Thursday, April 27, 2006

Portrait of the Artist As a Young Man; or, Sears on a Wednesday; or, The Second Level of Hell

I made an appointment for 11am yesterday morning at the Portrait Studio for Mr. Man's first photo session. I did Athena's pictures at five weeks as well, and they turned out pretty bad, but I'm glad I have them. You can't really get a baby that age to smile or wave or do anything cute. You just have to hope he or she does it for you and you catch it on film (or on disk, as the case may be).

I planned the morning carefully, making sure he was fed and watered and happy in time for us to be at the mall at 10:45. And it worked! I was right on time and he was napping happily in his carrier. There were two other women there, and the whole place seemed really quiet. Then the bottom dropped out.

The woman in front of me asked if I had an appointment. Yes, I do. Well, they are behind. One photographer called in sick. Great. "When is your appointment?" I ask her. "10:30." Shit.

So I decide to stick it out. The single photographer was clearly wrapping it up with the family before us. Ms. 10:30 had a small baby, so surely she wouldn't need too much time to get nothing from her. My only other plans for the day were to meet Chris for lunch. Oh, crap... I didn't eat breakfast. Well, no matter. This will be over soon. I wish I brought a book.

Then the baby woke up.

At 11:30, the family that had been a 10am appointment was still making decisions about the 800 pictures they were getting. Apparently, all five of them had pictures taken, plus there was a family photo. Great googly-moogly. Ms. 10:30 had to go change a dirty diaper and told me to go ahead. But Mr. Man had other plans. It was time for elevensies, apparently, so I had to duck into the vacant photo room to nurse.

One boob later, and he's happy. Ms. 10:30 still hadn't been seen. At 12:10, when Ms. 10:30 was done with the photos, but not done picking her choices, I called Chris and told him not to wait for me. He elected to come to Sears to keep me company. Have I mentioned what a great guy he is? Before he got there, Mr. Man demanded Boob Two: The Sequel, so back into the photo room I go.

She sees us at about 12:30 and Chris arrived shortly thereafter. As expected, Marcus is not really into "working it" for the camera. His expressions range from bored to angry to sneering. Not really a smile in the bunch. But we got about six poses to choose from, and one was really pretty good. At 1:15 pm, I was about to faint, and she was finally finished printing out and wrapping up the pictures for Ms. 10:30 and was ready to take our order. We dashed back out to the cars at 1:30 or so (about $80 lighter), and went our separate ways... getting lunch on the way back to work and the house, respectively. So much for togetherness.

I stopped at Burger King (after missing the entrance and making a U-turn) and headed home. Marcus screamed for about half of the twenty minute journey, then passed out.

All this for a mediocre picture. They did give us a free 10X13 of said picture, so that's something. As God as my witness, I shall never go to Sears Portrait Studio again (unless I have the 10am appointment -- first one of the day).


Chris said...

I love qualified vows. It sounds so decisive.

Jessey said...

Dude, I totally feel for you. We take an annual all-cousins photo. We're up to SEVEN kids in that picture now. That's a nutsy time.

For more portrait studio funnies, here's a story from my vault.

Brant said...

we used Flash last time we did formal pix. Worked great for us.

Staci said...

I feel for you. Ive gone thru the same with Jubilee on several occasions. Time feedings, naps, primping all perfectly with some great luck...only to have the Sears studio mess up your supermom moment.

We have an appt next week... hopefully it goes better than in times past.

Judy said...

I would say a letter to Sears is in order, if you can muster the time and energy!