I’m not a terrible looking guy. If you were to see me walking down the street, your first reaction to me wouldn’t be outright hate. I’m not spectacularly cute either, so I don’t stick out as stunning in very many places. The best way I can explain my level of attractiveness is that, if you saw me in Walmart, you’d probably think He could do better. I’m Walmart handsome.
On paper, this photo should have all the aspects needed to qualify it as the cutest photo ever. It has a person (me), who has a beard (which will be in style for about six more months), and there’s also a dog (the universal symbol for all things adorable.) To top it all off, this photo was taken at my parents’ house, so there’s a warm glow of nostalgia surrounding the entire thing.
And then someone must have set the Instagram filter to “Ogre,” because none of these pieces fit the way that they should.
That warm, nostalgic glow has been replaced by flu symptom fuzziness. There’s a hue to certain photos that always lets a viewer know “Something really, really bad happened to this dude later,” and everything bit of color in this photo screams “eight years, without parole.” It looks like the kind of photo that the family in an Amityville Horror sequel would find in the inevitable “Oh, god. THIS is what happened to the former residents of the house…” scene.
I know that you wouldn’t believe me from the way he’s been portrayed here, but Elmer is a really cute dog. His body language tells us that he’s been both stuffed and turned into a robot in this photo though, with an expression that says “Is there any other place to be but here? Because I’d rather be there.” Also, his eyes will be staring at you regardless of where you’re standing in the room. He knows where you will breathe your last. He’s heard your final scream. Have you?
In a stroke of bad luck, apparently the dog has given me mange, a disease that he doesn’t have. It took a few years for me to grow a beard that didn’t look like some part of a lazy pirate costume that I forgot to take off, but here, all of my body’s biological progress is undone. That beard/slight moustache combo makes me appear like I’m the tallest eighth grader in town. It’s as if I went to a barber and asked, simply, for “Unemployment.”
And then there’s me, with the skin tone of someone who died the day before. Also, I swear, I work out regularly, and that my arm muscles don’t usually take the shape of a hastily packed sleeping bag. Finally, I have the reddest, most piercing eyes in the whole history of failed photography. I look like a sleep deprivation test subject.
I really hope that this isn’t the last photo ever taken of me. I’d like my family to have something to remember me by that isn’t this, a photo you’d quickly flip past just before the walls started dripping blood.