"Why is your hair so long? The question surprised me coming from my 12-year-old nephew.
First of all, I was surprised he even noticed — 12-year-old boys are not renowned for their powers of observation about things outside their immediate concern. But also, why would he care?
Why do you ask? I responded. His "philosophy" startled me: "Long hair makes you look poor." Poor?! "Or like you don't have time to get it cut or just don't care," he quickly amended.
All my own reasons for having long hair flashed through my mind like a speeding train:
It makes you look younger. It makes me feel younger. I'm a Shakespeare / history fanatic and the heroines and maidens of lore have long hair. I played Juliet. The philosophical lesson of Samson, where hair equals strength. I'm single. My overall distrust of hairdressers who claim superhuman scissor power and you end up looking like a drowned rat… with a shag. Short hair looks too corporate and I'm in the arts.
Aaaaaand, yes, oftentimes there is a money and time issue. I can always think of 12 other things I need to be doing besides sitting at a hair salon (this goes for manicures too. Plus, I hate getting my hair washed!) And Joyce Maynard's haircut* cost $800! So, when I go it's usually Supercuts.
There's another issue though. When you get a proper haircut, as in hairstyle, it then requires upkeep! I have to admit I got a really good cut in the salon on the Oceania Riviera cruise – it looked great after they did (too bad my camera, with pictures of it was stolen right after that).
But aside from taking a cruise every 6 weeks (which would, of course, be lovely), there's no way to keep that up. So there it is, time and money again.
One outing with my nephew was to the Sterling Renaissance Festival in upstate New York (we were both expecting it to be kind of cheesy and were delightfully surprised to find that was not the case at all). While he was especially taken with the tomato booth, where a guy hurls insults at you and you in turn throw tomatoes at his face, it was all I could do not to drag him with me to the braiding booth where they were creating amazing braid patterns in all the girls' hair not to mention woven-in pearls and ribbons. Heaven.
So time, money and a romantic nature – when it comes to hair anyway.
But I have taken his point to heart. Although the irony of a (pre)teen telling an adult to Get a haircut! is not lost on me. And I don't want to end up in a tomato booth.
I'm going to get a haircut, as in hairstyle. Not to cave, mind you, and not short. But its time. It's the grownup thing to do.
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