I think I’m finally going bald – good week everyone. I know some people will be wondering why it’s just hit me like an epiphany but I usually don’t believe things people say until I see it myself. Anyway dat na anoda tory. This reality was brutally brought to the fore when I slapped at a mosquito that was just as brutally sipping at a bloody mary off of the top of my head. Off of the top of my head I repeat in emphasis, because to my rude dismay I realised that my large (hee hee!) palm covered both “land” and the “sea” with the shoreline dividing both combatants somewhere in its middle on top of my head! My forehead grows bigger by the, day?. How to combat this desertification process I don’t know. Plant trees? Reduce my aggressive testosterone levels? God forbid! I already told my God I want to keep blazing my guns till I’m past ninety. So what then does this mean?
I had my first hint of the impending – I refuse to use the word so feel free to fill the blanks – when I did a project where my character played a recording of himself that was done twenty years earlier. The make up artist, to achieve a much younger look, simply brought my hairline closer to my eyebrows by an inch and a half, I think. Then she did a most ingenious thing. Instead of my characteristic “W” shaped hairline, she made it a straight horizontal line – the adhesive being petroleum jelly to hold down the tufts of hair to my scalp. The result was astounding. I thought I was twenty one looking at myself in the mirror! Everyone exclaimed how young I looked so much it became a little uncomfortable. I took solace in the fact that I had a more mature and austere look and my encroaching ba------ was merely an intellectual high forehead.
All this aside, a much bigger challenge looms in front of me now. I have always had issues with my hair from when I was young, mostly to do with my father when he was alive. I cried and begged him to let me grow my hair long to be like the afro styles of the then Kool and the Gang or Earth Wind and Fire. I was refused. I was not allowed the Shalamar or the “BJ”, the Brothers’ Johnson hairstyles either. Matter of fact my father could not for the life of him see what the barber could do for me that he couldn’t except take his hard earned money or keep me from my books thirty full minutes longer than necessary. I was subjected to preliminarily having my hair combed, accompanied by my howls of pain – I hated to comb my hair; it was always getting matted especially the one at the nape of my neck. Oh God it hurt! Then he would begin shearing – the best word I can use for it; he preferred scissors, holding my little head in the vice like grip of his strong hands, tears welling up in my eyes as I thought of my brothers enjoying the Muppet show that I couldn’t even crane my neck to watch. You can imagine my surprise when in the nineties, when it was the ‘skin’ cut that was in vogue, a concerned father called me to his study to ask me why I felt the need to cut off all my wonderful hair I was blessed with and go about looking like a convict headed for the gallows. I should grow some hair so I wouldn’t be mistaken for a thief when I went to the market was my admonition.
Facing me now as I sit here typing are all the things I have longed to do but haven’t been able to till date. I haven’t grown dreadlocks yet. I wonder what I would look like when I do. I would probably grow a full beard as well and wear long white flowing robes and dark glasses. To complete that revered philosophical look I’d carry some rosary beads on one hand and a hibiscus flower on the other, sniffing and murmuring intermittently as I bob my head to the elementals in the universe. Alas, I have been prevented from this luxury because of the nature of my work where growing dreadlocks with limit my range as an actor. Tattoos I’m still thinking about. Hm, I think I’ll add these two to my hair bucket list before its demise.
Well that’s my missive on my bad hair day. Can’t believe I’m actually whingeing about my hair. Kalu, you have sunk to the lowest depths! Are there toupees for black men I wonder? At least I’ll take comfort in the scientific hypothesis that bald men are typically more virile than their full haired competitors. I’ll take comfort in my intellectual high foreheadedness while it lasts before I proceed to being baldilocks; I know I have a good shape of head. Plus, I get to have it caressed. Those of us fortunate enough to have experienced the loving hands of a good woman caress our bald heads during love making know what I mean. My resolve? To baldly go where others have gone before me. Have a great week everyone!