Home » Chemotherapy » “Once you can accept the universe as being something expanding into an infinite nothing which is something, wearing stripes with plaid is easy.” –Albert Einstein

“Once you can accept the universe as being something expanding into an infinite nothing which is something, wearing stripes with plaid is easy.” –Albert Einstein

“Once you can accept the universe as being something expanding into an infinite nothing which is something, wearing stripes with plaid is easy.” –Albert Einstein

Yesterday I had my head shaved. It was sort of traumatic in a non emergency way. I didn’t think I was unprepared. I was ready. It’s not nice when your hair is abandoning ship. My scalp was the Titanic and my hairs didn’t have enough life rafts. There was some jostling a bit, at first. Maybe a forced politeness, an ‘after you, no no please, after YOU!’ Then there was some pushing and shoving and the panic started. They all started overturning the lifeboats and punching each other. I had to step in, as captain of this ship, and take charge. Paulette, at Phoenix Rising, cut my-sorry, shaved, my head.


I was thinking it was all good. Except that I was out in Silverdale, 20 miles or more away when I should have been at the salon. I was buying wine. That’s not something one rushes. And cheese. I needed to think about the cheese. Liza wasnt raised that way. When she realized what time it was, she basically grabbed me by the top of my ear and dragged me to the car and made me drive to the salon, while she apologized to Paulette. I was only 20 minutes late. Maybe, after I circled the block, a bit later. Not much. I didn’t want to park right in front. I may have gotten boxed in. I needed a better parking place than that. I was going to park at the…a little more ear pinching and foot dragging got me inside. Sheesh…

Paulette has the best smile. She knew. She didn’t say, but she knew. There was no dawdling about. She whipped that sheet over me and pulled out the clippers and went bzzzzzzz and I had a
real bald spot. I almost wanted to see her give me a Mohawk. Not that I had a lot of hair to play with but FINALLY I could have had a Mohawk! Or a Boy George. Or a mullet. Anything…anything…but bald.

I didn’t like the way it felt, for one thing. It’s so breezy. And it’s weird looking. My head looks small. Like its a pea, balancing on a butter knife. Since when did I have such large shoulders? Lets not start on my ears! Where the heck did my ears go? They are so flat against my head I can’t see them. Bitch, bitch bitch…
I went home and had a temper tantrum, yelled at a picture frame that fell over.(I managed to step squarely onto it and break the glass.) Then I sat in my bedroom for a minute and felt sorry for myself.
‘Poor old Laura…’ I said. ‘Just look at what they’ve done to you.’ Maybe shed a tear. Then Maru came over and meowed loudly into my face. It was her ‘If you’re just going to sit there you may as well give me a brushing-plus, if you’re just going to stare at me you might want to break out the kitty treats. Just saying…’ meow.

" I'll sit in the bag. Works every time."

” I’ll sit in the bag. Works every time.”

So I gave her a hug and a kitty treat and I went and really looked at myself. It could be worse. I could have a bumpy skull. Or a dent. Plus I can finally see the golf club backswing injury. That’s something. I have three cool fedoras, which I could never in a million years have pulled off before. I mean, a fedora? I’m not that cool. Like Tom Waits cool. I tied some scarves and tried on some hats and put on some perfume and thought ‘Self. It’s time to go out and face the world.’ By the world I mean my nephews. Kids. You know.

My brother and sis in law loved the look (of course, they’re going to say that) Mom gave me some scarf tying tips-love the Aunt Jemima look and the turban-and Liza was just happy I wasn’t storming, around accidentally breaking things and yelling at inanimate objects. Then Hugo came around the corner. 10 years old. Unprepared. His reaction was the best.

‘GLLAAHHHHH!!! Oh my God!’ Then he ran into the living room…awesome.

THAT was the reaction I was looking for. That was MY reaction, too! Glaaaahhhh….oh my GOD! Run away…

His parents are wonderful and they just ignored it, mostly because I was laughing. We had loosened up finally, someone said it ‘Glaaaahhhh…’and we had a nice dinner. Lentils and rice with my own pickled hot peppers. Wine. Cheese after. Hugo came out and gave me a hug and apologized. I told him, when we were alone, of course, that he wasn’t allowed to do that to people he didn’t know. They wouldn’t understand. He said ‘I know that. But it’s YOU Tatie.’ Which was sweet. Also that he calls me Tatie.


Dinner was fresh dhal and turmeric jasmine rice, with pickled peppers.

With my brother's glasses.

With my brother’s glasses.

I felt much better. Isn’t the truth refreshing?


9 thoughts on ““Once you can accept the universe as being something expanding into an infinite nothing which is something, wearing stripes with plaid is easy.” –Albert Einstein

  1. There’s something about it not being in your control. You do have a great head for it though. My barber tells me I have the kind of wrinkly head they normally see in people who abuse steroids. You, on the other hand, have an amazing symmetry about your head. I get a zero every time I go to the barbers. But at the same time, I don’t like the idea of my hairline receding. If my follicles did shut up shop it would save me some grooming hassles, but I’d feel better if it was a light switch rather than a permanent power outage.


    • Everyone has something about them they don’t like, right? Receding was happening to me, but like The Bay of Fundy receding. I’m trying to flow with the tide but c’mon…plus my ears. They are soooooo flat. What’s up with that? Symmetry in a head is a fearful thing…


  2. This quote is incredible. And your writing! So powerful. You’ve inspired me! I’m excited to follow your adventures now 🙂


  3. Mr P is right! You wear this hair-less style beautifully. You do express yourself very well in writing and I wish I could express myself better if not like you. Dinner looked great. Nephew was awesome! GLLAAAAHHHHHHH, now SMILE 😀


There is no sin except stupidity.

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