Cut-offs

Cut-offs: (n) blue jeans cut off and turned into shorts.

There is certainly the possibility that if you’re willing to speak your fears out loud, you can save a lot of money on therapy.

So I will tell you bluntly that for the first twenty-one years of my life, I was frightened to death to go without a shirt or even think about wearing shorts.

When I was a teenager, I went to the swimming pool and waited until it was either empty or everyone had gone over to the snack bar before I would feverishly remove my shirt and jump in the water, hoping nobody noticed the recently submerged whale.

It was worse with my legs. They were bare.

For some reason, my genetics gave me absolutely no hair.

When I was sixteen, I took a magnifying glass, examined them, and found that there were follicles, but for some reason the little hairs became discouraged upon reaching the top of my skin—too frightened to make a public appearance.

So I was fat.

Very white because I got no sun.

And had no hair on my legs.

Not a great teenage turn-on.

So it was the summer of my twenty-first year that I found myself traveling, landing with my music group in Miami, Florida—still scared shitless to go shirtless, and completely unwilling to drop my pants.

Then, one beautiful hot day when the ladies in the group were anxious to go to the beach—tired of magnanimously staying behind with me—I grabbed an old pair of jeans, took scissors and snipped them off the best I could. I slid them on and walked outside with my two comrades.

At first, I held onto their arms, hiding and hoping nobody noticed me.

Apparently, I got my wish. Nobody noticed me.

It was Miami. There were oddly shaped people of every color, everywhere.

For the rest of that two-week trip, I did nothing but walk around shirtless, wearing my ugly cut-off jeans, walking the beach.

By the time I flew back to Nashville, Tennessee, to meet up with my producer, I was gloriously toasted brown and my confidence was at an all-time high.

I have never and will never feel the relaxation to walk into a room believing that everyone will accept my obesity or my hairless legs.

But I’m happy to report that the comfort of being comfortable in cut-offs finally comforted me.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Bald

Bald (adj): having a scalp wholly or partly lacking hair.Dictionary B

I am bald.

People often contradict this statement, telling me that I still have some hair on the sidelines of my playing field, but the landing strip has been completely cleared.

The top of my head is free of hairy situations.

I fought it for a long time–because it starts pretty early. Matter of fact, if you are destined to be bald, you may notice it in your teen years, when finishing a shower and combing out your hair.

Too much of it is ending up on your brush.

Also, there is the frightening revelation, through the well-placed mirror, of having to admit that the back forty of the scalp has started failing to yield crops.

So I intelligently took my early twenties to grow long hair, nearly to my shoulders, to celebrate this brief juncture of time when my virility could be expressed by the efforts of my follicles.

It was great fun.

Matter of fact, I continued to sport this bushiness until the dissipation of northern foliage on my dome began to make me look like Benjamin Franklin. After a while, it just gets silly.

Now I realize that the best way to handle baldness is to be bald. I even understand why some guys who are suffering under the condition just go ahead and shave their heads.

Because it is true in life that we gain wisdom by picking our fights. And honestly, demanding your hair to remain or placing fake hair in its stead is just not victorious.

Yes… most guys get a “Dear John Letter” from their lovely locks.

 

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Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix

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Afro

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

 

Afro: (n) a hairstyle with very tight curls that sticks out all around the head, like the natural hair of some black people

James was black.

Nothing truly significant can be ascertained without this fact. I do not bring this up because his skin color made him superior OR inferior to anyone else. It just gave him different hair.

James worked for me for a while–matter of fact, lived in my house. It was a rather communal setup, so we shared food, toothpaste, and even hair products.

James was very gentlemanly. It was several weeks of quiet displeasure on his part before I noticed his disgruntled spirit.

I was a bit perturbed so I asked what the problem was. His response was standard.  “Nothing.”

Of course, he knew that his “nothing” was really NOT nothing, and he hoped that I would pursue his “nothing” by trying to find something out. So I did.

“No, no,” I continued. “What’s up?”

After a few more overtures of encouragement, he released his burden. He explained that his hair was not like my hair, and that my “white people” shampoo and conditioner was killing his follicles. I produced a quizzical look, as paler brothers often do.

He asked me to feel his hair–and I discovered it was rather bristly and dry. He explained in vivid detail that his afro, which was very fashionable for the time, needed to be conditioned with the kinds of oil that I would probably find to be greasy, but his hair found necessary.

I think he thought I would be critical, since the idea of purchasing additional products would be expensive, but stepping out of my Anglo-Saxon world and putting down my mace and Viking horns, I agreed. Matter of fact, he took me with him to the store to purchase his items, and even though they tallied up to quite a sum, they made James happy. They also gave a tremendous shine and bounce to his afro.

I learned a lot that day. Even though afros are not as prevalent as they were when James and I were working together, I understood–and I understand now–that what’s good for one person’s do is a don’t for others.