Cheer Up, It Might Never ‘Appen!


FullSizeRender (5)The other day, I was out prom dress shopping with my eldest daughter (yep, somewhere along the line, England turned into America and now we have proms for 16-year-olds. But we certainly didn’t in my day). Anyway, we were taking photographs of the various dresses in the changing rooms because for some reason it’s always easier to get a better impression of a dress via a photo than your own eyes (I don’t know why that is, but it is). Now because there were a myriad of mirrors in the changing room, I inadvertently kept being caught on the mobile phone camera. And as always when I am caught on camera whilst not expecting it, I looked bored to death – as miserable as sin. Yet when I smile, my appearance improves remarkably. People have even remarked that I’m photogenic, which I suppose I can be if I ‘switch on’ the fun me. But photogenic really only means you take a decent photo, it says nothing about your actual appearance. However, I don’t smile a great deal in real life. So that is the crux of this blog really, I just don’t particularly like the natural set of my face.

This isn’t a news to me. The title of this post is something that random men would shout out at me in the street from a very early age (I don’t know if it’s a saying in regular use, but they used to say it in East London when I was growing up anyway). ‘Cheer up, it might never ‘appen!’. I don’t think I’d mind if those random gentlemen were honestly concerned for my welfare and just trying to advise me that the thing which I so obviously dread may never come to pass. But I think they were just taking the piss, if I’m honest. So basically, I look and always have looked so thoroughly miserable that people feel the need to point it out in the street. Well, not so much nowadays as I don’t live in London anymore and now I am in my forties, these random people realise they are more likely to get a punch in the face than the half-hearted smile they would receive when I was young.

I don’t particularly like to emblazon my blog with copious images of myself because I like to maintain an element of mystery. Well, there’s one photo there in the sidebar but that’s because I read somewhere that readers would like to get a rough idea of what you look like. So I got a my dear husband to take a few head-shots when I was on my way out to a party and plastered in make-up. Luckily for me, he’s a semi-professional photographer (available for weddings and family gatherings at a very reasonable fee), so he’s good enough to make even me look halfway decent. But I am forced to use a couple of photos of me in this post to illustrate the point I am trying to make. Here are two pictures, one of me caught accidentally in the background of a photo whilst dress shopping, and me having a camera pointed directly at me and choosing to smile:-

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‘Somebody Kill Me…’

Or, adversely…

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‘Let’s Have A Party!’

Now unfortunately, the first picture is more the norm than the second (believe me, I’ve even worse photos than that but there’s a limit to what I’m prepared to post on the Internet). I know what you’re thinking, and yes, I suppose the obvious solution would be to ‘smile’ more often (but if you know me even slightly, you’ll know that’s a pretty big ask). I remember I had a part-time job whilst I was a teenager, at some God-awful time of the morning, I handed out those free magazines to commuters arriving at various London Underground stations (you know the ones, they advertise jobs and little else). And on the days when I made and effort (i.e. smiled at the train passengers and wore a bit of make-up), I always managed to shift a sh*t-load more magazines than on the days I was my usual surly, just-dragged-myself-out-of-bed self). I mean, that’s not rocket science, people are far more likely to take a magazine from a cheery girl thrusting one into their hands than some bored teenager who’d rather be dead than at some  freezing cold tube station. I would. But let’s face it, I can’t walk around the street smiling all the bloody time, people would think I was certifiable!

So you see, it’s not my fault. I cannot help the natural fall of my face and I can’t go around grinning like a Cheshire cat either. It’s just another cross I have to bear, it really is. But within reason, I will try to smile a bit more often, or at least perfect an impassive face (whatever that looks like), rather than the, ‘let me die’ face I inadvertently tend to wear. So if you see me walking around the street looking so miserable that stringing myself up from the rafters seems like a better option, do forgive me; I’m probably as happy as Larry. My face just hasn’t realised it yet. And whatever you do, don’t shout out, ‘cheer up, it might never ‘appen!’.  A) You’re probably not a Cockney and that’s just terrible grammar, and B) it might have happened already, for all you know. I might have won millions of pounds on the lottery and lost my ticket. I might have recently fallen down a ravine and badly twisted my ankle but am managing to walk normally whilst gritting my teeth through the pain. Or I may just be bored to within an inch of my life. Either way, it would probably be best just to ignore me and say nothing, I’m a pacifist really and I don’t especially enjoy punching people in the face.



12 thoughts on “Cheer Up, It Might Never ‘Appen!

  1. I wouldn’t worry too much about other people Adele, some people just have that natural face – Anna Kendrick and Hugh Laurie spring to mind, I remember watching an interview with Stephen Fry and apparently it was quite common at parties when both of them were there for people to come up to Stephen and ask “What’s wrong with Hugh?” and the answer was always “Nothing, he’s having a good time” but his face never reflected . So I’d say that you’re in good company 🙂

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  2. There are two people that spring to mind after reading your thoughtful post. The first one being my daughter who in all the pictures ever taken after she got all her adult teeth, has ever cracked a smile for the camera. She fell on the ice one year around the age of twelve chipping a tooth then after it was fixed it slowly became discolored a little bit.
    The second person is my father-in-law his face somewhat resembling a bulldog. A nice man but he gots a bulldog face lol When I got married I wanted to tie the knot in the cemetery that my husband’s father and sister were layed to rest in. When I went to look at the pictures there he was, scowling away which thinking back on it now cracks me up.
    So don’t beat yourself up too hard Adele. Believe me or not you are still beautiful both ways you look! Everyone looks better when they smile, even a bulldog;)

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  3. I think smiling’s overrated Adele, much more fun to be an assumed grouch! Take our “one foot in the grave” pal Victor Meldrew, his life is much more interesting and gets a few laughs into the bargain!
    You really are very photogenicic (NOT at all jealous) I on the other hand am not at all, hardly any photos of me as a result and to make matters worse I am increasingly resembling a long since passed great aunt whose mouth turned DOWN at the corners even when she was happy!

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  4. Another great post Adele.

    I’m another who hates the “Cheer up!…” crap that sometimes gets thrown my way. I’ll laugh when I’m told or seen something funny, I’ll smile when I come across something endearing, but I’ll never walk around with a face like an airline stewardess.
    I often think that some of those people who are always smiling are hiding, deep down, something unhappy.

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  5. Actually, Adele, your “Somebody kill me….” photo makes you appear rather more some sort of moody artist. As if you don’t take any “stuff” from anyone and know entirely what you’re about. Next novel: author photo. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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