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Escaping ‘frump slump’ can be extended torture

February 25, 2012

Today I was working on my taxes and was flabbergasted to see what I’ve spent on my hair in the past 12 months. It was obscene. I could have financed a small country, yet the bad hair days still outnumber the good hair days 20-to-1.
The monthly hair cuts, the bi-monthly gray-zapping color and the plethora of hair care products added up to more than I spent on food.
I know most people would think my obsession with hair is way over the top, and I’m ashamed. But it’s a battle I’ve been fighting since I was 12 when my hair care regimen was limited to a bit of sugar water to paste my bangs in place and a bottle of Prell which lasted an entire year.
Does anyone remember Prell? If you do, you probably shouldn’t admit it, because it will date you quicker than your laugh lines.
I’m still trying to find an escape from the “frump slump” which has been torturing me for months. So I looked around at my friends who seem to have developed an immunity to this malady.
My buddy “Jan” is the first to come to mind. That’s not her real name because she would kill me. But “Jan” enters the room looking like a million bucks and so put together while I’m crawling around on the floor trying to retrieve my shoulder pad which fell out when I bent over to pull up my support hose. Bummer.
I’m probably the only female on the planet who still wears shoulder pads — even with a T-shirt. I think that little boost gives me an athletic look — like I’ve been working out at the gym. But that’s a topic for another day.
One day I sucked up my pride and asked “Jan” how she got her great hair. I’m still trying to create a “big hair” look with 2/3 less hair and it’s not working. She gave me a list of what I need to get hot (or at least a lukewarm) hair. I rushed out and got it all.
I bought #12 Rough Play Paste, Big Sexy Powder Play, Smoking Bedhead Gel and What a Tease Backcomb in a Bottle. It sounded like the ingredients for a cheap porn flick.
I washed my hair and applied all the products as directed, and for once in my life, I had big beautiful hair. At the Lenten service this week, no would would sit behind me because they couldn’t see the pastor over my hair. It was a glorious moment.
The next morning I couldn’t separate my hair from the pillow but I was one happy girl. I wonder when “bed head” became de rigueur, and who knew how difficult it would be to achieve the look you used to get for free when you woke up in the morning?

Emily Jones is a retired journalist who edits a website for bouncing baby boomers facing retirement. She welcomes comments at

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