My passport expired last October, and even though we all know I won’t be traveling internationally anytime soon, it’s very important that the POSSIBILITY always be there, in case an opportunity arises. In January I finally got around to sending all the stuff in to the State Department, thinking it would take weeks, if not months, for my new passport to arrive. Haven’t you been hearing in the media how people better be on the ball with getting a passport, because the processing centers are taking SO long to prepare passports? I have. Not that there was any rush for me, but still. I was quite surprised when my new passport arrived in less than three weeks!

My last passport photo was taken when I was 20, a few months before I was going to study abroad. In my old passport photo, circa 1997, I was sportin’ oddly layered poofy hair, extra college weight, and an ugly gray Gap t-shirt. So I was eager to have a new, updated photo to go along with my new, updated passport. So one day in January I headed over to Walgreens to have my passport photo taken. I distinctly remember making an effort to look decent that day. I had done something with my hair, applied a tad of makeup, and donned a new-ish sweater in a color that I thought was flattering on me.

Something I learned that day at Walgreens was that nothing special needs to go down for a passport photo to occur. I thought they had to use a special camera or dimensions or something, but no. The 16 year old Walgreens photo chick just whips out some ordinary point and shoot digital, has me stand in front of a white screen, and shoots away. She told me she ‘thought’ you weren’t supposed to smile for a passport photo, and I couldn’t remember if I smiled in my old photo, so I listened to her and posed seriously for the picture. And then I said thanks, was told to come back in a few days to pick up the picture, and left.

Right there was my mistake.

Note to self: If 16 year old Walgreens photo chick is taking your passport picture with an average ordinary digital camera, you can OBVIOUSLY ask to SEE the image before you leave the store. DUH!!! What was I thinking?

Two days later…I return to Walgreens. This time it’s a photo dude who hands me the envelope to make sure the passport pictures are actually mine. I open the envelope. And there was nothing I could do to stop myself from letting out a stifled shriek. Photo dude smirks and says “what??!!”. My response is “EW!!!!!!!!!” Photo dude doesn’t say anything, takes my $7.99+tax, and goes about his business. And I’m left standing there, holding the most hideous looking passport photo on the face of the Earth, realizing I’m stuck with this shot for the next ten years.

Post this image on fatj.wordpress?? H-E-double-toothpicks NO WAY. Just imagine a long-faced chester-molester-looking type of man with scraggly stick-straight hair posing for a mug shot. Now picture this person frolicking across the Greek isles, sunbathing in Fiji, or hiking Machu Piccu. That will be me.

Oh wait, I forgot I’m an unemployed stay-at-homer with a wee one who can’t even get her act together to plan a night away with her husband in the same city. Who am I kidding? That probably won’t be me:)