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Sat Nov 3, 2012, 02:54 PM

Hair Peace

We were talking - about the space between us all
And the people - who hide themselves behind a wall of illusion
Never glimpse the truth - then it's far too late when they pass away
We were talking - about the love we all could share
When we find it - to try our best to hold it there - with our love
With our love we could save the world - if they only knew
Try to realize it's all within yourself - no-one else can make you change
And to see you're really only very small
And life flows on within you and without you.
We were talking - about the love that's gone so cold
And the people who gain the world and lose their soul
They don't know, they can't see - are you one of them ?
When you've seen beyond yourself
Then you may find peace of mind is waiting there
And the time will come when you see we're all one
And life flows on within you and without you.
-- George Harrison


I ventured to the upstate New York community of Sidney today, for the second time in three days. Forum members may recall Sidney making the national news in the fall of 2010, when its Tea Party Town Supervisor and two rabid councilmen attempted to force a tiny Sufi settlement to “remove” all Islamic burials from a legal cemetery. Since that time, I have been helping to run the campaigns of good people who have stepped up to the plate. Two were elected in 2011, and two more may win seats on the town board on Tuesday.

Thursday afternoon, I ran into two of my Sufi friends in front of a store on the main street. They asked me to extend an invitation to Dr. Rubin “Hurricane” Carter, to visit their settlement, and discuss some social justice and reconciliation projects. As we spoke, a highly intoxicated fellow approached us on the sidewalk. Although we were not in any way blocking his path, he stopped to stare at us in a manner that conveyed his utter disgust at the mere sight of us.

After a few moments of our ignoring him, he selected me as his target: “I’d like to cut your hair” was soon followed by “you look like a fucking faggot.” We continued to ignore him, which he may have mistaken as license to become bolder. He stepped rather close to me, and again commented on his desire to cut my hair. I told him that wasn’t a good idea, and we continued to ignore him while finishing our conversation.

Now that I was alone, he became a bit bolder, getting very close to me, repeating the hair-cut and faggot nonsense, and adding in, “There are kids with cancer and bald heads, you asshole.”

I’m an older man now, then I was young and enjoyed fisticuffs. I do try to be not only non-violent, but peaceful, as well. In fact, I’m not particularly fond of the person I was when I made a name for myself internationally, as an amateur boxer. But that younger self took over for a brief moment, and it was as if I were a spectator. I turned and stepped face-to-face with this annoying shadow. “You look like the type of guy who has made a lot of mistakes in your life,” I said. “The one you are making now is going to be the most painful mistake you ever made.” He said, “Fuck you,” and headed off in a different direction.

This type of incident never bother the younger version of me. Back in the late 1960s and early ‘70s, guys with long hair were too often the target of aggressive jack-asses. And both my oldest brother (a professional boxer) and I were at times mistaken for potential victims. I viewed street- and bar-fights as recreation. But Thursday’s incident was not so entertaining …..not because I couldn’t do a fuck of a lot of damage quickly, but because I am no longer that person who mistakenly finds meaning in it.

This morning, I attended a political breakfast on the main street in that same community. A highlight for me was showing an article in the town’s newspaper, reporting that attorney Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., and the Pace Environmental Law Clinic have joined the fight against the Constitution Pipeline. For over a year, I’ve told the grass roots groups in Pennsylvania and New York that I talk to that they can only stop this project by bringing legal cases -- few elected officials or appointed bureaucrats have enough of a spine to stand up to the energy corporations. (Robert’s involvement is especially significant, considering that his former brother-in-law, Governor Andrew Cuomo, appointed him to the state’s “advisory committee” on hydro racking.)

When I left the meeting, I walked through an alley to get to my vehicle. There were two guys standing at the end of the alley, who looked like “red necks.” I attempted to ignore them, but one fellow said, “Hey! How long have you been growing your hair?” I said that I had been for many years. “That’s great,” he said. “I used to have long hair, but nothing like your’s.”

I thanked him, and went on my way.

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Arrow 10 replies Author Time Post
Reply Hair Peace (Original post)
H2O Man Nov 2012 OP
Lucinda Nov 2012 #1
H2O Man Nov 2012 #3
DollarBillHines Nov 2012 #2
H2O Man Nov 2012 #4
coeur_de_lion Nov 2012 #5
H2O Man Nov 2012 #6
xchrom Nov 2012 #7
lonestarnot Nov 2012 #8
spanone Nov 2012 #9
Beringia Nov 2012 #10

Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Nov 3, 2012, 03:26 PM

1. What a great post to wake up to today.

Thank you! ♥

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Response to Lucinda (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 3, 2012, 06:38 PM

3. Thank you, Lucinda!

Much appreciated.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Nov 3, 2012, 03:37 PM

2. Good one, H2O Man

Back in the day in Central Texas, walking into a bar and sporting long hair was an invitation to a fight. Like you, I took some delight in just holding my own. Rednecks had their own code, so it was usually one-on-one.

Then Willie came to town and everything changed.

I live in a small town, now, and there is a line right down the middle of it. There are just two of us with long hair on the "right" side of town and our hair gets us invited to all of the parties - even the 'pubs want to hang around the token 'hairs. They are pretty easily impressed. Myself, I would rather hang around with really cool women in better bars than those wild women and honky-tonks of my younger years.

My, how times have changed.
DBH

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Response to DollarBillHines (Reply #2)

Sat Nov 3, 2012, 06:47 PM

4. I discourage my sons

from fighting. The older one is a laid-back, peaceful young man. He's big and strong, but isn't the type to get into fights. He doesn't even like to watch boxing matches very often (only does to hang out with his brother and I).

The younger one loves boxing. He's had offers from guys like Micky Ward and the late Manny Steward to fight for them. I'm happy that he's back in college full-time, and working in human services part-time. But even at a college/university, there can be violence.

A while back, in the evening, he happened upon a gal he knew being pushed around by her then ex-boyfriend. The guy had two friends with him. I would later hear from the young lady's father, thanking me for my son intervening. When I asked my boy about it, he said that he remembered what I taught him: if confronted with two or more foes, take the loud-mouthed leader out fast. The other(s) will not get involved. He said that my lesson worked well.

In ways, I did well as a father. However, both sons do have short hair. I mean, I like short-haired men. One recently moved into our neighborhood. He's become one of my best friends ....

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #4)

Sun Nov 4, 2012, 11:14 AM

5. Too funny

In ways, I did well as a father. However, both sons do have short hair. I mean, I like short-haired men. One recently moved into our neighborhood. He's become one of my best friends ....


You're so magnanimous . . . .

I think those two boys you raised have turned out fabulous, even with short hair.

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Response to coeur_de_lion (Reply #5)

Sun Nov 4, 2012, 11:22 AM

6. A friend came over

last night with a DVD of "The Fighter." After we watched it, Vic & I showed her photos of Vic & Micky Ward after they ran a 5K race, and of the boys with Micky & Dicky E. (Mick's brother). Our friend is intent upon becoming a certified "cut man" for when D fights.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sun Nov 4, 2012, 11:30 AM

7. du rec. nt

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sun Nov 4, 2012, 11:34 AM

8. Dirty Hippy!

 

On edit, could you think about donating to Muddflap?

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sun Nov 4, 2012, 11:43 AM

9. k&r...

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sun Nov 4, 2012, 12:58 PM

10. Long hair


You look good with long hair, and you do have good genes for your hair. My older brother had long hair for a while in his teens and my younger brother had longish hair.

My sister recently made a funny comment, about my younger brother, Johnnie's hair. She remembered how when we visited my grandparents on their farm, my grandmother cut my brother's hair while he was sleeping. My sister said, "Grandma must have thought long hair is evil". My parents were both extreme liberals and let us do what we wanted with our hair. But my grandmother had other ideas about it.

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