Sunday, January 17, 2010

Hey, Who Cut Your Hair?

I laughed my ass off the first time I heard Cheech & Chong do this routine. (I was 14).

I remember me and my friends would channel Cheech & Chong whenever we saw someone who just got a haircut. We would just bag on (that was our word for making fun of someone) the poor dude who got a haircut. Of course, the worst was, "hey, who cut your hair. Your old lady? Your Mom?" (I think a few blows came out of that one, once or twice). And this was the '70's, so there was no such thing as PC, no PDA's, security checks and all the things school kids face today. It was merciless, unabashed, "your mama" jokes, out-in-the-open taunts––all in good fun. No, really.

So when I cut my hair last Sunday (or should I say when Teresa cut my hair) I thought about the main reason I had grown it past the middle of my back––to donate it to Locks of Love, an organization that takes hair donations and makes wigs for kids who have lost their hair due to cancer. Teresa even asked me twice if wanted her to cut it. Twice I said yes. This was the least I could do for those children who have to face every day at school, at the mall and at the mirror without their hair.

When I would wait for my radiation treatments, I would see a few kids who were also in treatment. I'd talk to them or their parents. Ask them how they felt. How did it feel without the hair. Tell them I was losing my hair, too. Just not as much. But I could feel their pain of having been teased or called "baldy" or "skinhead" or "scully." And I decided right then and there if I survived cancer––actually, when I beat cancer––I would grow my hair so some little dude or girl could not have to worry about some kid asking, "hey, what happened to your hair." So when I had 10 inches of hair to donate––I donated over 10––and Teresa was cutting it and cutting last week, I was smiling. Because it felt so good inside to do this simple little act. And because I could hear rattling in my head, Cheech & Chong, saying "hey, who cut your hair?"

My ol' lady did.

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