Monday, January 13, 2014
I did say I wanted everything to be thinner...
I’m sitting at the dining room table, eating breakfast and reading the news on my phone when my father walks up and stands beside me as if he is about to embrace me around the shoulders. I stay very still lest I wake what I am assuming is a sleep-walking redneck.
The Dad has never been one for demonstrations of emotion; he hugged me about three times that I can remember: when I became a Christian, when my mother died and, well I can't remember the other one; I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt. “Men don’t hug; men shake hands” is the motto of the Thompson men or so I’ve been told on numerous occasions.
So he’s looking down at me and he reaches to place his hand on my head as if he is going to tousle my hair, like on one of those commercials. Like someone who has just become aware of a wild animal in their midst, I am unsure of what to do except remain very still, hold my breath and commence praying. He lifts a few strands of my hair and says, “Boy, you’re hair sure is thinner since you got skinny!”
A Hallmark moment this is not.
But he is correct. For whatever reason, a typical side effect of gastric bypass surgery is hair loss; not in clumps, mind you, but thinning. I have always had very thick hair. It wasn’t something that I liked as it wouldn’t ‘do right’ when I entered the hallowed halls of high school and was desperate for awesome MTV hair. I tried to wrestle those tresses into a semblance of Flock of Seagulls’ bangs but it ended up more like Exploding Nest of Pigeon. Sponsored by AquaNet®, of course. It was just so big and , well, un-pretty, y'all. And that was long before those TLC girls had that song that was so good in that Glee mash-up with that other song the sister thought about singing in ‘Dirty Dancing’ but then didn’t. Exactly three of you know what I’m talking about; please help the others.
However, my hair is not thinning like other men my age,. It's still ample enough to cover my head in all it's pumpkin-esque glory. I don't think I'm going to be bald; however, truth be told, my mother’s father was careening towards a bald spot when he died in his mid-50s. I’ve been told that bald traits come from the mother’s side of the family. Everything else on my body is from my Dad’s side: weird feet, short legs, no butt and a complexion the same shade of pink as a canned ham. Yay me.
Of course, as I have mentioned, my father has been follicly-blessed similar to such Hair Hall of Famers as Johnny Cash, Conway Twitty and Slim Whitman. His hair used to be orange, then faded to a deep red and now is the same boring brown as mine; he calls it chicken doody. Well, actually my Mother used to call it that. My father’s salty tongue referred to it as something that I’ll leave to the ages. It’s for your own protection, people.
The Dad then proceeded to take his hat off and combs his fingers through his hair and says, “You need to have you a real haircut like mine.”
I replied, “They’ve outlawed bear grease, Dan Tucker, but thanks for the tip.” However, I will say that the hair products these days have gotten to be a bit much. During high school when I was growing more out than up, and attempting to grow out my bangs, we had things like hair spray or mousse or gel. That was it. You had either AquaNet ® or LA Looks ® or Dippity-Doo®. At least that’s what they had a The Wal-Mart. Oh, who am I kidding, I coveted those who go to shop at The Wal-Mart. I had to deal with what they had at Hudson’s Salvage Center, which is where we shopped when I was in high school in Mississippi. You buy your products, take them home and wipe the mud, dirt or smoke damage from the outside of the bottle and you were just like everybody else on the TV. Darn tootin’!
These days I’ve moved onto something called Bumble and Bumble’s Sumotech lo-gloss elastic moulding compound. It sounds like something that would have earned you honorable mention at a science fair. And it’s only $27 for 1.5 ounces. I guess I’m paying for the added ‘u’ in moulding. From what I remember Dippity-Doo® was $1 for a 5 gallon bucket complete with neon purple application trowel. I could be wrong; my memory, like the AquaNet® bubble that surrounded my house, is a bit hazy.
And that is all I’m saying.