it’s just hair

By SOLO

“Are you ready?”.

My hairstylist is a beautiful blonde, rocking intricate ink on her arms. Her name is Allison, and I found her by Googling all things hair, undercuts, and funky dos in Toronto. I am at Textur Studio, after biting the bullet and making an appointment, Pinterest board in hand.

This particular venture started as I was casually scrolling through my bucket list – a favorite pastime of mine, and one particular item caught my attention. A side note – this IS how the next item often manifests itself, it did not seem any different from dozens of other items on your list, and today, it made you go “hmmmm”.

“Shave my head” has been on the bucket list for a while, and I have not really thought about it too much, yet today, as it catches my eye, I have a thought. “It does not say I have to shave my WHOLE head!”. Now, I am excited.

Creative interpretation of my own goals can be fun, fun, fun! And yes, I am all about the loopholes, if need be. As I share my insight with the world of the internetz, some friends are skeptical.

“You are only cheating yourself!”

“Just shave it, and get it over with!”.

“You know what you meant, so pony up! Whole head or bust!”.

Meh. Go to hell.

I have never really seen items on my bucket list as absolute. It’s not a list of sources of suffering for the sake of suffering. It has not been notarized and finalized by a lawyer. It breathes and evolves.

As someone who has never been experimental with my hair, I am now excited. What can I do with this? Ohhhh – the possibilities are endless.

“Umm…”, I look up at Allison, and pat the sofa beside me. “Grab a seat, I have a bit of a monologue”. She smiles, intrigued, and obliges. I pull up my blog, and tell her about the bucket list, and how I made the realization that “shave my head” goal had some play room, and that’s where she, Allison, was going to come in.

Laughing, she agrees. The guidelines we settle on: 1. There will be shaving of head, and 2. It will be a significant amount of hair.

Symmetrical undercut? Or asymmetrical? We settle on the former, as it is more versatile, and a little less of a pain in the ass as it grows out.

“Have you ever had a client whose hair never grew back?”, I ask Allison, only half joking. She laughs again, and shakes her head.

I put away my laptop, settle in, and, after the mandatory set of “before” pictures, Allison gets out the razor. The receptionist is filming the momentous occasion. “Bzzzzzzzzz!”, goes the razor, and a huge chunk of hair falls to the ground. I touch the back of my head and squeal.

The buzzing sound continues, and I feel cool air on my neck. I angle my neck and glance down – holy shit, that’s a lot of hair.

After the basic buzz, Allison moves on to shorter setting on the razor. I gave her a go-ahead to shave out a design, and lines and angles start appearing on the back of my exposed skull.

Meanwhile, she wants to know all about my bucket list. What else have I checked off this year? What is still on the list?

I tell her about the powerlifting competition a week ago, and my speaking gig earlier this year, as well as about some of my past races that started out as items on my bucket list.

“You know”, she shares, “I’ve always wanted to shave my entire head!”. She is sporting a short do, and I almost exclaim: “But it’s already so short, what’s the big deal!”, when I stop myself.

It’s all relative. It’s all relative. It’s all relative. I have been paralyzed by having to choose between mustard and ketchup before.

If you are thinking, “It’s just hair!”, you are missing the point. Of course, it’s just hair. It does not hurt. It is all temporary. It grows back. Yet… this applies to everything. It’s just gym. It’s just eating healthy. It’s just a tattoo.

Nothing is a big deal, if it is not a big deal. To you.

Yours truly has jumped over fire, ran through electricity, and crawled under barbed wire, only to be stopped in her tracks by a narrow tunnel through a couple of hay stacks. Because, claustrophobia. Friends I was running with did not realize I fell behind at first, and when they did, they were shocked to find me bent over, breathing hard, trying to will myself to crawl through the tunnel, and at the same time convince myself that I was not going to die. Was I?

One of the unexpected side effects of sharing my bucket list with the world was that once people saw it, they were blown away by some of the items on my list. I received messages from 12-year old girls, and 60-year old men, pleasantly surprised that they have already done something on my list. “I can totally teach you how to do a flip turn!”, my friend’s daughter claims. She is in grade seven, and a swimmer. “It’s easy!”.

“Yes”, I think to myself. “Easy for you, maybe. I float about as well as a pack of nails”. There is something empowering in realizing that what you have considered easy, what you take for granted, is, in fact, someone’s goal, someone’s fear.

So…. HOLY SHIT, GUYS, I GOT (HALF OF) MY HEAD SHAVED. You better fucking believe I am crossing this off my bucket list.

Hugs,
SOLO

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Posted December 29, 2016

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