Thursday, April 23, 2009

Grandma Goes Grey

Actually, I began going grey long before I was a grandmother. It was really annoying, because the best feature of my fine, limp hair was its shine and color. I called it dark brown. My friend insisted it was black. "No, " I said, "I'll tell you who has black hair. It's your sister, Dodie." "That's what I mean, " she replied. "Your hair is black, just like Dodie's." Whatever.

In my thirties, I started using Clairol's shampoo-in haircolor. By my forties, I was having semi-permanent haircolor applied at a salon. By my sixties, I had become so grey I needed a stronger product. The question was: could my baby-fine hair withstand the harsh chemicals? After two or three months and much breakage, I had my answer. My stylist cut it as short as she could for the growing-out phase. As new silver-grey hair came in during the next six or seven months, the remaining color faded from brown to an ugly orange. I was a sight. My sister took one look at me and laughed. "Now you have hair just like Ginger's," she said. Ginger was Barbara's orange-and-white Brittany spaniel.

Meanwhile, at work, our team had enjoyed a small success. We were invited to brief an important agency official on our project, along with teams from eight other offices. I went first. After my 3-minute talk (with slides!) was over, the Big Chief said, "I have to leave the room for a minute. I need everyone to hold their questions until I get back."

When he returned, he forgot all about the questions and went on to the second briefer. Later, I told my team chief that I was a little disappointed about that. "Oh," replied Kurt, "He just wanted to spare your feelings. He knew the question everyone was dying to ask was, 'What the hell have you done with your hair?' "


Xanadu said...

Too funny. Well, now , anyway even though not at the time. I went grey in my mid to late thirties. I mean completely white. Brittany spaniel, huh? Should I say, "Here, Girl" when I address you? LOL!!! Great story. Hugs.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

This is a great story. You're on a roll with humorous episodes from your life.

happypitbull said...

My aunt dyed her hair red for decades. I grew up thinking it was her natural color. We lived halfway across the country so I rarely saw her. Boy was I in for a shock when we came to visit one year and her hair was totally grey! I'm sure it had been grey for years, but since I had just seen her a year ago as a redhead, it was as if my aunt had abruptly transformed into a senior citizen! Your story gave me some laughs and some memories. :)

PseudoPiskie said...

I was blond all thru high school. Mom thought it would bring me out of my shell. At 68 I have very few grey hairs - no husband, no kids. My hair is basically a darkish mouse brown with reddish highlights from the iron algae in my well. My high school classmates don't recognize me. lol

Cheryl said...

This was great. So, we're practically neighbors. Do you know Happyone from Life Is Good? She's in the process of letting her hair grow out. It's never an easy experience. She's a local too.

Thanks for stopping by!