Not yourself

Matt see himself (sort of) in a funhouse mirror in San Diego, California, Spring 1992.

Matt see himself (sort of) in a funhouse mirror in San Diego, California, Spring 1992.

When you look
into a mirror
it is not
yourself you see,
but a kind
of apish error
posed in fearful

kool uoy nehW
rorrim a otni
ton si ti
˛ees uoy flesruoy
dnik a tub
rorre hsipa fo
lufraef ni desop

— John Updike

WOW, I love this poem! What do you see when you look in a mirror? How does it differ from what others see when they look at you?

One year ago today:

Exactly like me

This post was first published seven years ago today. The original post, comments and photo are linked, along with two other related posts, below. These links to related posts, and their thumbnail photos, do not appear in the blog feed; they are only visible when viewing the individual posts by clicking on each one. I have no idea why, nor do I know how they choose the related posts. That’s just the way WordPress does things.


  1. Good morning, Julia! I got to thinking about that very subject when I saw a self-portrait that Patrick had painted in school. It doesn’t look like Patrick; it looks like his brother, Keoki.
    So although we may be right about which is our “best” side, it’s not the side we think it is (left versus right), from another perspective!

    • It was many years before I even realized I had a “best” side, and then only because someone pointed it out to me. It’s not that I thought poorly of myself, it was more that I didn’t think of it at all. I had assumed both sides of our faces were basically the same, probably because I had never looked closely.

      • I agree – we tend to think of ourselves as basically symmetrical. As a child, I had one eye that was more obviously open than the other. I learned to point the larger eye toward any camera, to avoid that “Picasso” look where parallax messes with one’s mind.

        • I’ve learned to appreciate asymmetry as a beautiful thing. I always tended to prefer asymmetry in many areas, such as in clothing, jewelry, etc. I’ve never gone so far as to wear two different shoes, though. 😀

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