I love red hair. It does something to me. For example, if I see someone with amazing red hair at the shops, I must talk to them about it. And, if I’m honest, it takes great restraint for me not to reach out and stroke it. (Funnily enough, strangers don’t really like the locks being fondled. Who would have thought?)
Anyway, I blame several people and characters for my adoration of Titian-types, which began at an early age (seven, to be precise) when I was given:
#1 MY CABBAGE PATCH DOLL
And in the tradition of all dolls with a stamp of their bum, she had a name not often chosen by little girls for a toy: Karlene Emily.
She was beautiful. No wool hair for her, just real (ok, synthetic) red hair all the way.
I treasured her, and now she sits in Betty’s room and I get VERY CROSS if I see she is not being appreciated in the way a 26 year old doll should be. Actually, maybe I’ll pop her back in my room. Mr POW would love a little snaggle-toothed Cabbage Patch staring at him in bed, I’m sure.
#2 RICK ASTLEY
I’d happily get Rick-rolled whenever and wherever. His was the first cassette I ever owned and you cannot stop me when Never Gonna Give You Up is played, even though my absolute favourite is It Would Take A Strong Strong Man (watch it here if you feel like singing). I’ll never let you go, you sexy ranga, Rick!
#3 ANNE OF GREEN GABLES
This is no surprise to you, dear readers, is it? I’ve written how I much I loved the feisty, spirited Lady of Shalott-lover many times. (Don’t get me started on Gilbert.) I mentioned how I BEGGED Mum to buy me a red wig in Grade Seven and when she said no, I had to settle with using Saint Anne for my confirmation name. (Sorry, God: I’m sure she was a lovely lady, but I was really interested in her for being an Ann-with-an-E.)
#4 MY POP, and
#5 HIS BROTHER
My grandfather was one of about seven or eight kids, all of whom had various shades of red hair. Pop was the typical ginger with blonde eyelashes and freckles. I have fond memories involving him buying me Buffalo Bill ice-creams, picking cherry tomatoes from his backyard, and how he would constantly re-glue the soles of my plastic high heels in his oil-scented garage. (But there are also hilarious stories of him losing his temper something FIERCE during family card games.)
Then there was his brother, Darwin. My great-uncle was an absolute gentlemen blessed with thick, chestnut hair that retained its hue, even into his 80s. A bachelor for his whole life, Darwin loved his horses and lived out his days in the tiny Queensland town of Mulgildie. You don’t meet too many of his kind – one in a million.
#6 BETTE MIDLER
Beaches, anyone? Even better than the songs that come out of her mouth is her straight-talk. For example:
- “After 30, the body has a mind of its own.”
- “I always try to balance the light with the heavy – a few tears of human spirit in with the sequins and the fringes.”
- “I made a pact with myself a long time ago: Never watch anything stupider than you. It’s helped me a lot.”
#7 NICOLE KIDMAN
I’m talking Nic from the BMX Bandit to Far & Away era, not the quasi-blonde thing she’s rocking these days. In fact if she’s reading this: Nic, you should return to your roots; literally.
#8 PRINCE HARRY
Break me off a piece of that. He’s got spunk, he’s cheeky, and he’s sometimes out of line, but that’s totally okay because he’s a redhead! Can’t wait to see who the lady will be to this royal beast.
#9 MY FRIEND FLICKA
One of my besties, Beth, is blessed with a mane a horse would envy. (Between you and me, I’m pretty sure I became friends with her in the first instance because she had The Big Red.)
Look at it and covet, people:
Beth’s second daughter (who’s only five weeks younger than Betty) was born with a head chock-full of flaming locks, so we have forced them together to also be besties – whether they like it or not. Why? Because everyone needs a redhead (or a few) in their life.
Now, the only blip on my redhead radar was a young lass in my Grade Two class. I won’t mention any names.
*cough* Louise Kingston *cough*
One lunchtime, I was hanging upside down on the monkey bars (risking life and limb, as society now recognises) when Louise picked up a dead, dry, flat Frilly lizard and popped it down my gaping uniform. I screamed, fell to the ground, sobbed and wriggled around like a loony, much to others’ enjoyment. I haven’t been able to look at Frillys – alive or dead – the same way since.
(P.S. I should add Louise is a cool chick and we rode our bikes home from school together for many years, despite The Horrific Reptile Incident of 1987. And she follows the blog. It’s FINALLY payback time, love. Ha ha!)
So, do you have a redhead you like to give a shout-out to? Tell me about him/her!