Memory Book


I picked up something really cool from Costco today.

Man, I love that store. Let’s face it, every trip to Costco is a bit of an adventure. They sell things that other stores sell too… but Costco does it in bulk on pallets. It’s like the entire place fell off the back of some gargantuan truck.

Anyway, the cool thing I picked up (really, two cool things) was the photo books that my wife spent many hours painstakingly compiling from amongst both of our photo collections. She made two: one of our honeymoon, and one of our first year of marriage. Looking through them now, as I sit with a well-deserved beer (penultimate bottle of the sixpack of Stone IPA I bought last weekend) I’m really struck by how much more kick a photo can have when you print it on paper.

There are so many memories in here — good and bad — and I can hold them all at once in my hands. They have a weight and a mass. Tapping through a bunch of jpegs in a folder just can’t compare to this. Of course, a big part of the experience is that all of these photos have been hand-selected by my wife.

I’m just blown away for a moment by the overwhelming rush of sense-memories and emotions as I flip through the pages.

It’s such a potent reminder of the whole point of the technological meandering that we go through in order to preserve our photos safely. I’ve spent so much time over the past few months reading about and testing and building out this arcane photo archiving system that I’ve completely lost sight of the reason I want to preserve these images.

I have a giant chunk of writing sitting in my drafts folder, all about the technological challenge and process1, and I’m deleting it right now because it isn’t important. The photos themselves are not the essential thing. What matters is the doors they open in your mind.


  1. To cut a long post short, I’m using BitTorrent sync backed up to a Digital Ocean droplet and a couple of MacBooks. Works great, so far. 

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