Hair Watch: Day 7

Plugging for Plugs: In past posts, I’ve made reference to John Kerry’s heroic prosecution of sketchy hair-plug surgeons in the early 1980s, which I learned about in a fascinating New Yorker profile of the man. I’ve also posted about my disdain for medical malpractice lawyers. So, just to set the record straight, the kinds of cases that Kerry tried, where he represented 16 men whose heads were implanted with carpet fibers, are the kinds of malpractice suits that are a-OK in my book.

And to further clarify, I don’t mean this as an indictment of hair plugs in general. There was a fascinating article in the New York Times recently about how far hair plugs have come since the Kerry crusade. Ignoring the $10 per follicle fee, these new transplant procedures are, quite frankly, life saving. All you need is a thick tuft that can be “harvested” from the back of your head and moved, hair by hair, to the front. Vice President Cheney might even have enough remaining slivers of silver to qualify.

On a personal note, in my more pathetic moments I’ve considered this procedure. In college, I even went into the Bosley Clinic in Center City for a free consult, and then ran the other way when they mentioned the price tag: $8,000. But after reading the Times story, I have newfound hope for two alternatives. A new Merck drug called dutasteride promises to be an extra strength Propecia (God help my poor prostate gland). And the good ‘ol University of Pa. is perfecting a procedure to isolate follicular stem cells and implant them into bald craniums (yet another reason to vote for Kerry: He’s pro-stem cell research).

Note: This will be the last daily installment of “Hair Watch.” Mainly because it’s devolved to the point where I’m talking about my own hair instead of the candidates’. But also because the political hair news appears to have dried up. Don’t worry, though. I’ll still check in periodically, with all the grooming gossip that’s fit to post. And please, if you catch any good hair stories, send ’em my way (