After a lovely lunch with family, Callie and I departed ways with the crew to head back for a nap (for Callie) and work (for mama). I was stopped by a man at a kiosk selling hair products.
Lesson #1 -- don't stop. Don't ever stop. When they see you and start walking towards you, do what you need to do to avoid stopping. Smile and quickly avert your eyes. Ignore them completely. Pretend you're about to vomit. But don't stop.
I wasn't interested in his product and told him. But he was persistent, insured me it would only be one moment, and let's face it, I have a hard time saying "no."
Lesson #2 -- It never takes one moment.
He wanted to put some serum in my hair to make it shine. Ok, fine. Who doesn't like shiny hair? He asked me to sit down for a minute.
Lesson #3 -- Don't sit down, and if they repeat "for just one moment" it certainly will NOT be just one moment.
As he combed through my hair, in disgust, he told me how dry my hair was.
"What is wrong? Why is your hair so dry? Look at this."
I responded with a classy, "Yep. Well." I mean, does he want me to get into the whole story of why my hair is too dry?
"Look at this," he continued. "It's so dry. Why?"
I guess he does really want to know why. "I haven't cut my hair in over 6 months." And maybe I should be embarrassed by that, but I was more annoyed at his disgust for my hair, that I said it with almost a sense of pride.
Lesson #4 -- You've been there far too long when you allow yourself to go into the ugly version of yourself mode -- it's never ok to feel good about such a bad bad thing. One should always take care of the hair.
He smiled. He said he wanted to use an iron on my hair. I, surprise surprise, actually washed and dried my hair today and so had no desire to flatten it out. In fact, most of my desire at this point was to leave. I'm sitting down, Callie is playing with the pink flat iron, and I keep looking over at this over kiosk of guys who are looking at me, clearly enjoying the fact that I'm stuck.
Lesson #5 -- You got yourself into this; noone can save you. So yes, high desire to leave.
As Mr. SuperSkinny reached for the flat iron, I told I didn't want him to use it on me.
"No flat iron please."
"This. This. This flat iron?"
"No. No flat iron."
He takes the flat iron to my head and flattens out a HUGE portion. Oh my.
"Look how shiny. Look beautiful."
I had no idea how long my hair really was. I'm a bit shocked, but annoyed nonetheless.
"Isn't it beautiful and straight, and shiny?"
Oh brother. "Yeah. It's shiny. And straight. Thanks. I have to go now."
"Just one minute." (Refer to lesson #2)
He proceeds to give me the sales job on the ceramic straightener and I look over and see the 2 guys still looking at me with amusement. I pleadingly look over at them, but what are they going to do? Perhaps save me with their Christmas Cell Phone Saver-deal-thing they have going on over at their station? I politely try to tell Mr. SuperSkinny that I'm not interested in a hair straightener and he looks at me as if I'm the least fashionable person on the planet. He may have me there.
"You not straight?"
Is he talking about my hair still or my sexuality? "It's fine. I use a straightener sometimes; I'm just not interested." I feel like I'm going into the whole it's-not-you-it's-me routine.
"You like curls?"
"Ya know, I normally don't even do my hair." And when the guy doesn't get the hint, start fabricating the truth. I mean, ok, I do my hair...not everyday, but I'm starting to think I should play up this "least fashionable person on the planet" persona. It could work for me at this point.
"Let me...let me..." He takes a section of hair, on the other side of my head, and curls it with the straightener. (sigh) "Beautiful?"
"Yeah, it's pretty. Thanks. I really have to go now."
"Just one more minute."
"No. I really have to go. I'm on my way out. I have to get my daughter to bed. I start working in 1/2 hour. I have to go. Thank you."
"You want me to straighten it out?"
"No. I'm fine. This is great. Thanks." It's not great.
And I leave the mall, with a curly right side and flat left. Imbalanced. Frustrated. I get Callie in her seat and notice that the burned rubber smell I keep getting whiffs of is my hair.
On a good note, my hair is soft...and probably shiny.
Lesson #6 -- There's always a positive that will come out of a pile of negatives.
At the time, I was rushed and frustrated. I was even more frustrated knowing it was all my own fault. But in the car, I found it quite comical. It was a nice afternoon.