Of course, I too was frantically trying to capture the food and the moment with my phone. I took the aforementioned photo of their tabletop food styling session. The next morning, as I whizzed through the previous evening's photos, I caught a glimpse of the photo and assumed that it was one of multiple images of the same thing, and accidentally deleted it. I do have several photos of the same bowl of pasta as it was bathed in the light of a streetlamp that shone into the window above our table, but they don't tell the story as well.
The instantaneous sharing of every moment of our lives that we choose to broadcast online has produced way too many "perfect" images for us to process, share, and envy. But how long do any of these stay with us for very long? I can now recall all the times that I wish I had a camera, or, in an effort to just be present in the moment, opted not to pull my camera or phone out to capture life as it happened. These memories are more deeply ingrained in my consciousness than the ones on record - and I am in no danger of "deleting" them.
|Moodily-lit Pasta Bolognese at Uovo|
People euphemistically call living "an art." However, I have been fortunate to be surrounded by individuals who actually are artists in one way or another. They don't self-consciously create art every time they set the table, dress themselves, or entertain. Perhaps art is only in the eye of the partial beholder - friends and family that cherish you and your ways of doing things.
That night, my sister gave me a pin in the shape of a typewriter. Our generation is probably the last to have had typewriters, dial phones, black-and-white TV, and a childhood without the internet. I remember our blue Sears electric typewriter in its snappy carrying case, the hefty Adler my parents gave me on my 10th birthday when it became evident that I was going to spend a lot of time writing, the iMac my friends all pooled together for my 30th birthday in the 1990s, and the various computers I've had since.
Technology makes this blog possible, both on my end and to broadcast it widely. But we shouldn't become slaves to the medium. Social media doesn't have to be an evil - there are times when it does a great deal of good for creativity, connecting, and even society. However, its allure needs to be harnessed by the user, not the other way around.
After our pasta-fest, we walked around the 3rd Street Promenade and got some ice cream. The conversation of old friends turned to past and future travel adventures, my nephew's latest adventure at a cooking school, the upcoming holiday season. As we ordered our gelato-on-a-stick desserts, some of which were dipped in chocolate and rolled in various toppings, I resisted the urge to whip out my phone and take pictures. And amazingly, I remember the evening a lot better.