Just a girl with a perm.

It's 1983. Life was simpler then. Or maybe it was just the perm. Maybe when they tug and stretch each strand of hair and treat it with something that smells like rotten eggs to make it curly, it actually dulls some part of your brain that thinks too much.

Thank god for the year 2000 because I believe The Perm has finally returned. Callista's got one, Pfeiffer's got one. If everyone's doing it, why can't I?

I know what you're thinking. When you imagine actresses with perms you see Goldie Hawn, Cher, Barbra. Look at Barbra with that perm. She looked happier, didn't she? And if not happier, certainly more secure. Who wouldn't be more secure with a helmet full of curls?

Babs was born to get The Perm. Quick shower, a couple of stabs with the pick, a scrunch here, a scrunch there, and that was it. Where have all the good times gone? With the perm, that's where.

Maybe I wasn't happier in 1983 with my perm, but I didn't have so many complicated problems to solve like bangs or no bangs, to blow dry or not to blow dry, round brush, metal brush, hair spray, mousse, gel. It was just The Perm. Camping proof, morning after proof, good from any angle proof - The Perm was a magical creation.

Thank god, after all these years, that the perm is making a comeback. I've been waiting all this time, stowing away my Stevie Nicks wardrobe, keeping a pick handy just in case.Callista Flockhart may be too thin but The Perm works it all out somehow. That's what I loved about it in 1983; somehow The Perm worked it out.


It really isn't much to ask our celebrity friends to keep having their hair permed so that other, less fortunate, straight-haired girls can live a little easier, look a little better. (Most anti-perm people actually like straight hair better --imagine that!)

Sadly, as I look at these celebrities I am reminded that all of them look better with straight hair. Could it be that I look better with straight hair too? That I really am caught in a time warp in 1983? Am I doomed to be like those teachers we always felt sorry for because their clothes were woefully out of fashion?

I do a quick look around. I do have one t-shirt with the collar cut out.

It isn't that I want to be fashionable or that I even care one way or the other. It's just that looking back at life as a young girl with my whole story as yet ahead of me, I couldn't help noticing that I was one of those people that just looks better with The Perm. I am willing to admit that I may be the only one.



CineScene, 2000