Hair Dressing Salons: Norman Mailer

She was a big woman, who could have been sister to Ali’s mother for they looked something alike, but she was in fact his father’s sister, and in her finery tonight, and proud and more than conspicuously careful of her hair, which had been straightened and marcelled and worked upon by an artist who must have been the equivalent of a high pastry chef…..

Norman Mailer’s turn of phrase so often gets it right: a perfectly turned metaphor for the work and artistry that goes into a good do.  But at other times his inability to engage and reflect just magnified his bigotries and so often got it wrong.

From The Fight, Mailer’s account of the Ali-Foreman clash in Kinshasa, 1975.


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