South Laguna Beach

Maybe one of if not the most important rules in photojournalism: NEVER set up a photo.

And that’s f’real, folks.

Sure, the photo of the crippled kid breaking the tape at the Special Olympics race would look WAY cooler and more triumphant if he would have had his hands in the air victoriously as he crossed the finish line.

But he didn’t, and you can’t make everyone back up and do-over – this time hold your hands in the air like you MEAN IT!

That’s not real life, sometimes.

And that is precisely why I love the red soda can in this photo.

It obviously, achingly, awkwardly doesn’t belong there.

It screams “Look at me! I’m the result of littering, ruining your perfect phone camera shot! I mockingly pierce through the blue sky and the wispy clouds – the subject’s attire even MATCHES the setting but HA! I am here to destroy your moment.”

Jason, my strapping boyfriend – oh, and, subject of this photo – even wanted to move the can once he’d realized I snapped his photo when he wasn’t looking. But nope.

It’s kind of perfect.