Everyone at the zoo thinks that they are a photographer. I don’t mean the ‘casual selfie next to a giraffe’ type of photography, I mean- ‘You just stepped in front of a single mom pushing her stroller so that you could get the best angle of a monkey shitting into its hand’ type of photography. I have 3 good reasons why this is fucking idiotic and you people need to stop.

 

  1. You look ridiculous. We live in a world where vanity takes precedence over humility. No one is humble anymore. I say hello to people every single day, only to have them avert their eyes and continue walking. They would rather listen to the words of a song through a set of headphones than ever engage in friendly conversation with a stranger. No, you’re not an introvert, you’re an asshole.
  2. You are fucking rude. If you have ever taken a course in photography in your pathetic fucking life, you would know that you cannot just obstruct public areas so that you can get a shot. You can certainly use public areas but you must realize that, just because you decided to pull your camera out, does not require anybody to respect you.
  3. You are not experiencing the moment. That picture is forever documenting a moment that you missed. It’s not a memory of your family enjoying the zoo. It’s not a memory of anything. Nobody cares about personal photographs except for the people who take them or the people in the photograph. You can wallpaper your house in photos of animals but everyone who visits is going to think you’re ridiculous.

 

I watched an 8-year-old child nearly push over an elderly woman today and her family was so distracted by the fact that she was trying to jump out of the photo that they did not even scold her. They didn’t even acknowledge that their child physically assaulted an elderly woman with a cane. I got to silently watch the entire scene as I impatiently waited for the child to listen to her shitty parents. I’m sure in 5 or 6 years that young girl will be a little piece of shit trying to fill public spaces with her vanity too. I think back on that moment and wish I would have done something. Like, apologize for the young girl who obviously didn’t realize that she wasn’t the center of attention. It’s not her fault that her parents are idiots. But one day it will be.

 

I don’t care how you correct their behavior- if you correct it. If you cannot stand to point out your child’s flaws, how are they ever going to know that they have any? You’re raising your kids to pose for pictures. You’re not raising them to apologize, show empathy, or even conduct themselves with respect for others. Take a step back, really think about the individual that your child is becoming. It’s a hard journey, becoming a parent. No one is perfect. But you cannot walk through life pretending that no one else is there. Put your camera down and be present.

A.

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