards the coming years.