Got my hair cut yesterday. Well, trimmed. Trying to grow it out. Again. Story of my hair life: When it's long, I want it short. Short, long. Permed, straight. You get the idea. I've always thought that what I needed was a big ol' knob in my back, like my old Tressy doll. Push a button in her stomach, turn the knob on her back (and turn and turn and turn) and she had a kicky shoulder length 'do. Push the button, turn the knob, grab that hank of hair and pull and, just like magic: a luxurious mane that tickled the back of her knees.
[For any purists out there who might be saying, probably out loud, "That was Chrissie!,
" no, I had a Tressy
doll, Chrissie's friend. Tressy had black hair, Chrissie red, and Velvet was a blonde. My Tressy wore a stylish orange Indian-print mini-dress with a matching headband on her black, black hair. Alas, she met a tragic end. Not at my hands, though I did place her, unwittingly, in harm's way. It was very sad.]
But as I, a mere human, have no magic knob, I'm growing my hair the old-fashioned way. As soon as I manage that (or perhaps even before), I will decide I can't stand it and cut it short again. Story of my hair life. When it's long, I want it short--Oh, wait, I already said that. Moving on. I do not possess the blow-dry gene. Or the hairspray gene. Or the anything-having-to-do-with-hair gene. My hair designer (yes, that's her title), being a paid professional and possessing the added advantage of having two eyes and
two hands in the back of my head, can perform the kind of magic that I didn't dream my hair was even capable of. (I used to say my hair had a mind of its own: it did what it wanted, and I tried not to mind.)
I left her studio (yes, that's what it's called) with big, pouffy hair. Too pouffy, I thought. But as the day progressed my hair settled into an acceptable level of pouf, with the still-shorter layers flipping up in a most fetching way that I can never manage to replicate. I was so taken with my pretty hair that it seemed a shame to sleep on it. I wished I could set it on the nightstand out of harm's way for the night. Which would be, you know, a wig. Still. It didn't occur to me until this morning that I could have tried my mother's fresh-from-the-hairdresser trick. She used to swathe her new curls and swirls in toilet paper and then cover the whole mess with a hair net. Quite attractive, really. And at least a moderate success.
Too late, alas. This morning my pretty, pretty hair has assumed the chaos and pathos of every other morning: mashed flat in places, standing straight up like Ed Grimley's
in others. Really, it makes the toilet paper/hairnet combo look positively delightful.
You notice that Patricia Lynn Reilly's book
is called Imagine a Woman in Love with Herself
and not Imagine a Woman in Love with Her Hair.
And with good reason. It would never sell. Women would take one look at the title and collapse into helpless, hysterical laughter that would quickly degenerate into tears and accusatory shouts until the poor things would have to be carried out of Barnes and Noble on stretchers. Probably under the influence of oxygen and no doubt heavily medicated.