My new camera makes me want to learn more about photography. And thinking about photography reminded me of a story told to me a few years ago by a woman I know. Usually it isn’t photography that makes me think of this story. Usually it comes up when the topic of conversation is the way men’s minds work.
The woman and her husband, both really good people, were seeing a counselor as a last-ditch effort to make their marriage work (which it ultimately did not). At this particular session, they told the counselor about an incident that occurred the day before. The couple had been at a gathering of the husband’s family, and the husband’s brother was showing photographs he had taken. The brother apologized that the pictures weren’t all that good, and the woman in our story, before she could stop herself, popped back: “It must run in the family.” Her husband’s feelings were hurt, and an argument ensued.
The marriage counselor listened as the couple told her about the incident, and then this exchange took place:
Counselor: “So, Wife, why do you think you made that remark? Do you think it’s because Husband puts so much emphasis on doing things right, and this is something he doesn’t do well, so you saw an opportunity to needle him about it?”
Wife: “No, actually, I don’t think that’s it. I think it’s just a sore subject because we’ve both been interested in photography and we both wanted to take a class, but we couldn’t afford it. We finally agreed that he‘d take the class while I stayed home with the kids, and then he’d teach me everything he learned. His pictures haven't improved that much since he took the class, but that's beside the point. What bothers me is that he's refused to teach me anything, and he doesn’t even like for me to use the camera.”
Counselor: “So, Husband, what do you think might be a solution to this problem?”
Husband (raising his eyebrows and shrugging his shoulders): “Get a new flash?”