Monday, October 25, 2010

It's haircut time!

Fingernail trimming tonight for Voov before her bath. The usual circus of book-reading to distract her, and Shmoop crowding in, blocking out the light so Hidden B can't see well enough to trim off the sharp little edges with which Voov mangles herself. Her skin hasn't been too bad of late, but she's got a patch of eczema on her torso that she was scratching away at with whatever hand wasn't being trimmed.

I read somewhere that infants with eczema exposed to emollients containing peanut protein were at higher risk of becoming allergic to peanuts. The Derma-Smoothe oil we use on Voov contains peanut oil, according to the ingredients. But apparently the proteins have been denatured-- by heat treatment?--or broken down somehow so that they are not allergenic. That's what Hidden B told me when I brought the matter up. The dermatologist said that she'd even applied Derma-Smoothe to a kid with a peanut allergy and seen no reaction. Now that takes some cojones. Why is the manufacturer using peanut oil? It must have some remarkable lubricating properties.

My big achievement of the day was getting a haircut. I'm at the age when my head is only really growing hair around the sides and the back, but you still have to get it cut every once in a while if you don't want to look like this guy.


Getting a haircut for me is a matter of timing. I have to do it on days when eczema isn't running rampant on my scalp. (It favors the back of my head.) Sometimes put off getting a haircut for weeks because 1) I've never been keen on letting anyone look closely at my scabs and 2) I've always thought a barbershop would be a fine place to pick up an infection. Sometimes you see barbers take those scissors from the jars of blue sterilizing fluid, and sometimes they just buzz your head with clippers that most likely were just on some other dude's head a few minutes ago. I get my hair cut in downtown San Francisco, which about thirty years ago was where AIDS first broke into the news. Always makes me nervous.

This morning I realized my head was an eczema-free zone. And I was getting shaggy in back. So off to SuperCuts at lunch.

I used to cut my own hair-- well, buzz it really-- but in my current job it isn't an option. Wouldn't look good if I missed a spot, as I've been known to do. Last time I went to a barbershop near home I got some gloomy lady who, besides boring the hell out of me talking about firearms, told me that the guy whose ass was responsible for warming the chair I was sitting in had had a fungal infection all over his head. It was a total Seinfeld situation. She told me that sterilization was priority #1 for barbers. I wanted to leap out of the chair and run screaming from the shop, but didn't want to make her feel bad. I got the haircut. It was no better or cheaper than the one in San Francisco.

So, the moral of the story? Maybe I ought to flatter Hidden B that she's got mad styling skillz.

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