Friday, 29 April 2016

A Not So Hairy Story

© Melissa Gaggiano

    I recently shaved my hair off for the World’s Greatest Shave, a fundraiser for the Leukaemia Foundation. It was an exhilarating experience, meaning I was both excited and completely terrified by what I planned on doing. But I went ahead [‘ahead’ get it? Oh never mind] and lopped the hair right off – a number one shave to be exact.

    It always seemed like a brave thing to have a short haircut. Mostly this was because a fully grown man-child once giggled at the sight of my newly chopped hairdo and told me I looked like Leonardo Dicaprio. I was actually going for the Halle Berry look, circa 2002. Clearly I had not the face to pull off the look.

    Since then, whenever I go for a short cut my one and only question is not ‘does this make my head look fat?’ but ‘does this make me look like Vin Diesel?’ Despite being a part time tomboy, I definitely do not want to be confused with being one. Of course I seriously hope that my hips and boobies are a huge give away to my gender even if my hair, or therefore lack of is not.

    Some surprisingly nice revelations have resulted from shaving my head. I have discovered that I actually do have a nice head for baldness – no lumps, no bumps! And with the exception of one person in the community commenting that I look intimidating, most have had uplifting things to say about it. Nice head shape. I look like Sinead O’Connor [thank you 50% Irish genes].

    One of the fun things about shaving my head for a fundraiser was that it gave me the opportunity to step outside of my comfort zone. In high school I admired a girl for completely shaving off her long curly locks. She looked amazing but I never once in my wildest imaginings ever saw myself doing what she had done. Had I known then what I know now.

    The hairdresser, who kindly donated her time for the World’s Greatest Shave, took off my hair starting with the sides, resulting in my sporting a ten second mohawk. Very rock star! I looked like Bono [again I thank my Irish genes]. I realised later that my hairdresser was allowing me the freedom of panicking and hitting the gigantic red stop button if I couldn’t handle the full lop. After all what woman in her right mind is going to stop the process when they’ve been given a reverse mohawk?

© Melissa Gaggiano

    So, that haircut took place a month ago and my hair has since grown out to a healthy 2 cm helmet. I feel like a half finished illustration of Astroboy, minus the sharp points on the head. I do want long hair again, but as my hair has a ways to go I realise that shaving my head has opened the doors to further potential experimentation. I could peroxide it [I’m thinking Edie Sedgwick or Debbie Harry]. Finally do that pink colour that I’ve wanted to try for so long [Jem and the Holograms anyone?]. I could even have a pink 1920s do. I’m having fun just thinking about the possibilities. From a bald head big things grow.

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