Monday, September 28, 2009

William Safire, RIP, a very good man and a life well lived -- (combover and all)

I often corresponded with Mr Safire, and in fact, one of my letters
made it into on his language books in the 1990s. A great man, great
writer. Just one thing, and please do not clobber me for this but I
must ask: why does "an entirely unassuming guy" as one observer so well put it at the Chronicle (sic) of Higher Education,and such a friendly avuncular man, why does he sport a combover in his
later years when he was going bald?

This is something I do not
understand about American intellectuals. We all age, many of us go
bald, there is nothing ugly and unbecoming about being bald. In fact,
an older man who is bald on top looks great! European men seem much less
afraid of going bald than American males.

So why do highly
intelligent people like Bill Safire and David Gergen, another very
good man, why do they bother to "cover up" their heads with combovers
that are completely visible to anyone watching them on TV or in
lecture halls? Who do they think they are fooling?

And if they are in
the businesss of telling the truth and analyzing life, why do they
"lie" to the public by covering up their bald heads? I feel it is a
sorry sorry day when American politiicans and intellectuals feel they
must cover up their bald heads with ridiculous combovers. Okay, so
clobber me on the head for saying this.

But I just saw an interview
with Safire replayed again today on TV for this obit, and there he is
in 2005 with the combover thing, and it looks dishonest. This is what
bugs me about these combovers.

Can anyone explain this? And please do
not get angry over this message so soon after his death, when else should I bring it up? I am asking an important question about
American intellectuals. Combovers make American men look ridiculous.

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