Express Yourself(ie)

I came a little late to the selfie phenomenon.

Partly because I have an irrational hatred of the word ‘selfie’ but mainly because I was busy taking photos of my two new babies, who seemed far more captivating than a poorly-framed, gurning shot of me. Plus I felt awkward actually taking a selfie, embarrassed to be doing something so seemingly self-indulgent.

Then I came to understand that there were only about three photos of me with the kids in existence, versus hundreds of everyone else with them, so I decided it was time to get in on the act. I also started to realise that I was looking through hundreds of images of other people’s lives  – not just the spectacular but the everyday, and found it so addictive that I found myself wanting to overcome my embarrassment and begin to share my world too.

So I have become quite used to having my phone on hand for any impromptu photo opportunity, snapping a random caterpillar, beautiful plant or a shot of myself in front of a particularly beautiful building or sky. But this Wednesday I was particularly pleased to have had my camera on hand when, as I crossed the road at London’s Piccadilly Circus, I saw out of the corner of my eye, Arnie on a ‘Boris Bike‘ (London’s self-service bicycle-sharing scheme).

Yep, Arnie. Ex-Governor of California, the Terminator, the man who totally recalled, the original action hero. On a Boris bike.

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Now, ‘old’ me would have been too embarrassed to do something as vulgar as take a photo of a ‘sleb, but I figured since he was cycling through central London at rush hour with a small entourage, Arnie wasn’t going for undercover here. So I reached for my ever-handy phone and merrily snapped away.

And there it was. My first celebrity selfie. And I was delighted. And so were my social media feeds, which finally had content from a genuine A-lister to boast about.

You never know when you’re going to bump into an action hero, prime minister, UNICEF ambassador or rock star, so always have your camera close and don’t be embarrassed to use it – if they’re out there, they’re probably after the exposure, so you may even be helping a fellow PR somewhere…

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