Lamenting a bad photograph

Published 10:11 pm Friday, August 7, 2009

For the first time in more than a month, my picture is running alongside my column.

I got a call from my mother earlier this week.

“Do you know your picture hasn’t been in the paper for about a month?” she asked me.

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I was aware. I was not necessarily displeased, but I was aware.

Now, after not having seen said photo for a month, I am gazing upon it again; this time with much more anguish than before.

I am not a photogenic man. I never have been. But friends, this is a bad photo. I am wearing an Atlanta Braves tie that looks more pink than red. I have on a suitcoat that doesn’t fit quite right. I am more pale than David B. Snow.

My eyes are slightly narrowed as if I am either angry or tired. There is no hint of a smile on my face.

Now, this lack of a smile could be due to a number of things. For one, it could be attributed to the fact that I was wearing a tie and an uncomfortable coat. Perhaps it is merely because I was having my picture taken in the first place.

As a general rule, people in this business do not like to be on the other side of the camera.

However, more than anything, that lack of a joyful facial expression may well be a direct result of my haircut, or lack thereof.

At the time that photo was made, it had been more than a month since some sort of device intended for snipping had come anywhere close to my water-repellent hair. That may not sound like that long, but my hair becomes completely unruly after two weeks. This isn’t something to which I ever paid attention.

The old rule of thumb was simple. If I didn’t like the way it looked, I wore a cap. If it got too thick to wear a cap, got it cut.

Then something happened. I waited more than two months between haircuts and finally broke down and went to a professional here in Demopolis. Now, not only can my scalp breathe, but I can look at a picture of myself for a brief moment before becoming entirely nauseated. All in all, it is a pretty sweet deal.

Unfortunately for our readers, not only have you just read perhaps the most pointless column you’ve ever seen, but you have again been subjected to the awkward paleness that is my mug shot. I know of one particular local bridge club member who will be particularly disturbed. All apologies.

So I guess the moral here is (if there even is one at all) that a fresh haircut is kind of hard to beat. Or maybe it relates to the fact that we have spent the better part of a month attempting to fix the glitch that prevented aforementioned awkward picture from show and how sometimes getting what you want isn’t necessarily good.

Personally, I think the moral is that an exhausted sports editor with nothing on his mind but sleep makes for a bad columnist.