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Dr. A. Al Sayyari
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Editors:
Dr. Shihab Ghanem
(UAE)

Ashraf Girgrah, B.A. B.Ed
(Canada)


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Last update July 2020  التحديث الاخير في
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المؤسس
الدكتور عبدالله السياري
(السعودية)

أسرة التحرير
الدكتور شهاب غانم
(ألامارات المتحدة)
أشرف جرجره
ب.ع. آداب، ب.ع. تدريس
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Can pulling hair on frequent basis lose  hair and lead to baldness ?

It all started by Dr. Adel Aulaqi. He was looking for a topic for discussion. As he was scratching his head for topics to generate discussions, he realized that there were a few strands of hair on his head !!!!
As he became suspicious who the culprit might be, he remembered the late teacher Hussein Al Hibishi, pulling his hair in class when he gave wrong answers to the teacher’s questions.

Was the late Hussein Al Hibishi responsible for Adel’s hair loss?

Abdulla Uqba :
As for Adel’s lost hair at the hands of Hibshi your research has proved his innocence! I don’t recall Mr. Hussein pulling my hair or touching me even once, strong and athletic though he was. Could that be that Adel and his fellow-hair-losers were naughtier than others! I have lost most of my hair but that happened in my late fifties and early sixties. Still I am not as bald as the ‘shining cranium”.

Dr. Shihab Ghanem :
I believe Mr Hussein Al Hibshi joined teaching in Aden around 1951. This was in the Secondary school in RIZMET (regiment) in Crater. At that time the Seconday school accepted graduates of the primary schools and had forms 1 to 7. Form seven was for boys sitting for the senior Cambridge. In 1952/3 the first three forms remained in Rizmet and the school was renamed the Govt Intermediate School. Form 4 became form one of either Aden College or the Technical College. Aden College went for GCEs instead of senior Cambridge and also added 2 years for A levels.
I was in the first year of the then Secondary School (later Intermediate School) in 1951/52 and Hussian Hibshi was one of our teachers. His brother Shaikhan was teaching my brother Qais in form 3 of the same school. Shaikan was a lawyer and I was told (as he never taught me personally) he was a good teacher.
As for Hussein he was a well trained athelete. He was educated in Iraq and I think so was Shaikhan (but I am not certain about this) .
Hussain used to punish the boys often and perhaps daily by two terrifying methods: hitting the top of the head of the boys with his elbow saying ( أجيب لك كرسوع) or by winding the hair of the boys around his finger and pulling it suddenly with the boys (about 11 years old) yelling with pain. I don’t remember seeing any strands of hair actually coming out except only once when a few hairs were pulled. I can’t remember if it was Adel Aulaqi's hair although he was my class-mate at the time. I was always frightened of Mr. Hussain and he did once threaten me by saying (بعدين أجيب لك كرسوع) but luckily he did not actually do it. He used to laugh joyfully when pulling hairs or hitting heads with his elbows. I don’t know where he learnt such methods of punishment, but he was certainly the only teacher to use them during my school days.
He was a very capable athlete and he was at one time our scout trainer. I saw him once hit the face of one of the boys in our group in the face with his metal whistle which was tied to a small rope. I still remember the name of that boy. He studied later in Aden College, but passed away many years ago. Once we were on a scout trip to Sira castle. He did a hand-stand on the wall. A little mistake and he would have dropped the full height of the mountain. Once we were on a scout trip climbing Shamsan. At one difficult point all the group and Mr. Hussain went up but I being the smallest of the group could not. He dangled to me a scout rope and asked me to hang to it. I refused as the fall would have been fatal or dangerous. He shouted threatening me and in an act of despair of fear of being left alone I held like grim death to the rope and he pulled me up like a fish! I can never forget that episode. I think after that I stopped going to scout training classes.
Mr. Hussain also taught us physical training later at Aden College but rarely used his methods of punishment of earlier days. The last time I saw Hussain was in the early or mid seventies in Dubai. May Allah rest his soul.
 

Dr. Abdulla Al Syyari:
We have two diametrically opposing yet strongly held views

On the one hand Adel Aulaqi and Jamal Hamid ( who, by the way is still in possession of his entire scalp hair) will swear in court that Mr Hebshi was in the habit of pulling hair

On the other hand, Abdulla Uqba and Mohamed Albar are equally certain that he did not. Mohamed goes further and suggests that this is old men’s imagined tale

Now what are we to make of this conflicting evidence from prominent members of society ( all of whom are Aden College alumni, no less).

One clue to a possible conclusion to this world shattering dilemma can be glimpsed from what Adel said. He said and I quote “whenever I got the answers wrong, he (meaning Mr. Hebshi) used to punish me by pulling a lock of my hair …..”

Ah! Could it be, then  that Adel and Jamal  tended  get the answers wrong and had their hair pulled  often enough that they could not forget the experience having happened to them personally) On the other hand the brilliant Mohammed and Abdulla always got the answers right  and thus never had their hair pulled, there fore never remembered seeing this ever happening

But hold on, there could be other equally plausible explanations:

a)      Could it be that Mohammed and Abdulla developed a   protective denial stance that led to genuine forgetfulness of the whole hair pulling episodes that did, in actual fact, occur?

b)      Could it be that Adel and Jamal being studious pupils insisted in sitting in the front row, thus being often asked questions by Mr. Hibshi that resulted in some wrong answers that led to hair pulling whereas Mohammed and Abdulla tended to take the back row seats ( perhaps falling sleep )and thus avoid being asked and even missing the whole hair puling episodes as they were hn a sleepy oblivion all the while.

c)       Could be that Mr. Hibshi is innocent all along and there is a mix up of the  real teacher culprit hence the opposing recollection?

Perhaps the older Ghanems could some light

Abdulla Uqba :
As for Adel’s lost hair at the hands of Hibshi your research has proved his innocence! I don’t recall Mr. Hussein pulling my hair or touching me even once, strong and athletic though he was. Could that be that Adel and his fellow-hair-losers were naughtier than others! I have lost most of my hair but that happened in my late fifties and early sixties. Still I am not as bold as the ‘shining cranium”.
Wonderful humour Abdulla and Adel. Please keep it coming. Ashraf will be delighted as this falls within his planned light-hearted diversified items to attract as many readers as possible. Adel could do well to apply your excellent Shampoo and hair restorer. Do you have a magic panacea to turn our totally grey hair into permanent black?

As regards Adel’s comment that his “premature” balding might be attributed to Ustad Hibshi’s hair pulling, let me say this. I have not been taught by Mr. Hibshi and I am  not yet bald. This might – at first glance- indicate that Adel’s theory is right. However to prove this theory or disprove it beyond doubt I suggest the following scientific study

Let us look at the prevalence of baldness among Aden College alumni before and after Mr. Hibshi’s  era

 I did a pilot preliminary study of my own and here follows an abstract of this study

Objective To investigate the long term effect of Mr. Hibshi’s hair pulling on hair loss among  Aden College Alumni

Method & Subjects This is non-blinded, controlled and randomized study comparing the development of baldness 40 years or more later in two groups of Aden College alumni

 Group I consisted of 5 randomly selected students who were exposed to Mr Hibshi’s “ hair pulling and Group II consisted of 5 students who were not exposed to hair pulling. Exclusion criteria included

a)    Those students who were bald from birth

 b ) students with family history of baldness  so as to exclude pre-existing genetic factors.

For the purposes of this study, baldness is defined as hairlessness of 80% or more of the surface area of the normally hair covered area on the top of the head

Significance of differences was examined using Pearsons chi square test

Results

Group I Abubakr Al Qirbi ( bald), Adel Aulaqi ( bald), Khalid Muhiriz ( bald). Jaffar Al Sakkaf ( bald)  Mohamed mohsin Atroosh ( bald)

Group II  Zuhair Shihab (not bald) , Abdulrahman Tarmoom ( not bald), Anwar Girgrah  (not bald) Farooq Murshid ( not bald), Abdulla Abdul Salam  ( not bald)

 Conclusion

This study shows that 100% of students Group I (taught by Mr. Hibsh) have developed baldness compared to 0% in Group II ( p<0.0000001), Whether this was due to hair pulling, the food served at the College canteen in the early days or merely to increased stress being taught by Mr. Hibshi requires further study

Declaration of conflict of interest The author declares that he is a product of post Mr. Hibshi’s era. He also owns a factory that makes excellent hair.
 

Mr. Abdulla Uqba :
Wonderful humour Abdulla and Adel. Please keep it coming. Ashraf will be delighted as this falls within his planned light-hearted diversified items to attract as many readers as possible. Adel could do well to apply your excellent Shampoo and hair restorer. Do you have a magic panacea to turn our totally grey hair into permanent black?
 

Eng. Nagib Khan :
It is also said that most of the bald people are clever. Therefore Mr. Hibshi must have contributed greatly to the attainment of knowledge, raising of intellect and advancement of age!

In the end, Dr. Shihab Ghanem wrapped up the discussion with a few verses of poetry.

Shihab Ghanem ;
In the early eighties of the last century, when I was working as plant (i.e. factory) Manager at Ethernet in Dubai, the General Manager Bishara, the Laboratory Manager Mike, and the Deputy Plant Manager Abu Simon where at least 90% bald. I was the only hairy person. Mike who was a close friend of mine always claimed his baldness was a sign of genius. Once the 4 of us were sitting around a small round table in my office discussing work. Suddenly I looked at the 3 shinning Lebanese heads and came up with the following 4 lines poem:



إذا لم تصدقني فهذا بشارةٌ             بهامته لا شيء والشعر قد طارا
وهذا أبو سيمون أصبح مثلكم          فرأس أبي سيمون من رأسكم غارا
إذا قدم زلّت بقشرة موزة ذراعا        تزحلقتم على الرأس أمتارا

 
والحقيقة أنني كتبت بعد ذلك عدة رباعيات سميتها رباعيات نادي الصلع.وبعدها توقفوا عن التوهم بأن الصلع دليل على الذكاء. وأصبح مايك يردد الأبيات دائماوقد لقيته عام 1999 في لبنان وكان يومها عمدة أو رئيسا لبلدية قريته فعمل لي حفلة غداء رائعة وألقى الأبيات على الحضور وهو يضحك بدون توقف فقد كان صاحب روح فكاهية وكان يرى أنني كنت أسخر من الرجلين الآخرين وليس منه
ومؤخرا تبادل عدد من أصدقائي الشعراء في الإمارات مقطوعات حول اللحى وطلبوا
مني المشاركة وربما أكتب لكم يوما ما بهذه الأشعار الفكاهية
ورحم الله حسين الحبشي الذي كان يفخر بنسبه الهاشمي ويقول لي أننا أولاد عم لأنني أيضا هاشمي

مع تحياتي
شهاب

 

Dr. Abdulla Nasher, wrote from Canada:

I enjoyed following up the humorous and interesting dialogue about our late great teacher Hussein Al-Hibshi. I remember him as physical education teacher in Bazara School for a brief period during my primary education, (1951-1954). And later on in Aden College where he taught Arabic language, during my secondary school education, (1957-1961). And unlike our brother Adel Aulaqi, I can not recall if he ever touched my head or if he ever    pulled my hair. Like our late brother Dr. Wigdan Lukman, I developed a habit in those days of pulling the hair in the back of my scalp and strangely enough that did not lead to major hair loss and thanks God I still have enough  to cover my scalp.

One thing I will never forget about our great teacher was his verbal prescription of “ISHRAB SALEET”, “DRINK OIL”, to any complaint by any of his students, whether it was headache, backache or even food poisoning. I wonder how many of you have been prescribed SALEET by our beloved teacher?

 

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