Let Down Your Golden Hair

Moiboston Goldilocks!  When I was in grade school I was called Goldilocks.  Sure the nickname bugged me since I was a boy and not a girl.  I had huge blond curly hair so I guess I deserved it.  By the time I got to high school I despised my curls something fierce. 

By fierce I mean that I would actually cut the little ringlets out of my hair each morning before high school, depositing them in a black plastic trash can.  Most normal people probably would have either tried to brush them out or received a proper haircut.  But no, not me.  After I washed all the chlorine off my body, I went to my room, grabbed my mom’s yellow handled yarn shears and went to town.  If a curl was sticking up, I chopped it off — repeat this every morning.  I justified it by saying it was important to have short hair while swimming.  Thus I wouldn’t have to wear a condom-like contraption on my head except for swim meets.

Needless to say this patchy haircut wasn’t all that sexy.  Which led to exactly zero dates in high school.  Now was it the bad hair, low self-esteem, bad breath, or constant smell of chlorine that repelled the girls?  Tough to tell.  Neither of those on their own are all that sexy.  I’m going to guess it was the self-esteem thing though. 

My high school years were rough.  My parents divorced as I started my sophomore year.  Tragically one of my brother’s died later that year.  Any confidence I may have had was sucked out of me.  I bottled it all up until my college years.  Thus giving birth to the animal known as Monkey Boy.

Other embarrassing grade school stuff: I was known as Mr. Perfect Attendance as I never missed a day of school from kindergarten through sixth grade.  (note: I didn’t miss my first day of school until 10th grade and that was the only one I missed).  I won the spelling contest in my second grade class.  For this spelling achievement I was given a box of Almond Roca.  Unfortunately I lost in the school tournament when I misspelled the word exercise.  I spelled it EXCERISE. 

Then there was the time I ran for elementary school vice president in sixth grade.  I thought I had it in the bag since I was running against a fifth grader.  Turns out I lost by a very narrow margin.  To make matters worse apparently the girl I lost to had a huge crush on me.  She failed to mention this until I was well into my twenties when her mom told my mom.  Wicked.  Finally, we invented this crazy playground game called The Animal.  Basically it was this modified game of tag.  You weren’t actually captured, or "out", until your coat was completely removed.  A simple tag on the back wasn’t enough to be considered caught.  I usually made animal noises as my attackers closed in on me. 


TODAY’S RULED OUT BABY NAMES: Celsius, Uday, Kelvin, Barbie, Birch, and Imelda.


About lessinges

Seattle native, discovering life! I like ice cream, cold cereal, and The Amazing Race.
This entry was posted in Storytelling. Bookmark the permalink.

62 Responses to Let Down Your Golden Hair

  1. Phil says:

    I feel your pain.
    I was in the lipsyncing Abba cover band in Grade Three. Nuns are cruel.
    You’ve got to explain the background of that photo. Silver paint?

  2. egan says:

    Phil – that didn’t take long for someone to ask about the photo. This shot was taken in 1998 while on a road trip across the country. I stopped in Boston for a few days before crossing into French Canada. I was originally only going to wear the silver stuff in my hair, but I put it on my face and other exposed parts. Nope, not down my pants.
    Nuns can be such bitches at times. Give them a good spanking.

  3. Burr-ee-toe says:

    I sang Eternal Flame in the school talent show in fifth grade. I feel ya on the curl thing. Except I just covered mine with hats. REALLY cute.

  4. Diane Mandy says:

    It’s not too late to delete this post. You sure you want to admit to spelling bees and perfect attendance?
    If you insist on doing this, I’ll have to try an make you feel better.
    I held office in both the Math club and Latin club, and wore plaid sneakers with lime green laces. You’re getting the picture right? Total geek– me in high school.

  5. egan says:

    Burr-ee-toe – oh yes, curls are unruly and all that good stuff. I wore baseball hats for awhile, but even they had a tough time hiding the out of control locks. Only scissors would do the trick. Thankfully someone invented pomade. Are you a good singer?
    Diane Mandy – I hate to delete a post so it’s not going to happen. I like your way of thinking though. Yes, spelling bees and perfect attendance. Good times I tell you. Math and Latin club? Huh, I was part of French Club in high school, mainly for the girl factor though. Did you attend any high school dances?

  6. sprizee says:

    Stop being so adorable. I mean it!

  7. Gawpo says:

    I cannot even come close to imagining losing a sibling.
    Strip tag sounds fun.
    Misspelling a word that you know is like missing the game winning field goal from 10 yards. We have all lost that game a few times in our lives.
    You totally out-achieved me, Dude. I was good with a BB gun. That’s about it. (Starlings, since you asked. We ate every one. Are you surprised? Spaghetti sauce.)

  8. egan says:

    Sprizee – this is adorable? Maybe as one looks back on it I suppose you’re right. At the time I felt like an odd duck. It wasn’t until about 24 years old that I realized I have much in common with peeps. It was then I realized if I’m experiencing something, chances are someone else must be also. How much do I owe you Sprizee?
    Gawpo – don’t say that man. You’ve accomplished plenty. What’s this about a bird? Starlings make loud noises and love to fly in huge groups. You shot and killed one? With spaghetti sauce? Please tell me you used something other than Ragu or Prego. Um, losing a sibling isn’t fun… but it can be an incredible learning experience.

  9. meno says:

    I just thought you were anemic in the picture. I can NOT understand why the girls were not all over this action. They must have been blind.
    My nicknames in school: stretch, birdlegs, freckle-faced strawberry, spaghetti, jolly green giant.
    Does that make you feel any better?

  10. egan says:

    Meno – based on the provided nicknames you’re taller than 5’4. Can I add a new one to your list? How about Torque? I did an entire post on my grade school nicknames. Now I can’t find it.

  11. Cheryl says:

    I had low self-esteem too. I was painfully shy in high school. Not many people took notice of me…and I was a cheerleader. I was voted Best Scientist and Best Mathematician in jr. high which is more of a sad comment on my school than anything.

  12. egan says:

    Cheryl – I have a feeling we might have similar stories from high school then. In high school I wasn’t known as a cheerleader, but just some studly swimmer that always reeked of chlorine. Nothing wrong with being a late bloomer though.

  13. Megan says:

    Oh please Egan, please post a picture of young Egan with gold ringlets. How adorable. I love when little boys have super curly hair like that. They remind me of a crush I had when I was 5.

  14. Tall Chick says:

    I wasn’t known as anything except by the chess club. ^_^
    OK, well, yes, I was Amazon Woman during PE.

  15. Tall Chick says:

    PS, is it custumary to paint oneself in such a manner before a border-crossing?

  16. Tall Chick says:

    I really want to know more about the TinMan. Is he a true Woodsman?

  17. jeci says:

    I also had zero dates in high school. I had declared myself Grunge and wore enormous baggy jeans and billowing plaid shirts and let my hair just…hang there. *sigh*

  18. mez says:

    hahah, well there is this kid in grade four at the school I teach at who has fluffy fluffy gold ringlets of doom and I always think of him as goldielocks. hahahahahahahaHAHAHAHAHAHA
    People can be so cruel.
    All the way through primary school I was “piano girl” because I was so …I guess advanced in my piano tuition. So would have to play at assembly every other week. Gee, boy did that do LOADS for my popularity. In grade 6 I was chosen to sing a duet with the spunkiest boy our class. We sang “some people” by cliff richard. Yeeeeaaahh….


  19. lord f says:

    you clearly had no problem being silver, though.
    i’ve noticed the temperature-measuring theme to today’s ruled out baby names.
    you might consider x minus 1, or phillip k. dick ii, electric boogaloo.
    hugs and mittens and does your expectant wife know that you have such a large female following,
    lord f

  20. egan says:

    Megan – I will do that for you. I have some pictures to scan, but I will make sure to post a curly picture. Nothing beats a five year old’s crush.
    Tall Chick – I don’t even know how to play chess. Teach me! Amazon Woman, have you been to South America?
    Tall Chick – yes, it’s required to paint oneself before going into Canada.
    Tall Chick – read the comment I left for Phil, comment number two on this post. It explains the reason behind the silver.
    Jeci – yeah, a kindred soul. Did you try to ask anyone out? I didn’t, maybe I should have.
    Mez – are you implying you’re one of those mean people? If so, I like how your mind works. If not, forget what I typed. I don’t know how to play the piano. Music wasn’t really stressed in my family. It was a lot about sports.
    Lord F – Mrs. Lessinges doesn’t even know I have a blog. So let’s keep it down. I’m glad you figured out the temperature stuff. You’re a smart man, MINI Cooper or not. Oh, I made stuff up. She totally knows and reads the blog from time to time. There aren’t nearly as many male bloggers out there so that can explain much of it. Plus I tend to avoid alpha male sports oriented blogs. I read that shit on websites.

  21. furiousBall says:

    haha, I had perfect attendance throughout high school. goddamnit, what a waste of the best years of my partying years…oh well.

  22. Maria says:

    I would’ve loved having you as a student!

  23. Are you touching your nipple in that picture, Goldilocks?!

  24. Good for Me says:

    the pic is priceless, egan. those pants! gah!
    i’ve never understood the perfect attendance thing. is this self induced or encouraged by parents? my mom would let me take a mental health day from time to time when i really needed it. of course she’s a psychotherapist, which would account for why i’m so screwed up now. i think i went in reverse…school years uneventfully normal and overachieving(athlete, honor society, band, key club, french club, girl’s state, blah, blah, blah…all equates to nothing that makes you a successful well-balanced adult).
    i think your path sounds like a pretty good one. though life lessons are never easy. especially when they involve death and divorce.
    I GOT MY BIKE!!!

  25. egan says:

    Furiousball – so do you get sick very often as an adult? Partying in high school? People did that? Huh, I hug out at the bowling alley and my buddy’s house. We were huge dorks.
    Maria – you think? I loved most of my teachers. The first one I didn’t like happened to be in 8th grade. I was a great Mercutio in grade six. I loved elementary school and was sad when it was time to move to junior school.
    Malnurtured Snay – yes, I touch my nipples often. It’s an erogenous zone … or so they say.

  26. Amber says:

    Yeah, you were kind of a dork in school. But who cares? We ALL were in our own way. Besides, who’s laughing now? You’re married to a great girl, expecting your first child, and buying your home – not renting some two-bit apartment.
    Through my own experiences in school… I came to the conclusion that most people are just assholes and to pay them no mind.
    Do your own thing and be proud of it :).

  27. egan says:

    Amber – are you suggesting I “make it my own” Paula Abdul style? Thanks for pointing out the good things. I do realize I’ve had a pretty fortunate life thus far. Sure there have been some bumps in the road, but these make us stronger though. I think most bloggers were/are probably dorks. Hoowah!

  28. Amanda says:

    I love that picture! I will come back tomorrow and read your post completely (I just skimmed as I really need to try and get some sleep since I just got home from school) as it sounds like a good story.

  29. Leezer says:

    Are we related? I still am quite a toe-head, even at 40. I was always Goldilocks, too. But I didn’t have curls, just long Jan Brady hair. And I was brainy, which was another reason I had no boyfriends. Apparently, I was to learn many years later, a tall thin girl with long blonde hair and a sarcastic sense of humor who gets good grades is intimidating. That didn’t help me out much at the time, though. I suffered to fit in, but couldn’t.
    Don’t you think everyone feels like a dork in high school? What else is high school for???

  30. ChickyBabe says:

    Remember how upset I was when you changed your profile photo and took the curls out of it?
    Goldilocks?! Pixie is laughing so hard, she fell off her Ducati!

  31. egan says:

    Amanda – when you wake up and you have a chance to read this, see my second comment on this post. I explained to Phil what the outfit is all about. The short version is Halloween in Boston 1998.
    Leezer – sure, I do think many feel like dorks in high school. More than anything I felt socially awkward. It wasn’t that I didn’t have friends or anything, I never thought to ask girls out or anything. It was easier not to think about failing at that point in my life. I’m sure guys assumed you had tons of men following you around when that probably wasn’t the case. See, Goldilocks is perfect for a woman.
    ChickyBabe – yes, I do remember your reaction to the updated photo. The curls have remained to appaise you and others. I’ve learned a few things in 33 years, one of them is that curls can make girls happy. Pixie, you’re not allowed to make fun of me. Those days happened 20-25 years ago. Is it Ducati time?

  32. Nessa says:

    Childhood is such a bundle of joy. Does anyone make it out unscathed?

  33. Mone says:

    Looks like you were into some “Kraftwerk” music those days 😉

  34. Mone says:

    PS: Is there still snow in Seattle? I have some flowers for you on my site 🙂

  35. Amanda says:

    This is an awesome post!! I love hearing about the embarassing things people went through in school. I bet you love your curly hair now, don’t you? I was a tiny little thing with huge glasses that covered the top half of my face, a rather large nose for such a small face and a HUGE gap between my front teeth. Thank god my face grew and my nose isn’t so massive. And my gap is now fairly small and people say it’s sexy (like Sophia Loren, but mine is smaller than hers). I found a hilarious picture of my from middle school where I just look horrible and I had a perm, too. I’ll have to scan it & post it sometime.
    I played that animal tag game before – I wonder if your invention made it to Nebraska or something. One time this kid ripped my coat in the process. Mom was a little mad.

  36. Burr-ee-toe says:

    Eventually I learned about mousse and grew my hair out so it wasn’t such a curly out of control afro. Yup, singing is the only musical gift I have. Can’t play any instruments to save my life.

  37. tori says:

    I had a real comment, but just read your other comments and noticed that you said your wife doesn’t know about your blog. Really? I thought I was the only one who didn’t tell my spouse.

  38. egan says:

    Nessa – I actually felt like I did make it out fairly unscathed. There were some bumps in the road with personal tragedies, but all in all it wasn’t too bad. I wasn’t ever really picked on too bad. I just didn’t connect romantically with any women. No biggie though since that’s what the 20’s are all about.
    Mone – ha, more like Nitzer Ebb. My buddy loves techno music so I’ve heard most it from the 80’s. He went nuts for anything German, kind of like how I am about French stuff. Raging dorks I tell you.
    Mone – nah, the snow has been gone for about 5-6 weeks now. As you know though, there’s plenty in the mountains where some say it belongs. The flowers are nice.
    Amanda – I’m glad you like this post. I did a post once with all my nicknames, but I can’t seem to locate it. Must be on my old Blogger blog. Hmm, I know I invented the term “gaydar” in 1992, but I’m not sure about The Animal making it out to Nebraska. The way you describe yourself as a child is cute. Is it safe to say you were a later-bloomer?
    Tori – you took me seriously eh? I was joking about my wife not knowing about this blog. You’re definitely not the only one that doesn’t tell their spouse though. Trust me on that one. I know of at least 3-4 others who don’t. Any reason you don’t tell him?

  39. Jennifer says:

    I never missed a day of school until 8th grade, at which point I went from angel child to hellion. And also, I still hold the record at my hometown library for most books read during summer break, 9-10 year old division. 😉
    Celsius. I LOVE it. You should publish your own baby name book.

  40. Rachel says:

    Egan, How dare you steal my shirt. I wondered where that thing went. It was my favorite you know.
    Love the silver ummm… everything!
    I sometimes wonder what happened to all of the popular kids in my school. I wonder if after high school everything is down hill from there.

  41. Caro says:

    Does one ever get over High school? Sad to read you had to go through such a loss. Losing a sibling… Man, you are quite a survivor Egan! Here’s to you!

  42. egan says:

    Jennifer – so how many books did you read in that summer? I can tell you’re proud of this and I think that’s so cute. Maybe I can make a living creating baby name books. Good suggestion Jennifer.
    Rachel – you like my freaky shirt eh? I have no idea where that thing ended up. I bet it’s still in Boston. I ran into one of the “popular” kids in college and it was quite comical. He was actually pretty nice, but not so bright. He seemed to be humbled while on the UW campus. I’m not sure what happened to the others though. Maybe they blog or something.

  43. egan says:

    Caro – merci mon amie. I’ve actually lost two siblings and each was tough in their own right. I would never wish a family death on anyone, but there are positives that can come about with such events. Hey, est-ce que vous avez un blog? Je pense que vous avez dit “non”, mais je ne peux pas oublier.

  44. tori says:

    The reason I don’t tell him is because I want something of my own. Since I stay at home with the kids, I don’t have my own job, my car is the “family car”, etc. This is my own little world where I matter first. I know he doesn’t think of it that way, and neither do I most of the time, but something of my own is nice sometimes. Nothing I have written would surprise him, and it wouldn’t be a big deal if he found out, but right now it’s nice to have my own place that is just mine. Also, since I am horrible at keeping secrets, it’s kind of an experiment to see how long I can go without accidentally telling him. Hopefully he will see it as funny and not as a “secret” because I would hate for him to be hurt when there is no reason to be.

  45. egan says:

    Tori – okay, cool. Thanks for sharing this with me. I’m glad you see it this way. I think nothing on the blog should be a surprise to your partner. If you can blog about it, you should be able to talk about it too.
    I see your point about wanting something that’s your own. Especially when you have kids and such. It’s kind of funny being raised in a big family for all those years. I rarely had anything that was strictly mine so it taught me to share. Then when I moved out at 18 I went through a fairly greedy phase. Then I met Mrs. Lessinges and I was back to sharing again. It’s a nice adjustment. Being a parent will definitely put me back in the sharing realm.

  46. The Grunt says:

    In high school I had few dates and two girl friends that were seriously strange. My deal was having a dad that didn’t work and locked himself up in his room for days at a time, two senile and incontinent grand parents from opposite sides of the family living with us, and my mom having cancer. It just made me feel very uncertain and unstable. It’s hard to feel confident when you are constantly thinking of how things can be taken away from you. I can only imagine how it would have been if there had been a divorce and the death of one of my siblings thrown in. I’m glad you fought your way out of it, Egan. You are a good example, even if you are Goldilocks.

  47. tinabellina says:

    But see, it’s made you a much more interesting person than if you’d had good breath and a decent haircut and played tag the normal way.
    Your way was much better.

  48. egan says:

    The Grunt – I love the caveat there, Goldilocks. It sounds like you had much stuff going on in your house and school was perhaps your refuge. Makes it tough to be you when you’re growing up. Hey, you sure do have a way of saying very sweet things. Thanks man.
    Tinabellina – thank you mom-to-be. Interesting is such a subjective word, but in this case I will take it as a compliment. I know what you mean. Fresh breath and well coiffed hair is overrated.

  49. Tim says:

    Even if you didn’t cut your hair everyday, it still would have been bad because of the chlorine. To this day my mom still accuses me of dying my hair blonde.

  50. egan says:

    Good for Me – crap, I missed your comment. My bad. First of all, congrats on the bike. I will head over to your blog to take a peek at the new bike. Hey, girls state? Which sport? I was actually very healthy as a kid. I think it’s because I was exposed to many germs with my large family. I believe my mom sent me to school some days when I should have stayed home because nobody could look after me. Plus health care isn’t cheap when you have seven kids. By the way, I’m thrilled you love the picture. Halloween 1998 baby!
    Tim – oh, I’m glad you chimed in on this. I figured a swimmer would know what I meant by the chlorine goodness. Sweating out the chlorine and all that itchiness that followed. Fun times. Oh yeah, the great colors your hair changed to. My brother and I were just chatting about swimming a couple nights ago. What great memories. Do you still use a shitload conditioner as a result of the years of swimming?

  51. Amanda says:

    I have a theory. Mrs. Lessignes is one of the women who frequently comment on this blog. She is, isn’t she? But which one?

  52. Pants says:

    I really, really, REALLY want to play animal. I think it would be a nice addition to my drunken evening out with the girls tomorrow night.

  53. egan says:

    Amanda – you wouldn’t be the first one with that theory. Hmmm, am I really that evil?
    Pants – Animal is a fun game for people of all ages. Even better when drunk and hands down (no pun intended) beats the shit out of Twister.

  54. Good for Me says:

    being a healthy kid is a great thing. and i completely get how a mom could send their kid to school when they still may not be at 100% health. as a single mom, if you’re not throwing up or running a fever over 100…off ya go!
    in school i was on the diving and tennis teams. tried out volleyball my senior year, but it wasn’t for me. out of school i was mostly on my bike and did two cycling trips on the east coast and into canada.
    girls state is a mock-government run for one week in the summer. it includes one representative from each highschool within the state (i had been vice pres of my class for two years and was asked to go). i think i cared less about government and politics than anyone there. these girls were completely into everything about it: running for elections, voting, setting up senate and house. it really wasn’t for me at all. i don’t like being in the limelight. somehow organizing fundraisers and highschool dances didn’t equate to mock government.

  55. Good for Me says:

    and i’m curious about the bad breath statement.

  56. With that list of amazingly attractive attributes you could even lose your current love! You know the great thing about youth, MB? You never have to go back through it, forgeddaboudit – because you can.

  57. Gawpo says:

    Scroll WAAAAY back up there for this: Shot ONE? Dude, I shot 27 with two shots from the 12 gauge. We feasted. They are excellent meat.

  58. egan says:

    Good for Me – it’s so true what you say about the sick thing. I was pretty healthy, but I recall going to school sometimes as a child when now I’d use a sick day. These bike trips of yours sound very fun. I’m need to learn more about where you grew up. Oh, that kind of girls state. I remember that stuff. It’s funny how you describe it and I can see why you decided it wasn’t for you. Good for You.
    Good for Me – well let’s just say I didn’t have the best oral hygiene skills. I wasn’t really aware of when my breath might stink. I know when it’s bad now and do something about it. Back then, I just ignored it.
    TheDailyMagnet – MB? Is this an abbreviation for what I think it is? Masturbation? Come on, you can say it. I’m not going to lose my current love. She knows this stuff about me. Damn, we met on a night when I was wearing freaky blue sunglasses. (see picture associated with this post)
    Gawpo – ….and you’re bragging about this? Oh boy.

  59. CSL says:

    That’s funny, we always tell our sons that perfect attendance just means that some parents are sending their kids to school sick!
    And, I’m sorry about your brother. I had a 23-year-old brother who died, and I know how very hard that is.

  60. seb says:

    Whoah, I wish I had gotten to play that game of tag you mention when I was a kid.
    Growing up can be really rough, and I can’t imagine losing one’s brother, especially at such a young age.

  61. Good for Me says:

    i ask about the bad breath because my 9-year old son has terrible, horrible, yucky breath. we call it dragon breath as a joke, but really, it’s not pleasant. i attribute it to allergies and nasal drip (oooh, yum, i know you wanted to hear that.)
    good to know you don’t ignore the oral hygeine anymore. i’m certain the wifey is thankful too.
    i grew up in Connecticut. my first bike trip was 14 days through cape cod, nantucket, and martha’s vineyard. the second was 21 days through maine and canada. both were amazing, but the second was quite life changing.

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