Hello, Failure

Of all the enemies of literature, success is the most insidious

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Failure of the Day: Tress

You know what we haven't talked about in a while? My hair. I have plenty of thoughts and ideas that have, you know, depth; don't go thinking I don't. But it's like this: I'm hot. It's the third day of a hideous scorching heat wave that necessitates my staying indoors during daylight hours and doing little more than working while my little fan coughs semi-cool air in my general direction, and if I want to talk about my hair, I'm going to talk about my hair, goddamn it.

So: I changed the side of my part. I do that every 5-10 years, just to keep things, you know, fresh. But then I got all wacky, threw caution to the wind, and decided to dispense with the part altogether. That necessitated a thorough rethinking of my bangs. That rethinking was immediately followed by an unfortunate transition period characterized by what I called "bang fangs": the two curls that were positioned at the far left and far right side of my forehead were about an inch longer than the middle curls. But only sometimes.

Because here's the thing about hair as curly as mine: it's a different length from day to day. No kidding. So I couldn't just cut the bang fangs because I knew as surely as I know my own name that the pieces I cut would suddenly shrink up into unmanageable puffballs the next time I washed my hair. So I bided my time through the bang fangs and sure enough, this week all my bangs are the exact same length.

And that's not even the exciting news. I have an appointment with an honest to god hairdresser. The San Francisco members of naturallycurly.com swear by Alexander G, which by some incredible magic is on Clement @ 32nd. They say Alex is the Man. The curly haired girls, they flock to him.

Now, I haven't had my hair cut in a salon since 1988, after some salon bimbo spent 3 hours circling the chair and finally started snipping at my hair one curl at a time. Sister, I can do that. And thus, I did. The result is that my hair hasn't changed a bit in 15 years save the part switching twice a decade whether it needs it or not. And also it was cherry red, then green, then pink in Seattle. But other than that, there's been not a lot of variations on my particular theme.

So I don't know if I'm going to let Alex cut my hair. I know I'm going to dye it to within an inch of its life, though.


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