Friday, February 6, 2009

Hair Apparent

Gimme a head with hair,
Long beautiful hair
Shining, gleaming,
Streaming, flaxen, waxen

Give me down to there hair
Shoulder length or longer
Here baby, there mama
Everywhere daddy daddy

Hair, hair, hair, hair, hair, hair, hair
Flow it, show it
Long as God can grow it
My hair

Gerome Ragni and James Rado
from Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical


Despite what I write, Linda doesn't really nag me. I guess that after 25 years it only takes a look or a tone of voice to deliver a shorthand version of a full-blown nag. But yesterday, in her own way, she nagged me about getting a haircut.

I haven't had one since September, and my hair is getting a wee bit long in the back. Obviously, there is no need to write about the length in the front.

Linda seems quite worried that I will soon be wearing a ponytail and looking like a silly old fart who doesn't even know how silly he looks. Or to be more precise, I think she is worried that she will have to go out in public with a silly old fart who doesn't know how silly he looks.

I am posting this picture from 1973 for two reasons. One, to let Linda know that by earlier standards today's 'do isn't even close to meeting my definition of long hair. And two, to show her that when it was indeed long hair, I preferred the "let-it-flow-like-the-prophets-did" look rather than the "aging-ad-agency-creative-type-with-ponytail" look.

Back in the early '70s I was a moving haystack - beard down to my chest, hair to the shoulder blades. You can complete the mental picture with my standard costume of bib overalls and, in the winter, a hunting jacket. I can no longer recall what made me choose this look, but I suspect I may have been overly influenced by the movie "Deliverance". I am pretty sure I wasn't going for the "Fat Country Jesus" look.

By the time of this picture, we had already gone through the hippie era and come out the other side. The Summer of Love had moved onto the Fall of Saigon, so it was not as if I was just adopting the same look as most other people. In fact, I can remember that I became known for having the longest beard and hair at the university where I was doing my graduate work.

(I can also remember my parents being - as always - tolerant of the goofy look I was sporting. But I don't recall too many people being invited over whenever I visited them.)

I also do not have any memory of why I finally trimmed the beard and cut the hair. I can only guess that it had to do with finally leaving university and having to get a job. Or perhaps there's an even more likely reason. Around this time I went through my first divorce. Let's face it, there's only a limited set of women who get turned on by a guy who looks like lead singer for ZZ Top.

Those are the singers who were offered a million bucks each by Gillette to shave their beards for a commercial. They turned it down with a reason that, in hindsight, I can fully understand. They told Gillette, "We're too ugly without 'em."

Anyhow, got to run now. I have a 9:30 appointment to get my hair cut.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

its called a short back & shine