Sunday, June 07, 2009

On Being Red

Today when I logged on to Angus (my trusty laptop), I was greeted by this headline on my sympatico/msn homepage: "Should you go red like a read head?" Obviously, I was intrigued. What's a "read head"? Should one's hair colour match one's voracity as it relates to the written word? Was this, yet again, another rumour matching this hair colour to preconceived notions of the bearer's personality or personality traits? Yes, I was curious: being a natural redhead, I've dealt all my life with preconceived notions of who I am, made lickety-split-snap, by people I've just met. Whether I live up to these notions or not depends on who's doing the judging, and I don't know if I could be or would be who I am if I had any other hair colour. What I do know is that people often will believe what they want to believe, regardless of what I say or do. I'm just me, and being a proud member of 2% of the population naturally born with this colour suits me fine - it's just the way it is, y'know?

Anyway, I checked out the link provided which took me to Elle Canada's webpage. It's all a bunch of hype for the "new It colour for Spring 2009." Huh? Redheads are in fashion right now. I didn't know they'd gone out. In Israel, being a "gingi" is a big deal: when the last Israeli dude I met (at the Macy Gray concert) saw my hair colour his eyes went wide and he breathlessly said, "Oh, you're a gingi!" Yeah, it was a total ego-boost considering that I haven't put any helper-copper-dye in my hair for a year, but his behaviour then became entirely inappropriate. See? A preconceived notion had entered his thinking which I was powerless to change, and frankly, I didn't have the energy to do so, so I walked away from him. The point is, being a redhead - or, perhaps, a perception of redheads - is kind of exotic and always has been. Seeing it advertised as a New Spring Trend makes my (stereotypical) redhead red blood boil. But, what really made my blood boil was the obvious typo in the original headline: wtf does reading have to do with redheads? Add "grammar/spelling/punctuation perfectionist" - so that such a headline is, as a hook, not so glaringly and weirdly stupid (where's the editor?) - to the long list of what would be in this case an accurate automatic assumption made about this re(a)dhead's persona.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Read or red? - you are wonderfully unique and "hot" and perfect just the way you are. There is a new bbq sauce out now called "Red Head" with a picture of a sexy red-haired woman on the label and of course it is a very "hot" sauce - we'll have to try some when you arrive home. Love you! Mom