For some odd reason, I’m really bad about remembering to get my hair cut.
I don’t know why. I don’t dread going to the salon, and I’m not one of those people who would cry if a hairdresser said they’d like to chop off all my hair and give me a pixie cut. I’m not saying I’d let the hairdresser do it, because I’m not one who could pull off a pixie cut, but if it were a life-or-death situation, I’d be all, whatever, it’s just hair. Truth be told, I actually really enjoy going to the salon, because having someone else wash your hair just feels so….luxurious. And then there’s the running of fingers through your hair and there’s the blowing out of the hair and it’s all soft and shiny and lovely and it won’t ever look that way again until you go BACK to the salon, because I don’t know about you but I am For Shit when it comes to doing my own hair.
So yes, I actually really like getting my hair cut.
I can just never seem to do it on a regular basis. I’m not one of those gals who schedules her next appointment before she leaves her current one (though I’ve made it a New Year’s Goal to BE just such a gal, in delusional hopes that maybe this will make my at-home hair care easier somehow? Like maybe with more visits to the salon I will be better able to pick up techniques on how to properly wield a hairdryer? I have hopes. They’re not high, but they’re hopes.). I’ve gone, LITtrally, seven or eight months between hair cuts. Like I said, it’s not that I don’t like getting my hair cut I just…forget.
So when the urge hit me a few weeks back to get my hair cut, and I realized I hadn’t had it cut in about five months, I jumped on it. I called a salon around the corner from my office and went in on my lunch hour.
It was, of course, a day brimming with Things To Do and Things That Are Due, which, I don’t know about you, but THOSE always seem to be the days when I decide that Yes! Sure! I’ll add more to my day! No problem-o!, like get my hair cut on my lunch hour. Instead of saving the haircut for the next day, when all the Things To Do and Things That Are Due would be Done. But no. Pile it on.
So to kill two birds with one stone, I headed into the salon gripping a thick pack of pages that needed to be scoured with my trained copyediting eyes, which would prove to be a genius move on my part.
Yes, I like going to the salon. Yes, I like people fiddling with my hair.
But you know what? It’s nothing personal, but I really don’t want to talk to hairdressers.
Would that I could simply answer their perfunctory questions on how I’d like my hair cut (Yes, layers around my face are good. No, giving me a buzz cut and dying it blonde are bad), and then peace out for the rest of the salon session. Would that I could tell the hairdresser, “Pretend I’m not here! Pretend I’m just a head of hair, nothing else, like those Barbie beauty salon toys I had when I was little, that was an almost life-sized Barbie head with blonde hair that ended at her shoulders, and in fact, that’s where her body ended, too!”
But hairdressers, being practiced in the art of customer service, often like to chit-chat and make small talk while they trim and layer and the like.
Actually, I should say they seem to like to chit-chat. For all I know they DON’T actually like to chit-chat, and wish they could just not talk during our appointments as well. For all I know, if I were to say to them, “Hey, let’s make like Gwen Stefani and Don’t Speak for the next hour,” they’d be thrilled to find a kindered, silent spirit.
So there I am, cape around my shoulders, hair wet and combed out, in that kind of glorious high you get from someone massaging your scalp for five minutes with lovely scented shampoos and deep conditioners. I was coming down off that high and starting to get the uncomfortable oh-dear-Christ-what-are-we-going-to-talk-about twinge in my stomach when I spotted my pack of proofreading.
I snatched it off the chair next to me and asked politely, “I’m sorry, we’ve been so busy lately I brought some of it with me. Do you mind if I do some editing while you work?”
“No, of course not!” the hairdresser replied cheerily.
“Just tell me when I need to move my head,” I said emphatically. “Tilt me wherever you need.
She nodded and got to work. I grabbed my pen and got to work as well.
I’ve tried similar techniques before, bringing a book with me, but it’s never worked as well as this. Usually with a book the hairdresser wants to know what I’m reading, and then tell me what he or she likes to read, which launches a book discussion that I don’t really want to have right then, and defeats the entire purpose of me bringing a book with me in the first place.
But this time, throughout the combing, the snipping, the brushing, the drying, she worked and I worked on our own separate projects, neither of us exchanging a single word.
It was magical.
It was the best salon experience of my life.
I could have kissed my hairdresser for being so awesome. And silent.
(But that would have been awkward.)
Before I left, I did remember to schedule my next hair appointment for three months down the road. (I can be one of those gals!)
But not before checking my deadlines, to see when my next set of copyediting was due.