Open Letter to the Person
Who Told My Mother
Her Hair Looked Good This Way
By Lockie Hunter
Perhaps you could not anticipate that she would take your words with
such gravity that her hairstyle would remain unchanged through Kennedys
untimely death, the tumultuous years of LBJ, the Nixon scandal, the
lost years of Ford, the Reagan administration, the Clinton years, and
now well into the Bushes' dynasty? Were you just being polite?
I ask you, honestly, was this hairstyle ever in fashion? I cannot
identify an era when it would have been leading edge. It is not Mod.
It is neither hep nor hip. It is neither punk nor conservative. It defies
gravity and fingerprinting. Many have tried to characterize it and have
become lost. When mother moves to a new city and is fated to seek a
new stylist, she often asks that I a woman teeming with words
tackle the job of describing her doo. I meekly cast
it as a sort of a modified bob with a large clump teased onto the top
Westminster show-poodle fashion the crowning touch of
which is a large cone of swirled hair that resembles cotton candy. So
much does this crown resemble cotton candy, that it is reported
that as a child I used to reach greedily for it and say candy.
Then the other adults would laugh with such force... And you. I hope
Did you say something like, This is your signature style?
or Dont ever change, even when countless hairdressers, friends
and family advise you to change? I noodle over your exact words.
Frankly, it keeps me up at night. I mean, what were you thinking? Was
it an act of derring-do? Perhaps you were a little drunk that day? You
had a highball for lunch?
Although I concede her hairstyle does add at least a foot to her stature,
and being petite, she appreciates this. Every time we discuss her height,
we add, And with hair, why, she is at least five feet three inches
tall." Were you entered into some sort of cosmetological hair height
Did you tell her that this style was lovely, simply lovely;
why, youre as pretty as a picture, as some sort of dare?
Perhaps you were being sarcastic? This last scenario seems the most
likely. You were being sarcastic in your compliment, and
mother, being the unpresumptuous lady that she is, why, she simply misunderstood.
That compliment was an act of pure evil. Well, I just hope
you are pleased.
The good folks at BigHairDooCorp, owner of the Aquanet Hairspray brand,
send mother a Christmas card each year, as she is the second largest
buyer in the upper peninsula. Sadly, mother may be personally responsible
for well over 1/32 of the ozone depletion in her home state. Some estimates
hold the figure at a full 1/16 percent. And, by association, you are
responsible, as well. Do you read the memorandums of the polar caps
melting? There are entire islands that are at risk of being swallowed
whole by the expanding ocean. You are basically at fault. I hope you