25 November 2010

One Among Millions -- A Short Story

I am nameless.
I am literally a mere number in this realm.
In a world where every new thing, no matter how problematic, displaces the old with startling speed, I have been predictably forgotten.
I am buried deep within her 'My Documents' folder... 'Serena's Documents > My Pictures > January 2008 > Dance > DSCN4671.'
There. That's me.
614 KB.
Taken at 11.53 AM on 17/1/2008 in a dance studio in Lethbridge, Alberta.
Focal length 15.1 mm. 1/448s. f/4.5. ISO 720.
When my binary bits are decoded and assembled properly, five children are depicted in the resulting image -- Naomi, Jane, Anise, Vera, and Tricia. They're wearing little blue suede dresses with pink polka dotted sashes around their middles. In their hands they hold blue umbrellas with pastel coloured polka dots.
This is their last rehearsal before the performance three days from now.
I show you a lovely scene -- the girls are gracefully pointing their right feet to where the audience will be in three days' time. They hold the little umbrellas in their left hands, their arms extended completely opposite to their pointed feet.
What I do not show you is that seconds after the shutter was snapped, sealing my existence, Tricia's umbrella slipped out of her hand, landing on Jane's foot. You do not see the large gaping hole in Naomi's tights because it so happens that the side of her leg exposed by the hole is facing the opposite direction. The slight bulge of Anise's dress from her insulin pump is hidden from your sight. I have concealed from you Vera's nervous habit of biting her nails and the fact that a bobby pin flew out of her hair forty-five seconds later and scratched the mirror slightly.
Odd how one moment was immortalised and the other details hidden or forgotten completely. What were the odds that the shutter would click at that exact time -- that the camera's operating system would create me and my depiction of that exact moment, not the one in which Tricia's umbrella was hurtling toward the floor?
An artists' eye perhaps, but I think a lot of it had to do with chance. And I'd also like to think that chance is what has regaled me to this forgotten folder -- that the beauty contained within me won't be hidden forever.

(This is just a little something I whipped up late one night (more accurately, very early one morning) back in January and expanded slightly to put here. Comments are welcome -- compliments, constructive criticism, overall impressions... whatever. ~ Kate)

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