I was cleaning out a box that had yet to be unpacked since my move last year. (A lot of you are probably shuddering at the thought of all those unpacked boxes stacked in my garage for over a year now) Not the point to this post though so I shall continue.
I found my old yearbook and as I was going through it, I decided to see if I could locate some of the people from my senior class. (This wasn't really about nostalgia or even vague curiosity. This was all about avoiding having to keep unpacking the damn box.)
Through the privacy invading phenomena of Facebook and Google, I was able to locate most of these past phantoms. It was disturbingly easy, even for someone as technologically challenged as myself. (I wonder if I can claim that as a disability?) Anyway, back to the post.
Obviously, over the broad spectrum of years and geography, lifestyles, relationship statuses and personal philosophies have altered a bit. Amongst students of human nature, I suppose it could even warrant an interesting if irrelevant study of human nature. Well, maybe not a study, more like a short unsubstantiated observation. Since I'm not a student of human nature, unless you count people watching (which I happen to be great at), this is still not what inspired this post.
My high school years occurred in the late eighties, where all the girls had big hair and all the boys had, well, big hair. Now that it's 2012, I noticed most of us made the socially responsible decision to tone down our earlier grooming practices. Some of us, however, have clung to our teen looks with a death grip as secure as the NRA reps with their guns. Others have left their coifs behind by force rather than personal awareness of themselves or our planet's atmospheric health.
Coincidentally, these victims are all male. They were all attacked by the same culprit. Who was this villain, you ask? Why, it was male pattern baldness, I answer. Although, that may just be an alias used to give a semblance of blamelessness since these particular males come from an era where excessively long tresses were routinely teased and sprayed into submission. It's possible the baldness was simply a result of hair abuse or a protest by the poor follicles to the humiliation they endured for years. (Lest you forget, long, ratted out hair for males turned into mullets and rat-tails.)
Either way, bald is really not that bad. In a world where shaved heads are considered a fashion statement, these individuals should be fairing quite well. The problem? Women aren't the only ones obsessed with their youth. (gravity defying breasts, frozen faces, inner tube-esque lips...) Men have a mysterious relationship with their youth that seems to center primarily around their hair, their car and their penis.
There's the Friar Tuck, the combover, the roadkill...err...toupee, camouflage in the form of trucker caps, cowboy hats, bandannas...and many many more. To me, a shaved head shows a man who has come to terms with the inevitable and has decided to face it with his balls in tact. Still, this particular person's choice seemed at once, rebellious and sad:
Graciously, while leaning heavily on my strong command of the English language, I remain silent.