The Unruly Curse – Part one of a trilogy

I was talking on the phone with a friend of mine (I’ll call her Judy) the other day (actually about 20 years ago, at this point, but something happened to me this morning that made me think of the conversation) when the subject of an early morning knock on the door came up.

It seems that her husband had somehow locked himself out of the house while releasing the dogs for an early morning constitutional in the backyard dog run. Being dressed only in his shorts and a small (but not unattractive) apron which proudly proclaimed “I’ll never be barefoot and pregnant”, he, quite naturally, was hesitant to go to the front door of their house to gain entrance. (Being new in the neighborhood, he was concerned about first impressions, and moseying through the front yard in such attire would give him unwelcome exposure – so to speak – to curious eyes.)

He did manage to get back into the house through a small, but rather high, window in the laundry room.  This was most fortunate because, had he knocked on the front door expecting his wife to let him in, he might still be waiting there today.

“Why” you might ask, “might he still be standing on his front porch dressed in half his underwear and scandalizing his neighborhood?”

“Why”, you may wonder,” would his otherwise loving wife allow him to remain in this vulnerable situaton indefinitely?”

“How”, you may inquire, “could years of loyalty and trust be suddenly replaced with callous disregard for a spouse’s dignity (or lack thereof)?

In truth, the answer lies in understanding (or at least awareness of) one of the most malignant manifestations of the human condition suffered by mankind. Throughout human history, few afflictions have struck more fear into the hearts of men and women of puberty age or greater than this one cataclysmic malady. (Although young boys also suffer from this condition, but don’t seem to be at all bothered by it.)

It is truly insidious in that you never see it coming. It happens overnight.

While you sleep.

You don’t feel it. You can’t see it happening. It creeps silently, stealth-fully, undauntedly over you.

While you sleep.

Oddly, it seems to ignore most of your body, save your head which it encompasses with tranquil ferocity.

While you sleep.

As you awaken in the morning, you are unaware of the appalling transformation which has befallen you. It’s not like morning mouth – you can’t taste it or smell it.

Even if you have had it before, you can never know for sure you have it until you have done one of two things.

The first, which you will only do one time in your life unless you are a complete moron (or a pre-adolecent boy), is to get out of bed, put on a bathrobe and stroll out to the end of the driveway to get the morning paper. This, in and of itself, will not cause you to become cognizant of your disease.

The light will begin to faintly glow when your neighbors’ dogs start to howl. It will become a little brighter when you notice the three year old next door is standing twenty feet away staring at you, mouth agape, while his two year old sister points, starts to cry and turns and runs away dragging her stuffed toy orangutan named Oswald, screaming “Mommy! the Booger Man ate the next door neighbor! And now he wants Oswald!”

And finally, you will know that something is terribly wrong when the animal control department shows up ten minutes later to check on a report of a large rodent seen in your driveway making off with your newspaper.

The second thing you can do to test for the dreaded disease is to look into the mirror. This will give you immediate knowledge of any sign of sickness. Indeed, there will be no doubt of any resident infection.

What is this demonic intrusion into the lives of billions of people world wide? And who is safe from it?

The epidemic: Bed Hair.

Who is safe?: Nobody.*

*With the minor exception of bald people. However, those ‘fortunate’ folks have to watch out for ‘Bed Dome’ – not covered in this paper.

Yes, it is sadly true. No one is safe from this scourge. Not rich or poor. Not old or young. Not male or female.

It doesn’t care what other diseases a person has, either. If you ever go to bed, for any reason, the chances are you’ll get at least a mild dose of the stuff.

Oh, I know, “what about all those movie stars? Their hair never gets messed up!” Get real. When was the last time you went to a movie? Movies are now into ‘realism’, and realism means Bed Hair.

But what is Bed Hair, anyway?

Bed Hair is all the unnatural curls, points, waves, horns, spikes, flips and frizzes you see when you look into the mirror when you first get up in the morning. It is truly a universal occurrence. No, it’s not a pretty sight, but some very famous people got to be very famous people because they took a positive attitude toward their own Bed Hair.

(Story continued below the image.)

This man has just discovered that he has a severe case of Bed Hair. Note the pained expression on his face. That’s because he has just come back in from walking his dog around the neighborhood – and he did it before he looked into the mirror.. Pray for him. And the neighbors. But pray mostly for the dog, who attempted to hide his face the entire time he was outside with his “master”…

“Who?”, you ask.

Well, let us take a brief look at a few historical figures.

First, let’s look at one of history’s most famous barbarians, Genghis Kahn. You’ve seen all the pictures of him in his hat with ring of fur around his head and the point in the middle. That hat is one of history’s cruelest hoaxes. You think that’s a hat? Nope! Bed Hair.

That hair caused Genghis Kahn to become barbaric in the first place. Really…

He started as a mild mannered yak herder, but he took so much flack over his hair that he finally lost it and started killing anyone who as much as smiled in his presence because he thought they were laughing at his Bed Hair. Because most people, at some point, laugh, he ended up killing off a lot of people in a lot of places and got the (rather undeserved, I might say) reputation as a barbaric, murdering conquerer. Give the guy a break – he was just an overly sensitive yak herder!

Next, we will discuss another famous conquerer in history, Napoleon Bonaparte.

Those curls decorating his famous forehead? Yep, that’s right.  Bed Hair. At least, they started out that way. Here’s what happened…

He and Josephine woke up one morning when Napoleon was a mere private in the French Army. When they did, surprisingly, he had his now famous locks curled just as they are pictured in all of the paintings. Josephine was so taken by them  that she immediately grabbed Napoleon and cried out “Oh my conquering hero!”, etc..

Well, as it turned out, this was just the encouragement that Napoleon needed. His self confidence went through the stratosphere and the rest is history.

By the way, Napoleon’s curls were easily maintained by introducing humidity into the process (relying on the ‘bedtime process to perfectly replicate a specific case of Bed Hair is a pretty difficult task. It just doesn’t strike twice in exactly the same way.). Being as it was not always humid everywhere he went, he had to bring his own humidity with him. He was able to do this by carrying a spray bottle full of water with him whenever he went out of town to conquer some other nation. He was a bit protective of his ‘secret of the curls’, so he always kept it hidden under his coat, ready to be employed at a moments’ notice.

(Sadly, for him, he didn’t bring his spray bottle to Waterloo because he thought the name implied that there was going to be enough humidity so that he wouldn’t need to artificially create his own. He was, obviously, wrong in that assumption. No humidity = no curls = loss of confidence = defeat.)

Now let’s look at another famous French national, Marie Pres d’le Porte. So who was this so called famous historical figure? You may not know it, but you have seen her a million times. Well, you may not have seen her, but you have seen the statue for which she modeled.  Yes, Marie Pres d’le Porte was the model and inspiration for the crown of our own, beloved Statue of Liberty. That crown is NOT what most people think it is. That’s right- Bed Hair! One of the most observed and least recognized cases of Severe Spiked Bed Hair ever recorded in the long, illustrious history of mankind.

Let us now jump to the Twentieth Century. Do you recognize the phrase “Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds”? No? How about this: E=mc2?

Yes, that’s right! One of the most famous and recognized cases of Bed Hair in scientific history, Albert Einstein.

You all know that he was one of the greatest minds of the last century, but did you know that he failed math in high school? And he did poorly in grade school, too. So when did he become so smart? When did he become recognized as a genius?

I’ll tell you…

One day he woke up late for work at the post office, so he didn’t take the time to brush his teeth. By not brushing his teeth, he also neglected to look into the mirror. And when he didn’t look into the mirror, he didn’t notice his now famous case of Bed Hair. Coupled with the look of sheer terror  at the thought of losing his job, he sped to work on his bicycle.

Along the way, he passed the local university and narrowly missed hitting the Dean of Physics. Well, the dean took one look at him and declared him a genius on the spot!

Ergo, E=mc2.

Our last example of famous people who made it big with Bed Hair is the musician/singer/songwriter Art Garfunkle. While it can be argued that his case is not strictly Bed Hair, I will endeavor to demonstrate that it is close enough.

We have seen Art playing his acoustic guitar and singing with his partner, Paul Simon, but it is not widely know that he actually started out playing electric guitar. Now that it is just a bit more widely known, it may be wondered why he gave up his electric guitar. Nobody is really sure, but one widely accepted theory Among those in the know about Bed Hair is that – well…

One night Art was so intent on practicing on his guitar that he failed to notice that he was falling asleep. As luck would have it, he happened to be practicing right next to his bed, onto which he collapsed upon falling asleep.

As luck would further have it, when he zonked out, he was still holding his beloved electric guitar, and it was still plugged in.

Well, as luck would still have it, he left his bedroom window open for air circulation.

And, as luck would inevitably have it even more, it started to storm outside.

And when this happened, rain entered the room, flooded the floor, hit the guitar, completed a circuit and created new opportunities for fame and fortune for Art Garfunkle.

When he woke up the next morning, Art felt completely drained and he ached all over, particularly in the area of his groin. He went into the bathroom, started the shower, got undressed.

As he passed the mirror, he noticed that his hair looked a little different. He got into the shower and started singing in his now famous beautiful high voice…

After about three notes, he stopped – he realized that something was drastically different… and then it suddenly hit him –

When he went to sleep last night, he was a baritone – and now he was a soprano!

Shocked (no pun intended), he jumped out of the shower and ran back to the mirror to see if he could detect any physical change that might explain what had happened.. The only thing he could see different was his hair… He wore a crew cut in those days, and he could plainly see that his hair had started to grow out a bit – it must be about a quarter of an inch long now…

Well, it’s about 1:30 in the morning now, and I have to go and work on my own case of Bed Hair. But let me close with this final warning…

Bed Hair has caused more people to remain in self-imposed exile within the safe confines of their own homes than all of the plagues and epidemics to ever sweep across the face of the Earth put together.

There is no safe sanctuary from the devistation wrought by this unruly curse.

Unless you are a dog.



Next up… Why Dogs Don’t Have Bed Hair – Click here to go there….