From The Last Bandit. A Rock'n'roll Life by Nikki Sudden:

Joachim spent the time it took for Dave and I to be snapped attempting to chat up Brigitte.

I don't understand the meaning and the construction of the sentence. Does "to be snapped" mean to take a picture? Who was pictured, and who was attempting to chat up Brigitte (Joachim or Dave and I)?

  • 1
    Dave and I were being photographed. While that was happening Joachim was chatting up Brigitte. Joachim spent / the time it took for Dave and I to be snapped / attempting to chat up Brigitte. Jun 26, 2021 at 8:45
  • 2
    Should be '...the time it took for Dave and me to be snapped'. Don't trust this book. It is probably full of errors. Jun 26, 2021 at 9:17
  • Thought spent was going with the time
    – Yves Lefol
    Jun 26, 2021 at 9:38
  • It is, like "Joachim spent the time reading" but in a more complicated sentence. Jun 26, 2021 at 10:17

1 Answer 1


"Snap" is used in various ways in connection with photography.

  • 'A snap' is a photograph
  • 'Take a snap' means to take a photograph

However, the term almost always refers to quick, unplanned photography. A posed photograph in a studio would not usually be called a 'snap'. In British English, 'Holiday snaps' is a common way to refer to amateur photographs taken on holiday. And, 'to be snapped' means to be photographed by someone else, usually unexpectedly.

In your example text, it seems that somebody photographed the first person and Dave were the ones photographed, during which time Joachim was chatting up Brigitte.

  • Calling an unplanned, spontaneous photograph a 'snapshot' or 'snap' was common in the USA and Britain from around 1900 when the first Kodak Brownie camera was introduced. These cameras made spontaneous 'point and shoot' photography easy, as there was no focusing, adjustment of shutter, etc. Jun 26, 2021 at 18:39

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