May 28, 2013 — Oh, we all hear what the Lassen County haters and the wing nuts have to say about our community, but we don’t have to listen to their shrill cries of outrage and wails of woe today. Nah, today is a great day for us to celebrate and rejoice our collective goodness for a job well done.
I actually played a very small role, getting my head shaved for charity, as part of a cool happening that occurred at the St. Baldrick’s event Saturday, May 18 at the Diamond Mountain Casino’s Diamond Willow Room.
I was a little apprehensive when my turn to sit on stage and get my hair cut in front of a room full of people came around, and I guess my smile started as a sheepish sort of grin. I couldn’t believe all the flashes going off while I was getting my ears lowered, but I’m sure they all weren’t taking pictures of me as there were three of us up on stage at any one time.
Now people tell me I look like Kurt Bonham or even Kojack. And much to my surprise, my new nickname is Baldy.
KSUE personality and master of ceremonies Mike Smith, who was in the first group to sacrifice his hair for charity, noticed how much cooler his head felt after the shearing. He ran for a beanie. I did not. I decided to be Mr. Natural.
And as I watched some of the 80 or so folks who joined me in the balding — both men and women — I couldn’t help but notice all the smiles on the faces of the victims. I’ve seen a couple of photos of me, and I’m actually smiling too above the piles of grey curls on my lap, dropping to the floor and wafting across the room.
Collecting donations from the community, we shavees raised something like $18,000 for cancer research. It’s not enough by itself to find a cure, but every little bit helps move us a step closer. Someday maybe someone will have a life free of this dreadful disease thanks to our community’s contribution. Many of us here in Susanville and across Lassen County contributed to that effort, and we should be proud. Let me once again say thank you to those who supported me in particular and the effort in general. You all sure did your part.
So it’s clearly time for me to move on, of course, but now that the deed’s been done as I contemplate the bald head staring back at me in the mirror, I can’t help but hear a young Bob Dylan’s bizarre comments on hair as part of his acceptance speech of the Emergency Civil Liberties Committee's Thomas Paine First Amendment Award in December 1963 bounce around between my ears.
“ … I'm proud that I'm young. And I only wish that all you people who are sitting out here today or tonight weren't here, and I could see all kinds of faces with hair on their head, and everything like that, everything leading to youngness … And I look down to see the people that are governing me and making my rules, and they haven't got any hair on their head. I get very uptight about it.”
Well, Bob, as you yourself said all those years ago, the times they are a’changin’. Indeed.
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