Wednesday, March 23, 2011
It's official. I'm finally invisible. It took a while. Some tell me it happened to them when they turned some rancid corner in their mid-fifties. Some complain of it even when they're in their forties.
Well it happened to me yesterday. And it was painful. And I fought it every damn inch of the way. I'll refresh your memory of this dark and hopeless day in November. Yes, November 2010. It has taken over 4 months for the mess on my head to sort itself out. The scrabble of kinda hair at the back of my head lengthened once again (it was traumatized) and the black started to fade and I decided to let my grey or whatevers start rolling in. Au naturel pour moi. I chopped the side burns (long, dangly) at the side of my face a few times and twisted the other bits into things at the back of my head. I know, I speak like my hair was a rather large forest of mixed plantings but that's what it felt like.
So I toddle off to a new hair-stylist yesterday and let the whole mess down off my head, it is a little bit of a shock. I expected commiseration, laughter, even a snicker. But nothing from the bored gum-snapping ten year old hairdresser behind me.
"I have a bit of a mess here?" I say, smiling.
"What do you want done?"
"Well, I normally wear it like so, I hate it on my face, so if you could clean it up, even it out and recommend some sort of transition rinse while I let my natural colour roll in?"
"Don't know nothin' about that trans word. You want colour or not."
"No, no colour, but a rinse to harmonize...."
"Don't do what you call rinse," she snaps gum 2,000 times in irritation.
"Okay then. Just don't cut the back, it's growing in after 4 months, but cut everything else to match it, shame you don't have a rinse. I must be the only senior in Newfoundland, ha-ha?"
Silence, snip, clip, snip, clip. Snap gum.
"I like your hair colour, reminds me of my granddaughter's hair."
"Is it natural?"
"It's a really nice colour."
Silence. She measures my hair carefully. Never meets my eyes in the mirror.
"I can hardly wait to have you fix up the terrible cut and colour I got the last time. Oh right, I'm stuck with piebald."
"You're not bald."
"I meant I'm stuck with the two-colour grow out."
"So now you want it coloured?" appalled silence, gum snapping ceases.
She dries my hair, I ask her to replace the barrette at the back. She sighs and deliberately twists it very tight. I know this as I see her face in the mirror as she does it.
She charges me too much. I tell her to give me the senior price. Huge, earth shaking, my-boyfriend-just-broke-up-with-me sigh as she redoes the bill.
I give her a $2.00 tip - a bit on the smallish side for me.
And you know why?
It's one of the best haircuts I ever had.