Wednesday, April 29, 2009

To Dalhausser or not to Dalhausser?

I'm off to the beach with the Darryls this weekend. I'm ready for some relaxation. New Orleans seems so long ago (not to mention a tad fuzzy in my memory). We'll be leaving tomorrow afternoon, which means I have just over twenty-four hours to make one of the biggest decisions of my life.

This is something I've been grappling with off and on for awhile now. It's a tough decision for a man to make. But this seems like the perfect time, as I'm going to be spending four days at the beach where no one knows me--save for my two longtime confidants. If I'm going to do it, it's now or never.

I've run the idea past my sister and a few close friends, and have gotten a wide range of responses. Then my sister inadvertently brought it up over dinner at Mom's one night, prompting a vehement "Noooooo!" from she who bore me. Later, Mom told me in no uncertain terms that I would be "out of the family" if I went through with it.

She wasn't laughing.

I suppose some background information is in order. Several months ago, I was watching a provocative program on television. It was called The Summer Olympics. Perhaps some of you saw it, as well. One athlete, in particular, stood out to me. And that athlete was Phil Dalhausser.

What was it about Dalhausser that entranced me so? Was it his forceful, sand-blasting kills? Was it his lithe, slender six-foot-nine-inch body? No. It was his cleanly shaven head. Think James Carville with a tan.

I had thought about making the hairy to smooth transition before, but Dalhausser's immaculate scalp brought the issue front and center again. I figure if I do it now, I can get a bit of a tan while at the beach so it's won't be pasty white. That all sounds swell, right? So what's the problem?

The problem is, this is a drastic step--a major life decision right up there with... um... well, surely I've made a major decision at some point in the past 36 years. And while I may talk a good game, I'm afraid that the sound of the clippers and the thought of my hair being sheared away like freshly cut grass will cause me to run home screaming and apologizing profusely to my precious follicles for ever allowing the thought to creep into my head.

As I said, I've received a wide range of opinions on the matter. My sister is all for it, because she "thinks it'll be funny." Thanks, sis. She also asked if I was going to get it "slick" like Mister Clean, or just cut it really short. Well, I don't know. What do most people do? Another friend asked, "What if you have dents in your head?" Well, that's a disturbing thought.

Meanwhile, I've been doing some research of my own. Turning to my beloved Wikipedia, I found these the following two statements:

"Incidents of cutting one's scalp with a razor blade are common, but generally are avoidable..." (Ouch. I'd never considered that. I'd hate to have to walk around with a tiny scrap of tissue stuck to my head.)

"Practical reasons include work safety or comfort, lice prevention, grooming simplicity and preparation for surgery." (Lice prevention. That can never be a bad thing.)

Finally, I've tried composing a mental pro and con list. On the pro side: I would save on shampoo and haircuts. Also, less drag if I ever were to join an over-35 swim team.

On the con side: What if it doesn't grow back? What if there are dents? And of course, I'd be out of the family. Though that sounds kinda cool. Sorta like being out of the "business," which makes me think of Sonny Corinthos and Jason Morgan.

And so, blog friends, it has all come down to this: To Dalhausser or not to Dalhausser? That is the question.

If you have opinions, advice, personal testimonials, or would like to adopt a blogger into your family, you know where to find me.

You have twenty-four hours.

"Cut off the mail, and I left on a light, and I locked up the house, and I hopped on a flight..."


  1. Do it, do it, do it!

    It's different, something fun. You're going on vacation, live alittle. :) You should also get a Speedo to wear. Now, see, shaving your head doesn't seem so bad.

  2. I'd not want to shave my own hair off, but having seen The Barber Of Fleet Street in action there doesn't seem to be an alternative.

    It will grow back of course, and I hear you can run faster without it. Might be worth a try.

  3. My son says and I agree if you have a beautiful head of hair that isn't receeding or thining why would you want to shave it? My oldest is 21 and unfortunity for him he got his Dad's hair genetics so at 21 he is already receding rapidly. The few guys that I know that shaved their heads have sunburned their skulls more than once and it is painful.

  4. Remember when you Super Mario used to be the coolest? Imagine if you always stopped at level 16 and just kept playing 1 through 16 over and over.

    You save the princess at level 20. As cryptic as this is - I'm saying go for it.

  5. Dude, it's just hair. Besides, I know a lot of women that really dig bald men. If you do it, perhaps it will spark up that dating life of yours. ;-)

  6. Remember what happened to that boyfriend of Elaine's who had been shaving his head and Elaine talked him into letting it grow...he then found out that he was starting to go bald and went into a deep depression!

    that would be bad.

    but I've always wondered what drove a man to shave his head. My friend's husband just did it, she wasn't happy about it. I'm not sure how he feels about it now though, but he seems to be keeping it up.

    I knew a kid in highschool who shaved his own mohawk...cutting his head on purpose it seemed. The school went balistic, there was a family meeting and suspension. They decided that he should go totally bald...he liked that even better!

  7. A single male friend of mine recently posted a Facebook status inquiring whether he should shave his head. The idea got an immediate thumbs-down from me. For whatever reason, when I saw the title of this post, I already knew what you were asking, and my initial gut reaction was... Go For It!

    When I was a freshman in college, a friend of mine shaved his head just before playing sand volleyball for an afternoon. He ended up with a sunburned, PEELING scalp. So don't forget to pack the sunscreen. :)

  8. I feel like I need a head shot to make an informed decision. Without said photograph, I'll vote for you to go for it.

  9. I say go for it. It will probably grow back. Or what you could do is just cut it really really really short.

  10. OKChick - I'm laughing at your Speedo idea. That would definitely take the attention away from the shaved head.

    Cooper - I didn't even think about the running! I could probably shave a good 8 or 10 seconds off my 10K time.

    PennyCandy - I understand that. But it's not like I have long flowing locks like Fabio or anything :) My hair has definitely gotten thinner the past two or three years. But mainly, it's just something I've always wanted to try. I have no grand reason for it other than that.

    Lisa Drafall - Haha. I'm always gonna love any video game reference. I remember being none too happy the first time I got that "Thank you, Mario, but our princess is in another castle" message, though. Thanks for stopping by.

    Murf - Dude, it's just hair.

    That was almost profound, in its own special way.

    Renee - Someone else mentioned that episode of Seinfeld tonight while we were discussing this topic. But Elaine's boyfriend had been shaving his for two or three years, I think, before he decided to grow it back.

    R8chel - So you're against your Facebook friend shaving his head, but you're telling me to go for it? lol Something seems amiss here.

    Ally - I like that you strive to be an informed commenter. I'm horrible about posting pictures. Even when I take them, it takes me forever to upload them. They wind up just staying on my camera or Blackberry indefinitely.

    Xinh - Yeah, the really really really short sounds good right now.

    Well, the tally so far is five go-for-its, a couple of cautionary comments, one "it's just hair" and one "might be worth a try."

  11. If you haven't learned yet, I can be profound in my own special way.

  12. I agree with Ally...we need a head shot to make a solid decision. Waiting....

  13. At 6'2", I've thought about it too but I'm worried that I've hit my head on things too many times and I would find dents and bumps. But I'm guessing in another twenty years, I will be there anyway one way or another.

  14. Do it.

    I feel like it would increase your awesome-osity. I'm just sayin.

  15. I figure baldness is something God gives... or maybe my baldness is payment for sins committed when I had long hair? If you do it, it'll make a good story (we'll just have to wear sunglasses to avoid the glare!)

  16. I haven't read all the comments as I'm kind of on vacation and wasn't even going to read your post but of course got vaccumed in

    You should do it if only to make a decision.

    Then to see your mother try to go through with you "being out of the family

    And your sister gave you Nephew Bone, you can give her something to laugh over

    Whatever you do have a wonderful time. Just glanced through comments--Elaine's boyfriend had been shaving his head for years.

    The whole reason he grew it back was because she saw a picture of him with thick gorgeous hair

  17. It's hard to focus on the post after OK Chick's Speedo comment - hilarious!!!

    I wonder why your Mom is so against the idea? My Mom, too, had a FIT when my brother shaved his (he did not go for the Mister Clean look, as an aside). She still complains about it. I think it looks fine, and so does his wife. Most importantly though, he likes it. I say go with your gut.

    P.S. DON'T forget the sunscreen if you do it though! A burnt head from the beach could be a very, very bad thing.

  18. Without knowing what you look like, it's hard to say. So I say 'yes', for no reason other than I don't think I've ever recommended that someone shave their head before. :)

  19. My hair is thinning and disappearing (I'm also almost 40, it's to be expected), so every weekend I whip out the clippers and give myself a #1 all over.

    Every weekend.

    Because if I don't cut it every weekend it starts to look scruffy very quickly.

    If you do go the shaved head look, I'd imagine you'd have to shave it just about every single day to keep it clean & shiny.

    If you weren't going to the beach this weekend I would have suggested cutting it really short, like #1 (or shorter), and letting your scalp get some sun that way first, before going totally clean shaven.

    If you do go for the clean shaven look, as someone who has had a sunburned scalp, I cannot stress enough to use Sunblock, SUNBLOCK! SUNBLOCK!!! because your scalp will burn.

  20. I think variety is the spice of life. Besides, it's hair - if you don't like it, you just wait to have it grow back.

    Make sure to have plenty of sunscreen, though, for your freshly shaven head! You wouldn't want to have it burn to a bright red while you're at the beach. That could be painful!

  21. Goodness, gracious...just do it. It's hair. It WILL grow back. If you don't like it, you can wear a hat for a while (think of it like your face, when you shave it, it takes about a week to get full again, right?). But beware, one TRULY needs to have the right shaped head for the 'do. I'm not joking. Is your neck the same width as your head (looking face first in the mirror)? If not, a shaved head on a skinny-necked guy just looks sad. But I'm gay, so I have a preference to shaved-headed guys with goatees. That Daughtry guy from American Idol? HE has a nice shaped head. I'm making this more difficult for you, aren't I?

  22. p.s. I've just gazed over your default photo and I do believe that you have the neck/physique to pull off a shaved head (the hat obscures things, but I believe it's possible!).

  23. I have no idea what you look like with hair, so I can't express an opinion here, because in your pic you are wearing a hat. If you did or do it you MUST post a before and after photo. Women ususally get compliments when they get a new cut... come to think of it, so do guys. Have fun with the Daryl's.

  24. Weighing in late, of course, but I say GO FOR IT! It's only hair and it will grow back if you don't like the results. And sweets, you are 36, plenty responsible to make this decision and stick to it no matter what the fam says. I don't care if you mom will boot you out of the fam, it's just a scare tactic.

    Do post pics of course. We support you.


  25. So what did you decide? Pictures???

  26. Go for it! Maybe go to the hairdresser to get it done the first time and get some tips for the future.