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Fake Summer - A Side

Friday, May 3, 2019
31 minutes

Hey guys, let’s raise a glass in death of our memories. Time has come to burn them down on a funeral pyre before the sunrise and the new day. Chromatic aberrations, family pictures, people smiling, their eyes pointed towards the lens. Me and my mother, hand in hand. She was young then, wearing a dress with floral prints, green and white. She smiles, I try to, but I just look clumsy e stupid. I would like to disappear from that photo, from all the photos. It’s 1979.

 

A class photo. We are 22 in it. I wear a pair of blue jeans and sneakers, I have long light brown hair. Sitting on the left, my friend Monica smiles for the camera, looking proud and confident. It’s 1985. Almost 18 years later she would be stabbed to death and her body set on fire in her flat by her boyfriend. I didn’t know until later. I couldn’t attend her funeral. Every time I look at that picture, I would like to tell her not to trust people too much.

 

Another woman smiling. My grandmother, this time. She wears an elegant pink swimsuit, sitting on a paddle boat, a crowded beach in the background. It’s summer, she is tall and beautiful, with long suntanned legs. She was from a working class family and she always refused to talk about her past. She was obsessed with money, constantly fearing to be poor again. When she died, in 1988, I opened her wardrobe: a hundred of dresses hanging in there, most of them untouched.

 

Old pictures, new pictures. 1.2 trillion photos are globally taken every year, mostly using a smartphone, ontological proof of our existence. I appear, therefore I am. The Cartesian philosophy applied to our daily life apart from all the digital photo editing. And there we are, prostitutes in a window, waiting for other people’s approval. Our anxiety, our inadequacy, our fear of judgement hidden behind the fake self we build day after day.

 

Let’s raise a glass in death of our memories, because they are not ours anymore. We sold them for a bunch of Likes on Facebook or Instagram. We are fish got on the line, stupid enough to give away our freedom and our private life in exchange of 15 minutes of fame, in exchange of a fake summer, in exchange of nothing. I’m not going to sell away my family, my past, my happiness and my pain. Open your eyes, turn off your phone. You are disconnected now. Here begins the revolution.