My last word is to say that I got back into film because I dug up my old Minolta when moving and out of curiosity bought some film and snapped a few rolls off. My 5 year old son could not conceive that a sheet of plastic could hold an image, and furthermore than one would have to wait to see it by sending it off to a lab for processing, waiting a week or two for return. When the prints came back he went nuts arranging them and sorting them, hanging them on the wall. It was great fun and real relief not to have to sit in front of the Mac to enjoy photos. He totally got a kick out of the surprise aspect, but he also noticed some shots turned out very poorly and worried we'd have to pay for them still. Now he wants more of the "old fashioned photos". But he still also likes the digital camera for instant gratification (and practise; digital is a Godsend for practise). He likes the instant Fujis as well, but he has noticed the better quality from the SLR and Mamiya. I could have just printed more digital photos, but what my son grasps is that there are different means to an end.

I was never arguing that film photography is not tangible. I was arguing that both film and digital are real, viable, and informative regardless, and it is a futile exercise to thump the book down on one side of the table and argue that one is "real" and the other "imaginary". Both are representations. Enjoy them. My 5 year-old got that intuitively.