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Retouché - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
Every time I load my Live Journal page, I'm taken aback by my new icon. I don't think I've ever had a less natural photo made of me, what with the putting on of a blazer and tie, the insistence that I pose at a certain angle, and the retouching that I never requested. It's funny that the image came out so strange, since I was feeling better the day it was taken than I had on almost any day in my teens.

Freshly returned from a brutally intense but illuminating "pre-college" art camp at Rhode Island School of Design, during which I'd been exposed to everything from Bad Brains to the meaning of "quim," learned how to fuck shit up with a photocopier, and lost a bunch of weight, I was more confident in myself than I'd been since we lived in Pennsylvania. I remember waiting for my session in the parking lot behind the studio on a typically steamy summer day, glorying in the prospect of having a school year in which I would present myself like the proverbial ugly duckling turned into a swan. I suppose a little of that comes through in the photograph, in the recesses of my eyes, but the overriding impression it gives me is of someone trying to look like everybody else. Maybe that's why I felt it necessary to make the other content on my yearbook page so biting.

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9 comments or Leave a comment
grandissimus From: grandissimus Date: September 9th, 2007 11:02 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Hey, it could've been worse. You could've been at a Catholic prep school, like me, where you had to look like everybody else – or else.

"Thank you, sir! May I have another?"
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: September 9th, 2007 11:25 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Good point. But the girls look so hot in those skirts, which must provide a small measure of compensation!

I've been loving your writing here of late.

Did you e-mail me? I can't seem to find the message.
grandissimus From: grandissimus Date: September 10th, 2007 03:12 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Thanks for the compliment. I'm glad you like the recent posts.

Alas, my school was all guys. The girls at our "sister schools" were indeed hot in those skirts, but I had to wait until after school for such delights.

I was going to send you an e-mail semi-officially outlining my diss. topic — a précis of a précis, if you will — but C.'s sister's beginning studies at Brown interrupted things; I was conscripted into "the transition team."
From: e4q Date: September 10th, 2007 03:01 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
i think it is amazing and weird. it is very old timey. you look like a mormon missionary, not someone who has just had a superliberal art and sex fest.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: September 10th, 2007 10:28 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Indeed. Maybe I would have been happier if I had gone on to become a Mormon missionary!

As I recall, my face was only a little bit broken out. But the studio was so intent on making me look smooth that they made it almost impossible to see my lips.
From: e4q Date: September 10th, 2007 10:38 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
i think there is a certain amount of bliss associated with having such a complete and prescriptive worldview all ready for you to step into, but on balance, best not!
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: September 10th, 2007 11:17 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Bliss = death; Anxiety = life.
From: e4q Date: September 10th, 2007 11:29 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
praise the lord!
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: September 10th, 2007 06:09 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I feel He's undersung. Poor guy.
9 comments or Leave a comment