The chop

by Tabitha Kidwell

Careful readers will remember item #67 on my uberlist back in January: Chop off hair! I wanted to wait until the triathlon was over, and since the world was supposed to end anyways, I decided 12-12-12 was the day!

This is the 4th time in my life I’ve done the grow-your-hair-really-long-and-chop-it-all-off thing. The first time was during my senior year of high school, when I my friend Brad cut it off onstage during our drama club’s skit night (in a skit totally plagiarized from Camp Akita). Brad and I played an unhappily married couple coming to see a wacky therapist, played by my friend Laura. Laura hypnotized us, then got a phone call. “Her water broke?” she said to the phone. Brad poured water over my head. “Cut it out!” said Laura, oblivious. Brad hacked off my braid and totally freaked out the audience. The second time was my senior year of college, when I returned to sorority recruitment after winter break sporting the “reverse mullet” popularized by Kate Gosselin from Jon & Kate Plus 8 – long in the front, short and spiky in the back. Half of my sorority sisters (the ones who also had that haircut) thought I looked great, the other half stood in the back during recruitment and wished they had been cool enough to be in another sorority. The third time was after the Peace Corps, when my hair was so damaged and disgusting from being dyed blonde in Africa that I had to just start anew.

So this has been a long time coming – I haven’t had more than a trim since 2007. I was so ready – I came home after class, put my hair in 5 little ponytails (as instructed on hawkslocksforkids.org) and cut them off myself:

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I felt like that would be easier than explaining what I wanted in Indonesian. I may have been a little over-generous with my hair donation, though – I cut it to about the length I thought I wanted my hair to be, unaware that the stylist would then cut like 2 more inches off. Oops. I guess it will grow. I went into the stylist looking like this:

I actually like this blunt-cut style (though it was super raggedy in the back) - maybe I'll try this in a few months when it grows more.

I actually like this blunt-cut style (though it was super raggedy in the back) – maybe I’ll try this in a few months when it grows more.

And showed her this picture of Katie Holmes:

I'm fairly sure the stylist thought this was actually me.  I didn't correct her.

I’m fairly sure the stylist thought this was actually me. I didn’t correct her.

And left looking like this:

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Though I can also do a pretty good Justin Bieber swoop:

This is also basically my brother Rickie's haircut.

This is also basically my brother Rickie’s haircut.

All in all, it’s not exactly what I wanted or expected, but I look in the mirror here about once a day, so it’s a good time to have hair I don’t love to look at. And even if I don’t love how it looks at the moment, I do love how much easier it makes my life – how much shorter my cold showers are, how I can just pop my motorbike helmet on and off, how I don’t have to move my bun around for different Yoga poses. Not too bad. Oh, and the people in my office spontaneously applauded when I walked in the next morning. They’re easy to please.

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My hair is now en route to Dublin, Ohio, where A.J. Hawks’ charity will pass it on to someone who will make wigs for cancer patients or Britney Spears or whoever. I sent it the same day I sent an expense report to Georgetown for almost $1000. Hopefully I didn’t get those mixed up! I imagine there are few things creepier than an envelope full of hair. Also, I really need that reimbursement. I have a lot of barrettes to buy.

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