I have always felt that the mirror takes advantage of our gullibility. For instance, when I pass a mirror, I see a middle-aged blonde woman, who at one time, if not exactly pretty, is at least interesting.


The word ‘interesting’ is interesting in itself. It’s a word people often use to comment on something, rather than telling them what they really think. If they don’t want to insult the artist’s latest effort, which they hate, it seems kinder to tell them it’s interesting.

Some years ago while we were at a family gathering, while watching a cousin across the room, a relative said “You’re not attractive, and I’m not attractive, but she’s attractive. To show that I don’t hold grudges, I am still speaking to her.

But back to the mirror, I was shocked to find from a photograph, that my hair is silver! Everyone else had told me it was, but I chose to believe my mirror. In the 70’s, when hippie clothes were in style, I bought a long denim dress, which I thought was quite cool. But when I saw a photograph of myself wearing it, I looked just like a mushroom in a long blue dress. The mirror had lied once more.


I don’t obsess about my clothes, but I must confess that I do have a fixation about my hair. Along with so many other things that youth steals, I truly miss having good hair. Throughout the years I have invested in numerous wigs and hairpieces in a variety of colors, and it has always been fun. I was greeted by a fairly close acquaintance once at a large dinner party while I was wearing a very cute wig, and she asked to be introduced. What is true is that I am older than I look, and the hair on my head is exactly where it should be given the hard life I’ve given it.

At one time or another, I have been a blonde, had various shades of brunette, or a combination of the two, and for one luau we gave, it even became black. Later instead of actually dying it, I bought a black wig. This was after seeing the movie “Chicago” with Katherine Zeta-Jones dancing her way through killing her husband.

I was astonished to discover that the nice woman who cuts my hair, is wearing a wig! You just never know.

I always wanted to have red hair, since so many people in my family have it, but the only time mine became red was an accident. I gave myself a home perm, and instead of following directions and waiting a certain amount of time, I put some brown coloring on it. It immediately bunched up, became brilliant red, and looked exactly like a Brillo pad, or Harpo Marx in drag.

It would have been OK except that a widower friend of ours brought a new girlfriend to dinner that night to introduce us. She was a pretty and much-younger natural redhead with long flowing curls she had a habit of tossing around during dinner. Worse that that, she arrived accompanied by an unannounced Schnauzer dog, who snarled at my two dogs, a German Shepherd and a large Dobermann, who did not snarl in return. It was not a happy occasion. However, it did put the lie to the old saying that people look like their dogs because she did not look at all like a Schnauzer. And they did not marry.

So what I needed to tell you is not to believe anything your mirror or your friends tell you about your hair. If you think you are a willowy 5″8″, and blonde, then you are, and in the real scheme of things, why does it matter anyway? It’s OK to believe whatever you wish.


I always wanted to have red hair.  From the time I met a little girl in the first grade who had lovely red hair, dimples and freckles, I could imagine myself with bouncing red curls.

I had hair which could only be described as ordinary.  A number of years ago a friend told me it was mouse-colored.  I retaliated by making a sculpture of a very large rat and leaving it beside her fireplace when she was gone.  We remained friends.

During my early tap dancing days Grandma gave me a perm to replicate Shirley Temple’s adorable curly top, but each time I went to stay with Aunt Georgia she would take me to the barber shop to have a Dutch cut.  You know, like the little Dutch Boy on the paint can.

My cousin was born when I was ten years old.  We had recently moved from California to Connecticut, and the family was ecstatic to have a baby after so many years with just me.  Grandma sent pictures of the new little one, all dimply and cute, and with the treasured red hair!  Some people have all the luck!

By the 4th grade my hair grew and I wore pigtails which hung to my waist.  I hated them so much that one day I grabbed a pair of scissors and whacked them off.  It was so ugly my mother gave me another home perm and  was so curly that I stayed home from school for 3 days to avoid the ridicule.

In high school, I rinsed my hair in a bucket of chamomile tea to turn it red, but it didn’t work, so I bleached it blonde, and found that blondes do have more fun!

My hair has been bleached, colored, hidden under a wig and otherwise mistreated, but strangely I never knowingly dyed it red.  Once. through an accident of home care, it turned into a brilliant copper frizz, much like Harpo Marx, and I recognized that red was not my most attractive color.

A Freudian psychologist could probably make a lot of my lifelong dissatisfaction with my hair.  I have always felt that since we have it, we may as well have fun with it.  A grandson once asked me if it were blonde or grey.  I told him to take his pick.