What I pictured was a group of friends who were taken to the festival and politely tried to act like they enjoyed it when they really didn’t. Was their frolicking not convincing? I asked what she meant and it turns out she was referring to the many pictures people were posting involving their families happily posing in front of what seemed like endless fields of tulips. No one took pictures of the hours stuck in traffic, the lack of parking, or made note that there weren’t really as many tulips as there appeared, so she was eager to experience The Tulip Festival with her own family, which consisted of toddlers who didn’t take kindly to a four hour drive there and a four hour drive back. It turned out the parking was far away and the long walk wasn’t safe for their children.
In other words, it was a nightmare and not at all what they expected. A while later, I was at a friend’s house and noticed her wilting tulips in the front yard. I thought, “Maybe she should have taken pictures by these tulips that are one minute away from her? Too bad they’re dying.”
Being the weird person that I am, I did an impromptu photo shoot where I pretended to like the dead tulips. I called the album “Late to the Tulip Festival”. It helps that a have a friend who is usually eager to support me in my weird endeavors.
Years ago I did actually go to the festival with my family in 2009, but in the interest of not being misleading, I shared the good, the bad, and the Gilbert Gottfried faces (what my family calls the face one makes when you try to smile with the sun in your eyes). We even included the traffic and our speedometer as we tried to get there. Note the many imperfect poses with our imperfect family. I don’t remember what that morning was like, but I’m sure it included, “PUT ON SOMETHING DECENT!!! WE’RE TAKING PICTURES!!!”
My church’s leaders recently suggested that we be authentic online. I think this situation is just one good reason why. My dead tulip poses are now becoming a tradition. This year I included a garden gnome. Of course, if I were truly dedicated, I would drive out to the tulip fields.