Let me tell you non-hair challenged folks a little something. It's unlikely that you know the pain and agony of bonking your head (like getting out of a car) and scraping off a chunk of scalp. In addition to feeling stupid, it hurts like hell and other than wearing a hat to hide the eventual giant scab, there's little you can do to avoid having to explain the situation a thousand times.
At this moment as I type, I have the remnants of such a giant scab. Unfortunately for me, I work in a place that prevents me from wearing a hat...and to me, covering it with a band-aid would not change the quantity and quality of the stupid questions.
My first night at work with the big, fresh scab, I was getting annoyed from all the razzing about it. Late that night, I crossed paths on the escalator with a dumb guy, named Alf.
He said, "Hey, what's that thingy on your head?"
I blurted out, "I smooshed a bug."
The perplexed look on Alf's face almost made my eons of suffering tolerable.
The bigger baldness picture is, it is incalculable the amount of money, time and effort I have saved down through the years because of it. Imagine how much men spend on expensive styling, hair care products, blow-dryers...even something as simple as a comb. Then consider the time and effort invested in going to a salon or daily self-maintenance.
Once you've worn-out an abacus or two factoring this all out...what you have figured out is....all the time, money and effort WOULD be worth it for a full head of hair.
Yes, I inwardly wish I had a full head of hair. My frustration is worsened because my dad's hair was a thing of beauty. He was a man of few extravagances but his hair and it's upkeep was a vice-like indulgence . In the early 70's the "razor-cut" was in vogue. Dad was obsessed with finding the ultimate razor-cut. He had little patience for pretenders and developed a "one and done attitude." Trust me, nobody went through more stylists than him.
You could never put me in that category. The gene that provides "pride in one's mane" did not get handed down from my father to me. As soon as I was too old to sit in Mr. Engel's fire-engine while getting my monthly trim and lollipop...getting a haircut (in my adolescence) became a painful chore. Maybe my distaste originated from the "cow-lick" (front left), I had. A new haircut always seemed to emphasize it. I remember wishing that the cow-lick would magically disappear.
The haircut drudgery got worse as I got older. My dad was a good-looking man and I'm guessing that he figured I needed all the help I could get? So when I became a teenager, he deemed it necessary for me to lose the schlump look.
When I was fourteen and fifteen, together with dad, we led nomadic life searching Brooklyn for the perfect razor-cut. I was less than enthusiastic about these jaunts and was satisfied with my less-than-dainty appearance. Even worse, I was uncomfortable being pampered, (way back then, male hair salons didn't hire females). I hated the shampooing , hair drying and assorted fuss. So having these excursions forced down my throat only heightened my resistance. The situation reached its negative apex when for a "command performance" (that meant I had no choice but to accompany my folks somewhere fancy and/or boring) dad threw in a manicure for me, (okay, there was one woman there but she looked like Stella Lugosi).
I was sixteen when my folks and I reached a compromise...when my mop-top was at it's shaggiest, or there was a special occasion, at my mother's behest, (that meant; at gun-point) I went solo, on foot to Ross's Barber Shop; they offered discount razor-cuts.
On the day in question, they had two barbers. I was getting my hair "mowed," side-by-side with an adult as the cutters blithered and had a giggly, grand old time in Italian. If my father was there, he would have insisted that there were no private conversations while he was in the chair...even in English! I guarantee that after a warning, if one more word amongst them oozed-out, dad would never go back there again. Me, I couldn't care less...I just wanted to get out as fast as possible...as long as it didn't slow these guys down, I said chat away!
My barber was about to begin the "razor" aspect of my cut when he and the other hyena suddenly disappeared into the backroom.
While they presumably had a cigarette, the other customer said, "Do you know what they were laughing at?"
At sixteen, I wasn't even clever enough to know what language they were speaking, so naturally I said, "No."
The man said, "They thought it was funny that you were losing your hair!"
The immediacy of this "going bald memo" was as foreign to me as the barber's conversation. After all, going bald was from heredity or happened to old men. So, it couldn't happen to me for a long time...besides, my dad was regularly complimented on his long flowing locks. Therefore, I dismissed the whole idea and wasn't emotionally scarred. Less than two years later, the Sherlock Holmes in me, figured it all out.
In high school I played football and in my junior year, every time I took off my helmet, the nightmare of baldness revealed itself in the form of countless lost strands. The horror show got worse when the shower drain was getting clogged with my fallen tresses. During my college years when long hair for men was extremely popular, it was distracting to meet girls and sense that they were focused, and making judgements due to my eroding hairline.
Somewhere in my college years, I recalled RCC and HJ's fifth grade teacher, Mr. Arnold Walker. It was then that I regretted singing this silly verse when I was eight-years old; He's here, he's there, he's everywhere but beware, he has no hair.
I HOPE THE JOY I GOT AT MR. WALKER'S EXPENSE DIDN'T COST ME IN THE END.
Somehow with a comb in my pocket, I was still in baldness denial when I got to Las Vegas. At Hotel Fremont, I regularly dealt to an old bald man with three, half-dollar-sized liver spots on his head. Due to their dark nature and perfect triangulation, I referred to him as "Bowling Ball Head." I guess because of him and Mr. Walker, that's where the term; we mock what we are to be, originated from.
I always remind my readers; be careful what you ask for...because you just might get it. More specifically, I'd kill to have my old cow-lick back.
Even though today's style standards can be favorable to bald guys...please, don't forget what we chrome-domes have been forced to endure. If you remember nothing else about this blog, remember this. When a bird craps on the head of a person with a full head of hair...the crap does NOT fall on that person's head...it falls on their hair. On the other hand, when a bird craps on a bald guy's head...the bird has indeed crapped on his head!