Mirror, mirror

I hate mirrors because they force me to see myself. I would much prefer to let my mind ‘see’ me as I truly am: handsome. I don’t wear glasses in that life. There, I actually have hair on top of my head. I always sincerely smile and never appear to be in a foul mood. If this stuff is getting too deep, I do rent out shovels and rubber boots.

On the rare occasion when my children wake up because of nightmares, they now come to my wife’s side of our bed. Once, I was their first choice for support and comforting. Late one night, after gently returning one of them to their bed, I sleepily stopped in the bathroom to get my own drink of water. There is a mirror in there. No wonder they have nightmares.

I used to wear a beard. Hey, if it doesn’t look the greatest, cover it with something. I thought a beard made me look rugged and masculine. My beard eventually started to turn gray from all its demanding hard work. Now I simply hope that constant shaving will smooth out my skin as well as get rid of the less-than-dark stubble.

Stores that have camcorders up-and-running as a sales tactic do not get my business. During one such shopping trip, my daughter pointed and loudly exclaimed, “Look, daddy, it’s you!” I looked up at the monitor. I then looked at the gentleman on the other side of the video counter. His smile met my frozen stare and he knew better than try to pursue a sale.

There is a myth that make-believe creatures called vampires can not be seen in a mirror. A similar myth exists about the IRS. Magicians use smoke and mirrors. So do some bookkeepers. The company name of Speigel is actually German for ‘mirror’, and look what is happening to their stock. Mirrors are silver-backed glass. In my opinion, they can go the way of gold-backed currency.

At year’s end, we look back into an imperfect mirror. If something did not necessarily affect us as individuals or families or communities, then it tends to not have significance. I don’t remember the times I look bad; just the times I think I looked good. No one talks about the 22 games the team lost; just the one or two that they won. I don’t remember the weeks I fiddled with a weird-sounding car engine; but I recall that it was me who took the rattling pop can out of there. Deaths are not as vivid as births. I don’t ‘see’ in that mirror the evenings that I had to work. I do see the evenings that I read to my kids or we played games. When my children see me in such a mirror, I look great. I pray that I always see them in that same mirror.

A fable states that the most revealing mirror is the one in the eyes of the person looking back at you. I will strive to always see them smiling back at me. The most handsome person is covered not in ugly wrinkles, but in extensive laugh lines.