The other day I was cutting my husband’s hair when a memory made me smile. Since it seems to make him unaccountably nervous when I smile for no apparent reason while wielding sharp objects close to his jugular, I hastened to explain.
First, a bit of background information:
I haven’t been to a hair salon in years. I cut Hubby’s hair, and he trims an inch or two off mine whenever I feel the urge to part with some split ends. This works well for many reasons, not the least of which is that if there are any latent hostilities in a marriage, letting your spouse snip away at your ‘do while you sit defenceless in a chair is certain to bring them to the surface.
Also, we’re both cheap and lazy, with no discernible fashion sense. Cutting our own hair saves time and money, and as long as there are no visible chunks missing or sticking out, we figure it’s good enough.
But pre-Hubby, I went faithfully if grudgingly to the salon to get my hair cut.
Apart from the layered big-hair era of the 80s and a brief fling with short hair after donating my long locks to the Cancer Society, this is pretty much what my hairstyle has been all my life, plus or minus a foot or so:
Back to the memory in question…
I love my hair, so (cheapness notwithstanding) I decided to spend whatever it took to make it look good. I experimented with various salons and price ranges, reasoning that an expensive haircut should be better than a cheap one.
That may be true if you have a complicated hairstyle, but I didn’t. It was pretty much “just lop off a few inches and make sure the ends are straight”. Other than the time I lost six inches because the stylist kept cutting it crooked and then trying to correct it, there was no discernible difference in the quality of the cut.
There was, however, one commonality between all the salons no matter how cheap or expensive: the snotty stylist.
You know the one. When you go into a salon, they put you in the chair, tie the cape around your throat so you can’t escape, and run their fingers through your hair with an expression of pained distaste.
Then they ask “Who cut your hair?” with not-quite-concealed disdain.
It didn’t matter whether I had paid $50 (which was a lot of money for a haircut ‘way back then) or $10, the haircut was always disparaged by the next stylist in line.
But once, and only once, I got my own back.
The stylist plopped me into the chair and ran contemptuous fingers through my hair before drawing himself up to haughtily inquire, “Who cut your hair?”
And I replied in complete honesty, “You did.”
It’s one of my most treasured memories.