June 20th, 2008

Eric Mass

Loss of Authority

I have a friend on here who very occasionally wears a mohawk. I wish I could get away with that sometimes! How very awesome to have that sort of freedom of expression - challenging others preconceptions. I grew up far too conservative for that type of behavior and it certainly wouldn't gain me much now anwyay.


So drax0r and I are sitting outside on a bench discussing this - I wore my hair down yesterday (which my wife hates, thus prompting her to suggest it was time for a haircut) and I was mentioning to a man who grows his thick hair and beard out every three months then shaves his entire face bald; repeat - that having long hair gave you more options. I told him that since I couldn't justify a mohawk, and that you can do more with hair than just a ponytail, that I would walk in here wearing pigtails today!

"I'd like to see that." He said.

It was time for me to put the kids down last night and my neck was hot from my hair, so I went to pull it back and thought I'd try it out. Let me tell you, I had no idea how retarded it was going to make me look. I mean, jaw-dropping OMGZ! And really - I've not seen pigtails on man or woman, gay or straight, ever. In fact, I've not seen pigtails on anyone over the age of nine, and now I know why! And I don't mind telling you this: I wanted to beat the shit out of me and I'm not a violent person!

Regardless, I retire to the North Wing of the house to put the children down.

They couldn't stop staring. My daughter specifically was quite vocal about her disdain. So we got the camera out so the children could photograph me. When they were done, they wanted me to take a picture of them. They stood next to each other and smiled for a pose. I brought the camera up to my face and my son throws out gangsign. I lower the camera. "Son," I begin, "That's not necessary, please don't do that."

"Yes sir." He says, and lowers his arms to his side. I bring the view finder to my eye and he throws out some different gangsign. I lower the camera. "Son," I say again, more forcefully, as in my smallish daddy brain, I must've not properly conveyed my intentions to his behavior. "That's dumb, please don't do it. Do you understand?" My son nods his comprehension and places his palms on his thighs, straight armed. I bring the camera up and my son tosses up some gangsign. "GOOD GOD WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU?" I snap. He doesn't know. He cannot discern why he's unable to have his picture taken without acting out. I chose to tell a story:

When your Uncle Kevin was a little boy, he used to dress like a clown, mixing harshly colored plaids with earthtoned argyles and pastel pants with brown saddle shoes. When your Grammie tried to correct him, he would scream and cry until he was allowed to leave the house dressed like a clown. People would snicker, because he looked so silly. Years later, when he was all grown up, we were looking at pictures of ourselves when we were kids your age, and Uncle Kevin found many pictures of himself dressed as a clown, and he got angry at Grammie, asking, "Why would you let me dress like this?" But Grammie told him the truth, that he refused to leave the house any other way, and Uncle Kevin felt foolish, because he wished that he had pictures of himself in which he wasn't dressed like a clown.

When I finished my story I explained to my son that when he was older, and he looked back, he would likely get angry at me and ask me, "Dad, why did you let me throw down gangsign, it makes me look really dumb." And that I was trying now, to prevent this future event from occurring. He nodded his understanding, and as I brought the camera up, he tossed out some gangsign.

My son may be retarded.

Then again, my hair was in pigtails when I was telling the story, which stripped me of any authority I might have had on the matter:

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