the north face puffer A face for all seasons

Being a human chameleon has its advantages, particularly for a journalist.

A nondescript visage allows for ducking in and out of rooms with little notice, which is important when a key component of the job description is to avoid becoming part of the story.

However, possessing such a face has unintended consequences. Features that are remarkable for nothing other than being unremarkable become a blank canvas on which others paint whatever they want to see.

Such has been my fate since my newspaper career brought me to the area.

A photo assignment took me to the county historical museum in Ironton a few weeks after moving there close to 30 years ago. I knocked on the office door and introduced myself to the director.

Her reaction astonished me. “You look just like Peter Noone,” she said breathlessly.

I had to search my memory. Who was Peter Noone? Oh yeah, I remembered, Herman’s Hermits, the Fab Four wannabe quartet “So you’re telling me I remind you of an all but forgotten one hit wonder whose persona was crudely modeled after the Beatles?” was what I didn’t say.

“Um, OK,” is what I did say, looking over my shoulder to make sure my car was within running distance.

“No, sweetie. You’re much better looking than Peter Noone,” is what my future wife, Mary, did not say when I told her the story later.

“Ha, ha, snort,” is what she did say. Mary’s sympathetic side has its limits.

For the record, I do not look like Peter Noone, never did and never could, even if Iwere leaning on a lamppost at the corner of the street.

“So you’re saying I look like a freeloading couch surfer whose credentials include a handful of grade Z straight to video movies and who is planning his pivot to reality TV based on his trial testimony?” is what I asked none of them.

“How about that,” is what I mumbled instead.

“How dare they utter such calumny, the slanderous wretches,” Mary did not say when I turned to her for comfort.

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hee, hee, chortle,” is what she replied. Strange what she considers funny.

Again, let the record show I bear no resemblance to Kato Kaelin now nor did I in the 1990s, when my only exposure to courtrooms was as a journalist.

Nor did I ever look like the TV character MacGyver, although I was told otherwise during the network run of the eponymous adventure series. Coincidentally, I was carrying a Swiss Army knife in my pocket at the time; rather than reply I pulled it out. It was one of the loaded models with a toothpick and tweezers and everything.

If only I’d had a roll of duct tape.

“You know, maybe if you part your hair like this and . nope, still not MacGyver,” said Mary the merciless. “But while you’ve got your Swiss Army knife, could you fix that dripping faucet in the bathroom?”

More recently, a visitor to The Daily Independent caught my eye. “You look like .”

“Here it comes,” I winced. Winced because it wasn’t just any visitor; it was a top officialof CNHI, the company that owns The Daily Independent. The officialwas in Ashland to confer with our publisher and took a few minutes to meet with rank and file workers.

” . William H. Macy,” she said.

At the time the most recent of the actor’s movies I’d seen was the one in which he, John Travolta, Martin Lawrence and TimAllen portray suburbanites posturing as outlaws on their Harley Davidson motorcycles.

“Wild Hogs,”I said weakly.

Following which I tried desperately and without avail to invoke my invisibility skills.

“Yes, and if you knock on your heads, they’re both hollow inside,”said Mary.

President Donald J. Trump signed into law tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from several countries. The tariff for steel is 25 percent and 10 percent for aluminum. Trump believes the move will help domestic steel and aluminum producers.
the north face gotham jacket A face for all seasons