No Pictures Please

WHAT’S PLAYING:  Bruno Mars “Liquor Store Blues”

I hate having my picture taken. If I had to choose between posing for a camera and putting out an oil rig fire with my tongue, I’d be on the next plane to Kuwait.

 

Lately, it’s gotten worse. Now that everyone has a camera/video phone, I’ve gone from antisocial to downright paranoid. I don’t like parties, but on the rare occasions I attend one, I’m jumpier than a bunny rabbit on speed. I’m a basket case, keeping constant watch for a cell phone pointed in my direction, twisting and turning in ways that would make a contortionist proud, all to avoid having my picture snapped.

Why I hate being in photos is a mystery. Even to me. Whenever I decline to participate in group photographs, my friends sigh in exasperation and point out that I used to be a model. True. But I hated it even then. In fact, the only reason I got into modeling was so that someone not related to me would tell me I was pretty.

Earlier this week, I got some bad news from my Social Media 101 teacher. Apparently, people relate best to people they can see, which meant I needed a photo for my blog, website and social media profiles.

 

(Gulp.)

I calmly explained to my teacher that I don’t like having my photo taken. I’d rather people concentrate on my words rather than my face.

He didn’t budge.

I tried a different tack. My hair looks weird on film. I have acne and braces and I don’t even wear makeup.

Nothing.

As I got more desperate, so did my excuses. My eyes are sensitive to light. Cameras give me hives! Scurvy! Rickets!

His reply? Get over it.

So, that’s how I wound up spending five hours changing clothes, rearranging my hair, posing, and later, combing through photographs until I found one that wasn’t too bad, but still looked like me.

 

(You can check out the full size one on the About Page.)

I have to admit that — while it sucked — it wasn’t the torturous, crawl-over-broken-glass-while-gargling-sulfuric-acid, experience I thought it would be.

But if I come down with rickets, my teacher is in serious trouble.

 

 

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Technological Miracles vs. Everyday Ones

WHAT’S PLAYING: Miley Cyrus “Party in theU.S.A.”

A couple of months ago, I bought a new phone. This sucker has a full keyboard, massive screen, camera, video, and all the latest Android technology. Sleek and shiny, it really is a marvel.

And yet, whenever I have to make a call, I find myself reaching for my trusty old tracfone. Why? I don’t know. Probably out of habit. Or maybe it’s my ever-present fear of change.  

Either way, it’s hard to believe that both these phones evolved from the one Bell invented back in 1876.

 

See what I mean?

I love gadgets. I do. In addition to two cell phones, I have a home weather station that I haven’t set up yet, two iPods (just in case one breaks), a tablet, a couple of DVD players, video game consoles, and various other devices.

When I think about the near miraculous strides humans have made over the past couple of centuries, I’m filled with both awe and humility.

Case in point: here is a link to an article about a robot so lifelike that at first, I thought it was an actor pretending to be a robot. You can find the video here:  http://mashable.com/2011/03/04/lifelike-robot/

(Welcome to Skynet, people.)

My first reaction was, “That is so cool!” Then I realized just how eerily lifelike the android was, even down to simulated breathing. There is a fine line between genius and creepy, and this thing crosses it.

If that isn’t enough real life sci-fi for you, there’s this:  http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/harry-potter-invisibility-cloak-effect-created-real-texas/story?id=14674417

 OK, that is seriously cool. Can a cure for cancer or a recipe for immortality be far behind?

With all these major advances in technology though, I’m left wondering what the future will bring. Already, people spend more time online than they do with friends and family. Then there’s the loss of privacy and common courtesy. Recently, I read a story about a blogger who overheard a couple breaking up in a public restaurant. Instead of ignoring it, he Tweeted the dissolution of their marriage in real-time. Granted, the couple probably should have picked a more private spot to end their relationship, but this guy was out of line.

I’m not a huge fan of social interaction, online or off. In fact, I usually go out of my way to avoid it. Still, when I do manage to crawl out of my shell every now and then, it’s not to update my status on Facebook. There’s more to life than technology and the latest and greatest discovery.

In fact, if you really want to see something cool, just get up early to watch a sunrise. Listen to a child’s laughter, take a walk, or simply ask about your family’s day. You’d be surprised at the everyday miracles this world holds, if you would only stop Tweeting long enough to notice. 

 

  What could possibly be cooler than that?