Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Crazy Hair Day

Last Thursday was “crazy hair” day at school to inspire being crazy about reading. Crazy hair day with the girls has always been easy. Numerous pony tails in weird locations, beads, hair bands, big bows, lots of gel or hairspray, and BAM! Crazy hair heaven.

But not my boy.

Now hear me…I understand why he wouldn’t want bows, beads, or tails (more like horns in this case). I understand a six-year-old boy’s desire to assert his masculinity, especially when little else about him exudes it just yet. That’s cool.

What’s not cool is that he insisted that his adorable blond locks be coated, no PLASTERED, with orange face paint. Mm hmm…you heard me. Waxy, greasy, left-over Halloween face paint.

See, it was all my fault because I hadn’t bought any spray-on, wash-out hair color. (MAN, why had that not been item number one on my shopping list?!) And the boy wanted orange hair.

So with about 10 minutes until the bus was due to arrive, I found what I thought would be an acceptable substitute for the spray (hey, it was orange!). A few streaks around his face and he’d be happy, so I thought.

Uh uh. “Mom, I look like a cheetah with just those few spots. I want it ALL orange.”

“Bud, you don’t realize how hard that’s going to be to get out. Seriously. You could be orange for Thanksgiving,” I tried to scare, I mean reason with him.

He didn’t care; maybe he thought the fall color would be appropriate. Or maybe he’s just stubborn. Variations on the above dialog ping-ponged for several minutes while his sister and I glopped on more and more orange stuff. (I know I probably should have exercised my full parental authority here and just shut the whole process down, but I can relate to the pain of not having my hair the way I want it. What can I say?)

The final result: a head solidly caked with orange face paint crowning a very unhappy face. His expectations did NOT match the outcome. Woe was us.

As I drove the kids to school (oh yes—we’d long since missed the bus), I tried to cheer him up, but when that kid’s in a mood, it lasts --where does he GET that?! When he got out of the car, three kids (one with orange-sprayed hair--argh!) approached him and I prayed that their smiles were ones of delight, not teasing malice.

He was pretty tight-lipped that evening when I asked how his day had gone. He said he “won craziest hair in the class but all that meant was people laughed at him.” Ah.

Shampoo, rinse, repeat x 6 = a very orange bathtub and not-so-orange-anymore hair. But it was still very waxy in texture and a bit rusty tinted. It would have to do. Thankfully, the next day was Friday and I heard there were other left-over indicators of crazy hair day besides the ones Skylar suffered.

What finally got the greasy waxiness out? At the wise promptings of the boy’s father, who is quite knowledgeable about hair and hair care products, I finally tried…Palmolive! If it gets grease off dishes, it should work on hair too, right? Three applications finally did the trick.

Here’s the whole crazy-haired class. Major props go out to Mrs. “Pippi” Wernz! I’m sure there’s no need to point out which kid is mine! ;-)