In the Trahan household, school photos are nothing short of an annual event. Just like clockwork, every year, Jaime would light up as she eagerly opened the school photo packet, ready to ooh and aah over her children’s smiling faces. But this year, her 17-year-old son, Colin, had other plans.

Colin, a senior at St. Thomas More High School, had always been the class clown—more like the jester of the family kingdom. Whether it was some prank he saw on YouTube or Pinterest, Colin never missed a chance to get a laugh.

This year was no different.

Jaime received the much-anticipated school photo packet after noticing it was wedged underneath her purse. Oddly, it was upside down, but she didn’t think much of it. She flipped it over and almost let out an audible shriek when she saw Colin’s face. Gone was the smile, replaced by a look so intense, so fierce, it could only be compared to Zoolander’s “Blue Steel.”

Or maybe it's more of a 'Magnum' look.

“Oh, Colin…” Jaime muttered to herself, reaching for her phone. She quickly shot him a text: "I am going to hurt you 😂."

In no time, her phone buzzed. "What, Mom? I just wanted to capture my true essence."

His 'true essence'—Jaime snorted. That was her son alright, always mischievous and looking for a laugh. And then it hit her: this would be Colin’s official School ID and yearbook photo. At that point, this mom felt like a walking facepalm.

When she posted the epic photo on her Facebook, the comments section was a hilarious collection of similar mom-ordeals. One mom posted her daughter’s senior year photo featuring a scarf and a wig. Jaime’s best friend, Jacy, said her son took a picture kissing the stuffed animal that the photographers use.


"Looks like it’s a high school tradition," Jaime thought, suddenly feeling like part of a secret mom club.

But revenge was on her mind. Her friends gave her a ton of ideas. From blowing up Colin’s blue steel photo to poster size and hanging it very visible places, to putting it along his route to school, the possibilities were endless. She grinned devilishly, contemplating her next move.

Then she remembered—Colin was impervious to embarrassment.

The cost of the original photos was just $40, and there was no way she was paying for retakes—especially since he would just serve up more hilarious looks.

In the end, Jaime realized that the real value wasn’t in the polished, picture-perfect snapshot she’d been expecting. It was the laughter, the absurdity, the pure 'Colin-ness' of it all that made this a lifetime memory.


As Jaime places the ‘Blue Steel’ photo on the mantle, right next to Colin’s toothless kindergarten photo, she realized some things never change. And honestly, she wouldn’t have it any other way.

So here’s to senior year, Colin. You may not have given your mom the photo she wanted, but you definitely gave her—and all of us—the laugh we needed.

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