Here Are My Outtakes

Monica Benevides Avatar

Mary and I spent Sunday morning on what might best be described as a content hunt for Manqué. The night prior, which is Saturday night, if you’re keeping track, we recorded an episode for The Manque podcast and, riding that momentum into the next morning, we investigated the contents of Mary’s overnight bag and my closet for impromptu photo-suitable outfits. Sufficiently pleased with our sartorial finds, we left the house overly-caffeinated and determined to have ourselves a creative output day.

And we did — as evidenced by some of what we’ve teased on Instagram.

But — and here is the but — in the days since that morning, which was replete with cream puffs, iced lattes and light jackets, I found myself doing that thing I do where I scroll through all the photos I store on my phone, wondering near-obsessively about which ones of myself I should post on my personal account. It’s such a common experience that I almost didn’t notice it, this mental health purgatory I visit any time I deign to take pictures of myself, or allow my picture to be taken.

To be clear, I was not the subject of this shoot, or at least not the sole subject. We took a million photos of me, yes, but we also took a million photos of Mary and cool houses and, for me, of the cream puff. But for my broken brain, it’s the photos of myself I obsess over, trying studiously to determine which ones are appropriate and ideal to share with the world. Why? I couldn’t really tell you for certain. What I can tell you is that, while I love taking photos of both myself and other people, this is a hobby that invariably launches a thousand ships teeming with body dysmorphia. Fun!

So, in a very online turn of events, I’ve decided to post a few here, right on Manqué Magazine dot com. 

This isn’t so much an attempt to be radical or anything as ambitious as that inasmuch as it’s an attempt to provide some context to what we’re doing here, some ~*behind the scene peaks*~, if you will. Mary and I have tender feelings about this humble magazine-podcast project we’ve got going here, and one way I show that love is by trying to make it a place on the internet where I, and hopefully you, can feel like a three-dimensional person. 

And part of my dimensional trifecta includes a piece of me that, like many of you, is always trying to navigate the relationship between herself as a person breathing oxygen and herself as a body tapping on lettered buttons all day long. (That’s the me you’re seeing here, I imagine.)

So, apropos of nothing else, here are some photos of myself that I probably wouldn’t have posted on Instagram, which aren’t objectively awkward or unflattering, but which I am sharing with you here to remind myself that I don’t really have any conception of what I look like and that nothing really matters and that is a good thing.

Comments are turned off b/c Mary’s a vegetarian and we aren’t going fishing. Here’s to the cutting room floor — cheers!

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