2010.10.27 Too tired to color my hair or write a column

Written by David Green.

By COLLEEN LEDDY

I went to bed last night hoping I’d awaken in the morning divinely inspired with a column idea. But, since “last night” is merely a euphemism for 4:45 a.m., I knew I couldn’t expect much...especially since “morning” is just a another word for “hell on earth.” Needless to say, there was no divine intervention last night. So, here’s a repeat column from July 24, 2002.

You know how it is when you buy a vehicle and suddenly you notice that particular make and model and color everywhere, when, before your purchase, you were serenely oblivious to the existence of tan Chevy Venture vans? Seriously, they are everywhere.

After we bought ours, I noticed what appeared to be the same used vehicle for sale from our dealer. He’s forgotten to take our van out, I thought, while proofreading his ad. Since we purchased this item, I don’t know how many times in parking lots I’ve thought I’d located my vehicle only to discover I’m mistaken.

I’ve noticed this phenomenon happening in another arena: the top of my head. Well, not so much my head but other heads with hair my color.

As my hair has gotten way more gray than its original dark brown and I’ve fairly firmly decided that I’ll not be dyeing it any time soon, I’m always noticing women in the neighborhood of my age (44) with gray hair.

My observation skills aren’t exactly the greatest, but from what I’ve noticed, women seem to hit a certain age, and they cut their hair short and style it in basically the same manner, sort of a mannish above the ears hairdo, with wavy curls here, volume up there, and other stylistic differences, but mostly, it’s hair arranged on top of the head and not much below the ears.

There’s not a great deal of gray hair variety among women in the 40 to 50 age bracket in Morenci—many more women seem to color their hair. But at the Ann Arbor Art Fairs on Friday, I was astounded by the number of women with gray hair and the diversity of the women and the styles. It didn’t seem to be former dyed-in-the-wool hippie women who weren’t about to do something so unnatural as dye their hair. I saw quite a few gray-haired professional-looking women with classy manicured cuts. There were some throwbacks to the 70s, of course, (this was Ann Arbor) but, mostly, it was women who seemed to accept the color and styled and cut their hair no differently than if it were brown or red or blonde. And just like my tan mini-van, their hair was popping out all over the place. Styles, lengths, shades, textures: the assortment was fascinating.

My mother turned gray very early; I remember her speaking of a swath of white hair she had at the front of her head at 17. She dyed her hair almost to the day she died, black through her 50s and then blonde in her later years. Remembering all the work it took to color her hair and all the visits to the beauty parlor, the roots growing in so quickly, the stench, the expense, I was never interested in getting started.

At heart, it’s another one of those things I don’t do because I’m basically lazy when it comes to grooming. Applying make-up every Wednesday to transform myself into Gina the Gypsy for the summer reading program at the library takes me at least 20 minutes and it’s a pretty horrendous make-up job at that. I can’t imagine spending that amount of time every day when I could be sleeping. The idea of having to color my hair on a regular basis ranks right up there with shaving legs (a beauty regimen I bend to on special occasions but one that seems essentially pointless).

I could change. It helps that I don’t look at myself very often, and that, in my feeble head, I feel pretty darn young. I don’t see myself enough to have it sink in that I look washed up and faded. (There’s a reason God makes our eyesight fail as we age.) Some very nice women say they like my gray hair and wouldn’t dye theirs if they knew it would come in like mine.

And then there was the young woman who did my mammogram. Making idle chat, she said she really liked my hair. I looked at her quizzically.

“My hair?” (Or maybe it was, “My hair?”)

“Yeah,” she said. “I really like the way the color came in.”

“Or the way it went out,” I joked.

Because when the age issue is barreling down on you, what else can you do but laugh?

Heck, I’m just happy I can still tell the difference between gray-haired women and tan mini-vans.

  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.
  • Front.splash
    Water Fun—Carter Seitz and Colson Walter take a fast trip along a plastic sliding strip while water from a sprinkler provides the lubrication. The boys took a break from tie-dyeing last week at Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program to cool off in the water.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.drum
    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
  • Front.art.park
    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks

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