Sam was a pirate for two Halloweens--he liked having whiskers drawn on. I suppose I knew that he'd grow up and be hairy--the men on both sides of the family (and a few of the women) are pretty burly--but when he was little he was as silky and soft as a kitten. He was a black-haired baby that turned tow-headed, and then gradually got darker and hairier; I think he started shaving in the eighth grade.
I'm sorry you have a five o'clock shadow at noon, honey.
In the nineties, an awful lot of family portraits looked just like this. Sam had a little tail of golden curls
(which was his choice, I want to emphasize.) It seemed like a good idea at the time.
Again, I'm sorry Sam.
And now he's all grown up. He's officially twenty-seven, but last year he found out he was really thirty, because once you're not in school any more and you aren't having fifth, or eighteenth, or twenty-first birthday celebrations, and have a big-boy career like a lot of other adults, you might as well be thirty. I guess when he finally gets there it won't sting so much.
I'm sorry about that, too.
Happy birthday, Son.