As soon as we started having full-cast rehearsals for The Vagina Monologues, most of us noticed something weird: We had a disproportionately high number of redheads in the cast. Now, I’m guessing not all of them were natural redheads, but still. Only something like 1% of the world’s population has red hair, and according to Wikipedia (“they can’t put anything on the Internet that isn’t true”), here in the U.S. only between 2-6% of the population is red-headed. In a cast of 28 women, we had 8 redheads. That’s almost a third. Apparently when it comes to talking about their lady-bits, redheads are much more likely to do so. You know, based upon my completely unscientific, anecdotal observation.
I am currently somewhat obsessed with hair. I have made my peace with my own hair color; since giving up dye and cutting it all off last spring, I have come to love my silver streaks. I feel more ME, again, somehow. I don’t know how I’ll feel when I’m ENTIRELY gray, but right now I’m digging it. (Though I am maybe a wee bit jealous of all those beautiful redheads….)
So on the color front, huzzah! It’s all good! The problem is that I’ve reached the PLEASE KILL ME portion of our growing-out-my-hair program.
Oh, I liked it short, I guess. It was a fun change. It was relatively easy to care for and felt alien and exposed enough that I even regularly wore mascara (WHOA) for several months. But—as always happens—time passed and I started feeling bushy, and because my hair grows at warp speed, I realized that if I was to maintain my sassy ‘do, I would need to have my hair trimmed every 5-6 weeks. Which just seemed like a hassle.
[Moral of the story: No matter the color or the style of my hair, nothing is as important to me as how lazy I can be.]
So I let it grow for a while and once I well and truly had some bizarre afro/mullet combination going on, I went back to my stylist.
“Same cut?” she asked.
“No,” I said. “I loved it, don’t get me wrong, but—”
“—you want it long again,” she finished. A good stylist totally gets your neuroses. I nodded, we discussed just kind of thinning out some of the puffiness, and I got a trim that was supposed to kind of keep me set until December or so.
“I’ll come in before Christmas and get another trim,” I promised, because I am a big fat lying liar. Shocker: I haven’t been back, since. Really, this is a compliment to my stylist; she did such a good job, it’s been growing out ever since without any weirdness.
BUT. You knew there was going to be a “but,” right?
I’m back to periodically straightening my hair, which is kind of an enormous pain in the behind. Even with it barely reaching my shoulders (while straight), I still have a LOT of hair, and it’s very time intensive to wrangle it into submission. On a regular day—working at home, no super-important-to-look-awesome events on my calendar—I can’t be bothered.
Of course, during the show I went ahead and straightened it for the run, and that was when several of us discovered that—in addition to our windfall of redheads—here was a group of women dedicating all of this time and energy to a charity organization to empower women, and clearly we’re all self-actualized and whatnot, surely, AND YET. Nearly every woman in the cast with straight hair curled it for the show. Nearly every woman in the cast with curly hair straightened it for the show. We all laughed about it, but seriously. WOMEN. GET YOUR SELF-ACCEPTANCE ON.
Oh, I have to do it, too? Sure thing. Lemme just go put down the flat iron, first.
All of this brings us back to the current state of my hair: BLEAH. It’s not short. It’s not long. It’s beyond the ‘fro stage but not quite to the long-enough-to-kind-of-weigh-itself-down stage. It’s a mass of curls without direction. It kind of sucks.
Now, I could go back to my stylist, and she could maybe shape it up some so that it’s a little less wild, but really, this is just an unavoidable stage of growing out curls. I happen to know that this period of time—when my curls reach longer than my chin but not quiiiite to my shoulders—is just… ugly. Blocky, untamed, and accidental-looking. And as a bonus: Not yet long enough for a ponytail (the rescue move of long-haired ladies everywhere). On truly terrible days I can sort of wrangle a headband, kind of.
Maybe I need to buy a hat? A series of hats? A wig? A clue? I’m pretty sure this is 800-odd words about hair that could’ve been spent on something that actually mattered, like… curing cancer or figuring out my favorite flavor of ice cream. You know, important stuff.