I dyed my hair electric blue for the second time in life. The first time I did it I was 19, and this time I am 35. The first time I did it to be different, or maybe I did it to fit in. I worked at a record shop where everybody was a little different, but all in the same way — a weird hair color, a piercing, a tattoo, a cigarette in hand, a band. I had all of the above, well except for a band. I have zero musical talent, possibly negative musical talent. Actually, I tried to teach myself ukelele this past summer, most likely for the same reasons I’ve dyed my hair blue. And I have no idea what those reasons are, but that’s why I’m writing this, and maybe we’ll both find out at the end of this thing.
The first time I dyed my hair, I did it to say look at me, here I am. Now I see myself in the mirror and say, a-ha, there I am. It’s a slight, barely-perceptible change in perspective: back then I was “here.” These days I’m just “there.” Here I am was an announcement of existing. There I am is simply a fact of such.
(Also, dear God, please don’t look at me. I’m a withered, quasimodo-like, shadowy figure. My kid was awake at 2am. And 3am. And 5am.)
Back then I did it impulsively. I woke up that morning whatever morning, well most likely it was late-afternoon, and decided I’d dye my hair. This time I did it as an idea, one of my many ideas that I carry around for months, years.
I should eat a hamburger and blog about it. (I haven’t eaten meat in twenty years.) I should buy a statue of a pirate. I should start a stamp collection. I should buy a summer house and rent it out to pay for it. I should learn how to brew beer. I should 1) buy a skateboard, 2) learn how to skateboard, and 3) skateboard down the boardwalk at Ocean City wearing a shirt saying Skateboarding is Not a Crime. I should build a computer. I should build an arcade cabinet. I should build a Tiki Hut Thing Barge on my deck, totally half-ass it, and watch it fall apart under the 30″ of snow we got last week. I should learn to play ukelele. I should dye my hair blue.
Maybe it’s part mid-life crisis. (Even though I’m not having one, and honestly, I’d rather buy a Porsche if I was going that route.) Maybe it’s boredom. Gotta be a little boredom mixed in. I spend 33% of my free time watching Daniel Tiger’s Neigborhood with the kid. Maybe it’s just a new way of looking in the mirror.
– Eyes, two
– Lips, nose, et al.
– All original teeth, except for one, lost in a biking accident. Actually it was more like a dirty street race. Okay, it was really a bicycling race when I was nine, but the other kid played it dirty for real.
– Three inch streak of a scar, barely missed the eye — bar fight. (Yeah right, Pizza, we know it was your toddler with his Freddy Krueger nails clawing your face like some kind of crazed rabid cat because you turned Daniel Tiger off.)
– Blue hair. Heh. Why the hell did I do this.
Impulses become ideas. Here becomes there. Winter becomes spring, I hope because I hate this cold weather. Blue becomes washed-out green. I should buy a flannel coat and look like 1994. There. I’ve figured it out. If anyone asks, this was my end goal all along. The dream of the 90s is alive.