I don’t understand this selfie madness thing. I just don’t get it! I have always felt uncomfortable in front of a camera which is weird because I host a TV show and perform standup comedy. However, in those scenarios, I am able to forget the presence of the camera because I have been blessed with ADD. I see the camera and then I don’t. But I digress…the topic is selfie madness.

Have you ever looked at photographs of people from the 1800’s? No one smiled. The people who stood in front of the cameras looked stiff, sullen and in pain. They were often forced to be photographed as part of some familial tradition which we refer to as the family portrait. And take note, sometimes head clamps were used to restrict the movements of the fidgety members of the family.

By the 1900’s Kodak had developed the Brownie snapshot camera. Kodak encouraged families to create their own Kodak moments. Family portrait tradition gave way to the “let’s take embarrassing photos of the children now so that we can embarrass them later” movement (my family archives contained many such photos). But the adults eventually did have to pay the price for their follies. You see this was also the start of the neighbor/coworkervacation 400-photos-or-three-hour slideshow era!

Some people say selfish help families document their vacations and holiday experiences. The odd thing about those vacation selfies is that you see more faces than places. In the end, those selfies taken on vacation tell us you were someplace, but really, we couldn’t tell if you were in Paris, France or Paris, Texas.

P.S. Have your ever noticed how the folks in those group selfie shots bear a striking resemblance to the Mount Rushmore.


Janet Cormier is a painter, writes prose and poetry, and performs comedy. JC prefers different and original over pretty. She loves collecting stuff, but cleaning not so much. Janet also talks to strangers… a lot. Her column appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.