You're On Your Own: An Abandoned America Blog
Posted: 31st August 2012
Sometimes I wonder what I'm doing all of this for.
Visit abandoned sites. Load to computer and spend hours editing photographs. Possibly add some sort of pseudo-insightful musings. Post. Get some likes/comments on various internet outlets, perhaps a variation at a gallery. Repeat.
What is it doing? What does that really accomplish? I have said, through words and images, "Hey, look! We f***ed up! And we're still doing it!"
Over. And over. And over.
Here's the photograph I worked on today. Let's take a few moments to ponder mortality and the past. Maybe say: look at how sad that is. Boy, things sure aren't the way they used to be. It's sad and pretty, pretty and sad.
So we peer, you and I, through the tiny window of the lens, which filters a fraction of another microcosm of loss. This place was many things to the many people who knew it: a source of income, memories of good times with family and friends, maybe even an inspiration or an ideal. Those things are gone now. Here is the corpse left behind, which we can parade around for our entertainment, and wax philosophical. Here we are, on high ground (or so we think), taking a tour of the path of the flood via imagery. Look, there's a nicknack or a memento. I bet that meant something to someone. Let's savor the pathos before we move on.
Maybe you think this is the part where I figure out some clever way to turn it around and say, "But wait! There is a point after all!" You'd be incorrect in that assumption. I don't have that in me today. As is often the case, I have the question - not just an idle curiosity, but a big gaping hole where meaning is supposed to be - but not the answer. Never the answer. I think sometimes I am just here to share the question, but periodically it's not a particularly pleasant one.
Maybe I'll feel better tomorrow about things. I can work away like a busy bee towards a set goal (taking/editing a photograph) with a set reward (sharing it with others). Maybe I'll have a more satisfying meaning to attach to things then, since all meaning is artificially constructed anyway.
In the meanwhile, I do truly hope you enjoy the picture. I don't know why I hope that, or why you would, or what either thing matters when you click on something else, when you log off of your computer and move on with your life. Off this image and my musings on it go, into the netherworld of forgotten things and the subconscious. Why does the husk of the building photographed matter? Why does the moment this image captured matter? Why does it matter that you're looking at it now and reading this?
I can't say. You're on your own with that one.
Follow this link to a full gallery from this abandoned resort. Image and text by Matthew Christopher.
If you're interested in more Abandoned America blogs, follow this link. If you enjoy my writing, check out my books: Abandoned America: Dismantling the Dream (Amazon / Barnes & Noble) or Abandoned America: The Age of Consequences (Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Signed copies).