Friday, February 10, 2012

Molting in crisis

Molt: to cast or shed (feathers, skin, etc.) in the process of renewal. (
Yesterday was a liberating day. What if I told you having my hair cut was almost as important as a graduation day or winning a race? I think it was a combination of factors: not having cut my hair in a year and half, having my own money to pay for it (no feeling bad or selfish), for the first time not being intimidated due to my lack to style but being comfortable with me!

I went to Hairport, an ultra-hip place I'd gone to three years ago. It's downtown Lisbon, in a 100-year-old storeroom with modern decor. The hairdressers are German, Austrian and Spanish and they all have short hair, red or purple highlights and tattoos. It's a super cool and fashionable place. Last time I went (and usually when I go to the hairdresser), I felt super nerdy and unfashionable.

This time I was completely different... inside. I didn't try to be tough, I accepted being sweet and silly/naive. I didn't pick an ultracool hairstyle from a magazine... I said what I wanted. We both laughed at how impossible it seemed: waves and volume, even though my hair is straight. Basically, as afro/crazy/country as possible. And to my surprise? She did it! And taught me how (apparently there's this thing you can put at the end of your blow dryer called a diffuser?)

I've cut my hair and I've bought clothes before but never with the purpose I'm doing it with now. Something is different inside...

"I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of the clothes. If there is not a new man, how can the new clothes be made to fit? If you have any enterprise before you, try it in your old clothes. All men want, not something to do with, but something to do, or rather something to be. Perhaps we should never procure a new suit, however ragged or dirty the old, until we have so conducted, so enterprised or sailed in some way, that we feel like new men in the old, and that to retain it would be like keeping new wine in old bottles. Our moulting season, like that of the fowls, must be a crisis in our lives. The loon retires to solitary ponds to spend it. Thus also the snake casts its slough, and the caterpillar its wormy coat, by an internal industry and expansion; for clothes are but our outmost cuticle and mortal coil. Otherwise we shall be found sailing under false colors, and be inevitably cashiered at last by our own opinion, as well as that of mankind." (Henry David Thoreau in Walden)

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