Yesterday morning I was talking with my brother on the phone and one of us brought up a picture our dad used to carry in his wallet. This was when we were very young, but both of us remember it vividly. It was a weird-looking man, or possibly woman, with a very long neck. And he would supposedly tell people it was a picture of his wife and take pleasure in watching them struggle to come up with a diplomatic response. He found great joy in their discomfort and the general awkwardness of the moment.
And while we were talking I did a simple Google search for “ugly woman,” and there it was! The same exact photo, on the very first page of results. Do any of you know it? Was it some famous thing from the 1960s? Is it something that went viral during the Johnson administration? I’d love to know more about it. Had you ever seen it before today? If you know anything, please help me out.
I sent the picture to my dad’s smartphone, which he still hates and complains about on a consistent basis. He was forced into using one by his pay-as-you-go provider, and he’s extremely resentful. But I gave him ten minutes to see the photo and called him up. I asked if he remembered it, and he said, “Oh yeah. I carried it in my wallet for several years. I still have it. I saw it in a drawer just a few days ago.” He couldn’t remember where he got it but assumes a friend gave it to him somewhere along the line. I asked him why he carried it, and he confirmed that he liked to tell people it was his wife. When I asked why he stopped he said, “I don’t think your mother appreciated it very much.” Ha!
He wanted to know how I had it, and I attempted to explain. But I don’t think he really understood what I was saying. Then he asked a very good question: “How in the hell do you remember that? It was from 50 years ago.” I told him I wasn’t sure but have been thinking about it. I now believe I remember it because it’s kind of twisted, and also something to do with my dad. You know, a couple of the things I’ve always loved?