Iron Mountain ski jump

Iron Mountain ski jump

Tuesday, September 25, 2018


CHRIST IN WINTER: Reflections on Faith and Life from a Place of Winter for the Years of Winter… 

After a certain age, a woman should not be allowed to change her hairstyle. Like high school graduation. Yes, I’m all for women being in charge of their own bodies, but hair is different, because it’s not exactly part of the body, and because that’s the way we identify a woman, the way we can tell one of them from the others.

The same should be true with men changing, also, but with height instead of hair. I remember the first class reunion Jack Drury attended. Who was this tall guy? When we graduated, Jack was about five-six. This man was 6 feet tall. He had grown over half a foot after high school! How are people to deal with something like that? Yes, he was wearing a name tag, but we were all looking for that name tag six inches too low.

If a man grows more than one inch taller after high school, he should be required to change his name and move to a foreign country, like Texas. At class reunions, we’d say: “What ever happened to Jack?” “I don’t know, but I remember him well… five-six.”

Now at class reunions we say: “Who are all these old ladies?” It’s not because their backs are bent and they’re wearing sensible shoes. We liked their straight backs and their high heels fine, but we didn’t identify them by those. Our confusion is because they all have the same white-bonnet hair-do, even the ones who are supposed to have the kinky brown curls, or the flowing red tresses, or the black flip-dos over their ears.

Yes, sometimes women lose hair because of cancer, but wigs can be made to replicate the lost hair. What’s more important, a fancy wig or being recognized at the reunion for who you really are?

The rules for old age are few, but important: Stay in the moment. Do the right thing. Start at the end. Don’t mess with your hair style. There is a reason why the hairs of your head are numbered. [Mt 10:30, Lk 12:7]


“All we ask [in old age] is to be allowed to remain the authors of our own story.” Atul Gawande, Being Mortal, p. 140.

I tweet occasionally as yooper1721.

The “place of winter” mentioned in the title line is Iron Mountain, in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula [The UP], where life is defined by winter even in the summer! [This phrase is explained in the post for March 20, 2014.] Having met and married while at IU in Bloomington, IN, we became Bloomarangs in May of 2015, moving back to where we started, closing the circle. We no longer live in the land of winter, but I am in the winter of my years, and so I am still trying to understand Christ in winter.

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