Tuesday, February 2, 2016

The Shoot

One of the perks of working for a comedy publication is occasionally they’ll ask you to pose for a photo that accompanies an article. You just have to pray your image isn’t attached to a headline like “So-Called Christian Has Erection.” 

Over my short tenure, I’ve been in a few. Given that I am the oldest person at the company by a long shot, I’m usually selected when the graphics team needs an old man or a grey haired man or a broken man.

I’m also the go to for family man.

The extremely nice, gregarious head of graphics asked me if he could come out to Evanston and snap some photographs of my wife, my kids and me for an article headlined “Disney World Opens New Ordeal Kingdom for Family Meltdowns.” All we’d have to do is stand looking angry and he’d insert us into a new Disney-fied background.

Diana was all for selling out our kids. She secretly hopes our kids will become child actors so we can nurture their creativity (steal their money).

Unfortunately, Diana was unavailable to be in the shot. She was too busy at the other Happiest Place on Earth, The Wine Goddess. We couldn’t use our sitter Schuyler, because the headline was not about a creepy old man who marries someone 20 years younger.

But we did have Lexa, our official back up mommy. She was happy to be in the shot, but less thrilled at wearing shorts in the dead of winter.

The photographer arrived and Elijah and Luca were climbing the walls with excitement. It took a while to get them into character. Eli was particularly tough.

“Okay. Now pretend to be angry. Nope. Not smiling. Try frowning. See, that’s the opposite of a frown.”

You can see from the final shot they had to Photoshop out his grin.

Luca got into character almost immediately. When the photographer asked him to look at me, he burst into tears. In fact, tears flowed the entire session. This delighted the graphics man. “He’s doing perfect,” he chirped as Luca blubbered.

We got the shot and the article did pretty well.

Later that week, I portrayed an old businessman who engaged in bare-knuckle boxing before being officially banned by the editors from being in the paper for a while.  Too much Rick.

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