I need to get something off my chest.
Sometimes when I reread the things that I write it makes me wish that I was actually speaking to my reader. The reason for this is that when I read my own thoughts….they sometimes seem pretty damn cynical and often sarcastic to the point of caustic, and I cannot have the opportunity to explain how those words got on the page and what mind they emerged from. I guess my main concern would have to be that this is how am perceived as a person…I am not really bitter at all…the things I write are never meant maliciously or critically…they are just pointing out the obvious and sometime obliviousness of those other earthlings who share this amazing orb with me. Sometimes, it IS the clothes that make the clown, and I like to discern who the clown is and why he likes to wear yellow (or blue, or red, or pink…..). Ah…I feel better now. That being said….here we go again.
The other day while sitting in my favorite café, I sensed someone walking past my chair. Looking up I realized that not only was this person wearing a Toupee but that the hairpiece had been intended for a much larger head than the one resting on this man’s shoulders. The postiche looked like an Elvis wig that firstly, had gone horribly astray and secondly, would have fit Elvis in his last days as opposed to when he was young and thin (if you catch my drift). That isn’t necessarily humorous by itself, I realize, but as he continued past me, he looked down at his feet and when he did, the wig separated at the nape of his neck and I could see a quick glimpse of about a 1 inch gap that allowed viewing midway up his bald head. I felt like a little boy looking up a nun’s skirt (some things are not meant to be seen). It covered his ears in a way that was not meant to cover his ears. Its hairline fell just above the man’s eyebrows like how bangs would sit. Ok…now this was funny to me. I watched this gentleman as he continued past me and giggled curiously at the hat on his head that was manufactured to look like human hair. After all, isn’t this in essence what he was wearing, a hat? I joked to myself that he had probably found it at a yard sale or it had been bequeathed to him as part of an estate, or better yet, perhaps he found the mop in an attic somewhere. I could just see him pulling the dusty salt and pepper chapeau from grandpa’s trunk saying “I remember seeing Grandpa wear this as a boy”, and then whistfully pulling it onto his much too small head where it would be displayed day after day…..…the reunion of so many memories….sigh
…And, in typical misfit fashion, this put a question in my mind to muse over….WHY? Did he sport this manmade mullet in the summer? Was it keeping his head warm? Why would someone get up every morning and shower, dress, brush their teeth, have coffee, read the morning paper and oh yeah, pull a much too large faded Elvis wig onto their cranium and go out and face the world? Did he put it on at home or in the car before he reached his destination? I can imagine him now, pulling to a stop, placing the car in park, pulling the key out of the ignition, removing his seatbelt and reaching over onto the passenger seat where the thing laid curled up like a sleeping skunk and pulling it onto his head while looking at himself confidently in the rear view mirror. What kind of performance art is going on here? Exactly what amount of genius is hidden beneath the artificially hirsute skullcap?
Now, I can understand women wearing wigs. I can…in fact I LOVE wigs--on women—and I can see why they are not only important, but sometimes necessary. I guess it’s the man thing I have trouble with. Please don’t think I’m being sexist, that’s just not my point. What I am trying to drive home here is that we live in a society where woman are EXPECTED to have lovely hair. Hell, for years I have WORKED as a hairdresser. The hair industry is a major contributor of our economy …hair color, perms, highlights, cuts, styles, blah, blah, blah…the list goes on and on, all designed for one thing, to make women look and feel more attractive. Magazine images depict woman with exotic and creative hairstyles. Fashion runways enhance the look of the fashions with a theme using hairstyles to “make the look”…even the Bible uses the verse “ …A woman’s hair is her crowning glory” (1 Corinthians 11:14-15)---a woman’s hair. I guess even God likes pretty hair on a lady, eh? For this reason (the societal importance, not God’s preference), It is very traumatic for most women to lose their hair due to illness or skin conditions or just plain genetics. It is commendable and understandable why people donate long ponytails to “Locks of Love” to help those who have been ill to feel more positively about themselves. With the focus on a woman’s hair in our society you would expect a woman to try to enhance her features with gorgeous follicles, whether artificial or not---But a man? Why?
Most Men naturally go bald, this is the hard truth. Look around you kids. Look at the percentage of bald or balding men as compared to men with a full lush head of hair. Get my point? And of those men who still have their hair, what percentage actually shave their heads to almost nothing, or cut it so short that it doesn’t matter if they take the plunge and shave the rest anyway. Then ask most women who have matured beyond wanting a boy and prefer a man if the baldness bothers them. They may make a joke referencing the famous Fabio, but most of the ones that I have spoken to find bald men to actually be quite attractive if not sexy. I know I do for one. In fact, to me, it is almost odd to see a man past the age of 45 with a full head of hair. (http://medicalcenter.osu.edu/patientcare/healthcare_services/mens_health/hair_loss/pages/index.aspx ). They stand out in a crowd. Bald hair and thinning hair in men is totally acceptable, tolerated and not even noticed for the most part (unless of course you are Sy Sperling the founder of Hair club for Men and trying to make a buck off the insecurity of the vain few). Oh, and if you are a man and still have your hair…good for you. Some women will prefer YOU over the hair deficient guys, it all balances out in the end, I suppose.
Ok, now that some important points have been state, I can take a breath and get on with my point and address the question at hand--“WHY?”…Which brings us back to my friend in the restaurant. I guess that this man had the right as an American citizen to go out in public with his furry crash helmet and not be ridiculed, right? And I am not ridiculing him….but I just can’t get past the why?WHY? If he is balding, then it is absolutely acceptable to shave your head and not stand out, why not just sport a chrome dome? In these modern times, this is the norm. If he had dirty hair, then a simple wash in the men’s room sink would do it. If he is ashamed of his baldness, then why not wear a hat? Perhaps his destination did not allow such an accessory to be worn? Was this his way of advertising his genius? Or my final idea would be that he was just weird and liked his big floppy hairpiece and that he enjoys to not only stand out in the crowd…but to wear his misfit status proudly and chooses to look that way simply because he CAN… simple as that. Didn’t Einstein even stand out in a crowd? Just because he could? I don’t know, even though I question it, I think THAT reason is the best reason of all…