I think I’m sending mixed signals.

My hair says, “Let’s go to the beach, people! Let’s go right now! Drop everything you’re holding and let’s go, or you are a complete waste of my time!” The rest of my appearance says, “Let’s complete a logic puzzle right now! Or a book! Yes, a book! Come on! YAY! Wait, why are you giving me that face?”

I know I’ve talked about my hair before. You’re sick of it. I get it. But it’s been a bit of a problem area in my life at times. For example, in middle and high school, it was just a really large mass on my head occupying a small country’s share of real estate. It commanded so much of my attention that I was barely able to exist back then, let alone navigate the social and educational minefields that I was trying to meander through. By college, I was able to negotiate an uneasy truce with the mass on my head. We’ve had some good times and some bad times since then. There was a time where I thought it would be a good idea to get a perm (!!!) on the advice of a hairstylist who had surely been sent to me straight from Satan himself. I was able to hunker down and wait for the perm to grow out. I made it through ok, and my loved ones were ok as well. I’m reasonably certain that I didn’t harm any strangers in those long, long months waiting for that perm to grow out, but I really can’t say for certain. People have eyes, you know. I can say that no civil suits were brought against me for pain and suffering caused by the sight of my voluminous, frizzy hair explosion, so I consider that a personal victory. Recently, I’ve grown to actually like, if not love, my hair thanks to the curly hair-trained specialists at Bombshell who taught me some key styling steps as well as to NEVER BRUSH MY HAIR. You’re aghast. Or you’re not surprised. I don’t know. But with curly hair, brushes are to frizz as blogging is to oversharing. Wait, that’s not a good analogy. Let me try again. Brushes are to frizz as …. You know what, I’ll let it stand. I’m thinking back to some of my posts, and the analogy isn’t that far off.

I was meeting with my business partner a couple of days ago (I’m starting a business! YIPPEE!!), and she mentioned offhandedly that I was a preppy. And I immediately dropped my head in shame, as you should when accused of this, and conceded the truth in the statement. I’ve never veered from this awful state of dress. It’s saddening. I wish I’d gone through a fun goth stage to mix things up at least. Sure, with my crazy locks, a goth stage could not be sustained for long, but preppy is not a look that goes with my head suit either. When I first met one of my college roommates, I distinctly remember her slam on my ridiculous number of khakis. She called them tackies. I remember thinking to myself, “Good one, Lisa,” while struggling mightily to come up with some sort of retort. She wasn’t dressed much better — it wasn’t a great time for fashion — but the slam was legendary.  But I dress very conservatively. Like a banker. Or an accountant. Nothing against those professions, obviously. I’m married to a banker, and I think he’s all kinds of hot. But if you look at me while shielding your eyes to block out my hair, you might want to hand over your tax paperwork to me, so I could prepare your taxes. Let me caution you not to do that, however. You will not get a refund. You will probably owe the government thousands of dollars. However, I could compose a kick-ass letter to the government, which I could submit along with that hefty check you’re sending them (incorrectly, because I did your taxes wrong in the first place, but why do you want to focus on the negative, huh?) that would convince Uncle Sam to send that check right back to you along with a bunch of extra cash. OK, maybe not. But I could compose a kick-ass letter to the government that would make them chuckle. How about that? Does that help? Probably not. Anyway, it was probably inevitable that this stupid style of dress would stick forever because I was obsessed when I was an impressionable kid with this book.  I was too young to be the target audience, but I enjoyed reading it because it was funny and ridiculous. I already dressed similarly, so there was stupid validation within its plaid cover. Way to go, Birnbach. This is all on you.

The Official Preppy Handbook
The Official Preppy Handbook

One thought on “I think I’m sending mixed signals.

  1. I remember that book, and had never heard of field hockey or lacrosse before reading it. I thought it was all made up! Imagine me with kids who have played both. It makes me chuckle every time. I was SO naive and sheltered!

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