Blue, sad, in a funk. Add to that irritated and annoyed. All over a photograph.
Well, not just any photograph. The photograph. Quite possibly the defining photograph of my life. The photograph that divides my life into two distinct, separate parts: Happy Me and Sad Me.
Why allow a photograph to wound so deeply? It's not just the picture, although it is one baaaad picture, let me tell you. What really bothers me is how much it bothers me.
Let's start with the picture itself. Ohhh, is it bad. So bad, that if it wasn't of me, I would laugh. With evil glee. Then, after snorting and wiping the tears from my eyes, I'd say, "Oh, poor dear. What an awful picture. She's really much better looking than that." Then I'd start laughing again.
There are logical reasons for my thinking it is a bad picture. I know there are, because I Googled it. That's how upset I was. According to on-line experts, this photo looks different than the me I see in the mirror because "blah, blah, blah, 3-dimension, 2-dimension, flip-flopping right and left sides, yadda, yadda, yadda." Or something like that.
I blame poor angle, poor lighting and poor caffeination. The photographer (who obviously hates me, although I don't know why) shot this from slightly below eye level, guaranteeing a good view of the turkey waddle starting to form under my chin. The crappy lighting forced the use of a flash and the red-eye eliminator pre-flash, guaranteeing a mid-blink picture of any contact lens wearer.
And it was taken after 8:30 a.m. Mass, so I had drank just one cup of half-caff an hour earlier and was running on fumes. Probably fumes from the decaff-half.
Oh, did I mention that this marvelous photo was going to be in the church directory? The adult equivalent of, say, a yearbook? I should be glad I didn't have a mondo-huge zit or that I wasn't wearing my "I'm with stupid" t-shirt. You'd think -- with the photo being shot in a church and all -- that God would have taken pity on me. But apparently he was siding with the photographer.
This brings me to part two of why the picture bothers me so much:
I can't believe it bothers me so much!
How vain! Who is this vain person obsessing over a silly picture? I'm not that vain! Am I?
Crap. The truth sucks.
It double sucks, because not only have I been smacked upside the head with my own vanity, I finally have to admit that yes, I do look as old as my high school classmates. Let me tell you, some of them look like the birthday fairy beat the youth right out of them.
Holy Crow's Feet, Batman!
Of course, I only saw a poor quality, black and white, proof sheet copy of the photo. Everyone knows those are crap. And I'd been feeling a little under the weather. A little flu-ish. That would explain why I look so tired. Did I mention Mass starts at 8:30 a.m.? And that I haven't been sleeping well?
That part about my high school classmates looking old, you know I didn't mean you, right? Just those other people.
The old-looking ones.
'Cause you and I? We still look go-od.
Maybe even mahvelous.
If the lighting is right.