Monday, July 1, 2013

What is a Redhead?

The Redhead, redhead

"Blondes are wild, brunettes are true, but you never know just what a redhead will do!" - unknown

Opinionated, fiery tempered, reserved, loyal, friendly, good humored, adventurous, passionate, strong willed and spirited, are just a few of the terms people use to describe redheads.  The desire to have red hair has grown exponentially in the last several decades.  Just about anyone can have red hair with a little help from Miss Clairol or a licensed colorist.  The shades of red available are limited only by your imagination.  Most redheads command attention merely by walking into a room.  Older men flock to redheaded women and instantly become feisty and may knickname them "Red", even if they've only just become acquainted.

But, just because you have colored your hair red, does not make you a true redhead.  One must grow up dealing with being called "carrot top", "ginger", "Ronald McDonald", "Bozo", "Howdy Doody", and other names, to understand where the redhead gets their strong sense of self.

Redheads are rare and make up only a small 2% of the world's population.  In the United States, only about 4% of the entire population is a natural redhead, but due to the population size of the USA, that percentage equates to more redheads than any other country.

What is it about a redhead which makes them different from blondes and brunettes - besides the hair color and attitude?  It's the eye color.   There are blue-eyed, green-eyed, and hazel-eyed  blondes and brunettes, but redheads are different.  The reason many throughout the centuries have been afraid of redheads has not just been because of the hair color, but because of the changing eye color.

That's right, I said changing eye color.  Many redheads have not only blue eyes, but depending on their mood, can also have green and hazel eye colors.  Yes, you heard me right - a redhead can actually have 3 different eye colors which change with their mood.  My eyes consist of only 2 colors - blue and green.  My family has learned that one color means I'm happy and jovial and the other color means it's time to jump into a bunker because that legendary fiery temper is about to explode like a nuclear bomb.

Because of our body's ability to change our eye color like a mood ring, many over the centuries who have witnessed this phenomenon have been so shocked they thought redheads were witches.  Redheads have been tortured and burned at the stake for the mere fact that they have red hair.  Seems crazy but people have been killed over the centuries for far less than that.

So, is there anything else which makes the redhead stand out from the rest of the population other than the hair and eye color and attitude?  Yes there is.  A study conducted in 1969 by the University of Pennsylvania concluded that redheads are actually proportionately smarter than blondes and brunettes.  Considering that redheads only make up 2% of the world's population, there is a disproportionate number who are high-achievers.  Thomas Jefferson, George Washington and 15 other United States Presidents, Napolean Bonaparte, William Shakespeare, Christopher Columbus, William the Conqueror, Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, James I, Winston Churchill, Oliver Cromwell, Mark Twain, Emily Dickinson, George Bernard Shaw, Sinclair Lewis, Vivaldi, and Beverly Sills, were all redheads.  What would history, literature, or music be without them?

And, of course, little old, good-natured, fiery tempered, and extremely intelligent (LOL!) me is included in that group........who increased the earth's redheaded population with 2 more humorous, good looking, intelligent, and strong-willed redheads.  So, what is a redhead?  Hang around this blog long enough and you'll find out!

by: Christie Bielss

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