Wednesday, June 22, 2016

The Art of the Deal

Always stressful, but grown-ups don't cry until they get home.
While I understand that my head is a blank canvas for the person who went to beauty school and got certified and now creates in hair for a living, I find that unacceptable. Thus, for much of my adult life I have cut my own hair. This practice has had varying results, soliciting a range of reactions from "Ooh, cute haircut!" to "Jeezus, what the heck happened to you?"

For me, having feral hair is far less painful than enduring the small talk with the stylist, the Naziesque brutality of the shampoo girl, and the final indignations of hair spray application and painstaking blow-drying of the mass of protein filaments growing from follicles in the dermis of my scalp into something it will never, ever look like again, just for the sake of "art."

But then I found At Last Salon. (Aptly named, to be sure.) My stylist, Denise, was a dream come true. She actually did what I asked at the outset and my hair ended up looking fabulous. She spoke very little, and when she did her observations were intelligent, meaningful and interesting. We didn't chit-chat, we conversed. Since I was having my color done too and would be there for awhile, and it being lunchtime, I was offered food! An appetizing array of salads from a nearby health restaurant was proffered, much like those rolling dessert trays in fancy restaurants; I chose the yogurt with fruit and nuts and bottled sparkling water.

Now I'm hooked. I already made my next hair appointment, and even one for a pedicure, something I haven't done in at least fifteen years since seeing a report on 60 Minutes about a woman who contracted a staph infection from a pedicure and eventually had to have her leg amputated at the knee. I shared this story with Denise and she swore up and down that I would be fine, taking me on a tour of the facilities and showing me how they sterilize everything between customers. Her final promise won me over: "If you do have your leg amputated because of a pedicure you got here, I promise I will come to your house for the rest of your life and cut your hair." Now that's what I call a deal.

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