Sunday, December 10, 2006

The most patriotic mullet that ever I did see

One of my fondest memories of VJ took place on a Worthington Field Studies trip out West in the summer of 2002. We were celebrating the Fourth of July in Jackson Square, Wyoming, a small city located near Yellowstone national park. VJ had been one of the key players in the so-called "Mullet Revolution" at Westerville South during the first years of the 21st century. While he had already sported a powerful mullet during wrestling season the previous year, the moving landscapes of the Wild West had inspired him to cut another mullet.

VJ, with his characteristic gusto, wouldn't settle for a conventional barbershop hair cut. Instead, he decided that he must have a public cutting. After announcing his intention at a local pizza parlor to a group of British tourists that he had befriended, VJ led a small parade of mullet lovers around the narrow streets of the sleepy town, ceremoniously ending on his knees in a heroic pose in the center of the town square. There he announced to a crowd of well over one hundred curious spectators that he needed a volunteer from the audience to cut his hair. After several moments of confusion, a woman from Idaho stepped forward and accepted the challenge. Someone else provided a pair of safety scissors (yes, the same kind that you used to use to cut red and blue construction paper circles when you were in kindergarten). VJ kneeled proudly with a priceless VJ grin on his face as she sculpted a beautiful dark drape from the back of head. After the work of art was complete, VJ rose dramatically as would a bronze statue being erected and let the astonished crowd admire his new do as it swayed in the gentle summer wind. Several not unattractive girls approached him to request a photograph with him as though he were the Backstreet Boys. Just before the Independence Day fireworks began, VJ led a triumphant victory march through the streets.

The moral of this story is not that VJ had remarkable charm and charisma, a terrific sense of humor, and exceptional creativity (while all of this is doubtlessly true). The moral of this story is that VJ had an incredible gift for making people feel happy and free. He made everyone, even strangers, feel comfortable to be themselves and proud to express themselves, even in unconventional ways. VJ loved that which was uninhibited. For me, this is what made VJ so damn likeable and special and so utterly impossible to replace. And it’s not a coincidence that this story took place on the Fourth of July.


This is a blog to honor the memory of VJ Pomante. This is hard time for us all and it's important for us to share our thoughts and feelings about VJ. Please feel free to share your memories with others who knew and loved VJ.