That’s what people say when they’re about to take your picture.
I understand the desire to have smiling faces in photos, but I think saying’s “cheese” creates people with phony smiles. The “cheesy smile” doesn’t give anyone to show a smiling expression, but an expression of one who’s just had a Novocain shot.
A photographer with a great touch for getting real smiles was working at a doctor’s wedding we attended. He told guests to say, “malpractice,” causing everyone to laugh. The pictures showed everyone having a wonderful time.
When I’m facing the camera I think of something funny I’ve experienced; a favorite memory that will elicit a smile.
Which brings me to the subject of coffee. Most people who drink it like fresh coffee. The fresher the better. Freshly ground coffee beans are best of all. The current popularity of the one cup at a time coffee makers attest to this desirability of freshly brewed coffee. When my future husband and I were dating I spent the weekend at his family’s house one weekend, and my future in-laws invited my parents to lunch. The in-law family included his parents, a sister, a brother and an elderly grandmother.
Grandma, I had discovered in previous visits, had her own way of managing coffee. She believed it was a crime to throw food away. So she recycled the family’s coffee. She poured the old brew into a pot, added milk and warmed it up. Then she poured it into individual cups and served it to unsuspecting guests. My father was a coffee purist and one of the “fresher is better” believers. I had never thought to mention grandma’s coffee preparation methods to him.
Dessert time soon arrived. When offered the choices of coffee or tea my father said,”I’d like some coffee, please.” Grandma went into the kitchen to prepare it. Will I ever forget the look on my father’s face when he took a long sip of Grandma’s concoction? The taste was so foreign: so different from what he expected that he almost spit the mouthful of recycled coffee out all over the carefully laid table. One look at his shock and disbelief was one of the funniest sights I ever saw. Its memory remains in my mind, and makes me laugh every time I remember that day.
So I never have to “say cheese” to force a smile; I simply recall the memory of my father reacting to is first taste of “Grandma style coffee.”