Men and hair have always shared a love-hate relationship. Our frequent visits to barber shops during first half of our life suggest that we are more in love with our barber than our hair … until one day when our hair decides to leave us alone. Our whole world comes crashing down. Perspiring profusely, we wake up in the middle of the night from a recurring nightmare, as our blood-curdling shriek reverberates across the neighborhood, “I AM NOT YOUR UNCLE!!!”
Nearly half a century ago, my hair commenced a standard evolution process without much ambiguity as it grew 2 cm from the scalp … but then it took a vicious U-turn. While scrutinizing its inspired trajectory, my folks realized that my hair would be a spectacle, an object of amusement for the entire world for the rest of my life; and they euphemistically pronounced, “He’s got nice curly hair!!”
When you enter a shop and the guy standing in front of you turns back and drops his pepsi can, a kid from the far corner screams “momma!!” and few brave hearts try to capture your photograph from a safe distance, then you might not find yourself in the right frame of mind to associate the term ‘nice’ with these gestures. These can only remind you of a scene beautifully portrayed in the motion picture ‘Jurassic Park’ where the dinosaur entered the city and created panic in the civilized world.
It was evident from the demonstrations of the dinosaur that he did not relish all the attention he got; nor did I (those who have been reading my blog should know by now that I do think like a dinosaur and have an identical philosophy of life). While he went on to address the issue in an aggressive fashion, I opted for a more subdued approach … I decided to straighten my hair (which eventually made it even more conspicuous). When I discussed my mission with my friends, they uttered a popular Hindi aphorism which articulates the characteristics of a dog and its tail. However, I did not want to go down without a fight, I prepared myself to defy nature; and hence a hunt began for that elusive product which would transform my hair into straight, silky, smooth strands that I always longed for (an overwhelming influence of silver screen also played a pivotal role here) and in turn would transform my persona non grata status as well.
Nowadays, there is a plethora of hair care centers that have already established the fact that the sole purpose of your existence is to fulfill the needs of your hair. However, back in those days we didn’t have too many options, especially in small towns like mine. ‘Deluxe Hair Cutting Saloon’ stood tall as the lone warrior amidst all tresses and locks in my neighborhood. Days gone by and we entered the new millennium with new hopes, new dreams and … yup, that’s it. There was a buzz in the air about a ground breaking invention. Contrary to prevailing notion, this product could work wonders, even on the most rebellious type of hair. A handful of establishments in select cities were the proud possessors of this magical merchandise, and hence, I traveled all the way to Bangalore to lay my hands on that piece of gem (got a couple of tubes for a friend of mine as well. Nearly 50% of his hair withstood the litmus test; our fragile bond did not). The results were phenomenal and quite visible; and so were the aftereffects.
Many were seen on the roads with this distinctive hair texture. The consumers of this brand could easily be spotted in the crowd when they walked on the road amidst sympathetic gazes. Those who wore caps or tried to hide the surface area of their heads (with anything other than hair) raised a lot of suspicion amongst the populace. People were broadly classified under two categories – those who used this product and those who didn’t. Homo sapiens never appeared in this form before.
to be continued…………………
in case you are drunk and want to read part 1, then here is the link.