I took my girlfriend to Paris and we headed straight to the Père Lachaise Cemetery. What can I say, I am a romantic!
For me it was a bizarre and macabre experience. There were tour groups, plenty of couples and occasionally genuine mourners on view.
When we eventually navigated our way around to Oscar Wilde, Edith Piaf and Jim Morrison’s Tombs, I was amazed. People were laughing, smiling and each taking turns to get a selfie with the celebrities’ graves.
A couple enjoying a selfie with the late Jim Morrison
Was this appropriate behaviour for a graveyard? I wasn’t sure.
It also made me think, why have we become so obsessed with selfies/photos?
Mr Biscuit the potty pottery mentor I think has the answer. He revealed that the value in creating ceramics was that every piece was unique, personal and could potentially last forever.
The same could be said about a photo.
The same could be argued about a tombstone
When Père Lachaise Cemetery opened, the first year’s trading was unsuccessful. Administrators devised a marketing plan to attract more burials.
They transferred the remains of Jean De La Fontaine (poet) and Molière (playwright and actor). It was a bit like when Paris Saint Germain FC brought David Beckham. It did work, burials more than tripled the following year and have continued to rise ever since.
So if a selfie helps to remember a few of the greats and keeps the business coming in – maybe it is not such a bad thing.
“All I’ve done
all my life
– Edith Piaf