The Obsessive-compulsive Cameraman

Although we have hired a professional photographer to take pictures at the wedding, I’m sure at least a dozen or so guests will show up with their own cameras to make sure they get photos of everything–because there’s always a chance the photographer will spontaneously combust.

My dad will be one of those people. He doesn’t go anywhere without his camera. It comforts him like Linus’ blanket or a potheads’s bong.

Taking photographs has become such an obsession with my dad that I expect to spend the majority of my wedding party posing for his photos.

He took me to Hawaii a few years ago. One day we planned on visiting a garden that was described as exotic and breathtaking in one of the brochures. It took us so long to get there that I had no breath left for any to be taken away. We walked from our hotel in Waikiki to a bus stop. The bus took us to the other side of the island and when we got off, we had to walk a few miles to the garden.

The sun beat down on us and we were hungry and tired by the time we arrived at the entrance. We both decided that we needed to get something to eat. “I want to take a picture first,” my dad said, his hand shaking with excitement. A cardboard-covered disposable camera poked out of his shirt pocket for easy access.

As we walked through the thick bushes of the entrance I commented on how quiet it was.

“There,” my dad shouted pointing to a clearing in the distance. He hurried along, pushing branches and sticks out of his way. I followed close behind until we reached the clearing. It was nothing more than a large patch of grass with a wooden gazebo. We looked around in confusion and then at one another. “Well,” my dad said reaching for the camera in his shirt pocket, “let’s take a picture.”

And that’s the way it’s always been. No one questions his motives, we just pose for the photos.

I expect my dad to arrive at the wedding in a suit with a specially tailored pocket cut into the front for his camera, which, of course, will be disposable.

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About JadedBride

Amy Kraft is a print and radio journalist based in New York. Her work has appeared in publications including Scientific American, Discover, Popular Science, The Week, Psychology Today, and Distillations, a podcast out of the Chemical Heritage Foundation. She is currently working on a book of humor essays. View all posts by JadedBride

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