Poor decision-making: a retrospective


As I’m writing this ahead of time, I have no idea how day-with-Mom-and-Dad went. Just talked to them and they’ll be here tomorrow at 11. So we can have lunch at 11:30 like proper old people. Then go shopping and then they have to hit the road because it takes my dad a billion years to get home. He drives very slowly, you see. If you go anywhere with Dad, bring snacks and a beverage and CDs and possibly some reading material because WHOO SO SLOW. But if you say anything like “hey! Dad! You know, I think you can get a ticket for driving too slow, too, you know” he gets ALL UP IN ARMS and he says things like “I AM JUST BEING CAUTIOUS” and “YOU ARE THE ONE WHO DRIVES TOO FAST” and then I say things under my breath like “the speed limit is not TOO FAST DAD.”

This would be Dad’s favorite speed limit sign. Slow like a turtle, he is!

So, on my birthday I do a lot of soul-searching and look back on my year and get all reflecty and sometimes that is happy and sometimes that is sad. This year it seems to be an equal amount of both. In an effort to not bring us all DOWN DOWN DOWN, I will not go into detail. Let’s suffice it to say that I’m reflecting, and doing a lot of thinking and mulling and such. And people that have come into my life in the past year, and have become very dear to me: thank you, and welcome, and where have you been? I should have known you before now. Look at all the time we wasted! And I love you. And, thank you. For everything you’ve done to make this year wonderful. (And to my old friends: thanks for sticking around. Love you, too. So much. More than I can ever, ever express.) There have been good things and bad things and super-highs and low low lows and it’s been kind of a weird year, but I think the good outweighed the bad, and what more can we ask for in a year, really?

Aw, no. I LOVE YOU GUYS. This just made me snort-laugh.

I have the day off to do all the things and relax and hang with Dumbcat and be all reflecty and that will be nice. I have some special happy birthday plans for myself. Because I am the best birthday celebrator! It will be a most excellent day of sleeping in and doing things I want to do and not going to work and such.

Anyway! In honor of my birthday, I am giving YOU a present. Well, maybe it’s a present for SOME of you. I promised this to Jim a while back, and then again to sj a few weeks ago, and then mentioned it to Ken just a few days ago and thought, what better day than the day you were BORN, all unexpected-like and weeks and weeks early, all tiny and incubatored for days, to look back on HORRIFIC AND EMBARRASSING MEMORIES? (And a couple that are kind of fine and even a little adorable, I’ll be honest.)

OK. So! You mostly all know what I look like now, right? You’ve seen my photo on Twitter or whatever. And whenever I comment. I look like a LADY with GLASSES. Oh, wait, here, I’ll show you, FINE.

TA DA! Me. Sort of unruly-haired, And I look smirky. But, here’s me now.

When I was home last time (July, I suppose?) I was looking for the mysterious missing photos my Europe trip. I do this EVERY TIME I GO HOME. I refuse to believe they’re gone. Someday I’m going to find them under the couch cushions or something.

But but BUT! This time I was home, I found a photo album I was not aware I even HAD. And in it? SO MANY THINGS.

So! In honor of birthday celebration, I bring you scenes from a very unfortunate childhood. (Some of these are terrible. My scanner’s not being so scanny at the moment.)

This is wee Amy. I’m thinking…first grade? Maybe? LOOK HOW EFFING ADORABLE! I approve highly of this photo. Well, not the wrinkle. The wrinkle in this photo is annoying. I should take better care of my things. Anyway, this little turtleneck-and-jumper combo is delightful, and my glasses are not yet eating my face, and I look so cheerful! I enjoy this photo a great deal. WIN.

I don’t know, a year later? Two? The glasses have started getting huger, though, which is worrisome. Also, I think this blouse is entertaining. It looks like I’m a server in a buffet-style restaurant. But I like that smile. THAT IS ONE HUGE SMILE YO. That cameraman told me smile and I DID WHAT I WAS TOLD. I still think this is pretty damn adorable. Also, you can see my fancy widow’s peak, which I think Ken said meant I was a killer. I do not think that’s the case. I think it means I am AWESOME.

Around the same time. What’s best about this photo is that necklace. It was a huge Strawberry Shortcake. Apparently I felt strongly enough about Strawberry Shortcake that I felt the need to memorialize that love in a class photo. Otherwise, this is blah. WEE AMY! This photo needed some FLAIR! I am disappointed in you, lady. (Also, I think this wee Amy looks sad. I don’t like this wee Amy as much.)

Now things start to get…um…strange.

I didn’t have any junior-high photos in this album. I have ’em somewhere. Let’s just say I had a bowl cut. And for a couple of very classy years, a rat-tail. Which I would BRAID. I know. I KNOW. Try to contain your passion for junior-high Amy, it is unseemly.

But then high school happened. I think maybe the bowl-cut and the rat-tail might have been better looks for me, honestly.

Oh, first, I’m in this photo somewhere (I have no idea where) but I just thought it was funny that I went to CAMP OVERLOOK. Come play with us, Danny! All camping and no play makes Jack a dull boy! Also, the camp director is looking out from right over the sign all creepy-uncle like, and it’s off-putting. (This was 4-H camp. You were forced to work. You had to clean the toilets and make your own food and shit. It was TERRIBLE. It was supposed to build character, I guess. Really what it built was a healthy dislike of camping and work and forced group activities.)


Um. I look stoned, and that is TERRIBLE hair, and I remember those glasses and they were so, so heavy and made of GLASS and always falling down. I look MISERABLE. And like a DEER frozen in HEADLIGHTS. That hair was a perm I was growing out. I don’t know what’s up with the bangs. I was ultra-proud of that shirt. It was like a men’s rugby shirt. I would wear it with black stirrup-pants and kicky hightop sneakers. I thought I was SO STYLISH.

This is my least-favorite photo of me in the history of ever. Of course, this means my mom had it displayed on the living room wall until about three years ago. I am not even kidding.  I look like I have some sort of weird neck-crick. And this was a failed hairspray incident. See how it’s all poky on one side? And that huge bangs-gap? That’s because my hair doesn’t accept hairspray and it all starts to go very, very wrong after about an hour and photo-day was at the end of the day. Oh, also, I wasn’t allowed to wear makeup until junior year of high school so I look all washed out. Why? Because it was the path to the devil, of course. Don’t be absurd.

This has to be at least junior year, but before I was allowed to wear makeup, but after I got my contacts. There were a lot of weird rules and regulations to growing up in the Lucy’s Football household. LOOK AT THAT SWEATER. It has a lot of heart. HA HA. Also, again, it was the early 90s, please don’t judge the hair. We were just weaning ourselves off the Aquanet.

NOW! The best Amy-photo ever. I’m thinking freshman or junior year. The look on my face here is really what makes this photo amazing. I obviously want to murder the cameraman. See, I was on the yearbook staff, and no one ever wanted their photos taken, so the staff would take photos of each other. I’m pretty sure the woman running the yearbook staff took this photo.

This was at a basketball game, which I used to go to because I had a crush on one or another basketball player at any given time. I don’t know, either. I outgrew it. No judging.

Ready? Ready for the best thing?

This is a very early “fuck off and die” Amy face, which is why I love it so. (PS: I still make that face. You see that face nowadays? RUN AWAY! RUN AWAY! It’s my “oh, what you’re saying/doing are SO INTERESTING, I’m really imagining murdering you in my brain, though” look.) Look at the PERM! And the GIGANTIC GLASSES! And there’s some guy behind me, I don’t know who that is. But I’m so into that face. That is such an awesome face, I can’t even. LEAVE ME ALONE I AM GOING THROUGH AN AWKWARD PHASE SOMEDAY I WILL HAVE A BLOG THAT LITERALLY TENS OF PEOPLE READ! TENS!!!

There we have it, jellybeans. Here’s the thing. You know how you never like yourself? (Well, girls, anyway. I suppose some guys, but most guys are pretty non-judgey of themselves, which I envy.) Like, whatever age you are, however you look, you bitch and moan and complain and whatnot? Like, when I was a kiddo, I thought I was so, so fat. LOOK HOW SKINNY LITTLE AMY WAS. MY STARS. And I used to spend HOURS in the mirror ON PURPOSE to make my hair look like that hairsprayed monstrosity. You’re always your own worst critic.

You know which Amy I like best? The top one. She’s got it going on, top-Amy. Happy birthday, top-Amy.

(But also, keep on keeping on, bottom eat-shit-and-die Amy, because I like your style, babe.)

Happy Mondays, all! I give you all pieces of virtual birthday cake. You and you and YES, today, even YOU, Ding Dong Joe! Today, even you get cake. Thanks, minions. Thanks for being the best part of my past year. Here’s to the next one: best of them all, right? Right. Most definitely.

About lucysfootball

I'm not the girl with the most cake. Someday. SOMEDAY. View all posts by lucysfootball

24 responses to “Poor decision-making: a retrospective

  • BFF

    Happy Happy Birthday!!!! Love you!


  • sj

    Awww, AMY! This post made me cry, I love it so much.

    The Strawberry Shortcake necklace makes me smile. I had a Care Bears belt that I wore WITH EVERYTHING. I didn’t care if it didn’t match and remember being SO MAD that they wouldn’t even TRY to get my belt in the picture with me.

    Happy Birthday, my friend. <3 <3 <3


    • lucysfootball

      YAY! I was hoping you’d love it, I thought of you the WHOLE TIME!

      I wore that necklace ALL THE TIME. I apparently really liked Strawberry Shortcake. A whole damn lot. (I had a lot of the dolls, too.)

      Thank you! It is a wonderful birthday so far! :)


  • therelentlessreader

    Ohhh my word I love this post bunches! The pictures are fab and bring up memories of my own crazy young pictures. Thanks so much for sharing all of this. Have a fantastic birthday!


  • jbrown3079

    I like the idea of looking back at old photos. Almost half of mine are in black and white.(I am old.) Mom used to take us for pictures at a downtown department store. The word “cringe”was invented by someone who was subjected to this form of torture.
    I loved this post.
    Have all the fun today!!


    • lucysfootball

      I had so much fun with this. Well, yes, cringey, but fun. I showed Mom yesterday and she was like, “NO! You were BEAUTIFUL!” Um. Mom. There’s nothing beautiful about that hair. NOTHING. Or those glasses. Moms are blind, apparently.


  • greengeekgirl

    OMG, little Amys! So many! Also, so brave of you to post them.. I never would have. And never will.


  • Andreas Heinakroon

    Aw, how adorable were you as a little girl? The most, is how! But I agree, your current photo is the most happy and confident (possibly slightly dependent on having had a book of yours just published, perhaps).

    And your fuck-off-face has been duly noted and recorded and will be used in my human emotion pattern seeking algorithm to detect potential threatening situations if we ever were to meet in real life.


    • lucysfootball

      Aw, thanks! Wee Amy was pretty cute. It’s only when she got older that the awkwardness came to visit with a vengeance!

      Hee! I LOVE that face. I’m pretty proud of that Amy. I can see this-Amy in that-Amy and that makes me all kinds of happy.


  • Kris Rudin (@krisrudin)

    Happy, HAPPY birthday!! Thanks for sharing your sordid past with us, via school photos. I don’t think they are as bad as you – as you said, we are all the most self-judgey!

    May the upcoming year be filled with family, friends and a GREAT NEW JOB!!! :-)


  • Heather

    Happy Birthday!!! I love the photos. All of them. Thank you for sharing them with us.


  • Charleen

    Happy birthday!

    And yes, I totally wish that I was as skinny now as I was when I thought I was fat back then.


  • becomingcliche

    Happy, happy birthday!

    That wasn’t a stoned look. That was a teenager “I am not amused by the adult photographer who talks like I’m in second grade,” look. Seen it, given it. Thanks for sharing the photos!


    • lucysfootball

      Thank you!

      Oh, those photographers were the WORST. There was one that used to always tell us to say “pickle.” Pickle? Really? I can’t say pickle without making a sarcastic face. Good choice, weirdo.


  • 35JupiterDrive

    Oh, little Amys are so cute!

    I love the photo of you at the bball game. It’s awesome.


  • lazyboo

    School photos are the greatest. School photos are the worst. Both are true in equal measure.
    I think the greatest part of this post was not the photos themselves, but the fashion rundown that went with each and had me cringing in recollection. Stirrup pants. Huges glasses. *shudders*
    I also love the turtleneck-and-jumper on wee Amy. Otherwise known as a skivvy and overalls. I love that shit, those little language differences that make all the difference.
    Happy birthday indeed, top-Amy.


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