Yesterday, Jimmy Kimmel shared that this week his three-year-old daughter Jane had her first ever school picture day, which prompted the host wax poetic about why, in our tech-forward times, school picture days exists at all. While Kimmel admitted that, while he and his wife bought a set of the photos, the photos seem to only exist for “grandparents who don’t know that phones can take pictures now.” Kimmel was especially amused by the different sizes of photos available, as some of the larger sizes don’t really have any practical use unless you are friends with Shaquille O’Neal or Peter Mayhew. Honestly, the man raises an excellent point.
School picture day used to be one of the few times a year you could actually get a decent photo of your kid. But that was back when most of us were stuck using disposable cameras and polaroids. Now, thanks to the photographic firepower of smartphones, we can take high-quality photos of our kids a thousand times a day. This makes school photo day feel like a vestigial structure of a bygone era.
Still, there is something nice about the yearly routine of the school photo day, of dressing your kid up nicely so you’ll have proof of them going about their little world when you’re not around. That, for many, is still worth the cost.