Headpointing versus haircuting!

13th May 2011

Having thought a while ago that I was going to have a Mohican when I turned 40, it was easy to ignore this theoretical concept and set it aside. But when the actuality of turning 40 started to loom, I realised that I was starting a process of thoughts in order to ACTUALLY go through with the Mohican that felt very similar to the process of completing a hard headpoint.

The route that comes to mind for me is Slab and Crack E8 at Curbar. Setting about doing this route was for me in no way organised or planned, it evolved…but that is me all over. Planning is not my middle name and routine is not the name of the game. I actually find this quite annoying about myself. When I make training schedules, I realise it’s something I have to do to kick start something but I rarely stick to them by the letter. They always evolve and change, training will happen but maybe not in the way I had originally envisaged.

Anyway, with ‘S and C’ until I actually tied on and attempted to headpoint the route, I had no idea if I was going to leave the ground. It was a bit tricky asking my friends to come out and belay and spot etc but I just had to say, “look guys, I’m really sorry about this but I have no idea whether today’s the day or even if I actually want to try this route”. But they came anyway and something inside compelled me to do it and set foot on rock. And the same thing happened with the haircut, until I actually went into Betty Tigers (even then I wasn’t completely sure what I wanted), I didn’t know whether I’d actually have the cut.

But the process of getting to the stage where I walked into the salon took a good couple of months of psyche, in the same way that it took me to master the climbing on S and C. The top roping was a game without an end goal. Maybe deep down there was an intention but because initially I found the climbing very hard and baffling, I didn’t entertain the notion that one day I would be leading the route rather than top roping.

I think what really compelled me to chop all my hair off was a feeling of not wanting to regret not having it done, rather than a need to have it cut. I have a little philosophy that I live by and that is not to look back with any regrets in my life. Essentially, actions should be thought through to an extent that the intention is known and wanted at THAT TIME. I think it’s a very sad thing when I talk to people and they say I really wish I’d done blah blah and I regret not doing it. Life is for living (I don’t mean in a hedonistic way) in a meaningful way and to gain joy and fulfilment is what it’s all about.

Do I feel better for having a mad haircut? You know I think I do…I don’t necessarily think it makes me look ‘better’ but that was never the aim. I had a need in me do this (yeah I know, I’m weird) and I’m very pleased I’ve done it. In the same way but more so, I was ecstatic when I headpointed S and C. It’s a feeling of pride I guess, in that you’ve managed to push yourself mentally. You know you’re alive when things like that happen….