Monday, 12 April 2010


I'm reading Falling Man by Don DeLillo. I suddenly came across a passage concerning passport photographs. Strange coincidence. My recently taken passport pictures are tucked into the back of the book, quite by chance.
"I look at the face in the passport photo. Who is that woman?"
"I lift my head from the washbasin," Martin said.
"Who is that man? You think you see yourself in the mirror. But that's not you. That's not what you look like. That's not the literal face, if there is such as thing, ever. That's the composite face. That's the face in transition."
"Don't tell me this."
"What you see is not what we see. What you see is distracted by memory, by being who you are, all this time, for all these years."
"I don't want to hear this," he said.
"What we see is the living truth. The mirror softens the effect by submerging the actual face. Your face is your life. But your face is also submerged in your life. That's why you don't see it. Only other people see it. And the camera of course."
This is how I am feeling about myself. Don't feel the photographs are a true representation of me. But perhaps that is my own perception of what I look like and not what I actually look like. We see ourselves in mirror image always, and potentially don't see ourselves as we are at all but overlaid with a memory of what we think we look like.

Opposite me a boy sits imagining taking photograghs out of the bus window with a little rectangle of card. T-schtick, he says, pressing the imaginary shutter release at a group of people standing at the 41 bus stop at Turnpike lane. T-schtick again. He looks in a different direction. T-schtick.

I have two pens in my bag. A biro with a wooden casing that is larger than a normal pen and a pilot hi-tec. I am searching for a pen, any pen, in my bag and can't find either of them. Rummaging, becoming furious. Felt through all the pockets, patting each pocket, and potential nooks. Finally find the pilot down the lining. Bring it out, use it and when putting it back find the other pen easily like it had been in easy reach all the time.

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