i remember my first affair.
The day i found out my college boyfriend was cheating on me. And when i found out, i believe, to my best recollection, that i didn’t eat for about 4 days. Not because i wanted to get all skinny and shit… i just couldn’t eat. my stomach was in knots. i was devastated.
here’s what she said, “it will happen again.”
so i discovered something. the track. i started to run. i put on my yellow sony walkman (yeah, all you 70′s babies… take THAT ride with me) and just started running around the track outside my dorm, Bates College, Lewiston, Maine.
Weird thing. I started gaining something totally unexpected. Had been an athlete my whole life, yet running always had made me want to puke. It was ugly, damn ugly.
But this first run, on this track, it was probably about 60 laps… i was a damn Forrest Gump out there. The ugly unlocked something beautiful.
And through the running, i was able to start thinking clearly, and through the thinking clearly, i was able to gain confidence.
And then, a couple years later, while working as a young professional fresh out of college… i had the affair.
I won’t go into details, it’s not important, at least not for this post.
The point is, we are all imperfect. I have cheated, i have lied, i have stolen, i have hated.
But you know what? I am a lover, and a fighter, and someone that will defend your ass to the moon if you have my loyalty. My life is chaos, but it’s driven out of the desire to be better. And i know, with absolute certainty, that i would not be that way if the ugly hadn’t happened.
So let’s give a shout out to the ugly. Let’s embrace it, honor it, OWN it.
When is the last time, walking around with a camera, you’ve shot something that under any other circumstances, you would have walked by without noticing?
It’s amazing, as i look through my kajabillions of photos, how many are of really ugly things. I don’t know why i’m attracted to them, but i am. I use them as backdrops, as illustrated by one of my favorite ugly things, the port-a-potty:
i find them all the time as i walk city streets:
i see it on it’s bad hair days:
I see it in it’s randomness:
and in it’s sadness:
at it’s ugliest:
and when it’s working it’s hardest:
and yesterday, on a walk with my dog, i took my iphone and found beauty everywhere ugly:
take your camera, and take pictures of the ugly.
If you walk by it in search for the beautiful, or the perfect, like the forbidden affair, you just may miss the very thing that takes your breath away.