austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

But they're guaranteed to raise a smile

And pausing from me thinking about music some: my parents' 40th wedding anniversary is coming soon. Last week in one of his typically aggravating conversations with me --- my father thinks I can handle hearing maybe three, four words at a time without a pause --- my father asked, if I thought, would it maybe be, appropriate for an, anniversary present for Mom, if we got, one of those, photo books printed up, with pictures from, our family from, the past 40 years. Although there certainly are risks in giving for an intimate personal holiday a present which requires a certain amount of personal thought and selectivity and of course the decades of ordinary living which make it possible, I thought it was a good idea.

I pointed out the hard part was we'd have to go through the photo albums and pick out pictures. He agreed, admitting that he doesn't know how the printer-scanner works and I've given up trying to explain it to him. Also I'm the one in the family with strong archivist senses and an understanding of photo and layout composition strong enough that even my dull pictures aren't unviewably dull. We agreed we'd spend some of the weekend picking out photos and the weekend came and went without any noticeable progress on photograph selection. On the one hand my father had a tiring week; on the other, maybe he just forgot.

So, I went through my closet and got miscellaneous junk out in order to get at the boxes of photographs, and delivered them to my father while he was watching Screaming Idiots News Flavored Channel. This delighted him, as he kept finding pictures of us from the most hideously ugly 1970s outfits imaginable, not to mention some real treasures, including a photograph of him when he was seven months old, and the various Baby Books. I pointed out to my father we need to narrow it to maybe a hundred pictures or so in order that there'll be a decent spread for a roughly 40-page album and that we'll be able to scan before the deadline. By my estimate he's managed to get a hundred pictures out of the first small box, with about 50 boxes to go.

I also pointed out he should put Post-It Notes on the back of the photos identifying things like the great-grandmothers I could name only because I know what names run in that side of the family. We haven't got that yet but, hey, we have literally hours before this really should start printing. (After the first hour of scanning and my delighted discovery that the scanner will separate multiple photos scanned simultaneously, we've got 96 pictures and have got through one-half of the first day's initial cut, with several albums to go.)

Trivia: Although a price war broke out among New York City department store book departments in 1961, Bloomingdale's refused to cut the price of Franny and Zooey because (Gay Talese reported in The New York Times) J D Salinger shopped there. Source: Service and Style: How The American Department store Fashioned The Middle Class, Jan Whitaker.

Currently Reading: History of Hungary, Denis Sinor.


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