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A word about the photo on my Olympic credential.

Scary.

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Or as my husband calls it, "Your Ma Barker look."

Like everyone else hoping to make Mother Tribune's Olympic team, I submitted a mug shot, the same one that decorates my Baltimore Police press ID.

Late last August, when it seemed as if I wouldn't be going to Vancouver, I took my heavy heart and a large amount of rum to Chappaquiddick, an island off the island of Martha's Vineyard, to fish and read with my husband.

It was there my fortunes changed and with it my ID photo.

An e-mail from Chicago informed me I would be winging my way to Vancouver in February.

A second e-mail told me that the photo that was acceptable for the Turin organizing committee and the Baltimore Police Department was not acceptable to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

"No teeth," advised Peggy Manter, my U.S. Olympic Committee spiritual guru. "No smile. No hint of a smile. No thought of a smile."

And then this from Chicago: "You have to get to a Kinkos and have a new photo shot and e-mailed by the end of the day."

An island off an island makes for great vacation photos. ID photos suitable for the Mounties, not so much.

Plus, did I mention the rum?

Our housemate, John, pulled the pale blue pillowcase off his pillow and with my husband held it over the refrigerator door. Our neighbor, Bev, played photographer.

"Serious."

"More serious."

"Perfect."

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Snap.

The photo was e-mailed to Chicago, which e-mailed it to the Mounties, who must be using it for the mug shot book they show crime victims.

All I know is it gets me in and out of venues and the media centers without a full body cavity search.

One more thing: after two sleep-deprived weeks here, I actually look better than my photo.

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