Friday, May 05, 2006

The Pineapple

My hair's finally long enough to try something new. Check out my "pineapple" as my friend, Brunsli calls it. It was fun. Nice to have my hair off my neck (wow, I can actually say that - pretty cool!) It's already 90 degrees and summer hasn't even officially started here in Texas.

I'll admit, I stumbled upon the style yesterday, quite by accident. I rolled my hair on solar rollers and the curls were a little too tight so I pulled it up to shower and loosen the curl some. I purchased these wonderful new "Goody - Stay Put" elastic head bands from Target. They're made for women and sports to hold back the hair. They come in all colors and look cool. I teach aerobics four times a week and this is the only head band I'v found that doesn't slip or move. They have a texture that prevents slippage so my locks really hold securely.

After I showered I looked in the mirror and thought that's kinda cute....so I pulled out a few locks on each side in the back, and I had a cute pineapple. I wore it this way to work yesterday and today. No one mentioned anything - which usually means either they don't like it or don't know what to say - and they know not to say anything to me about my hair! Besides, my sister and ex said it was cute. If they didn't like it - they'd definitely let me know.

I'm a member of our corporate Toastmasters group at work. I gave a speech once entitled, "How'd You Get Your Hair Like That?" My goal was to educate people of other persuasions about the inappropriateness of some comments about our hair. There was this one particular VP of another color who always made comments about my hair - the styles, the changes. I was transitioning from a bald fade waiting for my hair to grow for my locks. I wore a TWA, comb twist, braids, kinky twist and sometimes sported my 'fro. Her comments used to aggravate the hell outta me! They weren't malicious, just uneducated. So I'd respond to her and others with comment's like:
"We change our hairstyles simply because we can."
or
"The ability to change our hairstyles is just one of the many benefits of being Black."
or - and this one always sends 'em runnin'
"That was culturally insensitive of you."

During my speech I educated them about the history of why Black women and men originally changed their hair texture. Told 'em about the first black female millionaire, Madame C. J. Walker and how she achieved that, told them about major lawsuits filed less than 10 years ago by African Americans who were conscious enough and bold enough to wear their hair naturally in a corporate setting and were unjustly fired because of it from major corporations due to cultural insensitivity and mis-education. I wrapped by telling them about the new cultural awakening which includes the flexibility to wear our natural hair in a multitude of expressions from twists to locks to braids to afros to puffs. I challenged them to take a look at commercials and advertisements and check out the hair styles...which are more and more representative of our natural culture - and told them that it's going to continue become more and more prevelant.

I left them with this....

"It used to bother me when people would make comments about my hair.
But now I view it as an opportunity to culturally educate.
So go ahead, ask me about my hair,
you just might learn something."
Blaqkofi and proud!

15 comments:

LocBaby said...

Your pineapple is just TOO CUTE!!!

brunsli said...

Great post!

I love your hair collage, Ms. Black Hair Educator!

Only, now I have to try those elastic bands -- I thought they would hurt. You're further feeding my PJ addiction.

Anonymous said...

I love the collage. Keep educating.

Goodnapps said...

oh shucks. I'm not anonymous. Clicked the wrong button. The above comment is mine.

BlaqKofi said...

Thanks ladies, I 'preciate yall - Blaq

Maryee said...

Awesome post and lovely collage! Thanks for sharing! I love it!

nappychik said...

education leads to enlightenment, so keep on educating. your post was great and your pics are fabulous as always!

Tra said...

Really a great post!
The collage is too cute and so is your "pineapple".

What reaction did you get after your presentation?

Leighann said...

Bravo!!! Yes, I'd like to know too. How was your speech received?

BlaqKofi said...

Ladies, the reaction around the office was very positive. It actually turned into a joke...people would lead with..."Shirley, now how'd you get your hair like that?" Now they dont' say anything at all unless it's positive, including the VP.

Jeri said...

I LOVE your collage. You're so photogenic in every photo! Your hair is lookin' good.

coco_btrfly said...

Gorgeous!

RedDredPrincess said...

I love your speech. It is funny, I never really get any comments about my hair at work.... But I do get comments/questions from random people, mostly couched with compliments (which isnt all that bad if you are going to get them!) I have had locks for a long time though and I don't remember getting those compliments when my hair was shorter. But, I have taken the same attitude that you have -- I would rather they ask and know than never ask and think that locks are dirty or....whatever else they think...

Creyole's Sisterlock Exodus said...

My strong black sister shero!!! Girl, you are too AWESOME, love the new do and the past one's too!

Your DFW sister!
LaChanda

Valenciajaz said...

Continue to open minds and close mouths sista. SAY IT LOUD, I'M LOCKED AND I'M PROUD!

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