Dylan Bear
Professor Harken
English Composition
26 October 2015
In “My First Conk,” Malcom X Illuminates the excitement of conked hair, suffering the pain and torture of the process, and reflecting on why hair conk results in self-degradation.  

The process of getting a conk is a long process of many steps that involves a list of many things. Getting a conk for the first time is an unforgettable experience. Malcom and Shorty must beat the barber’s price, Malcom and Shorty make up the concoction at home, collecting supplies from varies stores, making the conking process noticeable. Even the Drugstore owner was excited when seeing the supplies on the cash register. The process of concoction starts with peeling and thinly slicing the potatoes into a quart-sized Mason jar, with a wooden spoon stirring them, then slowly flooding the potatoes with half a can of lye. In result of the lye, a goopy glop is formed. Breaking two eggs into the glop producing a searing hot jar.
Malcom X illuminates the suffering of getting one’s hair conked. The root of the process starts by applying Vaseline on the head, neck, ears, and forehead. Along with Vaseline, a rubber apron tightly tied around the neck is for protection against the approaching torture. The concoction is warm at first, slowly penetrating the skull, eventually burning the head like hell. Pain so violent causing Malcom to clinch jaw, grasping for anything in sight. With unbearable pain, sprinting to the sink with tears filling, and nose running. Starting the soap lathering course of action to Malcom’s head, begins with lathering and spray-rinsing the hair a dozen times or so resulting in a calming pleasure for just a moment. While drying Malcom’s head, the burn returns causing knees to tremble and yelping profanity. Shortly after drying, the hair dangles limp in damp strings. Applying Vaseline one last time, along with combing straight back producing the final product. After all the suffering and pain,...