I was showering at the home of a white friend, pondering deeply as I lathered my chocolate skin, when suddenly I had an inclination to observe the labels of the hygiene products placed neatly on the window sill. One particular bottle struck me as queer; “Garnier Fructis Fortifying Shampoo, For Normal Hair.” I thought, “normal to whom?” Based on my current residence my hair’s considered alien but I can think of several locations where it would fit the norm. Like the Howard University dorms, or the south side of Chicago. If I walked into a grocery store on 79th street in the Chi, and made my way to the shampoo aisle, I wonder what I’d find? Garnier Fructis Fortifying
Shampoo, For Abnormal Hair, you know, the kind you can’t find around here, for the hair that lays straight, no kinks no waves, for that crazy kinda hair that doesn’t need grease. Or would it still read “For Normal Hair.” Now if you asked me the question do you have normal hair I’d answer, yes, yet I doubt if that product was made for my texture. But I guess I can’t complain; who wants to be normal anyway? I know what
normal really means, and no offense to normal people, but I have no desire to be normal.

Then I started thinking, why don’t we label everything normal as normal? Mayonnaise, “the normal condiment..” Country, screamo and rock will all be called “normal music.” Barack Obama, the first Abnormal President, well technically he’s half normal. Now do
you see how ludicrous this concept of normality is? The only problem I have with normal people is that they think they’re normal. Trust me, there is nothing normal about you. Many of my normal friends have lost pride in their heritage, as if minorities have a monopoly on everything intriguing, while they get stuck with normal culture, and normal hair . But this is not just a normal problem, many people, normal and abnormal alike fail to see the beauty in their own identities. Oh the irony when Black girls cry themselves to sleep wishing they were light skinned, while white girls lay for hours on the beach
fabricating melanin. I just don’t understand, I’m happy how I am, not full of pride, but proud to know I’m made in the image of God, and God is far from normal. So if every person is crafted after Him, there is no typical human, no normal ethnic group, no matter who you are, red, yellow, black, normal or blue, there’s something Divine about you. But
I guess you can’t know this if you don’t know the God you reflect. You’ll go your whole life thinking you’re normal or worthless, never seeing which of God’s many attributes are present in you. I urge you to introduce your image to its template, Jesus Christ the prototype, in many ways a normal guy, rejected by men and despised, yet for them He was sacrificed. By this, God was pleased, therefore thus says the Lord in Isaiah 53 verse 12 “I will divide Him a portion with the great,” and all who know Him will be like Him as well. Normal, I think not, followers of Christ possess the very Spirit of God, making us
extraordinary, and as if by Christ we’re not already great, just you wait! We’ve been given a promise of glorification, each saint will undergo a magnificent transformation, from head to toe, every hair follicle will radiate with beauty unlike you’ve ever viewed, when we get to heaven, Garnier Fructis will not do. If your faith is in Christ, next time
you run out of shampoo, take me up on this dare, go to the store and ask the bag boy “Where is the shampoo for glorious hair?”


from The Man Without A Name, released February 16, 2013



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