Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Measuring hair…

Or lengths of absurdity

As a baby my hair was wispy fine but fast growing – I have a cute picture at about age two where my mother had curled it in the old method: around ones finger then squash to skull and put a bobby pin across it. That method had the advantage of being able to be slept upon with minimal damage to the head.

As I got older my hair grew: from chin-length in first and second grade to a long, lovely pony tail that accompanied me through third, fourth, fifth and sixth grades. In seventh grade shorter hair and perms arrived to take over my life. One of my very worst pictures is my 8th grade school annual picture: freshly permed I set off for school: it promptly rained and I wasn’t self-assured enough to refuse that my picture be taken. I still have it as a reminder than anything else I could ever do to my hair can never be that bad!

From then on it varied from short to mid-length, to long, back to boy short in 1977 (why do I remember the exact year? Summer photos taken just before I learned that I was pregnant with my first son: my reaction to that hairdo was: it suits my face, but oh what a pinhead on that long, stringy body!)

Short was easy to keep, mid-length impossible – although it looked lovely when I took the 20 years to fix it every morning. For many years I had a great stylist who knew how to not only deal with the wave in the back, but also how to thin my thick hair so that the frizz element wasn’t quite so predominant.

My husband preferred short hair, thus my (to most of my friends and family) somewhat odd decision after his death not to cut it: after all, I had refused to cut it for him, why would I now cut it?  Also, there was nothing easier than the 30 seconds it took to twist it and whip it into a clip at the back of my head.

Then one day it hit me: I am tired of this long (waist length) hair: tired of saying that I can wear it down for special events then never doing so. Since childhood though it had been inculcated in me that one must not do things on a whim, so I waited, one week, two weeks, a whole month then two. Still felt the same way so walked into the hair salon that one of my friends frequents, made an appointment for the day before my birthday (yes, major events are quite often stimulated by birthdays – although why they should be given that importance is a subject for philosophical debate) and off it came.

I won’t bore anyone with the time it took for all my friends and family to find out – that’s subject for a whole other blog – however, it was the reaction of my housemate that was perhaps the most interesting: “hmmm… if I let mine grow, I may even be able to have longer hair than you”.

Recently I had it trimmed and we talked about measuring our current lengths, but she was sick, then I was gone hence it was yesterday when we were seated in a restaurant for lunch that the subject first came up again.

Solution to the “have to known, NOW” ? Whip out our napkins: put top line at middle of the top of our heads, hold flat against head until reaching the end of a hair: compare.
Did it matter that these were red napkins, or that the room was already half full? Heck no, we needed to know and know right then.

We seem to currently have equal lengths. 
What a relief – life can return to normal.