Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Leaving a legacy

Have you ever considered your own mortality, I mean really considered what a short time we are here on the earth? The average life span of an American right now is around 75, of course a lot of factors need to be weighed in to this, but for simplicity we will say 75. So 75 years, that sounds like a long time, but looking more closely can show how short that really is. 657,000 hours... that is how long we have from day one. Still seem like a lot? OK, take out 218,976 hours for sleep, we are not conscious during that period, therefore time has no effect. That leaves a good 438,024; alright that is about 50 years. Now lets throw in the fact that most of you that are reading this are over 30, meaning 196,076 have already been lost, excluding sleep because we deducted that from the overall aggregate. That now leaves us with 241,948 hours, or 27.62 years of living consciousness left. Scary isn't it? Don't forget I am basing this number at 30. Now according to the Foundation for Infinite Survival, Inc., once I hit the age of thirty, my life expectancy raises, this do to the fact that I survived thus far, giving me greater odds of surviving further. I am now estimated to hit 76.5... Keep in mind that I have no desire to get old, I think I mentioned before that once I get old and funny, my children will be instructed to take me out into a field and shoot me like a horse. Furthermore, when I hit the age of 50, my life expectancy increases even more, 78.3. That is 3 years past the initial average I had when I was 20, ah the good 'ol' days. If I make it to 74, my life span expectancy hits almost 10 more years than the national average, 85. This equation is not exponential mind you, it peeks and then drops like a chin. Making it to 100 only guarantees me an additional 2.5 years... of life. And really there are no guarantees, depressed yet? It gets better... well I guess it doesn't. We basically peak in our 20's and it is all down hill from there. I myself have been feeling my own mortality. I am not as agile, nor do I recover from battle wounds as quickly, I have a bruise that I swear has been on my leg for at least 2 weeks... those kinds of things use to heal up overnight. Youth is wasted on the youth; one never laments these things, until they are gone. Perception of time as a child is vastly different; we are in such a hurry to grow up. There is nothing that can be done about this, no value or lesson can teach one to appreciate the time they have, until they experience the loss for themselves. There is a guy that has a website devoted to his life span, everyday he takes a picture of himself on his computer, and he has done this for the last 6 years. He stitches the day to day pictures together and has made a movie out of it, it is fascinating.

I think this might be one of the reasons I love photography; the art has a way of capturing time like no other, if only for an instant... time stands still. Photography, I believe, is more pure than any other form of art medium, remember I said it is my opinion... A painter, sculptor, illustrator, etc., creates what "they" see, the finished product is a result of their perception, mood, and agenda. Obviously art is subjective, what one considers art, the other might consider crap, and I have seen a lot of that. Photography is different, it can not change what is real, all it can do is capture and freeze time. If a painter doesn't like the background of whatever piece they create, they can change it to their liking. If a sculptor is creating a bust of someone, and doesn't want the person to have a divot in their chin... gone. I guess the point I am making is that when it comes to accurately capturing imagery, one can not trust anything except a photograph... To be fair, Photoshop has changed this rule, but you get what I mean. An Illustrator or whatever can lie about what they saw when they created it, a photographer can't. It is either good or not, there is no middle ground.

Looking at my own life, and looking back at old photos, not of myself as a youth, but mostly the last 10 years, I can see the changes, hair, eyes, face. I am jealous I didn't think of taking a picture everyday, but do you really want to see yourself age 10 years in 2 minutes, it would make my heart weep.
I thought it might be fun to go through all my photographs since I started keeping digital copies, I can date back to 2001, anything before that I either don’t have and was pre digital camera. I was able to find a picture of me from year to year, though it is never the same look, angle, situation, so it is very ineffective. But here ya go the summer of 2001 below The Fall of 2001The year would be 2002 below2002 the summer I believeThe fall of 2003The summer of 2004The winter of 2004 or 2005The summer of 2005The summer of 2006The winter of 2006The Fall of 2007The winter of 2008Time is precious, and I am beginning to see why holding onto it is so difficult. For the moment we are here, it seems like an eternity, and then we are gone. I guess that is why there is such a driving force to produce offspring, to leave a legacy, to leave something when we are gone. Maybe the best way to hold on to the past, is to take it with you in the future. There will always be pictures, in some form or another, and they will remain our ties to the past. Takecare everyone...


Andy Norman said...

I would leave more of a legacy but all my time is spent waiting for your blog to load and then another half hour getting down to the comment section. =p

I think my legacy will be posting the last of the 38 comments on the worlds longest thread(yeah that my be an exageration but the part about the page loading isn't)

Anonymous said...

Andy!!! Where have you been, I have missed you? Do not give yourself too much credit, Bananna had a part in killing the thread, she does that kind of thing, and I am not sure how... I think what is even more appropriate is her name, break it apart just right and you will see what I mean.
BanAnna... or Ban Anna from killing long threads. I will resume normalcy tomorrow... whatever that is.

Buppa H said...

The clip of Noah is very interesting. Amazing how he was able to maintain the same facial expression for every photo.