Friday, December 09, 2005

What Bumble says to Bumble in the shower

Update on the every other day hair washing experiment (because I know you've been dying to hear):

I think I've finally become used to moderately greasy hair on day 2. We've (my roommate and I) acquired a showercap and it seems to be helping immensely. I also find that just briefly alluding to what day it is at the start of every interpersonal communication helps cut down on the embarrassing hair discussions. Like, I say, "Hi Jill, It's day 2. Do you think you could help me find this particular transaction on the revenue statistics report?" Then we are free to move beyond my dirty hair and get to the business at hand. I've always been preemptive that way. Which brings me nicely back to the shower cap.

It's a bumble and bumble shower cap that my roommate received when she purchased some WAY overpriced hair stuff from Trev and his pirate cohorts at the salon. I stare at it every other day when my head is not in it and it says in BOLD! SASSY! letters, "Goddess...Bella Donna...Hot Mama....Sexy...blah blah blah" but it also says, "curl conscious, not self-conscious" as though juxtaposing that to Hot Mamamammaamamama is going to help me understand being a woman that much better. I started to wonder when being SELF-CONSCIOUS became a derogatory thing. The literal idea of Self-consciousness seems like a godly trait, right? So why is it better to be curl conscious than self conscious? This isn't just Bumble and Bumble's fault...there seems to be a societal connotation that's been ascribed to the the words "self" and "conscious" when used together. So much so that we feel bad about ourselves if someone describes us as self-conscious EVER.

www.M-w.com defines self-conscious thusly:
1. Aware of oneself as an individual or of one's own being, actions, or thoughts.

That sounds pretty appealing to me...and I would guess that most of us who choose to live on a higher level of consciousness would describe ourselves as such. The idea of being aware, being alive to yourself and choosing to be awake during your existence here on earth should be something to aspire to. I WANT to be better and I think that most of the time I achieve this sort of balanced internal insight, so what pushes me over the edge to the category 2 and 3 self-consciousness (which definitely happens!)?

2. Socially ill at ease: The self-conscious teenager sat alone during lunch.
3. Excessively conscious of one's appearance or manner: The self-conscious actor kept fixing his hair.

Notice the sentence examples! teenagers, lunch (food), actors (I'm sure this refers to Angelina Jolie), and HAIR...all things that I talk about like, every day of my life. So I guess I am self-conscious !???!?!???!???! and not self.........conscious. I think it's self-critique that takes us to the BAD consciousness place. If I could somehow learn to be complete in my self, then looking at me wouldn't be such a harrowing experience...and I could throw out the shower cap and be proudly self-conscious. I could say that Bumble and Bumble are wrong and that I would rather be self-conscious than curl conscious. So that's my lifelong process to become definition 1 of self-conscious... But until I nail it, I guess I am going to continue my preemptive strikes...breaking up with people before they can break up with me, pointing out that my hair is kind of greasy and trying to mind-read when I'm not quite sure what others are thinking. blah blah blah.

6 comments:

Adam said...

In response to your second point:
2. Socially ill at ease: The self-conscious teenager sat alone during lunch.
My heart goes out to all those shy teenagers who feel they don't fit in. I'm reminded of a quote I picked up a few years back:
"Shyness has a strange element of narcissism, a belief that how we look, how we perform, is truly important to other people."
-André Dubus, Broken Vessels, 1991
But as cool as that quote is, I think very few people ever get to the point that they truly don't care what others think of their appearance. So worrying about your hair should fall into the category of "so trivial that it doesn't bother you", though, nobody will blame you if it does bother you.

Hey, It's Ansley said...

I too allow myself to venture into that trying to mind-read area. Why is it that we seem to only mind-read the negative. How do you know your co-worker isn't thinking, "How come KaRyn's hair looks so healthy and shiny (that's from the every other day washing) and is always cut in these amazing styles I could never pull off." Because, truly, that is what I'm thinking in my head when I see you.

Anonymous said...

You're cool! :)

Kelly said...

Hey KaRyn
Just found your blog and I love it.
I really do.
I am working at definitioin 1 too. I wish 2 and 3 weren't even options!:)

Kirsten J said...

"Why is it that we seem to only mind-read the negative." I loved that, Ansley. I usually notice KaRyn's hair first, too. I can only do one thing with mine, long and straight.

I'm really self-conscious. All three kinds.

Sara McOllie said...

I was not the self conscious teenager that sat alone at lunch. No, I was the self conscious teenager that sat with the foreign exchange students at lunch. Seriously did my Sophomore year at a new school. Prior to that, I had lived in the same school district throughout my educational experience and hadn't needed to question how I fit into the social scene. My role had been set for 10 years.

However, because I didn't have an understanding of the 1st definition, I fell prey to the 2nd. I think, while the 2nd and the 3rd have the ability to coexist with the 1st, when we truly know who we are as individuals, we care less about the 2nd and 3rd. Did anyone get that? Who's on first?