Jun 152008

Admiral Ardeshir Cowasjee has always had a thing about dyed hair, which makes it hard to answer why he is such an ardent admirer of Gen. Musharraf. I suppose it is something else about him that he likes so much that he is prepared to overlook his jet black head of hair

What is common between President Pervez Musharraf, Imran Khan, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain and Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry? Even a schoolboy knows the answer: They are all members of the Kala Kola Klub.Imran Khan is a member with enhanced credentials. He has had a hair transplant too and he has had it dyed. I am a life-long member of the Imran Khan fan club and I would be in his corner even if he dyed his hair shocking pink. And even if he had no hair.

Since we are on transplants, at the risk of having Raiwind county guards set bloodhounds after me, were I reckless enough to enter its green acres, mention needs to be made of the most famous of our transplanted: the brothers Nawaz and Shahbaz. I hope they will not hold it against me or consider me a member of the Musharraf Glee Klub were I to say that I would prefer them as they were.

These are two good looking guys and they didn’t need those extra hair, each single one of which has been yanked right out of their scalps (Ouch!) and replanted one by one. How long does it take, one must wonder? Is it painful? Or is the recipient put under general anesthesia? I have the most formal of relationships with the former prime minister, but the younger sibling I could have asked, but dare not do so since he now rules the gallant province of Punjab and his police adviser is said to be a bearded gent who has long had the reputation of not eating breakfast unless a few enemies of society have been dispatched to you know where.

Ah! summary justice: executed before you can say Tully (Mark, not the former Farzand-e-Rawalpindi).

Admiral Ardeshir Cowasjee has always had a thing about dyed hair, which makes it hard to answer why he is such an ardent admirer of Gen. Musharraf. I suppose it is something else about him that he likes so much that he is prepared to overlook his jet black head of hair, with only the sideburns left stylishly gray. I have seen the Admiral getting worked up when it comes to dyed hair. I am relieved that Zulfikar Ali Bhutto never dyed his hair otherwise the Admiral would have hated him even more.

The other day, there was a report in Los Angles Times about Pakistani men — the kind that only reporters from American newspapers manage to find — increasingly given to manicures, pedicures, removal of unsightly hair and God knows what else. Some men there are who qualify to be officially certified as ‘All Wool’ but they are not to be found in male beauty clinics.

There used to be a family in Sialkot, each of whose male members had hair growing out of every single inch of his body. When one of them would shave, he would soap himself right down to the point where the neck ends and the chest begins. Before we had those super shaving blades that we have today, these brothers used to spend more on blades in one week than what the rest of the city used to spend in a year. However, nature had failed to show a matching amount of generosity when it came to their topsides.

Transplants, I am told, are not for the faint of heart or the parsimonious. Each hair on a transplanted head cost $$$ — or if done in Old Blighty Pounds Pounds Pounds — which means that Imran Khan’s head is worth more than a new Toyota Corolla. As for Mian Sahib’s and Shbbazshaib’s heads, roughly the price of a Rolls Royce.

And that brings me to the head of Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, on which not a single hair has gone gray in the last 25 years. But then how could it because what he has on his head are not human or animal hair, unless it is a Rawlakot bear that has been skinned and dispatched to Lal Haveli for necessary plucking. I fear what he has instead of hair is black shiny rayon thread. I have always suggested to the Squire of Lal Haveli to get himself a new wig but since he wants the world to believe that he has defeated the laws of nature and not lost or grayed a single hair on his head, he has ignored my advice. It has been said that slathering the hair on your head with black shoe polish can be forgiven, but a wig is a deal-breaker.

A hair colouring advice column on a US website was asked by a correspondent who signed himself ‘Colour Me Manly, Philadelphia’, “I’m in a creative business where you are judged by your appearance and need to keep up with the young guys. I know it’s cool for men to colour their hair, but I’m still timid to visit a salon and get my hair coloured. I wouldn’t even know what kind of salon or barber to go to for starters… it would seem weird to go to the same hair colourist as my girlfriend. I’m willing to try something different, but I guess, I need the encouragement to take the plunge.”

This is the answer he was given, “Dear Colour Me Manly, Beauty rituals are no longer reserved for women. Men know that looking polished means going that extra round in the grooming department, particularly when lasting impressions are made after one brief mental snapshot. Waxing back hair? No problem. Trimming chest hair? Takes two minutes. Hey! We even know about all those he-men who wear pantyhose. Take the plunge.”

Not everyone is so upbeat. Consider this posting, “Thing is, you can TELL the dye is dye. Dye on a young person don’t look too bad but after you are getting old it makes you look older! Maybe it’s that the hair is too (bright?) in comparison to the pale face? Makes ‘em look like death warmed over! My hair is snow white. I dyed it for at least 40 years and when I quit I feel so much better and actually (according to the spouse) don’t really look as old! Ain’t nothing worse than an old man swearing his coal-black hair is from his Indian ancestors and suddenly you notice a hank of gray hair hanging out one nostril.”

Khalid Hasan is Daily Times’ US-based correspondent. His e-mail is khasan2@cox.net



Source: Daily Times, 15/6/2008

 Posted by at 1:17 pm

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