Monday, May 28, 2012

Time traveling polaroids

Earlier today I came across this "feel-good" article at the Los Angeles Times. Old Polaroid yields eerie development — a long-dead uncle
A random garage sale purchase surprises a 13-year-old with a picture of a relative he had never known.Old Polaroid yields eerie development — a long-dead uncle A random garage sale purchase surprises a 13-year-old with a picture of a relative he had never known.
The opening of the story sounded interesting, and I read the story, expecting it being about how a box of photos contained some photos of family member or something. Of course it wasn't. It was about a boy going on garage sales, and finding a polaroid camera:
At the third garage sale, he spotted an old Polaroid Impulse — a cool find, given that a lot of popular online photo filters imitate what these cameras used to do. He bought the Polaroid for $1. But it didn't work when he took it home. After looking at some videos on YouTube, he realized he needed another antique: film. He cracked the camera open and found a bit of history inside: a classic photo of a young guy and girl hanging out.
As I read that, I went "WTF???". He "cracked the camera"? Has the journalist writing the story never seen a polaroid? Doesn't he know how it works? There is no way a polaroid would stay in the camera, and there is certainly no way that the chemicals would work and produce the picture so many years later.

What's more: I posted a link to the story on my facebook wall, saying it sounds fishy, and one person mentioned that the clothes and the camera doesn't fit together. The clothes are from the seventies, while the Polaroid Impulse is from 1988. Obivously the camera has the ability to travel in time.

According to the article, the uncle died 23 years ago, which would barely make the 1988 photo possible, but the whole article makes it clear that the photo was taken some time before his death ("The family thinks the girl in the photograph was a high school girlfriend").

Two seconds of reflecting over the story would have told the journalist that it didn't pass the smell test.

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2 Comments:

Blogger JackC said...

Actually, there are Polaroids that would retain the film packet, but this certainly wasn't one of them. You are also most likely quite correct regarding the developing process completely failing due to the chemical age, if in fact there had been an un-removed packet.

Nothing in the story lines up at all. I wonder what drives people to make this stuff up.

JC

May 29, 2012 12:26 AM  
Blogger JackC said...

Actually, there are Polaroids that would retain the film packet, but this certainly wasn't one of them. You are also most likely quite correct regarding the developing process completely failing due to the chemical age, if in fact there had been an un-removed packet.

Nothing in the story lines up at all. I wonder what drives people to make this stuff up.

JC

May 29, 2012 12:26 AM  

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