Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Rolling Stones – "Short and Curlies" (1974)

It's too bad
She's grabbed a handful 
And you can't get away from it all 

Wally Moon was a very good major-league baseball player.  He was the National League Rookie of the Year in 1954 – easily beating out future Hall of Famers Ernie Banks and Hank Aaron for that honor – and played in three All-Star games.

He also had one of the all-time great monobrows – or unibrows, if you prefer:

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A male can get away with having a monobrow.  It’s much harder for a female to pull that look off, but Mexican artist Frida Kahlo certainly did.

Kahlo wasn’t shy about emphasizing her monobrow in her self-portraits:

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I’m not a dermatologist or a doctor of any kind.  In fact, I know next to nothing about medical science or science in general.  

But I do enjoy kicking back with a cold one and having a gander at the “Notable Notes” section of the American Medical Association’s JAMA Dermatology journal.

The previous 2 or 3 lines discusses a “Notable Notes” article titled “Skin Suffocation,” which explains that covering someone’s entire body with paint won’t cause them to suffocate – contrary to what James Bond said in the movie Goldfinger.  

The author of that article, Helena Jenkinson of the University of Texas Medical School, is also the author of a “Notable Notes” piece titled “Consider the Monobrow” which appeared in the July 2017 issue of JAMA Dermatology.  (Is it just me, or does “Notable Notes” sound more like something you would find in Reader’s Digest than in a medical journal?)

A 19th-century Persian painting
Ms. Jenkinson notes in that article that while the monobrow – the scientific term is synophrys – is generally regarded to be an undesirable physical trait by Americans, other cultures have viewed it as a good thing:

[T]he abrou-ye peyvasteh, or “continuous eyebrow,” was once celebrated in Persian paintings and poetry.  In ancient Greece, the monobrow was associated with beauty and intelligence.  Those lacking the feature naturally imitated it by filling in the space between the eyebrows with either kohl or lampblack, a paint made from soot.  A similar beauty practice involving an herbal paint occurs to this day in Tajikistan, where synophrys remains fashionable. 

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If you want to get rid of your monobrow, you can wax the area between your eyebrows.  

Waxing is also a popular method of grooming pubic hair, but a February 2014 “Notable Notes” article titled “Wax On, Wax Off: Pubic Hair Grooming and Potential Complications” warns that waxing the bikini area may “cause deficits in the mucocutaneous barrier that may be sufficient for viral entry and transmission, potentially increasing the risk of acquiring sexually transmitted infections.”

The authors of that article suggest that doctors advise individuals who wax their pubic areas to abstain from sexual activity for a certain period of time after waxing.  But since pubic hair grooming is usually done in anticipation of having sex in the near future, such advice may not be heeded.

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The editors of JAMA Dermatology seem to be very interested in pubic hair grooming.

The August 2017 of that journal includes an article entitled “Prevalence of Pubic Hair Grooming-Related Injuries and Identification of High-Risk Individuals in the United States,” which presents the results of a study of over five thousand Americans who engage in pubic hair grooming.  

Believe it or not, about 25% of those people reported that they had sustained a grooming-related injury.  Of that group, almost a third had hurt themselves five or more times!

Several of the co-authors of that article are doctors at the University of California at San Francisco’s hospital.  About 3% of the adults who visit the UCSF hospital’s emergency room do so because of pubic area grooming injuries.

Granted, we are talking about San Francisco here.  But that’s still a lot of injuries.

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“Short and Curlies” was released on the 1974 album, It’s Only Rock ’n’ Roll.

That album – the 14th studio album released in the U.S. by the Stones – was the last one that featured Mick Taylor.  Taylor had replaced Brian Jones in the band in 1969, when Taylor was only 20 years old.

Mick Taylor
Shortly after Taylor quit the band, rock critic Robert Palmer of the New York Times wrote that “Taylor is the most accomplished technician who ever served as a Stone.  A blues guitarist with a jazzman's flair for melodic invention, Taylor was never a rock and roller and never a showman.”

Here’s “Short and Curlies”:

Click below to buy the song from Amazon:

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