There are a lot of reasons NOT to keep up with this blog, I think: primarily I am afraid as I stay at home, relatively isolated from people, I might tend toward introspection and self pity. I don’t want to be that, or to have that persona for anyone else. The real challenge will be, can I create fun and interest out of the stuff of my own life which is, by necessity, pretty dull at the moment?

Take today, for instance. How important is it to anyone but me that I finally washed my hair after 8 days? But that was the highlight of my day…or at least one of the events that consumed lots of time and energy and left me exhausted and in desperate need of chocolate and a nap (in that order).

What would happen, I questioned myself, if I just cut off the hair on my head to about an inch in length, and let it spike up all over? Then I could just rub some of that powdered shampoo on it and brush it out. Or, once I am healed enough that I can take a shower without Saran Wrap over 30% of my body, I could just rinse my hair out when I bathed. Forget the long hair and the color: I’ll just compensate for no-care hair with some large, preposterous earrings and be an outrageous old lady. I can even wear purple dresses, and red hats with the earrings.

What really captured my attention in this whole internal dialog was the question of what our ancestors did about hair. Remember, the world didn’t know ‘shampoo’ until the 1920’s, Also, water had to be heated on a stove and the only washing additive was common soap, complete with the fats and oils that it contained. You couldn’t rinse the soap out easily, and after being washed this way hair was usually dull and unattractive.

So, at the turn of the century women wore hats and/or wigs, washed their hair with plain water if they washed it at all, and took to hairstyles with braids and chignons. They brushed hair a lot, too—a way of keeping it cleaner and less tangled.

The conclusion of all of this introspection was my re-affirmation that simple is best: once I finally get ‘hip replacement’ checked off my ‘Things to Do in Retirement ‘list (that was Project Number One) and move on to Project Number Two, I vowed to keep this whole hair care thing as simple as possible for the rest of my life—no perms, plumps, or peroxide for this woman! Just look for the person in purple with the gilt cane and the dangly earrings. See her? She’s the one over there on the street corner with her open instrument case and the hurdy gurdy. Sometimes when she’s not playing music, she writes a blog. You can find it at





One thought on “

  1. Thinking about what our ancestors did with oily, greasy hair is not nearly as disturbing a thought as the days before anti-perspirant. My grandmother said they used Baking soda a lot. But can you imagine what their clothes smelled like? yucko.

    Don’t worry though – on a dull day, you are a lot more interesting than half the people I encounter!

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