Posts tagged with #family

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In the 70s my dad was a weather man in Milwaukee. He took this photo during that time and I just love it! He’s the guy on the right.

After 24 days of holding out hope that some troubling symptoms were curable, followed by 22 days of watching the realities of an awful incurable brain disease take shape, my mom died Tuesday evening. My dad, my brother, and I were close by when she passed on December 20th, 2016.

The 46 days leading up to this event have been heart-wrenching. Watching someone you love suffer and wither away before your eyes is an experience I hope none of you have to face. And if you’ve done that already: my deepest condolences from a place of unfortunate understanding.

Christmas

Christmas 2012

I’ve been fearing the death of my parents since I was ten or so. I was probably more tuned into it than most thanks to my Mom’s sense of morbid reality — like when she reminded us during the Christmas of 1988 that we should talk with our grandmother in Australia because she “doesn’t have much time left.” And then reminding us again in 1989, 1990, 1991, and the next fourteen Christmases until she died in 2006. You’d think that after a lifetime of thinking about death, I’d be more ready for it. But who is ever ready for this?

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Check this out: my great grandparents’ wedding in 1904. Those mustaches! My great great grandfather (seated) looking so much like Daniel Day Lewis! The sheer and utter joy spilling out of their faces!

My great grandparents' wedding, 1904. Mustache game is strong. #tbt #supertbt

A photo posted by Jeff Keen (@jeffkeen) on


I did a little research on the lack of smiles in Victorian-era photos, and what I assumed originally was a result of having to stand perfectly still for a photo turns out to be incorrect. Instead, smiling in a photo back then was viewed in the same way as today’s duckface: totally unacceptable.

“A photograph is a most important document, and there is nothing more damning to go down to posterity than a silly, foolish smile caught and fixed forever.” - Mark Twain