As a matter of courtesy, I would like to extend my congratulations and condolences on your imminent divorce. I am intimately familiar with the portents of loneliness and the cavalcade of ensuing woes. The recurring night terrors. The caterwauling in the kitchen. The looming reality of dining alone on a Friday night in a crowded Italian restaurant. While you were once regaled with the glorious chimes of wedding bells, you now shrivel before a vinegary antipasto and await the crushing gavel of defeat. And I understand how difficult that can be.
But if you look at it from my perspective, you’ll see you have a great deal to look forward to. Like the circle of life, our relationships usually decline and decay until you can’t remember why you wanted to be with a Trevor in the first place. Yet at the same time, we experience a rebirth, a new beginning. An unceremonious dumping at the Chevron station becomes a wonderful blessing, as it emancipates you from the cruel fetters of love. And that’s why I’m here. To help you recognize the beauty in this moment. To guide you on your path. To humbly serve as your divorce photographer.
While my services may sound unconventional, I can assure you that documenting your break-up is the Next Big Thing. This is your opportunity to get in on the ground floor of something huge. Momentous. Paradigm shifting even. I’m letting you in on a well-kept secret of the influencers and bon vivants of America. An underground wave that will leave every sullen divorcee in its wake. This is, without a doubt, the Bitcoin of cultural cache.
“But wait,” you may say. “The divorce rate is declining. I read it on my feed!”
“Tut tut,” I gamely reply. “All the more reason to stay ahead of the curve.”
You wouldn’t want to be caught wearing Canada Goose when everyone else has moved on to Moncler. Why would you want to miss out on the chance to commemorate the nadir of your trivial existence? Weddings are passé; divorce proceedings are the new selfie. It’s high time you immerse yourself in your impending singledom. Whether you’re a born-again bachelor or a single mother on the prowl at Benihana, you’ll be able to look back at that overcast Monday in divorce court and think, “The only thing I regret is the twenty grand I spent on a banquet room at the Marriott.”
Marriages fail for a number of reasons, but I can assure you I’m an expert in the panoply of offenses. Bigamy, desertion, Dirty John, my clients have undergone all manner of trauma and deceit and come out on the other side as extremely satisfied customers. I’ll let the testimonials on my Squarespace site speak for themselves:
“SplitPics captured the best moments of the worst day of my life. I’m definitely never get married again,” glowed Gina, a mother of two from Santa Barbara.
“If I divorce my new husband any time soon, I’ll be calling SplitPics before I even pay the retainer,” opined Theresa, a philandering academic from El Paso.
Wow. Those were impressive. See, my clients recognize the need for closure. And that’s what I provide. With only a few clicks of the camera, I‘ll create indelible memories for you and your soon-to-be insignificant other. If you want an action shot with your groomsmen—leaping in the air as you realize how bleak your future is—I can do that. Or if you want something with a deeper subtext—say, a candid of you and the Woman Formerly Known as Your Wife emerging from separate cars on the courthouse steps—I would be honored to capture your haggard visage as the gift of youth drains from your pallid cheeks.
People often ask me: “What’s the best part of your job?” And I always say, “Seeing the expressions on my clients’ faces after we finish a shoot and they walk away from each other forever. It could be a wince. Or a slight grimace. Sometimes it’s nearly imperceptible. But it’s always there. Because I know that despite their bitter resentment and irreconcilable differences, they believe they’ve made the right decision. Or at least a decision. For the kids or whatever.”
As a photographer, I like to think of myself as a soothsayer of sorts. I have a preternatural sense of whose lives will be ruined by the farcical institution of marriage. And I exploit that. Because like any other shrewd capitalist, I take pride in preying upon the most sensitive and vulnerable members of our community.
Let’s be honest: Your relationship was doomed from the moment you stepped on the altar. High school sweethearts? Get out of here. At least you can finally afford some quality snapshots of your annulment. Think of it as an investment. It’s a gesture that says, “I still care.” Even though you may never speak again. Except at your children’s open house event. Where your ex is canoodling with her new boyfriend, Todd, who your children are wary of. Until they get used to his presence, and see that he’s actually a pretty nice guy.
The fact is, you were never there for her. You should have listened more. Been an attentive father and supportive husband. Muzzled your protests when she wanted to watch that Nancy Meyers flick. Which, in retrospect, wasn’t that bad. The writing was quite breezy, and you’ve always enjoyed Diane Keaton. She’s just enchanting. Don’t you wish you could have captured those moments?
Well, this is your chance. Let me be your post-nuptial nurse. Wean your ego back to health. Dazzle you with my composition par excellence. And leave you with a transcendent coda to your matrimonial demise. Because regardless of the lies you keep telling yourself, it actually was your fault.