I have a funny relationship with my camera.
In high school, my parents' gift of a fancy-ish Nikon inspired me to take roll after roll (remember those?) of photos of my friends lounging angstily on fire escapes and brownstone stoops, eating toast in diners and putting on lipstick and blowing out smoke from pilfered cigarettes. I love these photos, but they aren't really photos of us - they're photos of us trying to be someone else, someone closer to the picture of "cool" we held in our heads.
And then there are the years that I jokingly (but not really) think of as "the lost years" - when I forgot about my camera for one reason or another, and many months went by without a single photo. I have only one album from college, and it's filled with shots from maybe three or four especially photogenic nights (a formal, another formal, a night my roommates and I got dressed up to go out and then decided to just stay in my room and drink bad tequila and dance to the Footloose soundtrack).
When I graduated and moved to California, my camera was stolen during a break-in, and I didn't replace it for a long, long time. I have a few shots from nights out at clubs with friends, but not of the times I'd really like photos of: the nights spent sitting by the pool with my dad, looking up at the moon and the palm trees and talking. The long drives I took to Santa Barbara. I wish I had more photographs of my sweet friend. I think of him every day; I'd like to see his face.