It wasn’t a “come to Jesus” kind of meeting, but it clearly fell under the category of “I’m telling you this for your own good”. The General initiated the conversation and the subject matter was her perception of my new look. She didn’t like it. She used the “D” word to describe her perception. She began by addressing me by my name. She calls me “Don” instead of “Donnie”. She’s known me long enough that she could probably get by with either. I’d prefer she not us the “D” word for “dumb”, but it was clear from the conversation she didn’t think I was all that smart.
I can’t remember if she used the word “distinguished” or “dignified”. Either carried with it the concept of something favorable. In her opinion, that was the way I used to look. If she actually used the word “deranged” to describe my current appearance, I can’t remember. She was fairly adamant that “unkempt” was a clear description of my image.
The crowning blow was when she mentioned I was scheduled to present information to two groups at a professional association meeting in Oklahoma City this week and that my appearance would place me in some category other than professional. Could she be making a valid point?
So did I really look like a lumberjack? I figured all it would take is someone good with Photoshop and I might fill the bill. All I needed was a plaid shirt and I had the look. At least I had the facial look. If more of me was shown in the picture, I’d need to have a few muscles added, but hey if you know what your doing on Photoshop, that should be doable. I think I would like the look.
It had been my intent to drive back-road with the top down on the Miata yesterday. Instead I drove into Austin to get a haircut and my beard trimmed. I’m not sure the barber recognized me. It was clear from his body language that he agreed with the General. He didn’t use the “deranged” word, but he did his best to provide me a complete make-over and that is NOT what I wanted.
I asked: “Can you shape up the beard a little bit and leave the hair full?” He said “Sure”, but I also heard him mumble something about taking an inch off of my beard. The scoundrel took off about an inch and a half. I was not a happy camper.
Heading back to Henly following the near scalping, I dismissed any thoughts of driving through the back-roads with the wind blowing through my hair. I didn’t have any hair left. Did I look “professional?” Who’s to say? It would now take something more than a plaid shirt and Photoshop muscles to pass myself off as a lumberjack now, but I hadn’t plan to do that anyway.
Okay, so I now look wound up tighter than a drum, but apparently that’s the “distinguished” or “dignified” look the General prefers. The barber sprayed enough hairspray on my hair that it would take a hurricane force wind for it to blow.
So what do I do about the new picture that will appear on my driver’s license. No one will believe the carefree relaxed guy with the beginning of a really good beard could look the way I now look. The way I now look is identical to the way I used to look. I guess “same ole-same ole” is good enough for the General. However, I’m not sure it will last. In a couple of months I can look the same way I look in by DPS driver’s license picture. Only time will tell.
Yesterday afternoon we did take the Mita over to Blanco. The General was my side-kick and she refused to roll down her window, but the top was down. That was a given. If the wheels are rolling, the top is down. It was the perfect day for a ride. We stopped at Sonic and an older guy driving a Mustang Convertible pulled in beside us. He, too, had the window on the passenger side of his car rolled up. It was done so to keep his small dog from jumping out.
I stepped out of my car and initiated conversation with the man. He said it was simply too nice of a day to stay indoors. In addition, he indicated he too had the “top down” approach. If he wanted the top up, he’d drive his truck. He and his dog were headed over to Lukenbach. He mentioned his wife, but didn’t indicate why she wasn’t along for the ride. Maybe she doesn’t like to ride with the top down?
The man said his first convertible was a 1950 Ford. He said: “I drove it with the top down even if it was 39 degrees outside. In the summer time the vinyl seats got at least 220 degrees.” He smiled when he said it was really a fun car. I asked how old he was at the time and he said “Eighteen”.
I initially thought the man probably bought the 1950 Ford convertible new. I then did the math in my head and determined that wasn’t a likely possibility. If I did the math correctly, that would make him nearing 86 years old. I suspect he was slightly older than me, but 86 is a wider margin than “slightly”.
I actually started to take a detour on our way home and head to Lukenbach myself, but it looked like rain might be an eventual possibility and I didn’t want to take the chance. Like I said, if the top is up the wheels don’t roll.
All My Best!
Apple Computer, Inc.
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