i have been told: lice, hairspray and nature

Before I continue, nobody in this house has lice.

I was brushing Jordan's hair this morning and when I was done I tried to quickly and nonchalantly pull it back into a pony tail. Jordan, who prefers her hair long, down, unbrushed and completely wild (she'd be happier if there were leaves and twigs in it I'm sure) immediately summoned forth the whiny voice and said "I don't want my hair in a pony tail. I don't want anything in my hair." I quickly finished twisting the elastic in and replied, "Well there's lice going around again. If you have a pony tail you'll be way less likely to get lice."

She reaches to pull out the elastic. I push her hand away. "I don't want it," she said. "Jordan, seriously, do you want lice?"

I'm not even ashamed about the fearmongering. She has long pretty blond hair and I'd love to play with it, but she figures that just allowing it to be brushed is compromise enough.

She scowled at me and reached for it again. I sighed and pulled her elastic out. "Fine," I said. "But if you get lice you're getting a haircut." "How short?" she asked. "Short," I said. "Like Tennyson's."

She looked at herself in the mirror. "Well I don't like ponytails because I don't like this." She pointed at the little baby fuzzies at the front of her hairline that don't lay flat and sleek. I grabbed a can of hairspray from the cabinet and sprayed a fine mist around the front of her hair and then pulled the hair back into a pony tail again. The frizzies were gone. Jordan picked up the hairspray and considered it for a moment.

"Is this hairspray?" she asked.
"Yes," I said.
"Well we shouldn't use hairspray."
"Why?" At this point I had an idea of where this was headed.
"Because," she continued, "all the stuff that doesn't go in our hair goes up, and the sun makes it stay down and the earth gets hotter and it kills the fish because it makes the water too hot." She looked at me like this is something I should know, and then left the bathroom to go back to watching TV with her brothers.

I told her later that she didn't have to use hairspray anymore if she didn't want to. Of course this is after I had a laugh in the bathroom when I was sure she couldn't hear me.

This is something that's come up before. The kid is concerned about nature. One of the other kids will dig a hole in the grass, or break a stick off the tree, and you can bet on hearing her angry scolding voice holler "You're killing nature!" She'll pick up random garbage in the grass or in parking lots or playgrounds and find a garbage can to put it in. The last time we were in Winnipeg she bolted into the parking lot to pick up a filthy, crushed water bottle. "There's a garbage right there," I said, pointing to the bin by the door of the restaurant we were heading to. She considered it, and then looked around before saying, "But this is recyclable." I told her it would be okay to throw it in the garbage, just this once.

Someday I'm going to find that girl camped out in a tree with a sack of carrots and tofurkey, keeping the loggers at bay, and refusing to accept help from me because she's still sore about that hairspray I sprayed maniacally into the atmosphere surely resulting in the death of a whale somewhere.


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