I like to go around asking matter-of-factly if anyone knows a guy by the name of Koay Hock Seng. Most people looked blur until I mentioned the Chinese version of Aaron Kuok’s name. The above is the localized Hokkien version of his name. I just love it when I get everybody in stitches with lines like that. But, speaking of Aaron, look at him now! He’s not just looking great he’s not looking back. And I don’t think he even bothers to look in the mirror nowadays. He’s just gone bald, and loving it! And they think he’s sexy like that! I can only hear his cash register ringing and his concert tickets slipping over the counter non-stop.
The same trend has been hitting a lot of big stars in other arenas like sports. And it certainly helps to make me more comfortable because most of my hair’s not coming back after waving goodbye. They used to wave pretty nicely when I was a lot younger but then they started disappearing when I hit the thirties. By my mid-forties, my head began to appear like a convertible with the canvas top folded back.
And my favorite rhyme still is:
The Lord is great, the Lord is fair.
To some men he gave more brains.
The rest just got more hair.
My mother never get tired of suggesting that I rub some brandy on my head daily to get them to grow back again. I said I’d prefer to drink it straight down instead. That kind of retort usually sets my dad laughing his head off. It sort of echoes the way he loved to put his remarks. Like father like son. But my retort never bothers mother in any way. Months or years down the road she’d be back peering over my head through her reading glasses and saying exactly the same things again. I’d always maintain that I’m not bothered at all. I’m just one of millions of men whose heads look like this at this age. Just so happens that none of her other sons or their dad have their heads in this condition. I just have to be different, otherwise lots of people tend to mistake me for my elder brother.
Some hair losers feel pretty self-conscious. They try to comb a few strands over from one side to the other and pat them down with some cream. Others wear a hairpiece. One drawback is that they have to keep on doing it, day in day out. Otherwise their friends might have difficulty trying to recognise them. On windy days, they'd have to spare a hand for their hair. For me, instead of spending time taking care of what’s outside my head, I'd rather be taking more care of what’s inside.
Me, I’m not bothered. I save a lot on shampoo and hair-cream. I don’t have to carry a comb in my pocket anymore. Whatever's left on the sides I just pat them down with my wet hands whenever I have to hurry. Besides, my hair-stylist (my wife) has lesser and lesser to snip off every few months. She's happy, I'm happy. Except for some crazy ones, no other woman's gonna waste a second look at hubby. I'd like for her to keep thinking that way, but somehow I don't think she's buying it. I don't know whether to be happy or sad about that.
Just like nursing mothers who get bombarded daily to slim down immediately after giving birth just to fit the mass media’s ideal shape of a woman, we males get daily-fed with the idea that only with a load of hair on our heads that we could get better paid jobs, head-hunted by bosses, admired by females or any other thing that matters. Those 'hair raising specialists' are not getting to me no matter how good they make those with a whole head of hair look. I don’t need to look glamorous in their terms. I'm joining the other group to create awareness to another icon for glamour.
So, kam-siah Mr. Koay Hock Seng. Thanks a lot. You make my day.