Obligatory Selfie

Since starting my second job back in July I’ve witnessed some pretty odd behaviors. Most of them stemming from other things the person has been partaking in. However, for the most part, whether the person has been engaging in extra curricular activity or not, their behavior boils down to wanting attention.

       Usually I work on the weekends which is prime time to get some hours in and do some people watching at the sametime. Within one weekend I observed two of the strangest behaviors I’ve seen which didn’t involve other substances.     

A young girl was walking down the aisle from where our pharmacy is. She was walking nonchalantly and pushing buttons on her phone. Suddenly she raises her medicine bag up and smiles at her phone, continues walking while her face goes back to “resting mean face”.

     This was foreign to me.  

     Usually I don’t take selfies, if I do it’s rare and it’s because I’m standing next to a Beatle, Mickey Dolenz or Agent Carter. (Which still has yet to happen.)

     Anyway after observing this young woman, the thought occured that maybe selfies have become obligatory. Now that the selfie is officially part of the lexicon of most of the world it has also been added to the dictionary. Does this mean that we should be taking them for every little thing as if it has become normal?

     What did this young lady have to announce by taking a self portrait with her bag of medicine? Here are some of the things that ran through my head that she captioned the picture with:

1. This is the only thing that has made me smile in 25 years!

2. Guess what’s in here…it ain’t a cat!

3. Party for one at my apartment!

4. I went to the store and all I got was this prescription…it IS possible to not buy anything else here!
     I’m sure there is a myriad of other ones more profane than the ones which were suggested here, but you see my point. I’m sure her selfie looked great with the framing she chose to go along with the filter and caption. However the process made her look strange to those of us on the outside of her social media circle. 

     The other strange behavior I observed was yet, ANOTHER young woman taking multiple selfies. Her behavior was more weird than the one aforementioned. She went out of her way to hide behind a stack of DVD’s because her selfie required her to stick her tongue out, and turn her head multiple directions while wiggling said tongue. Meanwhile her phone was making all sorts of noises like, “AH! AH! AH!” , like Stephen Hawking was frightened trying to roll away from her. (I’m not going to lie, I was tempted to step in and photo bomb her tongue waggling selfie.)  

     The first woman was unaware of her silly behavior. The second one was cognizant and actually went out of her way to poorly hide her behavior.  

     I just think it’s interesting how some of us have quit examining ourselves and our behaviors because it has become the norm, and how some of us despite the norm feel the need to hide from it.  

     What are your opinions on it? I’m curious to hear from you dear readers. Do you feel selfies are obligatory? Do you feel we should hide certain behaviors because we are ashamed of how silly we look?


4 thoughts on “Obligatory Selfie

  1. It’s interesting that even though a selfie is meant to be private to oneself or to a close group, it’s intended for a big audience. But do phones have the ability to take selfies because people want to take them, or since people want to take them, the phone has this ability? 🙂

    • Jim, technically speaking, it’s the latter. Selfie-taking started before the screen-side camera was added. As it was pretty inconvenient taking selfies with the main-camera, where you couldn’t see your face, the phone manufacturers came up with this second one.

      • Oh, I know. But I got pretty good self portaits, or with a friend with my trusty Polaroid One Shot Land Camera. 🙂 But the meaning of a picture with a friend or friends was more intimate back then. After all, you’d have to take two “selfies” for a friend to have one. Or order double prints with those 110 or 35mm cameras. Of which my “selfie” aim was never as good as the land camera.

  2. Selfies are not obligatory for /our/ generation, I believe. We know we can just living fine without mobile phones. As for myself, am rarely taking selfies, and never post any online.

    But am not so sure about Gen Y; they have been growing up with mobile phones for all of or a significant part of their life. They may feel the need due to peer pressure. They want acceptance and would be willing to fake a (non-existent) flowery life. If that’s the case, it’s no good obviously, as they cheat themselves.

    As for the act itself, most of those selfie-takers couldn’t be bothered about witnesses (at least over here it’s that way). It’s just a widely accepted thing

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