Friday afternoon I was determined to finish getting conference-ready. In desperate need of a new hair style, I opted to try a new hair salon. I like the results from my previous salon, but I have never been comfortable with the atmosphere. The stylists are arrogant and rude and I always left feeling inadequate. I frequently overheard them talking about a client who had just left leaving little doubt that they engaged in similar conversations about me.
The salon I chose had an attractive website and high ratings, so I was eager to give it a try. Unfortunately the website did not provide a clear depiction of this establishment. Sitting in the foyer on a hole riddled white pleather couch, I noticed an imposing sign which read "Shhh... we have dye for the 'hair down there.' Make tonight a special night!" I read the sign and debated whether I should laugh or flee.
I don't particularly enjoy getting my hair cut. Sitting in an uncomfortable chair with dripping wet hair, being forced to stare at myself as somebody attempts to chat is not my idea of relaxation. Despite efforts to remain quiet, I always seem to attract the chattiest of stylists. True to history, the conversation always seems to revolve around my amputation.
Realizing that people are simply curious about my limb loss, I always try to be polite while answering their questions. I take extra care to be courteous when the person asking the questions is cutting my hair with various sharp objects. I don't mind people asking me about my prosthetic, my accident or my amputation. Social graces typically limit the questions to fewer than five. Although it rarely happens, there are times when the questioning becomes intrusive and excessive. These situations try my patience.
I suspect that, in a previous life, my stylist might have been an attorney. She peppered me with questions trying to solicit specific details throughout the 45 minute appointment. She seemed unaware of my multiple attempts to change the topic. I eventually told her that I am more than an amputee and redirected the conversation to Robby. She interrupted me to ask me if I wore my leg during childbirth. I gave up and slurped more water from my paper cone cup.
In an ideal world, I would be able to get my hair cut without the pressure of having to make small talk during the entire appointment. Despite the non-stop banter about my amputation, I'm glad that I stayed. I think I like my new hair style. It is a remarkably modern style from a stylist who dressed like it is 1986 and never stopped talking.