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It's a ten

Posted by Pamela on December 30, 2006

In Reply to: It's a ten posted by Brian from Shawnee on December 29, 2006

: : Hello! I wonder what the meaning of this expression is:It's a ten.I got that from one of the episodes of Friends in which Monica was given a hair cut by phebe and she hated it and Ross said this expression to her which upsetted her even more

: People often rate things "on a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest". It's usually a compliment to be called a 10, but the joke in this case could be that Ross has notoriously bad taste so anything he likes is terrible.

I was only an occasional Friends viewer, but from memory of this episode, didn't the joke go further than that because of the types of hairstyles that were in fashion at the time? The movie 10 did spark a brief fad for corn rows in the early 80s (I had them myself), but by the time friends came along in the 90s, they were well and truely rembered as a bad fad - especially since most of us who had them were white and somewhat less of a ten than Bo Derek. So (and explaining jokes is always a bit torturous) to say that a haircut is a "ten" in the 90's automatically conjured up the Bo-do, at least to me. I also vaguely remember that Monica's hair ended up curly (although there were a few styles in the episode, so I may have it wrong), which goes against the general US fashion for straight hair (which seems to have dominated for at least the last, oh, 30 years - and I will mention that this obsession with ironing hair flat seems odd to outsiders). So curly hair dubbed a "ten" is even more strongly associated with a baaaaad fad. A bit like if I said today that "Is my hair ok?" and someone said "Well, Beckham would love it". All of this is from memory and from my own perspecitve on the joke. Pamela