A Tactile Past

I am often struck by the fuzziness of the past. The farther back in time I drift, the less real the time period becomes – blurry and grainy and pixelated. Black and white, washed out, faded and cloudy.
When thinking about the past, or seeing pictures or videos of places and people long gone, I have to shake myself to remember that these individuals and the environments that surround them were once as vibrant and tactile as the couch I’m sitting on now. As bright the lights that are glimmering around me. As real the keyboard I’m typing on. It sounds a silly thing to forget… That the past held the all the same colors and smells and textures as today.
They were real. They were real. They were real.
It was all real.

This, I think, is one of the reasons I’ve become so enthralled with period films – pieces that allow us to look back at the past in the same way we look at the present. Using the same technology, the same number of pixels. We can see what the past truly was, even if it’s not quite real.