Letting It Ride on The Freeway to Flow

In Celebrate by El Camaleón14 Comments

ROAD TRIP!

“Let It Ride” takes on a whole new meaning when talking about the changes that can happen in your life on your longhair journey.

I realize some of you may not relate to the AARP crowd. You still have that "new man" smell; running on high octane, burning rubber and cruising in the fast lane. Perhaps speeding so fast through life that the significance of your longhair journey is lost in the dust cloud behind you.

A hairstyle change might be just another Tuesday if you're 22, but if you've had the same hairstyle for 22 years, it can feel like turning a Model T into a low-rider. The journey to long hair is significant to each of us in our own way, and while the wheels might be different, here’s how my life has changed on the Freeway to Flow.

 

DENTS AND DINGS

I won't spin a tale of woe to describe my state of being before I decided to grow out my hair. It might be cheap therapy for me, but the details wouldn't really benefit the story and I'm not fishing for sympathy. One thing I know for certain is that everyone collects a few dents and dings with each lap around the track. We all have problems, right?

CLOSER TO THE FINISH LINE

A journey tale, however, must by necessity have a starting point. I'll try to condense 56 laps around the starting line down to three words...I felt defeated. Gravity is serious on this side of the summit. I didn't really feel depressed, more like I just checked out. I had accepted as fact that there was no way my life could improve going forward. With just my cat and my dog in my life, another lap just meant that much closer to the finish line.
Image
"...I felt defeated"

TAIL FINS ON A PRIUS

I was binge-watching Spartacus, Vikings, and Game of Thrones when I got the bug to let my hair grow out. I'm fortunate to have good hair at my age. I suspect that gray is planning a hostile takeover, but brown is putting up a good fight.

Still, I feared that long hair on me might look like tail fins on a Prius. I knew I'd catch some flack, but I figured I could use the "Bucket List" defense. (I plan on using that a lot on the downhill side.)

ONE EXIT AWAY FROM 60

I tried a few times before but I couldn't even make it to the awkward stage. I could only get to the "bugging the hell out of me" stage. I think most people believe that deciding to have long hair is all it takes and in a few months you'll be whipping like a rock star. It hit me pretty hard when I realized I'd be one exit away from 60 by the time my hair would be as long as I'd like. I'm a vintage model and I figured it might be my last chance to have long hair. I had to get off the freeway and take the scenic route.
Image

COMMITMENT WAS THE TUNE-UP I NEEDED

I started to see the change in my life once I understood that commitment was the tune-up I needed. I learned that from The Longhairs, and I have to say that I'd still be on the road to nowhere without them.

This community is like a gigantic travel plaza; something for everyone and everything you need. I loaded up on supplies, filled my tank with motivation and inspiration, got the “maps” and information I needed, and committed to my journey.

Image
"I loaded up on supplies"
Commitment, I've discovered, is not about continuing or following through with the easy things. It's about starting and sticking with the difficult things. You've heard the slogan, "It gets better." No! It doesn't get better, you have to make it better. No one's going to make it better for you.

LET’S POP OPEN THE HOOD

It occurs to me that I've written all these words and I haven't mentioned what the changes have been in my life. Well "How" is the point of the blog and learning how to commit from The Longhairs is the most important part. But since you read this far you must be interested. Let's pop open the hood and have a look.

HARD TO FIND AN EXIT

I quit smoking. Anyone who's been down that road knows it's hard to find an exit. I didn't quit specifically for the benefit of my hair but I imagine it won't hurt. Getting a few extra laps around the track might not be so bad. I quit because I knew I could this time— I knew how to commit.
 
"I started eating for my hair"
I started eating for my hair. I'm serious. I wanted to make sure my hair had the best chance to be strong and healthy. You'd have to know that I'm a very picky eater to be impressed. I went from frozen meals every day to eating a ton of fruits and vegetables, oatmeal, yogurt, quinoa and other healthy foods. This remarkable change was only possible because I learned how to commit.
Image

OLD JALOPY ON BLOCKS

I started working on the yard and thinking about regular exercise. I had become that old jalopy in the back yard up on blocks with no wheels. I need to visit my mechanic and see if my internal combustion is firing on all cylinders, but for now I'm thinking about a walking schedule and maybe some stretchy-bendy stuff I can do at home.

There have been a few other less significant changes, but all told the road for me is less bumpy and more interesting now. The Longhairs are an incredible source of inspiration and motivation for me, but I give myself credit for doing the work. No one's going to make it better for you, but a road trip is always more fun with someone to talk to and who knows the way.

Image

THE JOURNEY IMPROVES YOUR LIFE

Whether you are a muscle car, town car, pickup truck, or old VW hippy van; whether you have fuzzy dice, a crucifix, a crystal or a pine tree hanging from your rearview mirror; whether your journey is a Sunday drive or a cross-country trek, I have to believe that the journey to long hair improves your life in some way. I know my life is better because of my longhair journey.

REV YOUR ENGINE

Has your journey changed your life? Are you stuck at a red light waiting for the awkward stage to pass? I’d love to hear from you. Honk your horn in the comments section! Then pull into The Longhairs Station and fill your tank.
 
 

GUEST BIO

Mike O. (aka El Camaleón) is an accountant by day, rebel when no one is looking. He lives in Sacramento and has been letting it ride since April 2017. Representing the Baby Boomers he brings a fresh perspective to the awkward stage and the longhair journey. Often wacky, always sincere, follow his brand of outside-the-box Instagram posts @mike_o_sacto.

Comments

  1. welcome to the non profit organization ” les vieux c..s du tif” (the older hairy stupid people) ( from an idea of the female vlogger Bernardine l’ Ermite)
    it is also difficult for older women let accept they become rapunzels…, but as we become being retired, we get more freedom…

    1. Author

      Chamane,

      Bonjour! Thank you for being a loyal reader and for taking the time to comment.

      Stupid only in that I would not be able to identify a single Taylor Swift song. Smart because of all of life’s experiences endured; and smart to realize that one is a sum of these experiences but need not be defined by only one of them. My journey to long hair has inspired me to take notice of my life instead of looking for a destination.

      Prends soin de toi

      El Camaleón

      1. in France or Belgium, the word ” con” is not an insult, only a dirty word, and it is common that we call himself ” vieux con”to avoid the young people have to call us as
        as i am 64, i have gotten the card of the npo…lol
        ans i am more stupid as you: the only american singer i can identify is Joan Baez …during my childhood, i were feed by the songs of Jacques Brel ( a belgian singer) who destroyed by laugh the french-belgian conservatism…
        for me, the experiences are the sum of much mistakes and errors,and we shall cease be mistaken when they will put us in our coffins….lol
        let it grow, bro !!!

        1. Author

          Absolutely correct. Let us hope he that put us in our coffins is not mistaken.

          I will check out your article.

  2. Great post! I’m right in there with you. At 55, I have letting it flow since Sept. 2017. I figure I worked hard for my gray hair and I also felt that this was my last chance. The Long Hairs have been a great source of inspiration and I am very thankful to my supportive family. I can’t imagine turning back now!!

    Your fellow boomer long hair 🙂

    – Greg

    1. Author

      Thank you Greg!

      Don’t count us boomers out yet. The Longhairs are indeed inspirational and I admire them for what they are doing and how they approach each task. They’re not just selling product; they have created this incredible brotherhood. I enjoy the guest posts because it gives me a chance to connect with other brothers, and not just in my age group. I am in awe of the young guys in this community with so much talent and ambition.

      Are you coming to The Great Cut? You don’t have to cut your hair. It’s going to be a great chance to meet all the wonderful men in our community.

      Let It Ride!

      El Camaleón

  3. Mike, great post buddy, you are the man 🙂
    Always a nice bonus as well when the long hair actually does suit you! Trying to rack my brains as to which biker movie you should have been in 🙂
    I’d like to make it across to the big cut, not for a cut (just approaching the 10 month mark so by March I’ll be progressing nicely!) but to meet some good people, yourself being one.
    Take care, Nick.

    1. Author

      Good to hear from you Nick,

      I think long hair suites every man…they just have to give it a chance. It does take the journey to realize what it means. Biker movie – Pee Wee’s Big Adventure? 🙂 I did go to Sturgis in 2004 on my Goldwing. One month, 6,000 miles, epic!

      I hope you can come. Your mane will be long enough to join in the great hair whip! I’m not going to cut mine, either. Just going is a great way to support the cause and it’s going to be one hell of an event. When will you ever have the chance to party with a couple of thousand longhairs!?

      El Camaleón

    1. Author

      Drew,

      Thanks for reading my post and honking your horn!

      Bohemian…I like it! That’s right up there with being moosetickler’s spirit animal.

      If you check my recent Instagram post (mike_o_sacto), the one where I have a buzz cut and full beard in profile, it shows 90 pics in 60 seconds. I have many looks, hence the moniker El Camaleón.

      Will we see you at The Great Cut next March? It’s going to be an epic event, not to be missed!

      Let it Ride, bro!

      El C.

  4. Great post! Love to hear about a fellow Longhair’s journey, and your passion shines through!

    Looking forward to seeing everyone at the Great Cut! I will be participating in the cut, but hoping i’ve been on the Freeway to Flow long enough, that after my Great Cut I’m not starting fresh.

    Let it Ride!

    1. Author

      Yo El Tatuje!

      Dawg! Glad you are coming. Yes, I love this community. The awkward stage is a bit difficult, but if you have fun with it like I did, it’s over before you know it. Eight inches is the minimum, you’ve got about 3 inches of growth until The Great Cut. Even if it’s a little close, we’ll get you tuned up and detailed so you can get right back on the freeway and put the hammer down.

      Thanks for the comment, bro.

      El Camaleón

    1. Author

      Sheila,

      Thanks so much for your comment. It will be great to meet you, too. I want to experience my long hair for a while so I’m not donating. That’s why I’m doing whatever I can to help. Thanks for adding the link for volunteers. It would also be awesome for people to just come and enjoy the day. It’s great way to say “Thank You” to El Rubio and El Moreno for all their hard work and let them know that what they are doing is meaningful and appreciated.

      C’ ya!

      El Camaleón

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.