Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Gentlemen prefer redheads

posted Tue, 05 Oct 2004

I am almost a redhead. My time as a blonde has come to an end. Has been coming to an end for a long time, ever since I stopped spending my summers in the sun at the pool, which would be my first summer after college, when I had to work indoors instead of as a lifeguard and a swim teacher.

Boy, was that a shock. Not that teaching swimming and lifeguarding for minimum wage (I think $4.25 at the time) was so great – we had to clean the bathrooms at one pool (and one summer, a bunch of boys thought it was really funny to poop on the floors instead of in the toilets). In class, kids threw up on me regularly (even though I would beg the moms not to give the kids lunch before class – nothing like macaroni and cheese, spinach and red kool-aide to give the pool that special something). But I always had a great tan – this was when tans were in style – and my hair was white blonde from the sun and the chlorine.

Then I had to get a real job. I had to work indoors, so there went the blonde hair. I thought I would at least be getting real money, but then I got the second shock. When I had been told my starting salary, I had divided it by 26 to get the amount that would appear in my bi-weekly paycheck.

Ha!!! I opened the first check and thought they had made a mistake. They had paid me for only one week, not two.

But no – upon further study, I realized that all my money had gone for various deductions. Taxes. Money was being taken from me against my will. In some places, this is called theft. For most people, it is enough to make them reconsider their positions on just what the government should fund.

But enough of that. Back to my hair.

Geri – my hair consultant – and I decided I needed a change. She had given me some blonde highlights a year ago, and then had worked in some reddish tones this spring. “Just for warmth,” she assured me.

Jenny dyed her hair red a few years ago. It looked great. She and I have the same coloring. I started to think. Perhaps I needed to reinvent myself. Hair color change or plastic surgery? Easy choice. Hair grows out.

So I took the plunge. I look fabulous, if I do say so myself. It’s not all red. It’s just red highlights – lowlights? – strands? – whatever – chunks of red mixed in to keep the mousy from looking mousy. And, as Geri pointed out, the grey is still there, keeping it real. That’s me – authentic to the last strand.

The other good news is that Geri has another client who has been taking topamax, the migraine drug, since January. She has lost 30 pounds. Thirty pounds. I am so excited. I have never gotten the good side effects drug before. I have only been taking it for a day. I haven’t lost any weight yet, but I am not going to lose faith yet. I only want about 20 pounds’ worth. That’s still about five months, though. I’m not that patient. I wonder what else I can take.

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