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The Yodeler

The selfie animalia, part 1

Written by Ryan Haymore

There are so many selfies to take, so many backdrops, so many angles, so much lighting, and so much to choose from in this world of roving, virtual make believe. There is the smolder, the opened mouth smile, the sensual grin and more to choose from regarding facial expression. [Editor’s note, except the duck lips. Please, no duck lips.] We are a selfie people. We are a selfie culture. I think it’s good to believe in yourself and “believe in your selfie.”

This makes me wonder about how selfies have changed society and us in tandem. Then, I get to thinking about smiles in general. And whenever I think of something generally I go immediately and analyze myself. Personally, I’m fond of taking open-mouth smile selfies. I drink copious amounts of coffee out of a tiny, little straw to avoid stains, and I use peroxide in my toothpaste. Needless to say, I have teeth as sensitive as an open nerve ending, but they are rather white, considering my diet. I want to make sure when I flash my smile I channel a more porcelain sheen as opposed to a George Washington wood-brown hue. When I smile I open my mouth so you can see quite a bit of teeth; I’m a wide smiler even when I’m not trying to be.

This brings me to my point: apparently, as I was feeling my oats (with my sensitive teeth) and posting streams of my open-mouth selfies, I caught the attention of a friend who was really channeling Carl Linnaeus (the man who followed Aristotle in the animal classification). The next time I saw this friend, I was accused of chronically keeping my mouth open while grinning. I explained that that’s how I smile and they can kiss my grits if they have anything negative to say. This friend, not trying to be rude, took their assertion further and labeled me a “crocodile selfie-taker.”

Animals? Selfies? Two worlds colliding? Sweet Jesus this can’t be happening. When I think of handsome or cute selfies, I don’t think of crocs!

Apparently, the way a crocodile sits idly with its teeth showing and its mouth agape struck this friend the same way the larger portion of my selfies do. In this friend’s mind, in my selfies I look like a crocodile laying about on its belly and assaulting the world with an onslaught of toothy grins.

I stood there after this classification and wondered exactly what animals I channel while taking my selfies. Thus, I must ask: what characteristics do you exhibit when you selfie? What animalistic characteristics have you seen lurking about the facial expressions both in the wild and in the deep of our social media jungle? What animal do you channel when you selfie?

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Ryan Haymore

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