I've just caught the end of an advert on telle about hair loss and how it can be slowed or even stopped by some product or other..........can't remember what it was as I tend to zone out adverts.
The point was that the video featured a guy attempting the rings apparatus in gymnastics and being unable to hold on or do the crucifix move because, as we can see, he's got a little hair loss at the back of his head ! Then we hear the voice over about this product and of course 'some weeks later' we see the guy with a full Russell Brand head of hair managing the same discipline with ease.
So any budding but balding gymnasts out there training for Rio 2016, I shouldn't bother. And that goes for you men too !
But it got me thinking about hair, or the lack of it. I first noticed a small bald spot when I was in my teens at college but as it belonged to the Science lecturer, I wasn't fussed about it. I was fused, very fussed, when my own spot arrived, seemingly overnight, when I was in my early 30's. I remember the flat I was in at the time which helps to tie down the year and for some reason I was using a small hand mirror to check the back of my head.
No idea why I'd have done such a thing so maybe some kind friend had told me I'd got a bald spot and I thought I'd better check it myself. Friends are always the first to know and take great delight and passing on this information. Bastards !
In those early days I could use a black felt tip pen to basically paint my hairless scalp as it was only the size of a penny. As the years went on and most of my salary was going on felt tip pens, I realised I had to just let nature take its course - or go broke. It also didn't help that my hair was light brown so my attempts at covering up its loss was making me look like a Jew with a dodgy kippah.
(I tried to work in a phrase about being done up like a kippah......but it didn't work.....so I'm not going to mention it)
It didn't seem to take long for my head to be more scalp than hair although it was probably a decade or so. It all went off the top but in a bizarre act of cruelty, it didn't go from the front. As the years passed, my hair loss took on the appearance of the movements of the continents back in the day. As the hair receded, more scalp appeared but, still using the continental drift analogy, a small island of hair remained at the front.
But although not exactly embracing my advancing baldness, I accepted it. No over-the-counter treatments, scalp massages or follicle implants for me. We even learned to live with my island, my hairdresser and I. It was regularly trimmed, teased and sprayed but it stood no chance against Father Time and genetics. When it became more of an atoll than an island, I plucked up the courage to consign it to history completely and shaved it off. Annoyingly I have to shave it off every couple of days as it rises like a stubbly reverse Atlantis and I'm not having it. Oh no, it had its chance in the 80's and it blew it.
So these days I have my side hair and the rest is gloriously bald. No comb overs or wigs for this man. And it's great. I keep what's left very short so I can cut it myself every couple of months. This might have been a confidence killer back in the swinging 60's when Russell Brand style hair was all the rage but for some time now, anything goes when it comes to hair, led by follicly challenged celebs like Bruce Willis and Sean Connery.
It's like being able to order a soft drink in a pub without being laughed at.
I don't have morning hair. I don't need to wash it every day. It never needs a comb. Win, win, win. I often go out on a windy day and laugh at the elements. Ha ! I say in a proud and confident voice as I watch others flicking long strands of hair from their faces. I don't come out of a swimming pool or open sea looking like a drowned rat. It's all very liberating !
As an aside, my profile pic on here is a bit out of date as it shows my island when it was still 'active'. The beard has also gone so I'll update it asap.
So back to that advert which started me on this train of thought. I'm bummed my aspirations may have been dashed for a gold medal in the rings at Rio but the upside is that I won't have to hang around doing that training any more !