I was a bit miffed when He Who Brings The Coffee greeted me this morning by saying “I just love what you do with your hair in the mornings, Hails”. The sarcasm fairly dripped from his words, and I glared defensively at him. “I’m getting it cut tonight, OK?” He sniggered, satisfied with my reaction.
Honestly, just once I forget to get my hair cut in time, and it’s front page news around here. People are pointing out grey hairs, mocking my unkempt look and basically insulting me to my face. Last Tuesday night at the women’s group in The Madhouse, Jo looked seriously at me when I’d paused for breath in the middle of a very enthusiastic and – I had hoped – enlightening lesson about identity. I awaited her insightful remarks. “Hails,” she said thoughtfully, staring intently at me and chewing on the end of her pen, “you really need your hair cut”. However, she is my hairdresser, to be fair.
The one that really took the biscuit was Mrs. M last Sunday morning. She came up behind me as I was sitting chatting to E1 and E2, and patted my gel-free, flat hair in the same way you might stroke a cute little puppy. Leaning down to speak into my ear, she said “Your hair’s lovely. It’s much more sensible like that. I actually get a little bit scared when it’s pointing in all directions. I can cope with this much better.” I looked at her face and saw her genuine distress when she made hand gestures to illustrate the general chaos of my hair when spiked. She seemed so relieved that I’d decided to go for “sensible” hair. My friends laughed at the horror on my face when she left. She might as well have said “you’re not a young thing any more, dear – you’re one of us, now.”
By this weekend the hair had gone completely out of control, and I was being steadily driven mad by a bit of once-funky-and-choppy fringe flopping floppily over my eye. McBouncy’s youngest, McGinger, bought a pack of multi-coloured hairgrips when we were out shopping on Saturday, and donated the red one to me (being ginger and unable to use red accessories). It kept me from developing a squint and preserved my sanity, but I was frowned at by an awful lot of people yesterday, all asking in confusion and disapproval “Is that a child’s hair clip you’re wearing?”. I was tempted to scowl, fold my arms, pout and say “Yeah… so?”
Anyway. You’ll all be delighted to know Jo’s fixing it tonight. It’s a shame, really – what on earth will people have to talk about tomorrow?