I got the idea for this post based on all the talk here lately about how many of us are doing our own hair. Fifteen years ago, this would have been unheard of. Like my mother and her mother, we were completely dependent on the hairdresser to keep Buckwheat jokes at bay. I got a perm at 11-ish, hair broke off 3 inches flat. Every month we budgeted nearly $200 for 8 hours in the salon, and only 1.5 in the chair. For a while, I was COMPLETELY addicted to one particular stylist, whose magic hands grew my hair the longest it had ever been–18 inches. She had me so sprung she used to send me out to get her food, which I would pay for with my own money, of which she would not reimburse. I drove three hours round trip every two weeks. On the Saturday I’d make the trek, The Hubster would kiss me goodbye in the morning and say, “See you tomorrow!”
Dionne was the star of every beauty salon she rented space in. She had a the waiting room packed on Saturday like a VD clinic in North Hollywood. I’d have an appointment at, say, 10 AM, and she wouldn’t show up to the salon until 10:45, weave swinging and heels clinking. I’m not kidding–people would actually rise from their seats to greet her. Well yes–they probably rose because like me, the six of them also had 10 AM appointments and mistakenly thought it was their turn at the sink. Nope. Because Dionne was susceptible to bribes, she’d take the little old church lady who stumbled in five minutes earlier, bible clutched in one hand, and a wade of dollar bills in the order. All us knaves parted for Church Lady, kicking ourselves in silence, because to speak out could bring the wrath of Dionne, who would take everyone else who came after you before you and make watch, because you dare not leave for fear that you hair might be suddenly possessed by the Ghost of Buckwheat.
Don’t laugh. I’ve seen the aftermath of the exorcisms hairdressers have had to impart as Buckwheat ghost writhed and spat defiant coils that wrapped around stylists’ wrists, took hold, and whomped them left and right like a Looney Tunes cartoon. Church lady even had to crack open the Bible, because she just knew there was some verse in there about casting out the demon Buckwheat.
So glad I do my own hair now and can keep that $200 for another lame expense, like paying for food and utility bills.
Okay your turn–what’s your worst salon horror story? Inquiring and gossipy minds want to know!