Vanity can be a hairy matter, and for people who have been endowed with problematic strands, like myself, it can get very frustrating. I think my hair started out not so great anyway, and then to grow up in the ‘80s with a mother who fancied herself a hairdresser (she was actually a pre-school teacher), forget it. All my strands died sometime before 1989 – which doesn’t mean that the abuse stopped then, because no, that’s definitely not the case – and while they grow and multiply with festering fervor, they are all frizzy zombie strands that have clearly overdosed on permanent wave and straightening solutions (not to mention an assortment of hair dyes, styling mousses and gels, hairsprays, etc.). The thing about me is that I gave up. I dismissed my hair as a lost cause and resigned myself to a lifetime of braids and ponytails. I can’t just chop off the mess and sport short hair because as I told a former student of mine when he’d asked me why I wouldn’t try wearing my hair really short, I’m not a short-haired kind of person (if you must know, my dear student sneeringly retorted, “What kind of reasoning is that?”). It’s both a personality thing and a practicality thing. Not that my hair when short is a comely thing, but it’s especially hideous in the in-between stage. However, if I could just find the energy and the money to fuss on my hair, that could be a worthwhile undertaking. After all, after decades of bad hair, I’m due.