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Thread: All Because Of My Hair

          
   
  1. #1
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    All Because Of My Hair

    "You good for nothing fellow!" one slap.
    "You naughty boy!" another slap. "You rascal!"
    a shower of slaps. I could see stars dancing at
    midday! The portraits of Kabir, Ghalib and Einstein hanging on the wall started swinging. I lost
    count of the slaps raining down on my clean
    shaven head and face. I wondered if I really deserved them. I was in class VIII and a boarder
    in a Delhi school. I was a good singer and there
    were hardly any school functions at which I did
    not recite a poem or sing a song.
    For days and weeks now, we had been preparing for an important function. A very prominent
    figure was to preside, and so excitement ran high.
    The classrooms were cleaned and decorated, and
    charts and photographs fixed. Everybody was
    busy.
    A poem was to be recited in honour of the distinguished guest. And who else but I could be
    asked to recite it?
    I didn't tell you that my hair was rather long
    in those days. Sometimes my parents would be
    angry with me on that account. But when I was

  2. #2
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    sent to the hostel, I thought I would have the
    freedom of growing my hair as long as I wanted.
    The situation, I realised very soon, was worse at
    the hostel. The warden, a venerable old fellow, was
    stricter than my parents. He was an artist by profession and quite unnaturally insisted on everything being neat and clean and in perfect order.
    So, very soon, my hair became the bone of contention between us.
    Every Sunday, an old barber whom we called
    'Khalifaficame to the hostel. So the whole
    morning I spent playing hide-and-seek with the
    warden. However, every fourth or fifth week I'd
    be caught and handed over to Khalifafi. He himself shuddered at the mere mention of my name
    because I was really troublesome. His hands
    quivered when he touched my head.
    The Sunday before the function the warden
    warned me repeatedly that I would be severely
    punished if I didn't have a hair-cut.
    That was just too bad, because I wanted to
    appear on stage with my crowning glory untrimmed.
    But I couldn't escape the warden's clutches and
    was duly sent to Khalifaji. The dreaded moment
    had come. I had to decide there and then whether
    to submit to his threats or revolt.
    The devil must have egged me on. I was de-
    ° Powerful person (used sarcastically)

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    termined to take revenge and settle all accounts,
    old and . I presented my head to Khalifaji
    humbly. I even asked him to shave off my head
    completely! But, of course he wouldn't take me
    seriously. At last, when I insisted, he applied
    water on my head. Then before picking up the
    razor he asked me for the last time. "Are you sure
    you want your head to be clean-shaven?" It took
    great effort on my part to convince him. Then,
    with trembling hands, he put the razor to my hair.
    It took ten minutes to shave my head thrice.
    There wasn't the trace of a hair on my shining
    scalp, I made Khalifaji trim my eyebrows too.
    Then I carefully applied oil to give it a better
    shine.
    I went back to my room, put on a pair of shorts
    and wrapped a towel round my shoulders. Then
    I came out of the hostel looking victorious. My
    companions burst out laughing and clapped as
    they followed me. I headed the procession, looking like a Buddhist monk.
    The warden was busy decorating a classroom.
    The boisterous procession of boys, yelling, laughing and clapping, passed by. The warden ran out
    of the classroom and stood stunned as he watched. He could not believe his eyes. He examined
    me from head to foot.
    That's when the blows started raining down on
    me. I had rather anticipated them and now that

  4. #4
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    I think of it—deserved them too.
    I was of course not permitted to appear on
    stage the next day. But worse still I had to remain
    with my monk-like appearance for many months.
    After that nobody ever asked me to have a haircut again, and today I am the sole master of my
    head and hair

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