The Jasper Chronicles

The Journal of a Cynical Dad

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Just a Little Off The Top

I don't really think of myself as ultra-stylish, a clothes horse, or whatever you want to call it. I avoid leaving the house dressed like a freak, and I wouldn't be caught dead wearing sweatpants in public, but beyond that I'm not overly concerned with how I look. That is, except for my hair.

I don't know why, but I'm extremely conscious about the top 1/16 of my body. Whether it's my hair, a hat, toque, visor or Halloween costume, if it involves the top of my head I obsess over it. Ball caps have to sit at a certain angle. Toques have to allow some bangs to show along the brim. And my hair? There's too much criteria to list here. Put it this way, I can walk out of my house dressed like a sack of shit, but my hair must be coiffed.

Like most obsessions, I think this started in childhood. My parents used to let me walk around all day in the hair I got out of bed with. If you consider that Asian hair is really thick, it usually meant I spent the day with a rooster tail or sideways Mohawk on my head. Around seven years old I started to actually care that I was going to school looking like Tin Tin or Don King.

I'd spend hours in front of the mirror each morning trying to comb my hair down. This lasted until I was about 13, when I somehow discovered I could actually preen my hair while I slept, a habit that's stuck with me to this day. It's an unusual skill, and according to P, one that's even more unusual to watch. I'll be in bed fast asleep but molding my hair at the same time. Of course doing this means I don't sleep as deeply, but I do wake up looking magnificent.

So considering how much hair styles mean to me, you can imagine how I reacted when The Boy started to wake up each morning looking like Christopher Lloyd; it was time to visit my barber. We'd heard horror stories about kids going ballistic in the barber chair, and The Boy is capable of a high level of mayhem. Fortunately he loved the whole hair-cutting process, sat quietly and took it all in.

He may not have a thick head of hair, but at least it's nicely styled.