Who Are These People?

I love pictures.

If you’re anything like me and my wife, you have pictures everywhere. Hanging on walls, resting on bookcases, stored on the computer and even collecting dust in the basement. You remember, when people actually used to have film developed?


I’ve found that, especially after you have kids, life tends to morph into a bullet train that rockets by so fast you can barely keep up. I was walking down my hallway yesterday when a precocious toddler buzzed by me and caused me to trip. I temporarily lost my footing and hit the wall, which nearly knocked down a fairly large picture frame. As I steadied it and realigned it on the wall, I realized I hadn’t looked at them in quite some time.

I stared in amazement at the two happy people looking back at me with joy in their eyes. The picture was taken years ago in a different time. The faces I saw were younger, less worn down and flush with eagerness and anticipation. A young couple on the verge of life. She was dressed in a beautiful white gown looking ever the bride, with her arms wrapped around his shoulders. He was looking dapper in his tux, soaking in the moment and wondering how the hell he got such a gorgeous girl to marry him.

The moment was captured perfectly and conveyed a truly magical moment. And as I looked at it, I couldn’t help but wonder…


No really, I don’t know who they are. The frame actually holds four pictures. Three of them are from our wedding. Me rubbing MJ’s feet, the two of us at the altar and MJ and I posing together with our rings. But the fourth picture? Strangers. They literally came with the frame. Don’t get me wrong, they’re beautiful strangers. She’s gorgeous and he’s who I’d look like if I was 70 lbs lighter and my hairline wasn’t retreating faster than the French in wartime. But the fact remains, we have photo models hanging out where our wedding picture should be.

Then, when I walked into Will’s room, it was deja vu all over again.

You have to understand, I love Will’s room. I decorated it and worked on it myself. I put in all new baseboards, put up a chair rail around the room, painted it and even stenciled stars and moons all along the top of the room. I also put a couple of shelves in there too. I know that sounds ridiculously easy, but not for me. I’m not a handyman. I’m impressed with myself if I can take an electrical cover outlet off correctly. So when I finished that work in Will’s room it was like I had just built a damn house.

But when I looked at the two shelves above his bed I had to laugh.

We decorated his room with bumblebees. I don’t remember why. So on one shelf was the cute little bumblebee clock. It has been there for more than 2.5 years. And not once during that time has it worked, mainly because I never put the batteries in there.

On the other shelf sits a bumblebee picture frame. Inside that frame is the cutest baby picture you’ll ever see. The only problem is it’s not Will. With the best of intentions, we put that frame up there before Will was born and figured we’d take a picture of him and stick it in there. Well, 2.5 years later we still have someone else’s child peering down at us every night as we put our son to bed.

Parents of the Year right?

I thought about developing more pictures and placing them in the frame, but to be honest that smacks of effort. Besides, how fun will it be to make new friends or have people over to our house for the first time, and watch their confusion as they try to figure out who the hell the random people are in all of these family pictures? Or maybe I’ll name the couple and the baby and give them cool and interesting back stories.

Or I could just get off my lazy ass and print out a picture. But what fun is that?

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9 thoughts on “Who Are These People?

  1. I have the same problem. My in-laws bought me a multi-photo picture frame for my office. It was quite nice except that I never filled it with photos. Meanwhile, I have this giant photo holder on my office wall. It’s made of plastic and holds 8 upgright 4×6’s and 12 sideways 4×6’s. When someone visits my office, they’ll look at the photos and say “What a wonderful baby!” Then I feel like an awful father when I inform them that those photos are from when NHL was born. He’s 7 now, JSL was born and is 3 now and I have no updated photos of them (save for 2 from right after JSL was born). It’s just too much work to print them out, take out the old photos and put in new ones. (And by “too much work”, I mean I keep meaning to but get distracted.) Maybe I’ll just get a digital photo frame to hang on my wall. At least copying files to a memory card is quicker and easier than printing & replacing paper photos.

  2. There are no pictures of my husband and I anywhere. There is, quite literally, no visual evidence of our couplehood anywhere after 12 years. (We got married in Vegas and lost the one free picture that came with the package.) Even the photographer at the very fancy wedding we went to this summer only managed to take pictures of us separately.

    As to child pictures, I was the 3rd of 4 and the second girl. So, there are loads of pictures of my brother, the first, loads of pictures of my sister, the first girl and virtually no pictures of me.

    My brother used to like to torment me by telling me that the reason there were no pictures of me was because I was the police’s child and if I was bad, they would come back and take me to jail. Despite the fact that I look like a clone of my mother, I was convinced I was adopted for the longest time.

  3. That could be one of the easiest and most fun jokes ever. Just keep everyone wondering who the mystery people are. I have to admit you had me going at the beginning. I didn’t expect that turn. Nicely done.

  4. It takes on an even better angle as he gets older. We have envelopes full of school and sports photos, for which we’ve paid a small fortune, tucked in random places in the house. With 3 boys that are all in school and all play 3 sports we have a shit ton of backlogged photos. I keep saying I’m going to get frames but it never seems to happen.

  5. I took a ton of pictures on my first cross-country trip with my then boyfriend (late 1988) bought an album to put them in but got divorced before I finished it…more than eight years later!

  6. I am the opposite and the same!?! I take massive amounts of pictures and when I finally get them printed I pain stakingly put the in chronological order to the second in albums. I am very particular about it. However as for pictures hanging on the walls…none. Also, when my daughter was little I took endless video of her but now that I have my toddler son too, it is just not possible. I actually feel guilty that he won’t have nearly as much video to see himself on when he’s older but he is such a handful and by the time I go get the video camera (ancient technology) he’s done doing whatever it was I wanted to record. Oh well…such is life!

  7. Ditto sort of. My son is going on 2 and I have yet to have a baby album put together.

    Wait. Scratch that. I DID have a baby album put together until my dillhole husband gave it to his pain in the….grandma. Good thing I caught him otherwise my precious ultrasound pics would have wound up in AZ too.

    Pisses me off. Now I have to redo all of it.


  8. I have actually gone to stores and replaced the stock photo inside of frames with pix of myself and friends. It was stupid, juvenile and great fun. We’ll have to do it again.

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