Well, I might just as well come right out and say it . . . I am never going to be canonized a saint! The reason I am so sure is not what you may think. Of course, there are the reasons that pop right into mind, such as my professional standing as a sinner (well, there are a few commandments that I've managed not to completely disregard in my lifetime!) Fact is, the reason is much more subtle.
The realization came on me slowly at first. I was reading a book, "Modern Day Saints" by Ann Ball. It is a delightful book that contains not only the story of the lives of saints, but actual photographs of them as well. Then I discovered laminated holy cards for my two-year-old to look at and chew on without ruining. After that, my older kids brought home some different information on saints and holy people (also with pictures). I started noticing something. One and all, each of those saints depicted, male or female, young or old, martyred, dead of natural causes or illness, it didn't matter...they were all photogenic! I mean they looked fabulous! Smiling serenely, gently posed, caught in attitudes of prayer or meditation, reflecting thoughtfully upon a book or crucifix or simply gazing at a sight too ethereal to be caught by camera.
What with all the fancy new options available for cameras - instant pictures, red-eye reduction, auto focus, auto flash, etc., it makes me wonder why there isn't some sort of warning system for misguided males who are about to take a picture of a woman that would have been mentioned in the Bible as justification for violating the fifth commandment! They could call it the auto-NOT feature! I know that I would run right out now and buy that camera no matter what the cost! Because this is what is going to prevent my ever being included in a collected book of saints (well, this and that aforementioned sin thing). I am sure it would send the Pope and most of the Cardinals in Rome, a slew of televangelists and most of the Bible Belt straight to an early meeting with their savior if they were to have to go through the available snapshots of me. Right now that would include a most remarkable selection of photos of my backside. Truthfully, it is not because I have such a magnificent rear-view that my camera-nut-of-the-moment cannot help himself either. No, actually it is because the man has a truly bizarre sense of humor (and, if you ask me, an ill-concealed death wish!).
In each case, I am bending over, presenting a most unlovely view if myself which he has zoomed in on (he keeps insisting that he used a wide-angle setting!), creating a distorted image and causing him to be beside himself with hilarity. His favorite consists of a close-up of me backing out of the doghouse (don't ask). I am wearing a pair of stretch pants that are white with a metallic sheen that had a wondrously reflective quality (PLEASE don't ask!). The flash bounced off my posterior creating an incredibly accurate simulation of the aurora borealis - up close! Imagine THAT on a holy card!
To be fair, he has also taken a good many portrait shots of me during this time as well. Unfortunately, he read somewhere once that "natural" is better than "posed" for portraits. He interpreted this to mean "catch your subjects by surprise". So most of those shots show me in the middle of saying, "Huh?" and staring at the camera in confusion.
Yes, he has a favorite among these as well. On that occasion, I was sitting at the dining room table working. The kids had come and gone at various intervals, leaving behind the remnants of their snacks. I had just absentmindedly popped a cheese ball, maybe two (or was it three?), into my mouth. He strolled around the corner and yelled, "Zen!" I whipped up my head, causing my reading glasses to slip to the end of my nose and in an unbelievable incidence of bad timing, the combs holding my hair in a knot on top of my head popped out, resulting in my having a large, messy wad of hair ooze down over one ear and . . . CLICK . . . it was all over.
The picture is, indeed, a classic. I am sitting there in a spectacularly lavish state of disarray. My cheeks puffy with food, nose wrinkled in the effort to catch my glasses, hair disheveled, mouth agape, paper askew, an expression of startled confusion on my face . . . surrounded by plates, bread crusts, chips, cookies, crumbs, empty packages, pop cans, glasses, bits of popcorn, cheese curls and candy.
He thinks I should use it on the dust jacket of my first book.
I'm afraid they'll use it on my "WANTED" poster!