Monday, April 10, 2006

What Do You Say to An Ugly Baby?

What do you say to an ugly baby
What do you say to an ugly baby
What do you say to an ugly baby
err-lie in the morning

Okay, so Gidge's comment on the baby model post cracked me up. What do you do when you see an ugly baby? They exist, I've seen them. They're scary.

Bump and I encountered an ugly baby one afternoon at the Costco. He (? we'll call it a "he") was wearing the same helmet as Lumpyhead, so Bump and I peeked into the carseat and struggled not to recoil in horror. YIKES.

double yikes.


Yeah, it's taking me a minute just to shake the shock of it, even now.

So, when the rote "He's so cuuuuute" is out of the question, how do you handle it? Bump managed to start a short conversation with Quasimodo's mom about the nice people at the helmet place. I think I stammered something like "how sweet" or "nice pattern on the carseat" while thinking GOOD LORD IN HEAVEN WHAT A HORRIFICALLY UGLY CHILD YOU HAVE as well as "thankyouthankyouthankyou that Lumpyhead doesn't look like that."

I got the whole "there but for the grace of god go I" feeling because I dodged the Ugly Baby Bullet. I also had the "ha ha I just got upgraded to first class for no reason and I'm going to drink all the free booze I can on this 30-minute flight" feeling. Because I got lucky in the pretty baby category (you know, except for the lumpyheadedness) through no doing of my own.

In my limited experience, I've found that the attractiveness of the parents has little to do with how cute the baby is. Junior may grow up to resemble mom or dad, but hot parents don't necessarily make gorgeous babies.

For example,
  • Pretty + Pretty often = Cute
  • but Ugly + Ugly usually = Cute
  • and when Ugly + Ugly = Ugly, well, it's what you expect
  • but Pretty + Ugly can = Kinda Cute
  • and Pretty + Ugly can = Really Cute
  • but when Pretty + Pretty = Ugly, it's really really UGLY.
Maybe it's the cosmic justice of it all that makes the ugly offspring of two pretty people just so damn satisfying.

So, have you seen an ugly baby? What did you say to its handler? Ever seen two beautiful people make a shockingly ugly kid?

Hoo-ray and up she rises, Hoo-ray and up she rises . . .


Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

Compliment the outfit, people. You always find something nice to say about someone's baby.

Or shoes. Almost all baby shoes are cute. Right?

Plus, then you can avoid the "How old is he, uh, she, um it"?

tammy said...

I think it's "How old is your baby?" It's usually answered with he or she to help you out.

I've known a couple poeple with ugly infants & they actually got cuter.

Mom at Work said...

I think it's the shock of pretty + pretty = horrible to which the only response is "well, isn't she something."

Gidge said...

I usually give the baby sasquatches something along the line of "well aren't you a big girl/boy?" which isn't complimentary at all - but I say it in a baby sweet voice. I also like to say "look at you!" in the same voice, but I've had to quit saying it because I almost giggle because the rest of what I want to say is "you're the missing link!"

Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

I had this song stuck in my head all day yesterday.

I hope you are happy.

Pamalamadingdong said...

At a grocery store one time Chris and I came across this child who looked identical to a friend of his (this child LOOKED like a 35 year old ugly man). And we LAUGHED so loud and Chris shouted...oh my god that baby looks like Chicken! (his friends nickname).
The parents spun around to glare at us and QUICKLY added. "yes yes..ADORABLE just like a fuzzy little baby chicken"
I'm not sure if they bought it but they did not hurl rutabeggas at us.

Sara said...

I'm kind of like George Washington. "I cannot tell a lie" when it comes to ugly babies. I just can't force myself to say, "Oh, how cute!!"

I have found, though, that I CAN say, "Oh, how precious!" because every baby really is precious - at least to his own parents. Therefore, I am not telling a lie!