The Washington Times-Herald

Columns

May 31, 2014

Back in love with the 'selfie'

I used to hate the “selfie.”

A selfie, for those not aware with the term, is a shortened form for a self-portrait. Although the style has been around for centuries, the phenomenon has really taken off in the past few years in the United States.

I saw the selfie a few years before most Americans did, in South Korea. While walking around, I would see teenagers huddled close together to put their cell phone in front of themselves and snap a photo. Most likely, they would have a silly look on their face. Sometimes, they wouldn’t like that photo and do it again, and again.

Being that I’m older, I didn’t get it. I would assume it’s a Korea thing and go on. Only a few years ago, I saw, like many things in Asia, come over to the states and American kids were taking selfies all over. And, like most things kids do, the adults caught wind of the cool thing and started taking selfies. It is then at this inevitable point in a fad that the selfie became annoying to me. I mean, do you really have to stop everything you are doing to take a picture of yourself not doing the task or event you should be doing or attending? (Example: Ellen at the Oscars) Also, why do you have to take it yourself? Have we become that self-absorbed that you cannot ask a person to snap a photo?

It annoyed the heck out of me until recently. Last month, Mary Ellen Ritter, my grandmother, passed away. I called her Granny and she was a great woman in my life. She helped raise me and my late brother Matt, and she was also there to witness the birth of my children, Colin and Cooper. She meant so much to me, I gave the eulogy at her funeral, while my uncle Steve Ritter officiated the service. I continue to miss her.

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