Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Family Portrait

OK, so, back towards the end of October I receive the following email from my Mom that was sent to both me and my older sister who live here in Omaha:

Hey Kids,

Since this year is our 40th wedding anniversary, Dad and I would like to have a family picture taken. As it stands, we are scheduled with Michael's at 2:oo PM on November 21. It will be a casual picture, maybe even out here with a couple of the horses if the weather will cooperate. Jon, I sure hope you can arrange your work schedule for this. Please let me know as soon as possible, because if you cannot arrange it, we won't be doing the picture.

Please let me know as soon as you can if this will work for all of you.

Love you much,


I hate family pictures....with a passion. No, I don't hate pictures of my family, dear reader, I hate family pictures. The kind where some asshole tells you where to position your hands, how to stand, and who to stand by and affectionately position your hands on. I'ts all just retarded.

I think the last time we had a family picture taken, I was young enough that I was starting to grow some grass on the feild, but the hose hadn't been turned on yet. I know that neither of my 2 sisters had been married (or divorced) yet, and I only had one nephew (of which I have 6 neices and nephews now). I know that Mom had the barnyard fantasy of having pictures taken with the farm animals back then as well, but for one reason or another she was either veto'd (I highly doubt) or the weather wasn't good enough. But needless to say, the picture that was taken in the studio had the barn elements of hay bales and wooden fence posts.

My oldest sister Jody was the only one of us who rejected the whole idea of "country western" dress and showed up looking snazzy in a simple sweater ensamble. My other sister Heather looked good wearing something a sensible dark blouse and black jean combo that looked like it could be worn to "The Sugar Shack Saloon" and then to church the next morning, and her 2 year old son looked adorable in overalls. My folks look nice when they get dressed up in their garb of western shirts, jeans and boots, probably because they really enjoy all of that and the comfort they have with it really comes through.......But then there was me.

I looked like the aborted fetus of Garth Brooks. This was the unfortunate time in the 90's when Brooks and Dunn were shaking up the country music industry with their Wild and Crazy Western Shirts!

"Holy shit man! Lookit that shirt! It's got flames on it! That wild and crazy shirt has flames on it!"

"WOAH! A western shirt that looks like the Texas Flag?!?! No Fuggin' way, man!"

Besides that, and the fact that the fricking photographer made me button every button on the shirt all the way up the collar, I was a fat ass little 13 year old that could barely fit into the new (and never worn before or since) western shirt. Well, I had the fat squeezed into your clothes look that Garth Brooks used to rock, so I guess I had that down. It was just horrible, is all I can say, which is why I'm all paranoid about this picture now.

I take a decent enough picture, but when it counts and you're paying someone to take it for you, they never turn out for me. No, I'm not being too critical. Also with the fact that "casual" to me means freeballing in a pair of pajama pants and an undershirt is totally different than what my Mom's version of casual is, it's got me wracking my brain as to what I should wear for this thing. I don't think I'd show up underdressed, but run the risk of trying to look too sharp (i.e. gay as Little Richard at a picnic). I guess we'll just have to wait and see.

Plus I love the whole "If you can't make it, we won't be doing the picture" pressure. Believe me, I asked for that day off as soon as I recieved this email to relieve that pressure. Well......guess who got scheduled to work all day long that day, lol!!! I kid you not. So with the day 4 days away and me arguing back and forth with my boss for this, it is turning into a little fiasco. Oh, and my car took a complete shit and our "photoshoot" is 2 1/2 hrs away from here. So :-) wish me luck dear reader!


This was SO me as a teenager, looks and all.

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