Hollywood knows it, Japan too. Guess we Indians didn’t get the memo?
I have often wondered if there is a God and standing in front of a mirror — or any reasonable reflecting surface really — paints a rather shoddy picture for Him/Her/Them. How, in all His/Her/Their wisdom did they look me over? How is this (pointing at my reflection) anywhere near perfection? Sure my insides are unparalleled in being super-fabulous but surely an exterior shell to go with all that awesomeness would have helped. There’s a reason you don’t house an Aston Martin engine in a Maruti.
Among the many imperfections that I find agonising, baldness would rate pretty seriously high. I mean, imagine a world where we can almost cure cancer, and AIDS and even put up a serious fight against a pandemic within a short span of two years and yet, alopecia leaves our science fraternity flummoxed. Given how most of them look, you’d think they’d see a major personal gain in prioritising this issue. Instead, they continue to work, oblivious of such worldly woes.
Now, remember that being bald is not something we can control and yet us baldies get ostracised — stared at, called names, felt for smoothness, segregated, all for no fault of ours. We need our own minority rights movement because nobody is fighting for us. So when a popular rag goes and announces the World’s Sexiest Bald Man Alive awards or recognition, it is just the shot in the arm that our community needs (with a booster, maybe every few months).
But then, in what world of fairness does that award get awarded to the outcome of a royal gene pool? Just because these ‘Princes’ seem to remain endlessly ‘in line to the throne’, is this why we plebs have to compensate them with the crown of ‘Sexiest Bald Man’?
Even Bollywood hasn’t done us any favours. Baldies was a synonym for bad-man, or the villains’ henchmen; it was as if a shaved head meant all loss of any sense of righteousness. Like not just Samson’s strength but even a sense of what is morally and ethically correct was shed once someone’s hair was trimmed on setting zero.
Thankfully Hollywood has been kinder. Jason Statham, he makes bald look lean, like there could be a fat content to a bald man’s pate. The Rock, apart from being bald and successful, also makes you realise that a shaved head can take a lot of pummelling and still look smooth. Both of them together make you realise that you can make a crap movie with a few fancy cars and a plot line that drifts all over the place and still have a blockbuster on your hands because baldness can be sexier and hotter than all the V8 turbos you can line up and crash into heaping piles of flames. And let’s not forget Yul Brynner, the OG baldie, who made people sit up and notice our kind, even if it meant applying a helluva’ lotta’ make-up for the camera. By comparison, all that Prince Andrew has done by way of achievement is being born and then managing to lose all his hair and that too, with much left (pun intended) to be desired.
We already have female superheroes and toddler superheroes and animal superheroes and even LGBTQ+ ones. But it might be a while till we have a proper bald superhero. No, Doctor Manhattan doesn’t count. Neither does Professor X or Luke Cage. Thanos was bald and although his idea was pretty much about doing the right… okay, let’s not start. Maybe Saito-san from the One-Punch Man which just goes to show that as always, the Japanese have beaten us to evolution. But that’s the sad reality of life, losing your hair for no inexplicable reason is somehow linked to being a lesser human. When science has already proven that hair is a primitive relic of/in/on our species and rather inutile on the whole. If only matrimonial sites would understand this and just remove this segregating filter…
This column is for anyone who gives an existential toss.
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