Thursday, July 13, 2006

Photography at Tisch

 Edit: This is from the first, secret incarnation of this blog, but I'm going to keep it, as it keeps with the "mad wet" theme. I was very passionate about how men should wear socks with their sneakers.

During my last year of college I took 2 summer classes. They were both wonderful- a Photography class, and Writing New York City with Nettie.
I had a giant crush on my photography teacher, mostly because he wore, what I felt, was the perfect sock/sneaker combination for a man. It’s very tricky to strike a good balance here. I get completely turned off by the way men chose to wear their sneakers.
Without socks is just gross- you know the feet stink in those swampy shoes.
Those ankle socks where you can barely make out that one is wearing a sock is really, a girly thing. It's effeminate.
But, a full-blown sock, all the way up the ankle is also a no-no. It's geeky, in a bad way. Men also try to roll down their socks, or just scrunch them down there. This, additionally, does not work.
The trick is to strike the perfect balance- a short sock, low to the ankle, that is made to be folded once over. It's not a giant sock, not a tiny sock, but right there in the middle. Many men cannot grasp this.
Alex the Photography teacher, did.
I was a totally wacko in that class. I realize that now, but not at the time. But I guess its good to let your wackiness have free reign once in awhile. The first darkroom time we had had me freaking out the night before. I got very drunk with a friend and talked about how nervous I was to be back in a darkroom. I'd never felt like this before. I liked darkrooms, intended on having one of my own. They were personal, dark and cool. Like a cave. A fun cave. My friend had said that maybe I was nervous because I want photography more than writing. I immediately dismissed this, but his comment stuck with me, bothered me, and has bothered me from time to time since then.
I told Hot Alex that I was incredibly nervous.
I was at a point in my life where I just went ahead and said anything I felt like to anyone. This was within a year of coming back from Florence- I don’t know if that had anything to do with it. He asked me if I wanted to go somewhere and talk privately- the thought was appealing, at least for masturbatory scenarios later, but I didn’t want him to think I was a total freak as I entertained the thought of having a torrid affair with him.
So I sucked it up and tackled the darkroom. The enlarger was unfamiliar to me and I hadn’t completely paid attention during the demonstration. There were times I spent 8 or 9 hours in the darkroom. It wasn't just a class to me- but a wealth of time and materials to use for experimentation.
At first I did things like take pictures of bottles- I was informed all beginners take pictures of bottles. I then took pictures of Astoria- a view of the receding blackness and creepy towers underneath the Triboro bridge- this was also "amateur," and “uninteresting." I then created a box- I put glow in the dark stickers on the inside, shut off the lights in the bathroom, set up the tripod and took long exposures of the stars in the corners of the boxes where the stars angle in towards each other. I thought the pictures came out awesome- everyone else 'didn't get it'.
I then of course took polaroids of myself masturbating, and wrote VIRGINITY, a letter on the bottom of each polaroid. I painted my nails red, and laid out with my red blanket. I cannot believe I put pictures of my pussy on a wall, being stimulated by a variety of vibrators. But, at the time, it was true. I was a virgin, and I masturbated constantly. I would meet Chris the fall after that summer class, and I would no longer be a virgin and the set up for the worst betrayal of my life had yet to come into place.
I was still just a carefree kid putting pictures of myself jacking off up on a wall, contemplating my virginity- that wonderful thing that made me feel I was all me and no one else.