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Questions of purple hair perplex, taunt students

By H.G. Miller

H.G. Miller While discussing important political issues with a friend the other day — boy, I almost wrote that with a straight face. Anyway, while a friend and I were maliciously making fun of an instructor, I noticed something.

“Weren´t your eyes blue yesterday?” I asked.

“Yeah,” she replied. “So what?”

“So why are they brown today?”

“Because I´m not wearing my blue contacts.”

“Come to think of it, didn´t your hair used to be light brown?”

“No, it used to be strawberry blond,” she told me. “Then, I dyed it black, and now it´s burnt almond, which is what it was originally.”

I shook my head in stupefaction and looked at the person standing across from me.

“Who are you?” I finally asked.

She seemed confused by the question, so I let it go.

Later, I looked at myself in the mirror.

“Okay, other than any kind of a tan, what can I do to improve these meager features of mine?” I asked.

“You should color your hair purple,” another friend told me.

As any immediate benefits of such a venture failed to present themselves, I asked why.

“Because it would look cool,” my friend said. “Not the whole thing, just a few highlights to help you stand out amongst the masses.”

“You mean all of those people with banana-yellow highlights in their hair?”

“Yeah,” my friend continued. “Nobody´s really done purple yet. Not to the extent that it could be exploited.”

“So,” I said. “Why don't you color your hair purple then?”

“My skin's too tan.”

That sounded logical. With my Casper complexion, adding streaks of brittle, plum-stained hair just seems natural.

If you don´t do something to your hair, the whole social system may collapse in anarchy. Twenty years from now, when premature balding is the big thing, those of us who didn´t chemically alter our scalps will be sorely out of the loop.

Of course, I´m not being fair here. It´s easy to poke fun at those who change their appearances while I´m too scared to alter much of anything about myself. Of course, it´s also my column.

During the course of one of these conversations, a friend inevitably will bring up my beard.

Perhaps you´ve noticed the dark-gray smudges along my chin in the photograph. Those are supposed to be whiskers. Unfortunately, I forgot to compensate for the bleeding of newsprint when posing.

Yes, for a short while, I decided to grow facial hair in an attempt to look my age. You see, I have the face of a 12-year-old boy. Although it may be making millions for Leonardo DiCaprio, the look doesn´t seem to hold the same result for me.

Mostly, though, I just wanted to do something different with myself. Look older, look sinister, I don´t know — just look different. I guess we all get sick of having the same face stare back at us when we brush our teeth in the morning, no matter how handsome.

Let´s face it. Most of us have passed the major changing points in our lives. Eyeglasses have been replaced by contacts. We´re as tall as we´re going to be, and most of us can´t afford to overhaul our wardrobes.

All that´s left is messing with our hair and fiddling with eye color. Add a few earrings, maybe some tattoos, and watch the fun at your next family reunion.

And why not? This is college, right? Pretty soon, we´ll all have to get real jobs and wear suits and specified T-shirts on casual days. I guess I´d rather talk to somebody who doesn´t remember their real hair color instead of people who color-coordinate for the proper business effect.

I don´t think I´ll go for purple, though. Maybe burnt amber would better suit me.

H.G. Miller is a Hutchinson senior in English.



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