What's in a Selfie?

So, this burly guy stood on two adjacent tetrapods lined against Marine drive sea side, holding his mobile up in the air and looked into it with a ‘Kirsten Stewart’ animation of a smile, adjusted his left profile, surreptitiously raised one eyebrow, and with a conspicuously satisfied grin, eventually pressed the red dot, while his companion stood right there, suffering the ordeal of having to watch this business unfold before him while sporting an unconvincing smile. I had witnessed this incident roughly six to seven years ago, and I realize that the only reason I remember it is because I didn’t see another one of its kind on that day. Today I walk through a sea of selfie takers, posers, pouters and groupies with a ninety percent reduction in the magnitude of my culture shock. In fact, I have now consented to graciously (but not gracefully) being thrust into groupie photographs and managing a sort of sheepish grin, since I realized that my friends hold my friendship indispensability in direct proportion to my compatibility and eagerness to pose in these photos. And the last thing I ever wanted was to lose friends over a fad.! I mean, there are nobler causes to fight for, right?  

But when I go to restaurants or coffee shops, I am positively thrilled about the camera focus shifting from us people to steaming mugs of coffee and scrumptious plates of food. Great camera phones nurture exceptional photographers, taking perfect shots at perfect angles, with all the gooeyness of the chocolate cake and the cherry looking redder than red! Wow! I could look at these and burp for days!  

I am still way, way down the learning curve of perfect selfie capture, as I haven’t had much practice yet. Or should I say that the others around are much faster and far north. But I had a Eureka moment recently when I observed a teenage girl laying her hand on her waist, and for the sake of the click, twisted herself in full svelteness towards the side where her dress rose two inches shorter than the other. It wasn’t the whole of her she was interested in capturing. Just the better part of her. And just like that, I learned a lesson in human psychology. To present my best self. Maybe I didn’t do it in selfies or groupies, but I did it all the while. And don’t we all?