Hippodrome, And Saving The Gulf. With Hair.

Last week I mentioned that Hipstamatic app for the iPhone – loving it:

Vincent Oliver's Hippodrome Barber Shop, Woodlawn Al

Here are some pics of the same place – Vincent Oliver’s Hippodrome Barber Shop in Woodlawn, Alabama – with my regular Sony Cybershot:

Vincent Oliver's Hippodrome Barber Shop, Woodlawn AL

Vincent Oliver's Hippodrome Barber Shop, Woodlawn AL

Bottles. Lunchboxes. Figurines. License plates. Movie posters.

Vincent Oliver's Hippodrome Barber Shop, Woodlawn AL
I would like to meet Vincent Oliver one day.
Av takes Shug to a different barber shop – the same one that Shug’s great-grandfather Frank z”l went to, where Shug’s Papa goes to, where Av goes. It’s not too-too barbershoppy in the way that everyone leaves with a buzz cut or something else super short. The barber – Buddy – knows to cut my baby’s hair a wee bit long and make him still look like he’s two. There’s a real red, white, and blue barber’s pole outside also. Nice.
Shugie – our little one – is almost ready for his first haircut, and that’s one that I will do myself. Just a teensy snip off the back. I’ve been waiting so his hair will thicken up all over, but it’s time for the back to be straightened up for the first time. See that sweet wisp in this pic?


Now! This is what I want to share: a tiny bit of it I will keep as a sweet little memento, but the rest of it which of course is going to be not much at all but is one of those ‘principle of the things’ is that I’m going to send it to the Matter of Trust organization. They’re the people who are organizing all the hair booms to help soak up the oil spill in the Gulf.

If this is the first time you’ve heard of human hair used to soak up oil, I know it sounds weird and possibly just not…right. But it is. There’s an article here in USA Today about the Boom-B-Qs going on right now to assemble oil absorbing booms for use in the Gulf. I asked a friend of mine who works at a salon and already knew about it, and they are sending in all their clippings.

Part of the article reads:

Matter of Trust, a San Francisco environmental non-profit that has used these absorbent booms to clean up oil spills since 1998, says it’s received donations from all U.S. states and several countries that amount to hundreds of thousands of pounds of hair. It also accepts washed nylon pantyhose, even with small runs or tears.

In Gulf Coast cities, the group says volunteers are hosting Bar B Q parties, which they call “Boom B Q’s,” to assemble booms in their backyards. It says other “hair-raising” events include “Cut-a-thons” and “Shave-a-thons” to collect donations.

“For past spills such as the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill, these simple booms have been highly effective and efficient at cleaning up oil,” says Lisa Craig Gautier, Matter of Trust’s co-founder. She says a pound of hair can absorb one quart of oil in one minute, and hair mats can be wrung out and reused up to 100 times.

She says her group is coordinating thousands of volunteers and directing donations to temporary warehouse space along the Gulf Coast. Hair booms reflect the largely low-tech measures that are still being used to clean up oil spills.

Many more articles about it here.
You have to think to yourself there has to be a 21st-century way of going about this but, well, we’re desperate and this works and they’re being used right now, and it’s a way that just about everyone can participate. I can’t do it because I just sent a ponytail-worth of mine to Pantene Beautiful Lengths a week or two ago. Shugie’s sweet first trim will help the Gulf a tee-tiny bit now. That makes me feel good.

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