(Editor’s Note: Due to illness and/or lack of creativity, please enjoy this previously published column from February 2013.)
People love trying to figure out who a baby looks like. From the day a baby is born, he is subject to oglers and gawkers speculating on the origin of his nose.
We have concluded that our babies don’t really look like themselves until they are 6 months old. Before that point, they all look a lot like Wilfred Brimley sans moustache. Nonetheless, people are more than willing to give you their opinions.
I sometimes get the feeling people are revealing who they hope the baby looks like in their comments. My mother can always see some part of me in our babies. I would imagine that even if we adopted a child, Mom would still think the kid has my smile. I have no doubt my wife will be the same way with our boys.
Aside from my mother, people never say our kids look like me until they start getting fat.
Once Cooper and Callum lost their baby fat people stopped making the comparisons with dear old Dad. The boys are incredibly handsome, so it would be nice to think I had something to do with that. Instead, people say they look like either Paul Newman or Jesus.
A couple of days ago I had a friend say about Clane, our youngest, “I haven’t decided who he looks like yet.”
I thought, “Be sure and get back to us on that when you decide. We are dying to know.”
I try not to make statements about what other people’s babies look like.
For one thing, I don’t see very well so I have to get uncomfortably close to a baby to really see what they look like.
The other reason is that when a baby does have features that stand out to me, they usually aren’t great features. You can’t say, “He has your crooked hook nose,” or “her eyes are freakishly close together, just like your homely mother.”
I find it is best to remain silent.
Once in a while I get this comment about one of our children:
“I think he has your eyes,” they say.
“Let’s hope not,” I say, “One blind guy per family is plenty.”
It seems to make people uncomfortable and a little embarrassed. I get a real kick out of that!