In my last post, I wrote about Baby, Say Cheese, a photo studio that has opened near me that specializes in fetus photography. And I told you all about its $495 Diamond Deluxe Package which includes ultrasound images plastered onto mugs and magnets, and delivered in all different sizes suitable for framing.
I’m sure you, my loyal reader, were wondering why I had taken an interest in such a place.
Well, I can now announce that our daughter Casey and her husband Alex are expecting, and that I am soon to be a grandfather.
I’ve known about this for a few months, but, of course, you’re not allowed to talk about it until after the first trimester so as not to jinx anything. However, now that three months have gone by, mentioning it in a post is completely safe.
In fact, my wife Barbara has been mentioning it to anyone who will listen. Once the first trimester ending bell sounded (and, if we ‘re being honest, a tad before that), Barb launched a telephone campaign reminiscent of the days immediately after Casey and Alex got engaged. The purpose of this was not so much to spread the news (which, obviously, could have been much more efficiently accomplished with a single Facebook post), but to hear people’s reactions to it. Anything short of a screech of joy was insufficient.
Barbara is very excited about Casey being pregnant. She’s almost as excited as she was when she got pregnant; maybe even more so, since she doesn’t have six more months of excessive flatulence to look forward to.
I’m sure I’ll have a lot to say about impending grandparenthood in the months to come, but today I want to refer back to my previous post and tell you that Barbara has discovered an extremely cost-effective alternative to the pre-natal photo studio.
Here’s how it happened:
Barbara wanted to send her father a clever message about his coming greatgrandkid, so she decided to give him a framed printout of Casey’s ultrasound. Then Barbara had second thoughts. Not about becoming a grandmother, but about her grandfetus.
She thought it was fuzzy.
To be sure, our daughter and son-in-law often have bouts of fuzziness, but Barbara didn’t think this was an inherited trait that would be visible in the lima bean phase of pregnancy. (In case you didn’t know, fetuses are evidently measured in terms of fruits and vegetables.) She also didn’t think anything in the ultrasound print-out was discernible as babylike. Casey tried to solve this problem by sending over a revised photo of her baby, with arrows calling out the “head” and “butt.” But Barbara wasn’t quite satisfied.
She also pointed out that the ultrasound was from four weeks earlier and that her “grandchild had matured quite a bit since then.”
I think Barbara would have preferred an ultrasound taken by a professional, by which I mean a professional photographer rather than a medical professional. Of course, we could have paid for Casey to visit Baby, Say Cheese to get up-to-date, clear-as-a-bell snapshots, maybe even in 3D! But, as I said, Barbara found a much less expensive solution.
For some reason, Casey wasn’t a fan of this idea. “You can’t just use any random baby, mom,” she exclaimed.
“Why not?” Barb replied. “They’re all more or less the same. And with the picture you gave us, you can’t tell anything.” She said this in an accusatory tone, as if the quality of the image–or maybe the quality of the fetus–was somehow Casey’s fault. “The printout I chose,” Barb continued, “is more obviously a baby.”
Personally, I am on record as thinking most babies look alike even after they’re born, unless they’re one of those gigantic infants that look like the Michelin Man. I did, however, have to side with Casey on ethical grounds. We couldn’t introduce our grandchild to relatives with a fraudulent fetus.
In the end, Barb went with the real thing and then went through about a dozen picture frames to find one that she thought was worthy of her grandchild-to-be. But I’m afraid we’re not going to let her live down her attempted subterfuge any time soon.
For instance, she and I were leaving a movie theater after seeing Thor, and I told her I was done with Marvel films. “I can’t wait until you can take your grandchild instead of me,” I said. And then I added, “Or you can take any kid you pick up off the street.”
She was not amused.
See you soon.