Monday, January 19, 2015

To Curl or Not to Curl

On Face Book this morning, Deb, one of the women from Frick Hospital where I worked posted a photograph of her daughter with a permanent. The young girl didn’t look happy and her dad was chiding her. When I made my usual amusing comment, she messaged me and told me the story behind the photo.
Deb said that she had permanents since she was a little girl and thought although that her daughter’s hair was curly, it had more body and looked better with a perm. Her daughter hated it and fussed so, that the daughter’s dad had to step in to settle things.
We messaged back and forth. I shared that my wife Cindy, had baby fine hair and would convince herself that she needed a perm every so often. Her hair wouldn’t hold a perm and the smell lasted longer than the curls. Two days and no more curls, but the odor lasted for a week. Trying to sleep at night downwind from a chemical factory would have been no less toxic. My requests to never ever get another perm, but my pleas fell on deaf ears and about twice per year I would do the husbandly thing and curl up beside her as she slept.

I also shared with her that my dad forced me to get a crew cut twice in my life. One haircut happened when I was very young and didn’t know how ridiculous I looked and the other just before I went to Camp Conestoga Boy Scout Camp. I was older then and managed to cover my embarrassment with a knit stocking cap or my Boy Scout cap.
I was forced to wear a crew cut and it was the shortest of all. On arrival at boot camp for the United States Navy at the Great Lakes Naval Station, my head was shorn as short as the plush on a teddy bear. That is the feeling that I got when I rubbed my hand over my nearly bald pate. I have photos from that ordeal, but they are hidden on the book shelves at my home beneath my high school yearbooks.
Every once in a while, one of my kids will pull the photos out of their hiding place and show them to an unwary visitor just to embarrass me and to entertain the unfortunate guest.

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