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Geoff Shearer: Dye another day

June 03, 2020


A stalwart journalist for News Ltd for 20 years and a former TV Week Features Editor, Geoff Shearer is one the country’s most admired arts and entertainment writers. He’s taken a step into semi-retirement to concentrate on his fiction writing, while relishing the chance to share his unique take on life with My Halcyon Days’ readers.  

Cue the James Bond theme...

Looks like I could be taking salt out of my diet … hang on, I spelled that wrong, meant to write “dye it”. (Oh yeah, this column is going to be pun-loaded. You’ve been warned).

You see, I went grey young. By the time I was in my late 20s I was what you termed “salt and pepper”. In recent years, it’s been distinctly less peppery.

Hence the wife has been suggesting – oh, I don’t know for how long, maybe decades – that I dye my hair. I’ve stubbornly resisted; arguing that it’s “dignified”, “not worrying me”, and that it’s my hair and I don’t care what other people think. “But you could look your age, if not younger,” she teased. “Don’t be a George Clooney, be a dashing James Bond for me.”

Well, that threw me. She’s always been a Bruce Willis fan. Why throw 007 into the mix? Just come straight out and tell me to, “yippee ki yay” down to the hairdressers and Dye Hard … with a vengeance.

But Bond? Was she thinking Sean Connery from the ’60s when dye-monds were forever; or Roger Moore who nonchalantly said live and let dye in the ’70s, before revealing his grey hairs for your dyes only in the ’80s?

Timothy Dalton’s wispy side-part in 1987 scared the living dye-lights out of me. Although I must admit I kind of liked Pierce Brosnan’s black locks as Bond in GoldenDye and Tomorrow Never Dyes. I wonder if he coloured his hair for those films, or whether he just said I’ll dye another day?

Then there’s Craig, Daniel Craig. Now he was a real rough-around-the-edges, brooding, but dashing Bond in Dyefall…

Alas, this recollecting has reminded me I’ll never ever be the James Bond type, even if I were to colour over all the salt in my hair. Besides, I’m a very busy guy; as so accurately reflected in the title of this year’s 25th Bond film … No Time To Dye.