Monday, January 17, 2011
On baldness and other things out of our control...
While staring at the back of a bald man’s head in line at Albertson’s, I couldn’t help but contemplate how we handle things that are entirely out of our own control. My grandmother swore that her late husband had gone completely bald until she started massaging his head every night, which ultimately led to the return of a full head of hair. I have no way of confirming or denying her story, but always questioned its validity, especially after discovering two years later that she had early stages of dementia. Some men embrace their baldness or hardly notice. Others shave their head, which is a look I particularly prefer to the bald spot and, if I were a balding man, would also opt for. Bald men everywhere should thank their lucky stars, in my opinion, that it’s in style. When I was a kid, my mom had a friend who suffered from a combination of baldness and vanity and could talk about nothing else for months. He finally asked her for advice on the subject and she suggested “painting” himself some hair using liquid eyeliner. It seemed to solve the problem for a few days. Did I mention that I grew up in Seattle where it rains A LOT? Needless to say, there are reasons why that trend never caught on. Personally, my favorite look is the “sweepover.” It’s as if nobody will ever guess that a man is balding if he parts his hair just above his ear and brushes it all the way over to the other side.
All this to say we all experience things out of our control and the different ways we handle them is a psychology all its own. When I decided to dissect mine, it led to how I deal with the business of getting published. Surely anyone else would have given up by now if they had spent all of their free time writing and still had nothing they could call their own to place in the hands of the readers who would love their stories. In all honesty, my first inclination is to gripe about it to anyone who will listen. I do have to give myself some credit for hanging on this long, though. Fortunately, in my case, my determination outweighs my discouragement and I will continue to see this publication thing through. I guess now would be a good time to sign off, write something of significance, and perhaps also find someone to massage my head just in case.