Friday, May 13, 2011

That Baby Ruined Everything

I wasn’t there when this French family was photographed in their garden. I don’t know them either, but I think I have a sense of what was going on. Allow me to take some liberties with the reconstruction.

On the very left you have Bernadette who is married to Alphonse, sitting on the opposite side. They are the parents of Margaux (second from the left) and Maurice, who is standing.  While the parents seem relatively carefree, their children appear somewhat somber and a little tense.  Margaux has been unhappy ever since her fiancée broke off their engagement. Her sadness inspires her to surround her eyes with dark makeup so she can look as sad as she feels. She holds her parents, who didn’t approve of her suitor, partially responsible for her great sorrow.

Maurice’s family is seated at the table.  His wife Hélène is calm, but Maurice tensely anticipates an outburst of some kind from one of his children, a joyous flailing and high-pitched screaming from baby Pascal, or a crying temper tantrum from his daughter, Gabrielle.

Gabrielle enjoyed a blissful existence until recently.  Her curls, her soft brown eyes, and her adorable pout were the object of universal adoration. Everything she did was worthy of praise and admiration or at least attention of some kind. Life was so good. At least until that baby came along. It may not have helped that the baby was a boy. All of a sudden everyone’s attention was focused on the adorable apple-cheeked Pascal and his constant needs. Poor Gabrielle.


Here's the back of the card, which should have the names written on it, but doesn't. If you feel sad like Gabrielle,  a visit to Sepia Saturday is sure to cheer you up.

26 comments:

  1. The story you constructed is a riot! Tres bien.

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  2. Looks like you have hit the nail on the head with that one. Gabrielle was in a real mood. We have a similar family group portrait where my youngest child has exactly that same expression, whilst the rest of us are smiling through gritted teeth!

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  3. Christine, what a knack you have for creating a fanciful story to go with this photo. Poor Gabrielle! And sweet Pascal! Is it any wonder people gravitate to his round-faced cheeriness?! Don't you just want to kiss those cheeks?!

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  4. a wonderful interpretation! :)

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  5. Wonderful and creative narrative! Great RPPC, too. I think I felt like this when my cousins were born.

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  6. I'm not surprised nothing's written on the back of the postcard, but you have given us a caption which is far more illuminating, thanks Christine.

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  7. Mostly the youngest child will get more attention.

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  8. I smell a contest here. Why not post a real photo family group like that, and see who can spin the best story around it? (the winner would get the card!)

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  9. Mark, I think that's a great idea! I have other family photos that would be ideal for that.

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  10. Great story and photo. Unfortunately for little Pascal he will not remain the baby for long. Eventually he will be the oldest boy of 7 children.

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  11. I feel like I just watched Masterpiece Theater!

    Poor Gabrille. So sad. Let's hope she didn't end up like Marguax.

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  12. I love this story. I wonder how close to the truth, you are.

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  13. How funny - I should get you to analyse some of my photos and produce a story! Thanks for this one :-) Jo

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  14. LOL. Those eyes and glum look "make" the photo for me. I just love a good "little kid" pout.

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  15. The 'baby's' smile gives it away - I'll bet her mother's knee is wet!

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  16. Oh yes. . . as the firstborn and daughter, I was not particularly happy when "Pascal" arrived some five years later. Dethroning is painful.

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  17. Looks like they may have just come from a funeral. Everyone in black except the 2 little ones. Fun story.
    QMM

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  18. Splendid photo and wonderful short story. Perhaps a photo story contest with a missing last paragraph to be completed by the commenters? This one could go from Guy de Maupassant to Stephen King.

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  19. Gabrielle is my favorite of the bunch, if I were to add to the story it would be with the greatest of hope for her...I can see her taking over the motion picture world, much like Jodie Foster in the fact that she is a fine actress but also a great screen writer and director! Oh yes that pout will take on new meaning...and hopefully her brother doesn't become to content with being the life of the party, and perhaps he will be an artist....painting his life experiences...!thanks for sharing such a fine bunch of people!

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  20. Lovely - and I think you have kept on theme because this is a delightful flight of fancy based on a glorious old photograph.

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  21. sibling rivalry, something i never had to contend with...
    but great storytelling!!
    :)~
    HUGZ

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  22. Sad story. Its off to the nunnery for Margaux now.

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  23. Fantastic story for the photograph - I love that kind of fun with these!

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