World Tour of Bad Hair

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Note to self: If ever I need inspiration for a blog topic all I need to do is go spelunking in the family photo albums.
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I recently had access to my parents’ dusty, nearly-forgotten photo albums.  I think I lost about two hours looking at pictures of family, friends, and adventures from years past.  A couple of things struck me about the pictures from my youth:
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  1. I am ridiculously fortunate to have been so many places and seen so many wonderful things.
  2. In nearly every picture, I’m surrounded by someone who loves me.
  3. At every stage of my life, I’ve gone through a horrible hair phase.
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It’s the latter of these reflections that has me thinking.  Horrible hair is pervasive in pictures throughout my youth.  Don’t believe me?  Well then join me, friends, on a tour of Ryan’s horrible hair.
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Caveat: I’m not motivated enough to scan dozens of old pictures.  So the ones below are pictures of pictures.  Ignore the freak flash.
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Seems it all started in middle school…
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Faces of the acceptably-coiffed have been blurred to protect their dignity identity
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I was in the marching band and I had bad hair.
You can’t even imagine how popular I was.
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There was a HAIR DRESSER involved here.  We were robbed.
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Things, sadly, didn’t get much better in high school….
Holy bangs!
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This would be when I thought a perm was a good idea.
And gold bracelets.  WTH.
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Right before my senior year in high school, my whole world changed.  I moved overseas to Singapore and got to travel all over Southeast Asia with my family and my school. I started taking care of myself better; I ate healthier.  I got in shape.
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Somehow, despite my leaner physique and eye-opening world travels, the bad hair managed to persist.
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My one trip to the Great Wall, immortalized with
frizzy, ORANGE hair. Shame.
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The best strategy for hiding bad hair?
Ponytails and cutey-pies.
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Enter the college years.
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This picture is a mosaic of disasters: the uber colorful ski jacket,
the bad (but thankfully brown) hair hidden by
the velvet riding hat.  I think I hear the fashion police now.
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Looking back there is so, so much I want to tell this young woman,
not the least of which is, “For the love of everything holy,
use some hair product, woman!”
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Sometime during my college years I found a good hair stylist and learned the commandments of acceptable hair:
  1. Thou shalt search and find a hair stylist, recommended by someone with excellent hair.
  2. I am thy hair stylist, thou shalt not have other hair stylists before me, even if you have to wait an extra week for an appointment.
  3. Honor thy coloring and thy roots.
  4. Thou shalt not perm.
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And yet, the bad hair persisted..
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Bad hair inMexico.
(In my own defense, I am 6 months pregnant in this picture.)
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Is that a duck butt on the back of my head?
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Perfecting the soccer mom look….
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Fantastically bad bed head.
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Oh, Ryan.  Too short.  Waaaaaaayyyyy too short.
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So if you see me around please talk me out of red (read: orange) hair and perms.  Instead, persuade me to use hair product and listen to my stylist.  I thank you.  More importantly, my future family photo albums thank you.

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