It is never good to hear the word "oops" when the back of your head is hanging over a rinse bowl at the hair salon. My eyes flew open to look at the hairstylist who had uttered the word. She had a look of fright on her face that only made my heart sink.
I remember coming in that morning only to find out my regular stylist was off ill. I would have rescheduled but I was in need of a touch up in the worst way. I had been wearing hats for awhile and there was a very important event I had to attend that evening. Gerry, the owner of "Geraldine's Beauty Palace" assured me that another stylist was capable of doing color and haircuts. I was not so sure when the young lady came over. Her own hair was a multitude of colors which to her credit did match most of the colors in her outfit. It was a spandexy kind of thing I think, with holes in various places. She wore spike heels and one arm was full of bangle bracelets. Her lip gloss was shining so brightly it created a glare. I noticed how incredibly white her teeth were because of the contrast between them and her pink lipstick and gum, which she was popping quite loudly.
"I don't know.." I started.
"She's good." Gerry assured. "Don't let her young looks fool you, Shenae has had plenty of satisfied customers."
"That's right ma'am, I can hook you up." Shenae beamed proudly.
"Um, I think I will wait for Terri." I said. Terri was a stylist I had seemed in the shop for years. I wanted a more experience person to work on my hair. Aside from Shenae calling me ma'am, I was not exactly sure what a hook up was.
"Alright, I'll see if Terri can fit you in." Gerry said. As she and Shenae walked away I saw a hurt expression on Shenae's face when she glanced back at me.
I settled in for a wait with a magazine, when an old friend came in. Mabel was always full of life and she was the adventuresome type. Her mane of hair was stuffed under a hat too. She did not have an appointment, but turns out she was going to the same event as myself.
"Hey girl, how's it going? she said to Gerry. "I know it's last minute, but can you fit me in?"
"Sure thing, Here's Shenae, she can take you."
When Shenae walked up, Mabel didn't bat an eye. She said, " Hey girl, how's it going? My name's Mabel, I am in your hands, make me look beautiful."
It was then that Terri called me over to her chair. She appeared slightly preoccupied because I had to repeat the hair color I wanted to her twice. But she assured me not to worry she had been coloring hair for ten years. I could hear Mabel and Shenae in the next booth laughing and talking up a storm.
It was after the application of the hair color during the rinse that the infamous "oops" was spoken.
"What do you mean "oops" Terri?" I hesitantly asked.
"Well, it's not quite the color you asked for, but I think I can fix it, and we'll know better when it's dry."
Things only got worse. It seemed that way too much hair was hitting the floor when Terri did the cut. When she was done she turned me around to look in the mirror. I could not believe my eyes. The color that I had asked for was nowhere on my head. I had requested a soft burgundy red and what I ended up with was nothing less than orange, and brassy orange at that. The cut.., well let's just say I had never seen anything like it. I had came in with shoulder length hair and now it was short with angles. Meanwhile I hear "oohs and aahs" from the next booth. When Mabel walked by I was totally floored. Shenae had transformed Mabel's bird's nest into a masterpiece. Her color was perfect and the cut was masterful.
"Hey girl--ooh, what happen?" Mabel asked looking at my hair.
"An 'oops' apparently." I responded on the verge of tears.
In the end, I was able to attend the event that evening with a lovely hairstyle. Funny, the very hairstylist I had snubbed earlier came to the rescue and hooked me up.
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