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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What Is This: The Papparazzi?

As a writer, I feel like one my jobs is to notice trends.

For example, five times a week, I shit three times a day. Hm. Maybe there's a blog post there.

Maybe not.

When my head's not inches away from my own toilet, making keen quality & quantity observations, I do actually notice other things. One of the things I've noticed recently has to do with a rather strange trend I've observed at 20 Something Bloggers, the online blogging community to which I belong, and whose membership I hope does not get revoked after this post.

For those of you who don't know, 20 Something Bloggers is a wonderful place for blogging prowess to both notice and get noticed. I've fattened up my readership from the ranks of the 20 Something Blogger members, and I've certainly hooked my hooknose into the private affairs of others on the site as well. It's mutual exploitation at its finest-- and my father in law instructed his daughter prior to marrying me that this was the basis for ideal relationships.

He should know; he's both married and a psychiatrist.

Anyway, on 20 Something Bloggers, you're able to pick out a little avatar to represent yourself, your own personal graven image, if you will. For both my old and new blog, I have picked pen-and-ink drawings by Sir William Schwenck Gilbert from his "Bab Ballad" days, because I am an anglophile and I am obsessed with all things Gilbert & Sullivan (still no word on that "Pirates" audition-- I'll keep you posted).

Some people pick Japanamation-style self-portraits as their avatars, some pick close-ups of their cleavage (not complaining), some choose Barack Obama, who, I'm sure, is appropriately honored and moved. Delizcious has selected a picture of Miss Piggy with one tit exposed, a'la Janet Jackson, which I hope she cleared with Janet Jackson, Joe Jackson, the Henson estate's lawyers, and Kermit, who is one jealous mothafucka, from what I understand. Most people, though, choose to put up pictures of themselves, or what are purported as being pictures of themselves. Who really knows these days, am I right, peeps?

The trend that I've noticed is the staggering number of pictures of 20 Something Blogger members holding cameras.

What's that about?

On the members page, which features 21 member pics at a time, there are fourteen pictures of actual members (the other pics are either Audrey Hepburn, a string of air-drying laundry or some other weird shit) three members are featured holding cameras. Only one of them, from what I can gather, has some professional reason to have one in her possession.

Next page, 2 members with cameras.

Page 3, none. Fine. Be that way.

Page 4, well, okay-- none for a while-- though, on page 12, there is a picture of a girl holding a gun. I know, that doesn't count. You don't point that at someone and say "Say 'Cheese'" unless you're insane and/or Jack Nicholson.

One on page 19, one on page 27. Okay, I have to stop now. There are 244 pages, by the way.

And these aren't little, dinky "Coolpix" cameras, either. These are big, honkin' black things (no hyperlinked picture to accompany that phrase-- sorry-- even I have limits) and they're either big-time digital cameras, or they're old-fashioned SLR's, the photography industry's answer to the 33 record. I just don't understand

One on page 28. Okay, okay-- sorry. For real, I'm done. See? I closed the window.

I just don't understand what it's trying to communicate.

I like to take pictures? That's good. You and 76 babillion other people.

I'm so retro I have a 1976 Leica CL with a vertically-travelling shutter? Um, okay?

I'm pretending to take a picture of you while you're taking an actual picture of me? Um, okay?

I work for a newspaper? Okay, that I can accept.

I'm a peeping tom? Well, that's fine, but I wouldn't be advertising that on 20 Something Bloggers.

I work for the papparazzi? You're a disgrace. Go fuck yourself. Get away from Octo-Mom and her menagerie.

Look, it's great to want to be different-- we're all struggling with that. I'm pretty confident, though, that I'm the only homobear with some Gilbertian doodle as his avatar. Not that it's a contest of originality, but let's keep creativity and self-expression bouyant and alive. If you want to be different and pose with some sort of object from antiquity, I suggest you try a rotary wall phone or a dictionary-- the camera bit is getting a bit overdone.


  1. okay so wait. You like the cleavage shots, but Miss Piggy can't get in on that action.

    Discrimination buddy!

  2. don't worry, it's healthy to poop multiple times every day!

  3. were you on 20sb when my icon was still a picture of my belly? i thought that was "unique". :P

    anyway, yeah, i've noticed the camera thing. it sucks. i think MORE OFTEN THAN NOT, it's false advertising. i get all excited thinking "oooh! fellow photo hobbyist/photographer!" click on their page and NO pictures and quite frankly a lame blog. PET PEEVE.

  4. I've noticed this too and it's made me really tempted to change mine. In fact I just might. I'm glad you've deemed it acceptable though.
    Also, the gun/say cheese comment cracked me up.


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