May 21, 2013
Written by Joe Pisani
Wednesday, 29 February 2012 00:00
Is it my imagination or do all teenage boys look alike?
I know this sounds crazy, but I can’t tell one from another. Is it a sign I’m growing old and I’ve lost touch with the younger generation? Is my eyesight failing?
Or it might be lack of practice because I never had teenage sons, only four daughters, and by the time they became teenagers, I couldn’t tell them apart either.
I have the same problem with Victoria’s Secret models. When the catalog comes in the mail, I start leafing through it and proclaim to no one in particular, “Heck, these girls all look the same! They should put on some clothes so I can tell them apart!”
At which point my wife and/or daughters and/or puppy seize the catalog and start grumbling about “dirty old men,” and I never see it again, especially if the puppy grabs it because she chews it up.
I don’t have this identification problem with, say, the Westminster dog show. All those dogs look different, and I can tell them apart even though I can’t understand why the winner always looks like E.T.
I first noticed the teenage boy look-alike phenomenon on the train the day there was a victory parade for the New York Giants. Thousands of teenage boys skipped school to celebrate with their fathers, who set a good example by calling work and saying they had the stomach bug.
A woman I know wanted to take her son, but the kid told her going to school was more important. He must have gotten that gene from Dad.
I never took my daughters to a Giants game because they thought our quality time together could be spent more profitably at the mall looking for sales.
Anyway, there were 15 teenage boys in my car, and their appearance was eerily similar — long hair covering their ears and foreheads, earphones, sweatshirts, Nikes, pimples and peach fuzz.
Were these kids cloned in North Korea? Or maybe they came from the same family because their shirts all said “Manning.”
My sisters have teenage sons, and I can’t tell them apart either, even though one is a foot taller than the other.
Unlike teenage girls, who can’t stop talking, teenage boys can’t start talking because — I learned this from the Discovery Channel — their vocal chords aren’t fully developed, which is why they occasionally squeak. As a result, they resort to grunting. One grunt for “yes,” and two grunts for “no.”
Their diet consists of potato chips and Skittles, and they play this guitar game where they pretend they’re Jimmy Page performing “Stairway to Heaven” and jump on the sofa.
When I watch them, I have a faint suspicion I may have been a teenage boy once, back in an era when we all wore white socks and penny loafers — and looked alike.
Other times I’m certain I skipped the teen years and went from childhood into middle age. Overnight, my voice turned from squeaky to baritone and I started to go gray, but that didn’t stop me from jumping on the sofa when I played “Stairway to Heaven.”
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