Monday, June 05, 2006

Rites of passage

Rites of passage

There are certain rites of passage that every boy,teen,man must go through on the journey to being a man. Some are good ,,,,,The first time you learn to ride a bicycle without the training wheels…..Your first date, first kiss,,,,,,I won’t go any farther, you get the picture.….. Some on the other hand are not so good. The inevitable broken bone, the first breakup, Puberty,,, the last breakup etc; etc;…… I myself have recently gone through one of those rites of passage that would have to be considered NOT the good kind…. Not the good kind at all. At 37 years old it is safe to say I am at the very least starting to show my age a little bit. Things that used to bruise now tend to break instead, getting out of bed in the morning isn’t nearly as easy as it used to be. The bones creak, the ankles, knees, and back hurt like hell at times but all in all I guess I consider myself to be fairly lucky in that regard.

As I sat on my couch a couple of months ago staring at this little package in my hand which I had finally broken down and purchased, I couldn’t help but to remind myself of this. Let’s face it, I am getting older and whether I want to admit that I am starting to feel it or not it is indeed the case. I had crossed the threshold of denial weeks ago when I purchased this item but as of yet had not crossed the threshold of actually putting it to use. Sitting on my couch watching ‘friends’ for the 14 billionth time(a friend of mine tells me all the time I exaggerate, but I have NO idea where they get that idea from). I was staring at this box of, no not Viagra I’m not THAT old yet damnit!,,,,,,,,,This box and still telling myself that I wasn’t ever going to use it, it was just there as some sort of security blanket “just in case I ever needed it.” Using it after all would possibly be breaking a long standing agreement not to do so. The repercussions of which I shuddered to think about.

I have always had a pretty full head of hair(thanks Grampy) and for that I am quite grateful. I have always said that I really don’t care if my hair goes gray it wouldn’t bother me much if it did. In fact, with visions of George Costanza from Seinfeld, dancing around in my brain I made a deal with my hair a long long time ago which went something like this.

BD: “I don’t care what color you turn knock yourself out but whatever you do please please please, just STAY IN MY HEAD!”

Hair: “I will try but I can’t promise not to explore your back someday when you are much much older.”

BD: “do what you must, but don’t think that back, ear,knuckle, or nose hair is a fair substitution for HEAD HAIR!”

Hair: “are you sure? You know that whole ‘comb your last 14 strands of hair around your head and try to cover your whole scalp’ look is really underated I hear the ladies dig it.”

BD: “NO! I am not doing that, in fact, the first sign of baldness, I am shaving it all off! You either all stay there, or NONE of you that’s the deal.

Hair: “okay okay relax!!! , I guess I can live with that, you got yourself a deal.”

For it’s part my hair has (knock on wood) always held up it’s end of the bargain. For my part, I must say I have as well. Better still, I can say that as far as my head is concerned I don’t have all that much grey not enough to the point that I am worried about it at least. My beard on the other hand or more specifically my mustache……now THAT has been starting to irritate me for a while. It started with a couple popping up dead center and has slowly spread outward till it looks like i have the worlds smallest skunk taped to my upper lip. Therefore, unable to take it anymore there I was sitting on my couch with a box of ‘Just for men beard and mustache coloring” which had been purchased weeks and weeks before hand in an attempt to perhaps Scare it away....

So I am sitting on my couch reading the instructions for the 17th time. Yes, yes contrary to popular belief , men really can read directions ,I read them several times to be sure in fact. Also contrary to popular belief while reading instructions may be against some sort of man law the penalty is not as bad as it is thought to be……as of yet noone has shown up to repossess my penis.(again knock on wood)


1)-Wearing gloves(to prevent staining)squirt a line of color developer into tray on one side of the raised line,,,,,,check!

2)-squirt an equal size amount of the color base on other side of raised line…CHECK!
NOTE:avoid getting on clothes or sink and such to avoid staining…check!

3)-wipe ends of tubes(to prevent staining) and put away for future use.

4)-using mini spatula type instrument provided mix product from two tubes together….chhhheeee,,,,,,,,wait,,,,,,,HOLD UP ON THAT check!!!

As I do this I am somewhat surprised to see that rather than the dark black color i was expecting, it turns a light brownish or better yet tan color. ….It is like a cup of black coffee that has just had a dash of creamer added to it.

Since I have Black hair and mustache, this is cause for concern for me. I am not looking to go sandy blonde, THAT middle age crisis is still at least a month or two away lol. I go back to the tubes making sure that one is indeed “Black” like it is supposed to be,,,,,check….and the other is “color base” as it is supposed to be…….check ,,,,,and check….and reread the instructions yet again to make sure I haven’t already screwed up…….check!

Okay back to the business at hand.

5)-Using gloves provided (to prevent staining of the hands) check!,,,,,,,,,,,,,and mini brush provided Check…….use brush to apply product quickly….Check!

6)-Important: Time yourself with a timer, clock, or watch starting after application is completed waiting 15 minutes or a bit less. Having read this instruction 99 times I have previously set my microwave so all I have to do when I am done is run out of the bathroom push start and wait. …..CHECK!!!!

Fifteen minutes is a long time, especially when you are anxious, but I force myself to go into the living room, sit on the couch, relax , and watch television. After about 12 minutes I cant stand it any more so I grab the instructions yet again and begin reading them for the 100th time and be sure of what I need to do next. Yada yada yada......spatula,,,,gloves,,,,,,timer,,,,,,,a loud "HUH?" must have escaped me cause Kash my dog is looking up at me like i have lost it yet again. I blink first thinking my eyes are deceiving me,,,,surely they must be cause I read these damn things countless times……..OH SHIT!!!! It says 5 minutes not fifteen!!!! Just then as if to mock me I hear beeeeeeeeeeeeep as my microwave tells me that time is up…….I have visions of the brady bunch or some such show where someone’s attempt at hair coloring goes horribly wrong, and comes out green instead. I force myself to breath normally and tell myself that all will be okay, and walk into the bathroom.

Glancing into the mirror I am terrified at what I may see. There where my mustache and goatee were previously spotted with grey, I see black whew!!!!.
As I get closer to the mirror though I see that it isn’t just the mustache and goatee that are black, it is the skin under it. It is the skin allllllll around it,,,and I am talking BLACK!. I flash back to a time as a child getting ready for Halloween when I was going to dress up as a rodeo clown. Doing so I naturally had to paint my entire face white. For this purpose we had used one of those little bottles of shoe polish. You know the kind with the little felt top that you squeeze the liquid from the bottle out onto and it covers this felt top and then you spread it where it goes? Looking at myself in the mirror it is as if I have done this to myself again all these years later.
In a panic, My minds eye blinks in rapid succession, like a night marish slide show reminding me …..

rule 1)wear gloves (to prevent staining),click…

brady bunch or some sitcom show of hair coloring gone bad,,,,,,,Click!

,,,,,note: avoid getting mix on clothes,,,,,to prevent staining!! Click…........

wipe ends of tubes after use(to preeeeveeeentttt staining!!!!!)…click

Valerie(the lady that cuts my hair) laughing as she tells the story of one of her customers
Coming in to be rescued after a “self hair coloring gone bad” episode……..

time yourself CAREFULLY,,,waiting only five minutes(damnit it said fifteen I swear!!!!) or a bit less prevents color from going too dark!!!!

Valerie: “if you want I can color that for you”(commenting on my mustache without me having said a single word to anyone of my concerns of it) BD: “nahh”,,,,,,,, click

I also see in my minds eye another conversation with my hair that goes as follows:

Hair: “we had a deal!”

BD(feigning ignorance): “what???”

Hair: “you saiddd you didn’t care what color we went as long as we stayed in your head and here you are coloring your hair! See what you get?”

BD: “I didn’t color my hairrrrrr it is my beard! My mustache,,,,,THAT don’t count!”

Hair: “pardon the pun, but that’s ‘splitting hairs’ and you know it!” and speaking of hair splitting,,,,,,,mwahhhhhhh haaaaaaa haaaaaa haaaaa!!!”


I reach for the sink to turn it on ready to wash it all off, and suffer a moment of panic when I think oh shit the water is out!....After a momentary pause it finally comes on and I scrub like there is no tomorrow. For the most part everything turned out okay but for days, I swore everyone that looked at me was staring at me like I had the world’s biggest zit and they couldn’t look away no matter how hard they tried. For weeks, even when they WERENT staring at me I thought, “ohhh shit they are trying soooo hard not to stare at it that it must still be there!!!! Even NOW, I can see one spot just to the side of my goatee where there is still a faded black spot……It is probably all in my imagination(I hope) but I swear sometimes when the light is right(or wrong) I still see it!

I said before contrary to popular belief men CAN read instructions……

I never said anything about being able to actually follow them however…….


christine said...

Oh my god, I can't stop laughing! It's actually funnier than Joey's eyebrow epsiode on Friends.

HAHA, so is it all gone now?

briliantdonkey said...

i think so ,,,,though it may never be completely gone, even if only in my mind.


Anonymous said...


Thanks for the smiles while I was reading your story of the lady who got the ticket. I had to laugh, because I've had the same conversaitons with people who 'bitch' about cops driving official cars when off duty.

I agree with your analogy 100%.

While I'm here, I need to also mention, you have put together a great Blog site and I'll visit again when I have more time to look around.

Take care.


briliantdonkey said...


Thanks for stopping by and glad you enjoy the site. Thanks for taking the time to comment as well. Hope to see you next time.