I thought that my first experience in the blogosphere would be ironically prolific if it began with a eulogy to the fairest of people — my fellow redheads. For years I have been reminded of the rapid demise of my ginger-haired people and it has caused me great concern. Miniscule percentages have floated around the internet proclaiming that redheads amount to no more than 2% of the world’s population (sometimes merely 1%) and estimate that there will be no more natural gingers in 100 years.
At first these proclamations of my people’s demise seemed like an inevitable fate that I would undoubtably just accept but as I learned more about the red hair phenomena I realized that these estimates of doom may have been made in haste.
Apparently red hair occurs when both copies of the MC1R gene do not work properly. So if you’re a redhead, you inherited a nonworking copy of MC1R from both your mom and your dad. If you get a non-working copy from only one of them, then you won’t have red hair. You’ll be a carrier, according to Dr. Barry Starr is a Geneticist-in-Residence at The Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, CA. He even goes as far as stating that this occurrence can happen with a person of any race — I learned this firsthand when I began nannying for a family with a sweet redheaded Chinese toddler (I lovingly have referred to her as “The Little Ginger Noodle”.)
This serendipitous occurrence made me think that maybe, just maybe, there are more people out there who are often generically yelled at by strangers, “Hey Red!”
Growing up in Hawaii severly limited my exposure to more people with this affliction but aparently there are others out there — I just might have to go on a hunt. Would I need binoculars? Should I wear camo? Was there a pheromone I could purchase at a shifty hunting supply depot on the corner of some Bayview pier? Apparently not.
To my surprise I have spotted redheads everywhere, not just in San Francisco but also right on SF State’s campus.
It seems that, once I set my goal to spot more of my kind, I couldn’t shake those soulless monsters. (I can say that cause I am one.) In fact, two of the editors I work with on the campus paper happen to be my freckled, fair-skinned hommies.
Now, every time I turn around there is a carrot-top delivery man or strawberry-blonde hipster or barista.
Well now the hunt is on. And apparently I am in the midst of redhead season . . . we are a wilily bunch but I hope trap more of this diminishing race for further study.
Wish me luck.