Nostalgia, Bad Poem #3, And Hair
Be careful who you say “hey” to.
I have been thinking about nostalgia lately. I have never been a huge fan of it, and occasionally I revisit my thoughts about nostalgia and try to figure out where I stand on it and why. First, because I am trying to be orderly, I offer up these definitions:
nostalgia: n [NL, fr. Gk "nostos" return home + NL "-algia"; akin to Gk "neisthai" to return, OE "genesan" to survive, Skt "nasate" he approaches] (1770) 1: the state of being homesick : homesickness 2: a wistful or excessively sentimental yearning for return to or of some past period or irrevocable condition; also : something that evokes nostalgia
The nostalgia I am thinking of has less to do with “homesickness” and more to do with “sentimental yearning.” We seem to be obsessed with sentimentalizing our pasts on this continent. Open season has been declared on almost everything we have used, done, or experienced. We tell ourselves that we are shaping tomorrow by creating a better today, but our eyes are not turned to that unknowable future; they are trained on a past that we have recreated through various media and agreed upon as an image we can all live with. So much of what is fashionable in clothing and accessories right now for my generation are enlarged duplicates of what we wore when we were children. Movies recreate accepted versions of several wars that few of us actually participated in. 80s dance nights can be found in any city any night of the week. It is kind of repulsive how we wallow in such sentiment, because it is not even ours on an individual level. Your individual experiences and resulting feelings about the past are bound to be quite different than our socially agreed upon constructions, so what is this nostalgia we feel for a history that never was? What are we creating and why are we creating it?
You may wonder what set this off. Nothing really. I’m just blathering on again. Please disregard this paragraph.
Visit Mister Pants. He’s “quite a guy.”
Oh, yes. I just remembered what it was I wanted to share with you. It’s another five-minute poem. You may read the other two if you like (one and two). Remember that the goal is not necessarily to write good poetry, just fast poetry. This one was fun as all hell to write. (I stole the pattern from Emily Dickinson’s “I felt a Funeral, in my Brain”).
You sought a Picnic, by her Hand (or, The Thingness of Language)
You heard the Exhibit, on your Path,
And Flautists this and that
Ran bowling – bowling – though some gleaned
Since Belief had reckoned fat –
So which those few saw wield,
The Washer, quite the Card –
Was reeling – reeling – such she wrought
Her Arm did wander hard –
What such she saw him touch the Top
That thump around his Mind
Upon the like Knots and Green, over,
and Sky – rang as kind,
So that that Dictates was the Room,
Where Trying, if a Rung,
That you, so Chaos, all soft Game
Heaved, dramaturge, sung –
Why when that Shore in Nothing, shook,
So you felt through, too through –
As twist the Deed, with accurate cross,
That Undid seeing – mu –
Okay, I am really sorry for that. It is quite late, and I am still up drinking coffee, and my contacts feel fat and sticky and refuse to fully correct my vision anymore, so I don’t know how responsible I am for my initial rant and then that nonsensical poem.
Human hair is a food ingredient! Yippee!
The Rag has its own ideas for the uses of human hair.
Hair Facts and Links:
* 35 metres of hair fibre are produced every day on the average adult scalp.
* The average adult scalp had 100,000 hairs on it. Redheads tend to have the least hairs at 80,000, and blondes tend to have the most hairs at 120,000.
* 40% of women will have female pattern hereditary hair loss by the time they reach menopause.
* 90% of scalp hairs are growing while 10% are resting.
* Hair colour results from melanin, a pigment produced by cells called melanocytes. Grey or white hair in older people usually results from the melanocytes no longer producing melanin.
* “Weird and Wonderful Hair Facts” has quite a list of facts for you to peruse.
* Each hair is composed of three structures: the cuticle, the cortex, and the medulla.
* Go to The N to find out that body hair is not pointless, shaving does not make your hair grow back thicker, and the meaning of “hirsute.”