So you think you got a cute baby. And maybe you do. It’s possible; some of those sneaky c-section babes manage to dodge the cone head. But come on, new parents – see beyond your baby blinders. Does your newbie look like a baby walrus? Does your new son look like Steve Buscemi? Would Anne Geddes put your baby waaaaaay in the background?

Oh I forgot. All babies are precious gifts from God, how can they be anything but beautiful?

Easily. But I will spare your butt-fugly babe and use my own child to demonstrate.

When Max was born, he was pretty easy on the eyes. Big lips. Button nose. And lovely olive skin. Waaaaait a damn second. I quickly recounted all my sexual rendezvouses of the last none months. Hmmm, just one skeety white boy from Mount Pearl. It had to be jaundice.

I show people Max’s baby album now and they ask, Who’s the little Mexican? I say, That’s Senor Max – he comes from the village of Taco. It is very hot down there. 

He had such an orange tinge, it was like I had been impregnated by Ernie. Which could have worked out, come to think of it. I mean what better neighbourhood to raise your kid in than Sesame Street? If I married Ernie, I could control his every move. But then there’s the whole gay thing. Bert would have been pissed. (Can paper clips be used as weapons?)

The jaundice went away with the bilirubin and my baby boy was 100% Irish honky. We also stopped calling him Billy Rueben.

But his skin problems did not end there. After a few weeks of cuteness, he started to morph into a kid from the first half of a Clearasil commercial.

Wow, that’s a cute… elephant. Max was a total Gremlin.

Once, I nodded off with him in my arms. Dreaming of my beautiful boy driving a cloud car with the Care Bears, I woke up and looked down to see his googly eyes and crater face staring back at me. Imposter! I almost dropped him on the floor.

But fear not! All you parents of motley munchkins out there, there is hope. At one month of age, Max looked like a pizza with eyes and hair. But it only lasted a couple of weeks. And today he is God’s gift to midget women: a full head of curly, copper hair; big, brown eyes; a heart-melting smile; and bulging biceps.

But I’m sure there are uglier days to come, at age six or seven, when he starts to lose teeth and grow hair on his shoulders.

I am living proof of the fluctuation of childhood beauty. I was a pretty cute toddler, and this is how things panned out…


In my defence, I was not born with a mullet. Or that geometrical nightmare of a shirt. Some kids are born ugly and some have the ugly thrust upon them. So my pukoid elementary school days were less the fault of Mother Nature and more the fault of Mother Shirley. Thanks for keeping me humble, mom. I owe ya.