From the pages of Milky ¥ Number Seven (1419 31st Avenue S., Unit B, Seattle, WA 98144; $3)

Excerpts from Confessions of a Repentant Mullethead

By Harri Palmer

Feathered hair. Mohawks. The “Shy Di” cut. Somehow I avoided them all. But I didn’t, I couldn’t, I wouldn’t escape. . .


In 1983 or 1984 somewhere, I was really liking the Thompson Twins. This was also the year one of my best friends traded all of her Led Zeppelin albums in for Oingo Boingo albums. I really wanted a “tail” like Alannah Currie or Tom Whatshisname. Up until MTV, I’d been quite content with my stringy dishwater hair, parted in the middle, tucked behind my ears and nailed firmly to the sides of my head with silver hairclips. This had been out of style since the mid-seventies but there was no way I was going to feather my hair. Soon, however, cheesy pop bands both domestic and British had their evil ways with me, and I wanted hair that would say “NEW WAVE.” What the hell, I was already a big nerd, and chopping off a few strands wasn’t going to change a thing for me socially. I might as well have fun, I thought. And so it began.

Unfortunately for me, mom was paying for my new haircut, and the hairdresser was her good pal. They were both convinced I would deeply regret losing the greasy locks I had held onto since my earliest girlhood. Regret. Soon I would know the meaning of that word. Two against one, my hair was shorn, but only to the back of my ears. The rest remained long. I put it in a ponytail in a desperate attempt to make it look “new wave.” But no matter how many layers of baggy clothes I piled on, I still looked like a “baby dyke.” I spent the next few years wondering why everyone I met, without fail, assumed I was a lesbian.

The mighty monster moulet followed me on to college, where it infected every one of my friends. We had very little money and would cut each other’s hair with sewing scissors. A little off the sides over my ears, a little longer on top–but DON’T TOUCH THE LONG STUFF IN BACK we’d tell one another. Boys and girls alike. Curly or straight. Red, brown and blonde. Sportin’ the big “M.”

Most of my former moulet pals have moved on to other cuts, bobs, pixies, sideburns, etc. I now have some version of the “Janine Turner” do from Northern Exposure, though I hated her and her stupid-ass show. No matter how hard my mother tried to shield me from pain and regret, it still founds its ugly way to my hair. I was unable to escape the ugly ways of the demon “MOULET.”

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Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): zine cover.