**Edit: Due to the complete ignorance and stupidity of the poster, the picture in question has been removed due to the fact that you shouldn't really share your passport information on the world wide web. In my defense, the passport is no longer valid, but I doubt that makes too much of a difference.**
For the last ten years I have been haunted. Not by a person, not by an experience, but by a picture... A picture I have to show people multiple times a year on demand. Each time I do, there is an evident cringe, and I'd like to just take a few minutes and tell them the story.
I would explain how 10 years ago I never knew that my life would consist of flying over 100,000 miles a year and so I didn't really consider the ramifications of taking a decent passport photo or that this particular photo would be a huge part of my life for the next decade. I was so new to the whole process (this being my first passport and all), that I didn't know you couldn't just take a photo with a hat on. So, when I showed up to snap my pic and I was told to remove my hat, I had no readily available mirror to look in. I simply shook my head upside down and proceeded to put it up in a ponytail. I was alone and in a hurry. Nobody was around to tell me that I resembled Buckwheat's older sister, who also inadvertantly got stuck in lightning just after she finished plucking her eyebrows into obvlivion. If I could find that picture taker now, I'd go back and put part of the blame on him. He should have known better, really. He could have told me that there was an explosion coming out of my scull that would haunt me for the next ten years of my life, and maybe, just maybe, I'd like a redo.
I am happy to announce that my 10 years is up. My days of being haunted and feeling embarassed in passport lines will soon be behind me. Today, I took a new passport photo. I had always planned to go ahead and get professional hair and makeup done for this one, but as luck would have it, I found out last minute that I needed a new passport, like, yesterday and so there really wasn't time for that. What I did do, however, is ask to see my picture after the first take and then kindly ask for a redo. It was the least I could do.