Dad Dyes His Hair Blue for His Son, Ends Up Raising $16,000 for Charity
An act of father-son solidarity became a force for good.
Matthew Green, 42, is a computer science professor and cryptographer living in Baltimore, Maryland, who recently found himself in an interesting situation.
"My kid wanted to die (sic) his hair blue but would only do it if I also did and now I'm questioning this whole 'parenting' decision," Green tweeted on Monday.
When reached via phone, Green said he and his wife encouraged their 11-year-old son, Harris, to dye his hair as a way of showing that it's OK to stand out.
"[My wife] wanted my son and daughter to do something interesting, different, and was trying to get them out of their comfort zone," Green explained. "So blue hair was the thing, and he agreed to do it. This was a learning experience for our kids."
On Twitter, Green chronicled his attempt to dye his hair at home himself. He quickly realized the process wasn't as easy as he'd thought it would be.
"If you start with brown hair and you try for blue, you don't end up getting much," he said.
Green posted a photo of his failed attempt on Twitter, and, soon, his followers began to pledge money to RAICES (Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services) to see him actually get his hair dyed professionally.
"There's a whole bunch of people on Twitter who also do computer security service [and] they know me well enough to want to make me look stupid and also they like to collect money to do good things," Green explained on the phone. "All of a sudden these folks I know said, 'You know what, I'm putting 300 bucks if you do it right.' Someone else then says, 'I'm putting in another 300 bucks,' and suddenly it was 2,500 bucks."
So, on Tuesday, Green went to the hair salon intent on doing some good for both his son and the world.
By then, Green's tweets had gone viral, and the donations had skyrocketed to $12,500.
The process was a little daunting, to say the least.
They had to bleach his hair first so that the blue dye would set better, which made him look like Guy Fieri, he tweeted.
In the end, Green followed through, but there's a plot twist…
Once Harris saw what his dad looked like, he ended up backing out of the deal!
"He said I'm totally not going to do that and it's ridiculous so it actually kind of backfired in the end!" Green said.
But the good news is that, when Green last checked on Tuesday, the amount of money he had raised was up to $16,000, and people are continuing to contribute.
In fact, some people are saying this is a great way to raise money for charity in general, kind of like an altruistic version of "truth or dare."
And, in case you're wondering, Green does plan to keep the new 'do for a little while longer.
"I think I'm gonna keep it all summer," he said. "I feel like I owe it to the people who put in all this money."
And for another heartwarming father-son story, check out The Touching Story Behind the Video of a Man with Dementia Remembering his Own Song.
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