Friday, May 26, 2006


Yesterday, I sent off the form to renew my passport.... but before this...

Panic 1 - Status
I woke up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat. Occupation? I haven’t got one. It’s always said ‘teacher’. Surely not ‘pensioner’. Would ‘blogger’ or ‘idler’ be accepted. I leapt out of bed and found my old passport.
End of panic 1 - occupation isn’t there any more. It used to be at the top of the page above your height (another source of anxiety) and eye colour.
When did it disappear? Perhaps it was in the days when you got lots of purple stamps in the back from Greece, Bulgaria and even Malaga.

Panic 2 - Photograph
My current passport photo is a unique phenomenon. It is lovely - a big improvement on the real thing - even of 10 years ago. I have glossy dark hair and some lovely silver earrings (long departed). Recent photos of moi taken with Kev’s new high-resolution camera have been a bit scary.

So, I dyed my hair to a tasteful compromise. By looking in the magnifying mirror to apply mascara I got it in the top half of my face for once. The result was not unpleasing.

And the photo - awful. Serves me right for being such a prat.

More trauma to come - I struggled through the wind and rain to be told by the post office person that the photo wouldn’t do because I was smiling. I loudly contested this. ‘You can see your teeth’ she replied. So??? I have big teeth. Couldn’t we measure the upward angle of the mouth or something scientific? Back to the booth. Next photo pronounced too big! Back to the booth at £3.50 per go. Resulting drunken, drowned rat accepted. Passport sent off.

Kaz to Primark for cheap and cheerful retail therapy.


Blogger Betty said...

I've got to renew my passport next year and all these new regulations for photos has been worrying me. I'm sure it's all part of an EVIL CAPITALIST CONSPIRACY to make huge profits for those people who make photo booths as people have to keep going back to get more passport photos that comply with the rules ...

10:34 am  
Blogger Geoff said...

Do they want us all to look like Buster Keaton?

I'm sure it's no fun for immigration officers, having to look at miserable faces all day long.

What about poor Stephanie De Sykes who was born with a smile on her face?

11:52 am  
Blogger MJ said...

We Canadians have been banned from smiling (or frowning) for passport photos. We’ve been instructed to adopt a "neutral expression" for our pictures. Is it the same in the UK?

2:26 pm  
Blogger KAZ said...

Betty: I had considered adopting the hijab, burka, yashmak fashion, but that's not allowed either.
I'm sure you can do a good job of looking like a curmudgeonly person.
Now get back to the spring cleaning.

Geoff: Poor old Stef will just have to stay at home. But I'm sure you'll be OK in the non smiling department judging by recent posts.

MJ: Bloggers don't really do 'neutral' do they? Just don't show any teeth and think of the Canadian equivalent of the Liberal Democrats.

5:57 pm  
Blogger coolbuddha said...

Those photo booths are scary places, and £3.50 is an awful lot for what you get. And what to do with the spare photos...?

12:23 pm  
Blogger KAZ said...

I'll tell you what I did with my spare photos - I destroyed them immediately.
If I'm not smiling - I have a double chin.

4:54 pm  
Anonymous NiC said...

Grrrr... don't talk to me about passport applications... I dread to think how they're going to cope when there's more than just photographs involved!

9:09 pm  
Blogger KAZ said...

Oh no - there'll be a booth for taking finger prints and iris scans.
It'll cost £15 per finger and £20 per eye.

8:57 am  

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