A Terrible Photo

The young woman who took my photo at the DVM politely offered to retake it to try to get a better photo. I looked at my face as the camera sees it. “Thanks, but it’s really hopeless. There’s no such thing as a good picture of me any more.”

Please use the open space below to share your first 50 words on the topic “a terrible photo.”


Author: Virginia DeBolt

Writer and teacher who writes blogs about web education, writing practice, and pop culture.

5 thoughts on “A Terrible Photo”

  1. “Reality” shows don’t appeal to me; in fact I abhor them. The reason? Because people have been brought up being subjects of camera and video pictures, beginning at birth and even earlier. “Reality” today, is an expression of the unreal, the posed, an instant in our journey of life, not of the chaos which is our 21st century milieu. A happy memory of mine originates in an event way back when: at the central schools’ office where I worked at the time, we were learning the ins & outs of TV. The final portion was that each of us was to issue, live, a statement of our own. Mine came pretty much toward the end after great contributions from everyone else. Thank God I have a sense of humor, because when mine was aired the whole room erupted in laughter. And thank God, that image allowed me to do whatever educational work I did for our TV station as someone other than “talent.” Bottom line, I take terrible photos all the time because I simply cannot fake it. c

  2. “What a terrible photo it is”, exclaimed the innocent little boy . Little did he know that she was the most beautiful soul who survived the acid attack but died at the hands of the insults she faced because of her mutilated face and mutilated character. His mother smiled through the photo at him.

  3. “Hmm. ”
    The lady at the checking counter was incredulous. “Are you sure this account is yours?”
    “Yes, ma’am !” I replied with polite patience .
    “And this photo is yours?” She had flipped to the front where a 12 years younger me grinned , in a full lipsticked smile.
    “Are you sure ?”
    It was my turn now to lose patience . “Look ma’am . This account was opened 12 years ago . How can you expect me to look the same ?”
    “The self-same pretty me .” I added, in poetic license . I snorted a small laugh.She was not amused . She looked at me , of shorn mane , and dry-lipped scowl, and retorted, “But , this ma’am , is a terrible photo!”
    I was silent . For this was my wedding day snap , and all told me that i looked verrry pretty and much younger in this snap. Now this small , bespectacled girl was telling me otherwise .
    Surprisingly , she added , “You look much prettier now. Your normal relaxed self .” She gave me a warm smile as she signed and stamped my paper. Then She directed me to two other counters to get countersigned and counterstamped , before I could shut down my 12 year old account .

  4. For the hundredth time she heard her mother say, “Don’t frown.” She was constantly being told by all the aunts, grandmother, and mother to stop frowning because it could become permanent and would make a terrible photo. It seemed someone always had a camera and wanted to take pictures. She tried to explain that the sun shining in her eyes was almost painful and she couldn’t help but frown. Each time she sees that photo of herself dressed in a long blue silk gown with the gold halo and fluffy wings the nuns made for the girls, she sees that innocent little angel frowning as if she’s angry with the world. She recalls how much she loved getting dressed as an angel and solemnly walking down the aisle of the church during special celebrations. She always made sure that her little hands were held in the praying gesture; pointed skyward, as taught by the nuns. She can’t imagine how she loved the entire ritual so much but her photos always belied the fact because she was frowning. A terrible picture!

  5. I asked Myles, did you have your class photo taken. As a proud grandma I always collect class photos . Myles was not ready to commit . I asked him again and he replied with some reluctance “well yes and no.” ” Ok, which is it ,” I said. Yes that I had my photo taken and it was a terrible photo. No to forget it was taken and hope to have a new one to give you.

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