When I moved into my apartment last semester, I promptly began to snoop around the closets and drawers to see what previous tenants had left for me. Among the treasures was an album full of disposable-camera photos from the early part of this millennium, all picturing circa-2003 residents and staff members of the residence hall I currently oversee. And so I sat down to the task of cutting those photos up.
I was looking at people that I didn’t recognize in a place that I did. How quickly those folks had become nameless, and how willingly relegated to a closet corner. With such little concern I cut up their likenesses and constructed my own story about them. How easy it was to put the pieces back together in a self-serving way. And maybe we do that for our own memories, not just the ones we find in a closet.