5/18 -- Got Me By The Short Hair.
On Saturday, I marched into Heidi's Salon in Fair Oaks Mall, handed the stylist a picture I'd found in a hairdo magazine, and said "This is what I want you to do. It's a big change, heh heh."
"That's good," she said. "You need a big change."
Ouch. But she was, of course, right.
I'm cursed with great hair. I've always had hair I really don't deserve. My hair is shiny, thick and lush. It isn't curly (my only real regret), but it has enough body that it can be coaxed into waviness without too much fuss. It stands up well to perms and dyes.
And once it's grown past a certain length, I just can't do a damn thing with it. I can't braid to save my life. I never get it pinned back in barettes or pulled into a bun without a big hunk falling loose and ruining the effect. Anything more complicated than grabbing a scrunchie and putting my hair in a ponytail is beyond my styling ability. My hair should really belong to a woman who knows how to style it.
I love long hair, but I've come to realize it's just not for me. It hangs there and hangs there and hangs there and looks boring unless I use the blow-dryer on my roots for an hour. And I usually don't bother. With my glasses and my perenially pasty complexion, the unstyled hanging-down hair gives me the distinct look of "Computer Gnome who never sees the light of day." And that's pretty much what I am, but why advertise?
And last week we were having the latest Summer Week in our ever-alternating D.C. climate. I walked outside and felt the heat bearing down on me as if I had a wool blanket draped on my head.
"Know what would be nice right now?" I thought. "Short hair."
Once upon a time when I was in my early 20s, a drastic hair cut wouldn't have happened without a whole lot of agonizing about the Major Life Change I was about to undertake. Ohmigod, what if I didn't like it? I'd be stuck. My life as I knew it would be over. I'd never be able to go out in public without a hat again.
I had the "What if I don't like it?" thoughts this time too, but I answered them pretty quickly with "Fuck it. It's just hair. It grows back."
And while the stylist was snip-snipping away and I was squinting at the mirror without my glasses trying to see my blurry reflection, I repeated my brave mantra to myself. It grows back. It's just hair. Fuck it.
Ohmygawd, does this mall have a "Hats in the Belfry?"
But in the end, after she'd finished cutting it and styling it, after I'd left the salon and hustled over to MAC so I could stare at myself in their mirrors, I decided I liked it after all. In fact, I thought it looked pretty darned cute. I headed over to a jewelry kiosk and bought some big hoop earrings to show off the fact that people could actually see my ears again.
And Bill liked it. Mom liked it. Everyone likes it. The women in Bread and Chocolate made such a fuss over me that I wanted to dive under a table.
(I will say this, though: Women who claim that short hair is easier and less styling work than long hair? They're insane. Or they're lying. Or they're Susan Powter with an inch of hair on their heads. I finally have a use for all the Bed Head pomades and styling glosses I bought for my long hair.)
I Never Meta Man ... oh wait, I did: For those who haven't seen it yet, Bill has a new journal, Overlook. You may remember him from such online journals as "And Me Without A Cyanide Pill."
And I had a point here besides a blatant pimp. For most of this week, I've been in training to learn Lotus Notes Designer. (The verdict: Ugh. But I'm going to need to know it for work.) Because I'm cursed with the world's shortest attention span, I'd hop on the Net now and then when my instructor was up in front of the class. At one point, I opened up my email and found a message from Bill.
He already reprinted most of the email in this entry, so I'll just say that when I opened the message and found myself looking at that picture, I nearly gave myself away trying not to giggle for the next 20 minutes. I figure the story is completely bogus, but that picture damn near killed me. Especially because I couldn't really let loose and laugh. I sat there quaking for a few minutes with my eyes watering up and my face turning red. The instructor was cool enough to pretend she didn't notice.
And now that I've got my spiffy new short hairdo, we're having Fall Week again. I don't think we got out of the mid-60s today. But I don't mind. I'm enjoying the coolish temperatures for as long as they last, which can't be much longer now.
(It's Friday. One Clix won't kill you, right?)