Why only Happy Snaps?

9 October, 2004 at 23:12 Leave a comment

Fuelled by an email discussion I have been having with Jay and David about art and photos and other things, I started to wonder of why is it that we always take happy snaps or photos? Amusing, given that the word “snapshot” is actually a hunting term which I guess originated when our ancestors used to kill wild animals and take photos showing their achievement (all those snaps of people with pointed moustaches, guns, standing on the backs of dead tigers and bisons and all that). This is a remnant of our cave painting days as well. Killing animals is an achievement and so we have been drawing them all our petite purposeless existence since hunters and gatherer days. They used to ‘snipe’ them which got converted to ‘snap’ and of course the animals were ‘shot’ by rocks, spears, arrows and guns. I should write a paper on this. For the record, I do not have a doctoral degree in English literature/language and this etymological history I gave for snapshot is fully of my own fiction (but then if you do not know the truth, you will think this might be the truth, aint it? And believe me, this might be the truth but who knows?) and the explanation I am offering is totally as arbitary as any other etymological explanation of any word we find in the dictionary. I mean, how do these guys know that a word has an origin in 16th centrury and not sooner or later? Have you ever wondered about that? Anyway, where did we start? Why happy snaps? the answer could be (my theory) is that we as a species find it extremely hard to remember the happy moments of our life. So, we have to capture them. What is the evolutionary benefit of forgetting happy moments?

Sorrow, misery, fear, paranoia, hate and other dastardly emotions are what we remember best and define our entire lives with. Sad. Even movies are made on this premise of horror and are, for some reason called, dramas and thrillers (what inappropriate genre tags). And of course they are so all around us that we do not have to capture them specifically. Happiness is precious. We have to keep reminding ourselves all the time that there was at one time happiness and we were part of it too. Just open the windows and go out and see the world or read the newspapers and we can find all the misery we want to see. O-mi-Gawd, I am turning cynical and dark, darker, darko… Yelp Frankie!

Nah, I just wrote this poem to Marianne when she invited me to her 21st Birthday Party –

Ah! Quintessential 21
The centrury we are in
is it too much pressure to be nice if we all start singin
clap-n-rejoice you, me, one and everyone
Marianne’s turned 21!

Lame poem I know but I need to have a reality check once in a while that my split personalities still exist and are in full kiddy form…

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Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

3rd World Childrens’ Happiness GU: SRC Elections, Voting, Manifesto et al.

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