Sunday 10 May 2009

Aware EGM: My hair flashed before my eyes

When the Association of Women for Action and Research (Aware) old guard defeated the usurpers at the truly extraordinary general meeting (EGM) last Saturday, it was a victory for pluralism, diversity and tolerance.

And I'm just talking about the hair.

Basically, the people with the craziest hair won. And let me tell, I know first-hand about crazy hair.

On the scalps of the 3,000 who swarmed the Suntec event were an eye-popping variety of coifs in unexpected styles and colours.

The scary thing is that I've had every one of those hairstyles at least once in my lifetime. It was like seeing the life of my hair flash before my eyes.

Take for instance Ms Alex Serrenti, an Aware volunteer who was featured in The New Paper on Monday. She is botak.

This was of course the look I sported when I was a fresh army recruit like so many other Singaporean males on Pulau Tekong. Possibly the lowest period of my life - apart from last month when I ate some bad Indian rojak.

At the Aware EGM was another volunteer who has so far only been identified as "woman with loud hailer".

This could be because it would be rude to identify her as "woman with extremely unflattering bowl cut".

Maybe she planned to see the new Star Trek movie as a Vulcan, but still.

My mother forced me to have this haircut when I was in primary school and I haven't forgiven her since. Oh, is today Mother's Day? I'll send her an e-card - even though she doesn't have a computer. Ha! Revenge!

And then there's Ms Zaibun Siraj, a former Aware president, with that retro-futuristic purple streak in her hair.

If I was a middle-age woman with a matching outfit, that was exactly what I looked like back in the early '80s as a fan of all those great New Romantic bands from Duran Duran to A Flock Of Seagulls.

Yes, I ran... I ran so far away. The only difference was my streak was blue in colour.

My theory is that the old guard won simply because Ms Siraj frightened the bejesus out of Ms Josie Lau and company with her purple hair and matching oufit.

"Did you see the scary woman with the purple hair? She looks like the Joker. What chance do we mere mortals, who believe that a neutral stance on homosexuality is tantamount to a tacit approval of gay lifestyle, have against a super villain like that?"

Hair today, gone tomorrow.

- Published in The New Paper, 10 May 2009

Dear Mr Ong,

Thank you for the light take today. It's good to be able to laugh at ourselves, although I don't think Zaibun is going to relish comparisons with The Joker. Then again, who knows? We all love a good laugh.

Dana Lam