The Husband is not an unintelligent man. He has a masters in business after all, as he tells me at least once a fortnight as if that gives him some kind of edge over me in an argument, which it doesn't. But, as my own mother says, 'there are none so blind as those who do not wish to see' and I realised the significance of that statement when not one of the men in my life noticed a momentous change in me last week.
My hair has been the source of some discussion with the sisters over the last few weeks - they were laughing at me a lot. A bit like the Three Bears, one of them has short hair, one has medium hair and one has sort of long hair, but none had hair as long as mine.
I should say at this juncture the siblings and I are cursed with bad hair. Across the board, the hair is very fine, but there's loads of it and it has a tendency to curl into quare frizzy pronouncements at the hint of humidity. It requires a lot of upkeep in the way of straighteners, hair oil, hair dye and expensive shampoo and conditioner.
My Ma won't take the genetic blame for it - she says her hair is grand, it's the Da's end of the gene pool that has made us as bad as we are. She also blames him for the streak of bad teeth and bad tempers that run through the offspring.
The hair has been a constant battle for me, like the sisters. When I was around eight, my Ma had it pretty much all cut off. The Posh Sister, being a year younger than me, got the same treatment and we went around for months looking like extras from Schindler's List. On my First Holy Communion Day, I took it into my head I wanted ringlets and, unlike now when young ladies get to hairdressers, the Ma decided to do it herself with a Braun curler that had hardly any teeth left and there were one or two 'scalp burning incidents'. The curls stayed in about five minutes of course, so it was all to no avail.
At secondary school, there were girls who had poker straight blonde Timotei hair that slid down their shoulders. There were others who had fabulously luxurious dark hair that seemed to fall in perfect ringlets. I tried growing mine until fifth year, but it looked like a bag of baby rats' tails, so I lopped it all off. Not a good idea when you have a face as long as mine. I think I was trying to emit my inner Princess Diana, though it was more like Princess Fiona from Shrek.
And I know it will come as a shock to you, but I have been dying my hair for 25 years and for the for the past ten years, I had been growing my hair, but I lacked the imagination and skill to do something proper with it.
So after work last Tuesday, I went to a hairdressers in Dundalk and asked him to cut it into a bob. I hate bobs, but there was no other alternative. So he did what the customer asked and cut a good five or six inches off. It was a huge difference and I headed home to see what the Husband and the Lads would think.
I thought the Big Lad would be particularly sad because he loved taking a strand of my hair and rubbing it on his face as he fell asleep. I walked in the door and the Husband started waffling on about something he'd heard on the radio. I went upstairs to see the kids, and they asked me to bring them up tea.
I thought I would leave it for 15 minutes to see if anyone noticed my hair. They didn't. 'You're nothing but a blind, selfish, self-centred bas***d', I told the Husband, his gob swinging open in shock. 'Wha? What have I done?' 'It's what you haven't done', I replied. And then he copped it and started spouting about how wonderful the haircut was and shouting for the kids to 'come and see Mummy's lovely hair'. Later, the Husband said I should have told him I was getting the hair cut so he would be ready with the compliments. He's not an unintelligent man, but he is a blind one.