Friday, November 5, 2010

Shear Madness: Drama in the Hair Salon

I went to get my hair cut today. While I was sitting in the hair-chair I had a flashback.....

to Kip (alias).

A couple years ago I was looking for someone to do highlights on my hair and a neighbor recommended Kip. He did a pretty good job, although I thought he was pricey. I never had him do anything more than highlight my hair. ( I feared that a cut/highlight combination would require me taking a second mortgage on my home.)

Let me describe Kip. He had a perpetual tan, short spiky highlighted hair, and always seemed to be a should I say it...flighty. His prices always varied from visit to visit, and were never below $100.

Over time, Kip started getting a little 'blond happy' with my highlights. When someone referred to me as a blond, I looked in the mirror and had to agree. I'd been a red head since birth and all of a sudden I was starting to resemble Carol Channing. I scheduled an appointment with Kip.

I didn't notice anything unusual about Kip that day. He was perhaps a bit more animated than usual, but, he was Kip. What did I expect?

When I asked him if he could use a little less blond in the highlight formula Kip took it very personally. His reaction seemed way out of line with my request. I mean, it wasn't like I was telling him his bike shorts looked bad on him or something.

Kip introduced me to Susan, the shop owner and asked if I'd rather have her do my highlights.

"No, Kip. You do a great job," I said, feeling bad about hurting his feelings.
"I'm going to have Susan approve my color mix, so I know it's just what you want," he said.
"Kip, that's fine! Don't worry about it."
"I'd trust Susan with my own Mom's hair," Kip said.
"What?" I thought.
"Susan has been doing color for 20 years," Kip insisted.
"That's good. I'm fine, Kip"
"In fact, I'd trust Susan with my own Mom's hair," Kip said.

I plugged in my I-Pod buds, hoping to end the discussion. It worked.

When my hair was ready to be rinsed out, Kip was nowhere to be found and Susan took over. I laid back in the chair, rested my head on the lip of the sink and closed my eyes as she sprayed water onto my hair.

I heard a faint voice in my ear.
My eyes popped open. "Did somebody say something?" I said
I saw Susan's lips move.
"What?  Are you talking to me?"
"Don't let him cut your hair"
"Don't let him cut your hair," she repeated. "The doctor is playing with his meds and they're not quite right yet."
"Am I on Candid Camera?"

You may think this rather insensitive of me, but I completely enjoyed the rest of my appointment. Kip's weirdness took on more meaning. And it was way more entertaining than anything I'd seen on Jerry Springer.

When Kip began to style my hair in what can best be described as "Cave Woman with Excessive Mouse", I decided to call it quits. "Kip, I think I'll let my hair air dry today."

The most interesting part of the appointment was yet to come.  Kip looked at me and said, "I much do I charge you for highlights?"

I considered several options, but decided to play it conservatively.
"I don't remember! Why don't you ask Susan?"  When Susan said, "$60" I almost shouted, "I knew you were over charging me!"

But I'm a glass half full kind of gal. Me and my slightly less blond Cave Woman hair walked out of the salon feeling pretty darn good. We saved at least $40 on that visit.

And the entertainment was priceless.

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