One of my high school senior pictures was posted on a list of Ridiculous Senior Photos on the Holy Taco Blog. While mine s one of the tamest of the bunch, it’s an honor to be nominated with a great group of horrendous pictures.
Since the picture to the right was such a hit with the internet community at large, I’ve posted more senior photos for your enjoyment.
These photos were taken in the Fall of 2000 by New England Photography in Elizabeth, Pennsylvania. They’re nice people and do good work, even if some of the poses and scenery are a bit over the top.
Back in late 2000, I saw the Barenaked Ladies before in concert and it changed my life. They’re the one band I’ll truly follow, for better or worse. I was unabashed about this in high school, contributing to the already vast list of reasons I never dated. I took my love of the band one step further and designed a website dedicated to them, loaded it with photos of nipples, and gave it the most ridiculous title possible: The Chilly Nipple.
Looking back, I see the logic. If a lady is naked, her nipples are most likely chilly. It’s a catchy joke title but maybe something that shouldn’t have been associated with my straightforward fan page. Besides having a horrible design and being adorned with nipples, I waxed poetic on my love of all things Barenaked Ladies. The problem? No one gave a shit.
The site never got visitors, and I gave up on it almost as quickly as it was created during a brainstorming session in the shower. After going through my archives, I found the desktop wallpaper that I crafted. It’s the greatest thing about the site, a 10 on the unintentional comedy scale, and arguably the best digital image ever created.
The wallpaper adorned my desktop for several weeks before I realized having a huge nipple in the center of my monitor wasn’t as cool an idea as it seemed (and my mom yelled at me). The background was changed to something more hip, like “Survivor” contestants, and the website was abandoned.
Fortunately, thanks to portable hard drives and the foresight to save a lot of my old files, it lives on for you to enjoy.
Welcome to a new segment of Muldo.Net: Things I Did in High School. From time to time, I’ll highlight an event, activity, or story that happened during my salad days at Thomas Jefferson High School in the South Hills of Pittsburgh from 1997-2001. Today’s installment: Ridiculous Senior Photos.
It was September of 2000. The first season of “Survivor” had just taken the nation by storm, Al Gore and George W. Bush were fighting for the presidency, and the summer Olympics took place in Sydney, Australia.
A world away, I just turned 17 and was working part time at a local movie theater as I began my senior year. Of course, with senior year came a rite of passage which every human being must partake: Senior Pictures. I was never one to shy away from a camera, so I approached the day with excitement. It’s not very often that you get a professional photographer to perfectly capture you while you’re looking your best.
My mom hired a husband and wife team to capture my essence. I picked out several of my best outfits, or what my mom said were my nicest, and drove to their office at 3:00 p.m. that afternoon to begin my day as a model.
Based on conversations I had with classmates, I expected to be finished in 30 to 45 minutes and back home with a belly full of dinner in time to watch “Big Brother.” I was wrong. Five hours, four costume changes, and three locations later, we had used up most of the photographer’s memory stick and a good portion of my sanity.
The shoot began at their studio, where I took the typical suit-and-tie senior portrait. We then moved to an old railroad bridge for a more industral look, and finished that up with scenes near a quaint babbling brook, showing my love of nature.
The most ridiculous result of this was the picture to the right. They posed me next to a rusty support beam and directed me to longingly look into the lens while doing a Spider-Man style pose.
The end result? My mom spent a lot more money on senior photos than most parents, and because of the volume of pictures, felt obligated to purchase more. This led to what my family called the “Ryan Shrine,” a collection of about 8 photos, separately framed, but in a collage style that adorned the living room wall for 7 years. It was a running joke and was eventually moved into the spare bedroom that people rarely enter.
As for me, I was exhausted and bewildered by the amount of time taken for something not very important. Looking back, I realize it was all worth it. These photos represent memories to be both cherished and laughed at.