It's Oscars time. Somebody wake the Grouch.

Monday, July 18, 2011

What's with the Hair?

Hair is weird stuff. It grows out of our head in various colors and thickness. It can be curly, wavy, or straight as a hypotenuse. It grows all over our bodies, but mostly on our heads, faces, underarms, and (ahem) nether regions.

Unmanaged, hair is pretty wild stuff. My own salt and pepper mane has a life of its own, especially in the humid conditions of summer. Whenever I'm asked by a hairstylist or barber if I want gel in my hair, I just run my hand through it and watch their eyes gape as it stands up on it's own like a field of parched cornstalks. If I let it grow out and walk outside after a summer rainstorm, I've got the Joker's hairstyle inside five minutes (circa the Cesar Romero era).

So, hairstyles are important, and they can make you look good or call into question your powers of judgment and sanity. Consider the following hairstyles and the central question they raise: Why?

  • Mohawk - Based on the traditional style of the eponymous Native American tribe, once it spoke to tradition and adventerousness. Today, it cries out, "Electric razor accident."
  • The Fauxhawk - This style, which incorporates the high middle of the Mohawk with the relatively conservative arrangement of hair elsewhere, is the stylistic equivalent of a suburban banker who spends the weekend dressed in leather and tooling around on his immaculatedly-financed Harley. 
  • Bob - This hairstyle became popular with women in the 1920's and got it's name from the fact that it made ladies look like guys named Robert.
  • Combover - This hairstyle says, "I'm bald but I think you're too stupid to notice." Sorry, we're not.
  • Mullet - This hairstyle was obviously created by someone who cuts their own hair. "I've got the front and sides done, but I can't reach the back.  Oh, well, screw it."
  • Ducktail - Presumably named for looking like the unkempt posterior of a mallard, this hairstyle is accomplished through the application of massive amounts of petroleum products. A great style for spelunking, as you can trim a bit off the top and create a handy torch.
  • Rat-tail - Continuing the animal-themed hairstyles, this one would have been more accurately named the Squirrel-tail, given that actual rat tails are balder than Vin Diesel.
  • Dreadlocks - The urban legend is that dreadlocks are achieved by not washing your hair. In reality, they are achieved by weaving shag rugs into your scalp.
  • Beehive - What is the attraction of wearing the hairstyle most likely to attract stinging insects? Next in vogue: The "Spider's Nest."
  • Jheri Curl - A style that resulted in a pile of luxurious, curly locks, the kind of which look fabulous on a woman. Unfortunately, the style was mainly worn by men, on whom it looked like a cheap wig.
  • Moptop - The style made famous by the Beatles, this got its name for looking like, well, a mop. This explains those movie scenes where lonely girls danced with mops. Actually, no, nothing explains those scenes.

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