The Hambone Child - What to Do?


#1

On Memorial Day our family was invited to a Watchfire, which historically speaking is the campfire built to call the soldiers home from the field, but today is a fire in which American flags that are worn out or damaged are given a properly Constitutional burning. This was the first Memorial Day on which my Veteran father was gone from us, and I wanted to get some photos to send to my sisters who could not be there, and to frame.

Unfortunately, every time I aimed the camera, as you will note in the photo below, a fat-faced boy jumped into the frame. After the second ruined shot I yelled at him to get the heck out of my shot, and his mother or somebody jerked him out of the way.

Is there some better way to deal with the Hambone Child of a stranger?


#2

What’s a Hambone Child?


#3

Cat I had to open this thread to see exactly what that meant so my best guess is a child who likes his or her picture taken no matter who is behind the camera lens.

Can’t help with how to deal with this except to say maybe you could photo shop the child out of the picture and if you don’t just label it “fire w/random unknown child”. So the question of course is did this child purposely stand in front of you every time you snapped the camera or was it just a coincidence.

Brenda V.


#4

:shrug:

In the example you gave above, if your photo must be certain people only and a child wants to be in your picture, I would ask “who is your mommy or daddy?” When they pointed out the parent, I would ask the parent “your little boy wants to be in my photo, as I am a stranger to him I did not think that a good idea” and go back to getting my pictures of my own family.

If the stranger simply appeared in the picture, you can photo shop them out.

So, did this child carry a hambone or something?


#5

A Hambone (in my part of the South) is what you might call a Showboat, someone who deliberately jumps into a photo in the full knowledge that he is being a pest and that you do not want him or her in the shot. I have a set of photos taken in Australia with a teenaged boy doing his best to ruin the shots (which he in fact did, to the point that I gave up.)

I dont like to yell at someone elses child, especially during a solemn ceremony, but this brat was deaf to ordinary requests or attempts to appeal to his better nature, and since this was a film camera, I didnt have 300 shots available so I could have deleted all the shots with him in them.


#6

those pictures are pretty funny though.


#7

I was born in Birmingham, AL, and this is the first time I’ve heard the word “hambone” used this way.

<>

There’s nothing in the US Constitution about the flag at all.


#8

(1) So they dont call a showboat kid a hambone where you live; and (2) It isnt in the Constitition; it is in the protocol for disposing of flags.

Other than arguing with my choice of words, do you have anything to say about my question?


#9

No offense meant - I’m sure this was a mucho frustrating experience - but my response would be to crack up. The pic you posted is hilarious.

And yes, I knew what you meant by hambone. Which is a great word, BTW. We have the best words down South! You could also say you “didn’t know that child from Adam’s cat.”

Not really the response you wanted … probably, I would look around, find the parents, and say something like, “Um, your son keeps leaping into my photos. I don’t want y’all to think I’m some kind of child molester or something - could you keep him out of them for a sec so I can get a pic?” This would probably a) make them laugh, and b) defuse the situation. It’s better than shrieking at them to watch their kid, which we’re all too polite to do anyway :D.


#10

Absolutely. Hambone children are looking for a bit of attention, someone to care. You talk to the child as though the child is an actual human being rather than yelling at him like a dog. You talk to him about your father, about Memorial Day, about taking a photo for your sisters who cannot be there and so educate a boy to become a man. Children treated like errant hopeless dogs grow up to be errant hopeless dogs. Children respected as human beings grow up to be respectful human beings.


#11

I live in the north and I know what a hambone is. People haven’t heard the terms “being a ham” or “hamming it up” for people who like to be filmed or like to be the center of attention.

I would have said “Excuse me could you please step away while I take a picture.” If that didn’t work I would have asked where his parents are. Last resort is photo shop (actually Arcsoft PhotoStudio) which I use all the time to correct things.

I think you did fine though the kid was being a pest.


#12

Hand him the camera and ask him to take a photo of you?


#13

I had this happen at my daughter’s dance recital. This one girl just wanted her picture taken with anyone who was getting their picture taken. As I was trying to get some shots of my daughter and her close friends, she kept getting in the photo. I finally said to her, look…I don’t know you, you aren’t even in my daughters class. We are trying to get some pictures done before the show starts, will you please stop getting in the pictures. I wasn’t as nice as I could be, but she was going from person to person getting in everyone’s pictures, didn’t care if she knew them or not. She finally went and sat down. The other mom’s were glad I said something, no one else wanted to be the one to do it, but I didn’t want this kids picture. It would have been different if I would have had some clue who she even was, but I’d never seen the kid before in my life.

Absolutely. Hambone children are looking for a bit of attention, someone to care. You talk to the child as though the child is an actual human being rather than yelling at him like a dog. You talk to him about your father, about Memorial Day, about taking a photo for your sisters who cannot be there and so educate a boy to become a man. Children treated like errant hopeless dogs grow up to be errant hopeless dogs. Children respected as human beings grow up to be respectful human beings

It’s been my experience with kids like this, that they really don’t care why you are doing what you are doing. They just want in the photo. Should they be treated badly? No, but they aren’t going to listen to you talk about your dad. The kid was being a brat and trying to ruin her photos. My question would have been, where is your mother and why aren’t you with her. My guess is she was hiding from her kid:D


#14

I agree with this. When a child acts up, it’s often because they want attention. Give it to him. Ask him to help you take the pictures by offering an opinion on the “best angle” or something. Thank him for helping you.

I feel kind of bad for the kid–where were his parents or relatives taking pictures of him? (Same for the girl at the dance–why did she go sit down? Didn’t she have any relatives to take pictures of her? That’s kind of sad, isn’t it?

**I agree with those who say that the parents should be approached. Nowadays it’s not a wise idea for a child to ascribe to be in the pictures of total strangers. ** I would gently speak with the parents and warn them that their son is doing something kind of dangerous and perhaps they should reign him in so he doesn’t get victimized by a predator.

And sorry for the question about Hambone. It sounded like some kind of disability nickname. There is a syndrome nicknamed “Mermaid Syndrome”, and there’s a disability called “club foot.” And there’s “hunchback.” All of these are nicknames for the scientific name. So I was just curious to know what “Hambone” meant. I imagined some kind of extra vertebrae sticking out the back.


#15

I hope you did finally get a good shot. That bonfire looks fantastic.

For the child, I ould have spoken to him directly. “Honey, please step away a bit, I’m trying to get a picture of just the fire.” If that didn’t work, I would have been more blunt.

I do think it is a good idea to speak to children as you want them to behave (ie, as if they have some clue), but unfortunately I see more and more that kids are growing up with very few manners. I’m not sure I would have wanted to get into a long conversation with this lone child. And I highly doubt he would have listened to your stories about your dad. But yelling would not have ben my first choice.


#16

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