Paying $100 million for Damien Hirst’s diamond-encrusted skull seemed, to us, outrageous until this afternoon. That’s because someone just bought a lock of John Lennon’s hair—of all things—for $48,000 from the Beatles’ onetime hairdresser, Betty Glasgow. The anonymous, winning bid came into London’s Gorringes auction house over the phone. Preliminary estimates for the wad of brown hairs—which, when rolled up as they are, roughly equal the size of a silver dollar—stood at between four and six thousand dollars. Of course, the lucky buyer won’t just walk away with the piece-o’-mop alone; they’ll also get to keep an autographed copy of Mr. Lennon’s book, A Spaniard in the Works. (Sadly, however, the singer addressed it to his coiffeur; it reads, “To Betty, Lots of Love and Hair, John Lennon xx.”)
“It is astonishing that there is still so much interest in the Beatles and the sale goes to prove that John Lennon is still an icon,” said Francesca Collin, a spokeswoman for Gorringes. “To have some of Lennon’s hair along with a signed note from him really does give it fantastic provenance and authenticity.” Fittingly, Ms. Glasgow was the band’s hairdresser during the filming of the Beatles’ film Help!