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  • Betty Girardeau

When The World Is Upside Down And Out Of Focus


I created this image a few days ago specifically for a contest called "Numbers in Order." While it most certainly fits that description with three different sets of numbers showing, it seems to represent something more. Two sets of numbers are upside down, and, while still in order, seem disordered, not as expected or as we like to see them. In fact, the six appears like a nine, and the nine like a six. We know what they actually represent only in context to the other numbers directly around them. The other set of numbers is blurred, almost out of focus. But because we have been counting since childhood, we don't really need them to be in focus to know their order or how they should look. When I look at this image, it seems to symbolize what our world has been like so far this year, upside down and out of focus, yet still orderly in its own way. The days have become weeks, and the weeks have turned into months. Generally speaking, there are few appointments on our calendars, so the days become muted, flowing one into the other, almost becoming blurred. I used to know what day it was by the special things that I was supposed to do on a given day. Whole weeks were even blocked out with days I would be away attending a photo workshop or returning to France. Now those days, too, have become empty and blurred, the same as all the other days around them. Like many, I look forward to when my days will have calendar entries that prove there is purpose and meaning to them, but I have come to realize that it's not just what we are doing or have to do each day that does that. It is why and how we are doing those things that are more important. If I have learned anything in the past six months, it is to not take any day for granted. I am in charge, for the most part, of making that day count. I appreciate more fully relationships, too, and the importance of being able to interact with others in a meaningful way. I know that eventually the world will "right" itself, and there will be focused days again, but I hope that I don't forget the lessons I have learned while that has not been the case.

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