Monday, August 31, 2009

I'm Ready For My Close-Up, Mr. DeMille

The scene: Sunday evening, the night before school starts. Sandi is making sure we’re ready for the mad rush that will be the kids’ first day of school. Backpacks packed, check. Clothes ironed, check. Lunchboxes cleaned, check. Pictures. We’re going to want to take pictures. Sandi checks the camera to make sure the battery is charged and that there’s enough room on the memory carOHMYGODWHATTHEFUCKISTHAT? Is that a picture of Ethan’s penis? Why yes, yes it is. In fact, it’s about 200 pictures of Ethan’s penis with a few screen shots from “The Penguins of Madagascar” interspersed. Which is kinda creepy because the last thing I think of when watching that show is taking pictures of my penis. In fact, I’m hard pressed to think of any show that makes me regard my penis at all. Picture of my dick, picture of the screen. Couple more pictures of my dick, picture of the screen. Aaaaaannnnnnnnnnddddddd scene!
Besides the obvious, a few things bother me about this. Like WHEN did he snap all these shots? Our house has a very open floor plan and there’s very little one can do that is not seen or heard by pretty much everybody else in the family. Plus, we rarely stay in one part of the house for very long. Surely we would have wandered by during the half hour or so this must have taken. At the very least you’d think we would have noticed the flash going off 200 times during the creation of this homage. Hell, we didn’t even notice the camera had been moved from its place on what we thought was an unreachable shelf in our home office since the last time we’d used it just a few days earlier. Yeah, this was no boating accident. This was sneakery.
And thank freakin’ god it wasn’t maliciously conceived. Can you imagine what would have happened if he’d used film that had to be developed by some pimple-faced kid at Photomat? I’d be typing this from prison is what. And from what I know of prison (Oz, The Longest Yard, etc.), they do NOT take kindly to people who take pictures of kids’ weewees.
So technology and/or the fact that Ethan didn’t think to place an anonymous call to Child Services have kept me a free man, but the big question looms: How do we approach this with Ethan? We haven’t said anything yet, mostly because … well, it’s really awkward but also because I can totally see this being a defining moment and a misstep here could have long-lasting repercussions. Like maybe his parents confronting him about snapping his giblets on the family Polaroid is what made Mappelthorpe go all batshit crazy and start cramming bullwhips up his models’ butts for posterity’s sake. No, so far we’ve just erased all the pictures from the memory card, even the ones of King Julian in case there were any telltale reflections in the TV screen. Thanks, CSI, for that little tidbit I learned the one time I actually watched you.
No, I’m thinking that the thing to do is to hang back and see if this happens again. And hide the video camera.

"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.
" -- Pablo Picasso

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