Thursday, January 13, 2011

A Southern Belle's Kevlar

I think I've gotten the point across that Southern Belles--gracious and beautiful as they may be--should not be messed with in any way, shape or form.  To be perfectly frank, if you haven't derived that hidden danger by now, you may just be too stupid to live and the wheels of Darwinism are turning toward their inevitable conclusion.

GENERAL RULES:  A Belle holds her family close in her heart.  She will brook no aspersions cast upon her ACC team.  One takes their life into their hands if one dares to call her manners into question. 

Certainly, the above tips comprise a good, basic survival guide for maneuvering safely through the South.  Unfortunately, there are a few more basic tenets to get under one's belt and I aim to address one of those today:


Do not everevereverever mess with a Southern Belle's hair.  Most Diamond Magnolias are--or give a darned good impression of appearing--perfectly put together 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Clothes are stylish, understated and flawless.  Shoes are expensive and un-scuffed.  Manicures are get the picture.  The crowning achievement on all of this perfection is "The Hairdo."

A Belle can certainly sport different hair styles, but each of those styles have one common thread:  Hairspray.  Gobs of hairspray.  Costco quantities of hairspray.  Enough hairspray to freeze a woolly mammoth in it's tracks and fossilize it.

I know that many of you are familiar with the wonder that was '80's mall hair.  For those of you too despicably young to recall, the very popular hair metal bands at the time (Poison, Motley Crue, etc.) fluffed their long locks up to the heavens.  It was both a mating call and a way to be seen on the stage during an arena concert. 

Anyway, hair metal bands learned their tricks from the Southern Belles.

We live in a land of humidity and hurricanes, so there is no room for playing around when it comes to hair.  We also live in a land of beauty pageant tiaras and Miss Sweet Potato Pie did not spend thousands of dollars on sparkly gowns and risk her life tossing flaming batons during the talent portion of the program for Mother Nature to blow the crown off her head and screw up her 'do when she finally gets her chance to preen in front of her subjects!

Of course, industrial quantities of hairspray can go horribly wrong.  Miss Sweet Potato Pie is highly flammable and would do well to keep the flaming batons on the shelf until the end of her reign.  She is also at risk of getting gnats stuck in her hair like a spider web would catch flies.  I've even had occasion to witness pageant hair so thickly laden with hair spray that the outgoing queen literally could not penetrate the shield on the new queen's 'do with the bobby pins necessary to attach the tiara to her noggin.  Horror!

Just to give you an idea as to how critical hair care is in the South, let me talk to you about our mature Southern Belles.  Every Friday at 11:00 AM for time immemorial, my Grandma Willie has an appointment with the House of Charm to get her hair did.  This appointment is religiously observed because Grandma gets her hair styled for the week.

Yes, the whole week.  There are various sleeping caps, shower caps and rain caps employed to get her through to the next Friday.  By the way, her appointment is on Friday so that she will look her best at Sunday Church.  A better belle has never been and never will be.  Nothing stands between Grandma and the House of Charm at 11:00 Friday.

CASE IN POINT:  I get a cell phone call from Grandma at 10:00 AM on a Friday.  She locked her keys in the car at the grocery store.  Does she need me to come and help?  Well...eventually...but first I have to take her to the beauty parlor so she's on time for her appointment and then I need to go back to the grocery store to deal with the car that swallowed the keys.  The aforementioned scenario has played through with a dead car battery and a wreck. 

I just love my Grandma Willie.

Mind you, absolutely nothing of what I've told you applies to me.  I have naturally curly (read:  naturally squirrely) hair.  It doesn't matter how many hours I spend styling or how much cement I pour onto my head, when I step out of the house and into the 300% humidity, I look like an electrocuted poodle.

Oh well...we all have our crosses to bear.

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