Saturday, November 04, 2006

Hair--Not the Musical

One of the things that affects how I feel on any given day is my hair. Long gone is the glossy brown of youth. It started when I was eighteen, the horror of finding stray grey hairs, and gathered momentum through my twenties. My mother had always messed around with rinses and tints and streaks and touch ups. I wanted no part of that. Only once, in my thirties, did my resolve weaken, when my sister begged "Please let me put a rinse in it, I promise you won't be disappointed!" Since wearing a bag over my head wasn't an option, I stoically walked around for a month thereafter with green hair.

Our first year in Germany we went to Stuttgart's Oktoberfest. Beer was flowing and everyone was having a jolly time when one of the young lieutenants' wives, looking at the OC, brightly inquired if I was his mother in law. She had assumed that our oldest daughter was his wife! The OC was hugely amused, and flattered, and still cackles about it. The young lieutenant's wife scored big with the boss that day, he of the dark haired good looks. She did have the grace to be embarrassed, and of course I gamely went along with the "joke", grrrr, smiling through clenched teeth, while the young lieutenant crept under the table and wept.

So, for me, the cut is everything. When we moved, eleven times, I'd go on haircut watch. When I saw one I liked I'd just ask who did the lovely job. It worked. Most people are happy to share, and I was happy to find a good stylist, without wasting time on the also-rans.

I have this fantasy of, in my dotage, having long hair that I could wind into a bun or an elegant chignon. My grandmother and everyone else's grandmother wore their hair this way when I was a child. But when it gets to a certain length, and the neighbourhood dogs start howling at my approach, it's off to the chopping block and back to the short bob.

I had a haircut this week and I feel wonderful.


meggie said...

Molly, I sat here & laughed hard at your post.
Did you read my post called Warning;This is a rant!
It is my experience with haircuts.

My hair still seems almost brown-haha, is getting streaked with many greys now, & like you, I cant be bothered with the tint nonsense.

Lily said...

I don't think I'd recognize you with long hair! Also I recall an episode where your sis got a hold of it when we were en route to Germany, think it turned out more orange than green that time round.

molly said...

Daughter dear, that is the very episode of which I speak, and it was green,decidedly green. I know. It was on my head. And there was no 'other time round', since that one cured me for all time of messing with Mother Nature.

Pam said...


I've been reading your blog with interest - I found it the other day, I think from Meggie's. I do enjoy the way you write. I too can't be bothered dying my hair; it's still more or less brown and what's the shame in going grey, anyway?

You leave a lot of questions unanswered, I must say. Why did you leave Ireland, for example? Do you still sound Irish? Where are your other children? And so on. However, I'll keep reading.

Becky in FL said...

Isabelle, I know the lady, and yes, she does still sound Irish. It is very charming. I like her for other reasons, too, but the Irishness is definitely in her favor.

Molly, this blog made me start. I had just come out of the bathroom having put the scissors down for the 10th time today. EVERY time my hair gets a certain length I go through the same thought process. Roughly: Haircuts are a foolish waste of money. Why not grow it out? (Combs hair back into nonexistent bun.) Maybe I could mousse it in place until it can be caught in a barrette. Next day: Eieiei can't stand this any longer! (Picks up hair scissors. Puts them down. Repeats several times every hour for the next 3 days.) Fourth day: Runs out to quick-cut place for a butchering. Oh well, it grows fast.

BTW, your hair looks great. Where do you get it cut, huh?

Aunty Evil said...

Molly, first time reading you, and I relate to you from the first post I read! I do colour my hair, I have never gotten over the gorgeous golden hair I had up until a teenager turning a mousy (now grey speckled) nothingness.

I do agree with you about the haircut though. When I am feeling haggard and old, and my face looks like only a paperbag can save it, I head off to the hairdresser, and somehow, my skin glows and firms up, my eyes sparkle and even my triple chins reduce to doubles.

Anonymous said...

One of the things I HATED about being an Army officer was the political crap my wife had to be aware of and involved in. Yech!

That young lieutenant's wife would NOT have "scored big" with this boss. If the mistake was excusable, the response was not.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry if you took that as a criticism of your husband. It was most definitely not intended, though in hindsight I can see that my comment was worded so that it would have been written that way. My reaction was to the LT's wife. Exaggeration I usually recognize when I trip over it, but you hit a nerve that is still raw after ten years of civilian life.

I guess what I found so frustrating was that MDW had to suffer through the political nastiness while I had to pretend it didn't exist. My view is, I am certain, also colored by the fact that my wife was also on the junior end of the nastiness.

I am glad your husband was the boss that he was - it is a rare command couple that are as good as you and he must have been.

My float said...

This made me howl with laughter. I am convinced that dyeing one's hair simply kills off all the existing colour cells, so you end up with more grey than when you started!
I too would love a long long plait down my back when I'm a grandmother. (Although I'd hate it if the darn grandkids yanked it!)

PS. Found you on Aunty Evil's blog.