Neil Armstrong, who some of you may remember was the first man to walk on the moon, has threatened to sue a barbershop owner in Lebanon, Ohio, for collecting Armstrong’s hair clippings and selling the hair to collectors.
The shop owner, Marx Sizemore, said that Armstrong formerly set foot in Marx’s Barber Shop in Lebanon about once a month, until he learned that Marx was collecting the leftovers and had sold a bundle of them to a collector for $3,000. Sizemore said that Armstrong, who loathes publicity and rarely even grants interviews, called him and asked that the hair be returned, but Sizemore said his buyer refused to return it. “Then I got this letter from his lawyer,” said Sizemore, who maintained he had done nothing wrong. Armstrong’s lawyer, however, contends that the sale violated an Ohio law designed to protect the rights of famous people. He threatened legal action if Sizemore did not either return the hair or contribute his profits to charity.
The hair was sold to John Reznikoff, a collector in Westport, Connecticut, who according to Guinness has the world’s largest collection of hair from celebrities. Reznikoff reportedly has the hair of Albert Einstein, Marilyn Monroe, Abraham Lincoln, and Napoleon Bonaparte (among others), which I find both remarkable and creepy.
Right after I moved to San Francisco, I went to a book signing by Buzz Aldrin, who a smaller group of you may remember was the second man to walk on the moon. During a Q&A session he was quizzed for quite a while by a six-foot transvestite with purple hair who said he had been a NASA engineer for a number of years and appeared to have the knowledge to back up that claim. I wondered what was going through Buzz’s mind.
I didn’t get any of his hair, but I bought the book.