Thursday, February 17, 2011

Tough question #2

So the first tough question I posted made me feel GUILTY.  Then several kind readers reminded me that guilt is an invention of the mind.  My own mind.  But is stupidity?  Tough question #2 has me feeling STUPID (and I don't mean outrageous).  OK, I didn't feel that stupid, but I didn't know the answer, and I still don't, even though I took the time to look it up.

The question was posed while I was cuddling with GJ at bedtime.  He was petting my hairy arm and he asked me,
"Why do arm hairs grow to a certain length and stop but head hairs grow and grow?"  
Isn't that a great question?  The kind only a curious child with enough time on his hands to stare at arm hairs and wonder about their comparative shortness would ask.  Why aren't we all going to the barber or salon to have our arm hairs trimmed?  Maybe some of you are.  Eek, sorry about that.

I consulted reliable Wikipedia but I don't understand the entry there, nor do I think that it is a complete answer.  Doesn't it have something to do with evolution and the advent of clothing to keep us warm? 
"While the anagen phase for the hair on one's head lasts for years, the androgenic hair growing phase lasts a few short months [1]. The telogen phase for body hair lasts close to a year[1]. This shortened growing period and extended dormant period explains why the hair on the head tends to be much longer than other hair found on the body." - Wikipedia
But I don't much care about the answer in this case.  What I really love is being witness to the wonder, because it is contagious and I still have so much to learn.

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