If squirrels had their own social media this gal would rate highly. Just look at that flamboyant tail-you won’t see many that bushy or multi-colored. And, that pose, viewed from the rear which has become so popular. Then there is that coy expression with a sideways glance as if to say, “What do you have that I don’t have?”. Let’s not forget her marbled eye, cute twitchy nose and tiny whiskers. All of this beauty while balancing steadily on a slider chair with a nonchalant grip on the iron bar. I’m surprised she didn’t take a selfie!
Seriously, this is my last photograph of a squirrel for quite some time, but I couldn’t resist such a beckoning subject. After taking a jet tour through various social media sites recently, I was reminded how much this rodent has in common with humans, social media and self-publication. I mean, how many images can one take of eating out or hugging friends; enjoying a cocktail or describing what makeup to use; vacation photos about how many places one has seen in a day, a week, a month or a year; digitized faces and places which we try so desperately to convince others that are as real as they appear. Egos get stroked and reality choked.
I’m not against sharing good looks, fun moments, fantastic locations, unusual food or exotic experiences. It’s just that we share the ‘fantastic’ so often that our images and texts all tend to blend together into one big melting pot of the same extraordinary. Where are the mundane photos such as of a motorist double-parked because he or she was late to an appointment or a couple hand picking fruit while at the grocery store? How about kids tossing rocks in a stream or dogs simply laying around doing nothing but panting? Corporate meetings where half the attendees are falling asleep or mimes losing their balance while acting on street corners in NYC?
Ordinary doesn’t sell…not on television, in videos, on social media outlets, in magazines or even within our government. And, certainly not through our ‘smart’ phones or tablets where we post and view so much of this extraordinary content. Sensationalism is all the rage and Americans lead the parade. Perhaps my optical lenses need to be cleaned so I can see Americana without the bias. And, hopefully, my perspective will change along with clarity. I really do want to be a part of the sublime-especially when framed within the daily routines of life.