Skip to main content

Bad hair day

TELEVISION is heavily tattooed with shampoo commercials—why, the idiot box is all slathered up and virtually oozing with shampoo suds. The market for hair care preparations must be lucratively huge.

Or most people in these islands have gone bonkers over their hair, so hair care has become a national obsession. Never mind what’s under the scalp and skull, hair care is the order of the day. Say, beer suds also does wonders for hair setting but San Miguel Corp. won’t advertise it as such.

Now, the rind of kabuyaw—the so-called kaffir lime or Citrus hystrix – can lend a silky sheen plus a delicate sweetish scent to a maiden’s midnight tresses. Kabuyaw is now quite difficult to find—a seed-grown 6-inch tall sapling cost us P150 and it took months hopping from one garden show to another before we actually got one.

So, it will take 2-3 years before such pathetic sapling finally grows into a decent size and starts yielding the genuine article that tops every shampoo preparation currently available in plastic sachets and non-biodegradable plastic containers.

As we licked our chops over prospects of huge savings from having nature’s version of a hair care formula, we found out that three caterpillars have feasted and grew fat on the foliage of the kabuyaw sapling. It took less than a week before those leaf nibblers stopped their infestation and just hung out cocooned on a kabuyaw thorn— and turned up a surprise of three green-and-black winged butterflies.

So the kabuyaw stood there nearly defoliated—and those precious leaves ought to have gone into a quaint tangy broth for Viet and Thai cookery or into plain sinigang.

The few days of rain have nudged the sapling to put forth some tender buds that’ll hopefully replace the gnawed-out ones. That means in a week or two, we can try out either a Viet or Thai stew.

See: there’s a whale of a difference between shampoo preparations that choke the idiot box and this hard-to-find genuine article. The fruit rind goes to hair care. The fruit pulp goes into flavoring kinilaw na tanigue or a unique version of lemonade.

The leaves are for cooking up something tasteful and exotic—uh, make that whatever the caterpillars that turn into butterflies can leave untouched ought to turn up something delicious.

Shampoo won’t be drizzled on kinilaw na tanigue. Or mixed into a marinade. Or stirred into an exotic broth. Shampoo containers won’t ever be a nursery for butterflies.

Don’t consider this as an advertisement for ersatz shampoo to ease a bad hair day.


Popular posts from this blog

Every single cell of my body's happy

I got this one from Carmelite Sisters from whose school three of my kids were graduated from. They have this snatch of a song that packs a fusion metal and liebeslaud beat and whose lyrics go like this:

"Every single cell of my body is happy. Every single cell of my body is well. I thank you, Lord. I feel so good. Every single cell of my body is well."

Biology-sharp nerds would readily agree with me in this digression... Over their lifetimes, cells are assaulted by a host of biological insults and injuries. The cells go through such ordeals as infection, trauma, extremes of temperature, exposure to toxins in the environment, and damage from metabolic processes-- this last item is often self-inflicted and includes a merry motley medley of smoking a deck a day of Philip Morris menthols, drinking currant-flavored vodka or suds, overindulgence in red meat or the choicest fat-marbled cuts of poultry and such carcass.

When the damage gets to a certain point, cells self-destruct. T…


MAYAMAN pala sa tinatawag na phytochemicals o sangkap na panlaban sa samut-saring sakit ang singkamas—na sa alias nito sa Latin ay talagang kahindik-hindik na ang dating, Pachyrhizus erosus. Tunog erotikong suso sa dulo.

Jicama ang pangalan nito sa pinagmulang lupalop. Mula pa Mexico, nakarating sa ating pampangin nitong kasagsagan ng kalakalang Manila-Acapulco. Jicama. Sumablay ang bigkas dahil kasintunog ng “higa kama.” Nabalbal. Naging singkamas sa ating wika.

Pampigil sa salakay ng kanser, pampababa ng antas ng masamang cholesterol sa dugo, likas din na antibiotic o pamuksa ng mikrobyo sa katawan. Pampalakas sa likas na panlaban ng katawan kontra sakit. Anti-oxidant o pampahupa sa pagiging amoy-lupa. Karaniwan ding gamit na sangkap sa siomai at lumpia.

Hubad na lumpia! Opo, hindi hubo’t hubad ang tawag sa naturang lutuin. Hubad lang. Masarap kung may kalahok pang budbod na mani.

Kaya nakagawian nang talupan ng mga hayok. Ilalantad ang kinis-labanos na laman na pinipithaya (kahu…