Monday, September 25, 2006

Winning is Everything

I don't like to play games that I can't win.

I'm a real "sport" like that.

That is why I am a swimmer instead of a racquetball player. If you beat me at racquetball (as if) I'd likely get all John McEnroe on you and hit you with the racquet.

Hard.

Good sportsmanship? Not so much.

So when I saw the "Worst School Photo Contest" going on over at Petroville I entered because I felt like I had a sure thing.

Some of you have already seen it
here, but this is my school photo from third grade:


I am cute as a bug in this photo (you can't deny it) but I am wearing a bonnet. Let's be clear, this was taken in 1975, not 1875.

The results are in at Petroville and it turns out I am a big, fat loser. Contestant number 4 whooped my hiney. Here she is ladies and gentlemen, contestant number four...


I think it was the tall bangs that beat me. She won the contest fair and square with those bangs of hers.

I am going to be a good sport about this today.

This ONE TIME. (Don't get any big ideas.)


Here's why...

As a third grader I was OBSESSED with Little House on the Prairie. I read all the books, I watched all the shows, and I practiced saying, "Aw, Paw."

I loved it.

Fiercely.


To save money, my working mom made all my clothes herself. In her "free" time.

(Free time? Moms have free time?)

My mom made the Little House on the Prairie outfit for me so that I could fulfill my 1875 wanna-be fantasies.

As a mother myself now I look back at this and am certain that every stitch was sewn with love. The same love that taught me to read, encouraged my imagination and introduced me to Laura Ingalls Wilder and other authors.

My mom made this costume for me simply because she knew I would like it.

Of course, I was thrilled!

Oh, great outfit of wonder!

I'm wearing this bad boy to third grade picture day!


Step OFF Melissa Sue Gilbert!

Who's Half Pint now?

My love of fiction, imagination and the world of make-believe are all captured in this school photo. Even better, the photo captures a moment in time that serves as a lasting illustration of the love my mother has routinely demonstrated for me throughout my life so far.

So I've decided that this bonnet photo is actually The Greatest School Photo Ever Taken...

...and I'm making myself a First Place certificate.

28 comments:

Sayre said...

The winner is SO "Square Peg"!!!!

Sorry, Jessica - no one can look at your third grade picture and not go "awwwwww"! There is no way the judges would ever call that the worst picture.

Waya said...

WHOA!! I'm sorry but I would have voted for you, not that you weren't cute as a button but of the outfit and all. Although I'm a fan of "half pint", but for acting it out in real life? That takes guts! I'm rooting for you for being so brave going to school like that and your Mom, for being braver (sp?) to let you out of the house looking like that. ;-)

Momish said...

Oh my God, this is classic! I absolutely loved Little House on the Prairie and dreamt of running away to Amish country all the time so I could really live that way, like right now! I totally understand your need to have captured that fantasy in a photo. If I was your classmate then, I would have been super jealous of your bonnet.

slackermommy said...

Oh no! You mean my oldest may put her Little House On The Prairie photo in The Worst School Photo Contest? Like you I was obsessed with Little House and well...um...I still am. I have the first season on DVD and we watch it all the time. My oldest did a book report on Laura Ingalls Wilder and dressed up like her. I think she looks adorable but I can see her hating the photo when she's older.

I think you looked adorable too. I give you first place for the Most Adorable School Photo.

The Medium Swede said...

Being a guy I am hesitant to admit this.... My first thought when I saw your picture before I read the blog was, "ohmygosh, that looks like Half-Pint." I prefer the Little House on the Prairie episodes pre the blind guy and before Michael Landon turned himself into Jesus Christ himself.
Plus I always hated Mr. Edwards. Me thinks he was just a bit to interested in children....

Pendullum said...

Ok.. I'm howling...
AND I WANNA see you in the bonnet now...
Present day Jessica...
I know you have it filed away...
Pull it out of the box and put it on and post a new pic of Half Pint...Snicker snicker...
Come on Jessica...
You can do it!!!
We're begging here... I triple dog dare you!!!

wordgirl said...

Sayre is right. Your picture isn't ugly. It's just...you know...tragic in an Amish kind of way. All in all the kind of thing that'll get you stares on the street but might not be damaging enough to merit full blown psychiatric counseling later on.

Plain Jane Mom said...

I saw the bonnet and instantly thought LIW -- 'cause that's what all of us Little House on the Prairie geeks call it.

Know why? Because I had the same bonnet! And a red one too!

Natsthename said...

Awwwww! (1975...the year I graduated HS! *sigh*)
I agree that yours is The Greatest School Photo Ever Taken!! (and pretty darned cute!)

carmachu said...

The only award YOU are going to receive is the patented "Dumbass Award" for rigging the contest.....

Congrats!

Mama C said...

Oh Joy! You seriously needed a reality check. It's a cute pic though. You are adorable!

Glinda said...

Great job channelling Laura Ingalls!

If you can't find your bonnet, I live in a place where they still make them, I'm just saying...
It's a good look for you.

Fran said...

I like the smirky little smile that says "yeah, I'm lookin' pretty cute."

:)

Fran.

Lisa Goldstein/Kelly Kelly said...

That photo of you is so cute!

Lisa

Blonde Vigilante said...

I was gonna say...you are cute as an effing button in that picture. Not everybody has pictures like that and not everybody is lucky enough to be loved like your mother loved you. You win...and it shows.

blessedmomx3 said...

Why is it that I also have a Laura Ingalls outfit? You make me want to post it just for you. There's a picture of me in my bonnet and long dress staring off into the distance at the swing set in our back yard. I believe it was '77 or '78.

I SWEAR we are soul sisters. Except that I was too young to wear it because of t.v. I was probably wearing it because it made my mother giggle, and I was too stupid to notice.

Mrs. T said...

I have a similar picture of myself from 1975- but it wasn't my school picture-I wasn't that cool. I was totally obsessed with Little House on the Prairie, but have found that Michael Landon as Pa hasn't stood the test of time for me.
It's funny how things come full circle, because now I have a daughter in 3rd grade, and guess what she wants to be for Halloween? Half Pint.

Lisa said...

That photo of you is so adoreable! Love it.

Jen3 @ Amazing Triplets said...

There are no words ... truly ... no words!!!

Because I don't think bwahaha is a word. Is it?!

Panda said...

If I had known you then I soooo would have rolled you for that outfit.

I still want to be Laura.

Mel said...

Me too, Panda!
I love that pic. And you so deserve that award (The one you made up, not the geek one - to me, you look way too cool to be earning any 'bad pic' awards).

Blog Antagonist said...

You *are* cute as a bug in that picture! I remember the Little House on the Prairie craze. I LOVED it. I wanted to BE Half Pint. And I had the hugest crush ever on Michael Landon.

I'm such a Little House dork that my husband bought me the DVD boxed set of the First Season. You know that Christmas Episode where Laura sells her horse to buy Ma a stove and Pa makes her a saddle for the horse she no longer has??? After 20 years, I still bawl like a baby watching it. Prolly even harder now.

See. Dork. :?)

sweetney said...

that holly hobby picture is surely a winner.

Kevin Charnas said...

Umm...she definitely should've won.

And I was really, REALLY hot for Laura's Dad. Oh yeah....

blessedmomx3 said...

Yo Jessica, I posted my half pint pic for you on my blog. But I will warn you in advance it's not nearly as good as yours!!!! :)

urban-urchin said...

Oh, the 8 year old me is so jealous of your bonnet. I wanted a bonnet, just as I wanted a well to collect water at, 2 sisters, and Charles and Caroline as my parents. Sadly I had none of the above.

You look really cute.

Stefanie T. said...

Awwww.....your pic is priceless! I loved LHOTP, too. But obviously not quite as much as you, lol.

Mona said...

I looove the LHOTP outfit. I had to move onto the Gilmore Girls because I realized that I watched every episode, even the New Generation. We should compare notes.