I'm not a vain person. I mean, I like to look good, and take the appropriate girly measures to do so: I moisturize, get my hair did, paint my nails, even apply eyeliner for special occasions. I wear lipstick every day. I own lots of pairs of heeled shoes. I'm pretty secure with how I look, and can usually laugh off a silly or unflattering photograph of myself--it happens. I'm not a super-insecure diva-like chick. But I totally pulled a diva move the other day.
Newsflash: I take lots of pictures. A significant number of said pictures could be (are?) deemed unflattering by their subjects. Aware of this fact, I sometimes edit out terrible pictures of my friends from my silly flickr account, figuring my best friend wouldn't appreciate a picture of her nasal canal or one where her eyes are Gary Busey-closed. But most of my stuff on flickr is not of terrible importance, so it's not the end of the world if one or two less-than-flattering images make it up. None of the albums up there are my wedding album. Wedding albums are a whole other deal--they represent the most important people on the most important day in a couple's life together.
I usually don't love pictures of me at weddings, mostly because I'm drunken and nowhere near as luminous and beautiful as the bride (which is the way it's supposed to be--all girls pale in comparison to a bride, even when dolled up for a wedding). And I'm totally fine with that--it's their day, who cares what I look like? But usually there's one or two of me and everyone else that are tolerable enough to include in the wedding album. Or so I thought. On Monday, a close friend of mine shared his online wedding album with the whole world. On it, there are 176 photos of a gorgeous and beaming couple and happy, well-dressed, fabulous-looking wedding guests. And then there's the one of me.
It is a photo inappropriate for viewing for any and all grandmothers, potential mates, babies, dogs, model scouts, boy scouts, Mounties, ex-boyfriends, future ex-boyfriends, and/or employers. And yet it lives and breathes and is currently being clicked on (to expand!) by most of my close friends and anyone else who was at the wedding.
Let's examine the evidence:
- My dress is falling down. After a series of evaluations I concluded that no, that's not a nipslip. But it's damn close.
- A mighty wind has blown my hair into a power mullet. Like Charles Bronson on top and Vanilla Ice's unbraided rattail in the back.
- An unlit cigarette is clenched between my frowning lips. True class.
- From the way my finger is positioned, it looks like I am flipping off the photographer and whoever else happened to be in a 20-mile radius.
The first time I saw the picture, I shuddered, but knew, because of its hideousness, that it would never be included in any album, so I forgot it existed. Until Monday. The second time I saw it, bookended by a photo of the bride's mom and sister sharing a tender moment (both looking fetching, I might add), and two of my chain-smoking friends (sans cigarettes and smiling widely, of course), my body temperature alert level rose to "mortified" and I immediately begged my friend to take it down. Surprised by my vehemence, he said that everyone loved it but that he would add another one of me to offset the terrible one. O...k...?
I know, I know, I know: it's their wedding, their pictures, their friends, their album. I should just keep my mouth shut. My one small point is: I'm single. I don't want a picture of myself that elicits laughter (not to mention ridicule, revulsion, or moral outrage) representing my presence at a lovely wedding between close friends. But I guess I'm stuck with it and have to own the fact that I did, for that split second, look like a haggard boozehound with a palsied face. Could be worse. I suppose I could look like that all of the time.
And no, I'm not linking to the picture. Those of you who've seen it know what I'm talking about.
Vain in New York