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  • Writer's pictureDavid James Parr

Itchy Scalp

Jude proudly wears her Pussy Hat though over a year has passed (!) and she is not marching this afternoon but striding down 7th Avenue on her way back to the office from lunch. The hat covers most of the hair she has recently dyed an electric shade of blue, mainly because her hair is one of the few parts of her own body that she still has control over, and who knows when they’ll try to take even that away? She has always hated the easy philosophy, the cheap banality of slogan t-shirts, but this hat is not a slogan; it’s a movement. No, movement seems too simple, too solitary. A single movement is over too soon, like listlessly lifting a finger. Why aren’t all of these other women striding down 7th Avenue alongside her still ready to scream? Or, for that matter, why aren’t the men? Scream is perhaps too desperate. Scream is what the ill-fated teenage girls do in horror movies before they trip and the monster splits them in half. Rally is what she wants to do. Rally against the complexities, the complicities, the women like Carla—the Millennial in the next cubicle who argues against the feminism of Lena Dunham while ignorant of the very name Gloria Steinem. Who found Hillary “unsympathetic” and smirked at Jude’s blue hair without considering the current Clown-in-Office’s ridiculous orange-rind soufflé coiffure. Who recoils at the word “feminist” and actually laughed at Bicep Bob from Restructuring when he said, “You can’t have ‘women’ without the ‘men’ in them.” These people act as if what is going on has no critical urgency but instead is just an itchy scalp, a stiff knee, a toothache: things that only get worse before they get better. Unless you act in time. Unless you act accordingly. Maybe “scream” is correct after all.

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