Thursday, June 15, 2006

Hair

There's something about the climate here that induces Texans to have big hair. I first started noticing this phenomenon while at church the other day. There are a LOT of people at my church with really big, takes-three-cans-of-Aqua-Net-to-hold-it-in-place hair. And it isn't just the women; there are plenty of men walking around looking like they have some sort of foreign creature perched on their heads!

So I wondered - is big hair their defense against the sun? Is this some sort of example of evolution at work in humans? Because I've noticed that the higher the temperature, the bigger the hair. What sort of protection does this offer? Does extending the hair as straight as possible out from the scalp prevent any sort of body-heat build up there which could cause discomfort? It's possible, as I remember my mom always telling me that people lose most of their body heat in winter from an uncovered head.

Or is the bouffant an attempt to create as much shade as possible for the rest of the body? It doesn't rain here very much, so a lot of the trees here are short and squat. Maybe Texans feel the trees aren't tall enough to provide them enough shade, so they must create their own mobile shade units.

Or perhaps they, like Chicken Little, really do believe the sky is falling. Perhaps the humongous hairstyles are to provide padding in the event a big ol' chunk of sky should fall to the earth and strike an unsuspecting Texan.

You would think, though, that they would reason - the less hair, the less heat. But NO! Down here, hair is a symbol of one's femininity, one's womanness. I cut my hair really short once I got back from Ann's wedding, because it was so darn hot. One of our technicians at work, Pablo, walked in and acted like someone had just shot him when he saw how short I cut my hair. "What?" I asked, a bit defensively. He merely pointed to my head. "Yes, I cut my hair." He just shook his head sadly. Seems he's now half-way convinced I must be, well, I'm sure you can guess. I'm just not a woman anymore in his eyes. LOL

Meanwhile, while I'm as comfortable as I can possibly make myself in this blistering Hell called San Antonio, I find myself confronted everyday, everywhere, with the image of what natives around here think of as "womanhood." Apparently, it looks a lot like Marge Simpson.

11 comments:

Suze said...

maybe it's so they can feel taller. you know how everything's bigger in tex-ass...

annalu alulu said...

Where are the pictures?

Jenn Hacker said...

LOL, Suze!

And Ann, I don't have any pictures, yet, but I'm planning on getting a digital camera eventually. Then I'll take lots of pictures and post them!

Becca said...

Just remember that you're in Texas, so it definitely ain't evolution.

Maybe it's like in chemistry class, when you place the end of a very fine pipette into liquid, and the surface tension draws the liquid up the stem, seemingly against gravity--maybe they use their hair as pipettes to draw the sweat?

Jenn Hacker said...

Ewwwwwwwwww! Just what I want to think about - the odor (not to mention the yucky consistency) of sweat mixed with Aqua-Net. To quote a character on one of Jamie's favorite TV shows/books (they were books first):

"Vomitrocious" - Muffy Crosswire, the Arthur series of books by Marc Brown (any relation, Lydia?) and also seen on PBS

Tooz said...

I think it is very relevant that you are seeing the big-hair in church. My girls were always told by their mama that the bigger the hair, the closer the woman felt to God. Dang, some of them penticostals must be a knockin on the Pearly Gates!

annalu alulu said...

i've heard those called PHD's, now that i think about it (pentacostal hair do's.)

Lydia said...

I'm really confused. I thought I had posted about big hair here. I recall writing a huge paragraph about it. Well, here are my thoughts. As a survivor/victim of big hair, I would think humidity had a big deal to do with Texans reasons for wearing big hair. Unless it is really dry down there, and then that just blows my idea out the window. But seriously, I recall days where my hair would be MEGA huge in the morning, but by midday it would be down to normal big hair size do to humidity. SO, I'm guessing that these peeps want their hair to look good in the afternoon, so they fix it huge in the moring. Could that be possible?

Jenn Hacker said...

Lydia, I think they are believing their own hype that "Bigger is better" - but I've got news for them, "bigger is only - well, bigger"

Tooz said...

There is a character in the Tamar Myers novel I'm reading now who has a beehive hairdo. According to the author, it probably hasn't been touched by human hands in years--people are afraid what would happen if it were to fall.

Suze said...

OR, maybe they're really keeping bees in there. that'd be sweet. (he he)