I took a lovely spring walk to my local grocer’s this fine morning. It was just beautiful out. The birds were in the trees, doing what they do with such a spectacular rhythm, singing all varieties of Mother Nature’s greatest hits. It was a wonderful soundtrack after a bitterly harsh winter.
As I was enjoying the warm breeze sweeping across my thankful face, from the corner of my eye, I spied something not in sync with the glorious bounty that was my morning in this temperate paradise. Something most vile, fluttering about like a defenseless wren unfortunate enough to become mired to the globe of a driveway lamp-post.
As my eyes slowly registered what I was seeing, the lovely aria provided me suddenly scraped to an abrupt halt. There, standing proudly to my side was a man sauntering about, wind whipping through his few remaining strands of hair. He was clearly unaware of the giant exclamation point his head had become as the breeze held that thin strip of hair straight up towards the heavens. The looks he was getting from fellow pedestrians were clearly lost on him. The snickers, the public recrimination, the repealed laughter, none of them penetrated his state of total delusion.
Man was very obviously on a day pass, or his meds had run low, take your pick.
As I attempted to avert my eyes to a safer target, I couldn’t stop from looking. The proverbial car wreck stood before me, at the very intersection I was heading for. His raven haired question mark/exclamation point whipped about like a kitten on catnip. Not one hair separated, they simply danced in unison upon his crown-less glory, as if summoning battle weary mosquitoes towards the flesh coloured runway for a perfect landing.
I stared when I should have been eyes forward. I felt horribly guilty for my transgression, yet I could not focus my eyes elsewhere for a discernible time. Yet, despite my untamed interest in his prancing coiffure, he remained mercifully oblivious to the attention he was garnering.
The incident set me to wondering why men become this deserving object of jocular derision. It seems pretty clear to most that wrapping your balding self with bacon strip sized masses of hair only makes a bad thing worse. Of the various crimes against middle-aged decay, this one is the worst offense, hands down.
Who do they think they’re trying to kid! Well, my suspicion is themselves. To some, the loss of something that can make or break your looks is seemingly devastating.
It starts out as a little hair covering a thin area. And like a slow-moving lava flow, as the spot gets thinner and broader, the effort becomes more elaborate and pronounced. Within a few years, what once was a tiny misdemeanor has become a full-fledged suicide pact on the participants scalp. He blankly stares straight ahead as he fools himself into thinking the world approves of this nesting maneuver he’s performed for its benefit.
Chickadees would love it. Sparrows would be ever jubilant. Those of us who bear witness…not so much.
Men partake in all sorts of crowning crimes. I once had a boss that decided that hair plugs were the thing to do. It was hell on earth when we were at staff meetings for me to keep from blatantly staring at the neat rows of doll-like hair now covering his altered scalp. And you’d think he might be wiser, and comb down a bang to at least disguise his misguided effort to recapture what nature robbed him of.
Nope. He went the way of the Guido and combed it straight back, the plugs a Mafioso trophy for all to see.
Then there are those foolish enough to incorporate “Lee Press On” hair into their field kits of battling testosterone on the virile landscapes they trudge through, clueless and delusional.
Unless you’re paying a mint to a “Hair Club” and use a modicum of restraint when buying your astro-turf, it’s going to inevitably look like Ricardo Montalban’s “Corinthian Leather” “do” not.
It had to have been easier back in the days where men’s fashion provided us all with a fedora to disguise the loss of such a cherished friend. You could strut about a total gent, dignity intact, never needing to resort to the desperate measures being employed by the follicle deprived.
As a middle-aged man who is slowly noting absent hair in various spots across my crown, I can clearly understand the folly of their actions. The temptation to bankrupt myself into a Rogaine stupor is powerful. But, I must, in good conscience be ever vigilant. The idea of joining the ranks of the clueless holds no appeal to me whatsoever. My hair, while still relatively intact will someday meet its own maker, very likely sooner, rather than later. With that in mind, I have sworn to do as most self-respecting chrome domes have done, and raze the lot of it, the day it becomes too thin to make look decent without resorting to the act of a desperado!
I absolve myself of all thought to join the ludicrous lampoon of hairdont’s. I pray they all go towards the light. It’ll certainly make for a prettier day!