Monday, August 26, 2013

Bad Hair Days and Other Misadventures

by Suzie Johnson
If you’ve never had a bad hair day, consider yourself lucky, and stop reading now I’m so happy for you. Not.

One of the things on my bucket list is to have just one good hair day in my life. Okay, maybe that’s exaggerating, but not by much.

One day in late spring, on impulse, I stopped in a salon in Seattle. The stylist knew exactly what to do with my hair, leaving me to hope there’d be more than one good hair day in my future. About two months later, I stopped in the same salon, only to be informed that the stylist’s last day was yesterday. Lizzy (not her real name) said she’d be happy to help me.

My first clue should have been when Lizzy left me with my head tilted back in the sink while she went and chatted in the doorway with her friends. But she was young and I was willing to overlook it in spite of my screaming neck. Lizzy came back and wrapped my head in a black towel then ran back to talk with her friends again, leaving me to stare in the mirror and wonder how she managed to get the black towel to look like a tricorn hat.

Okay, I know. That should have been my second clue. And really, how many clues does a girl need when it comes to important things like hair?

When Lizzy returned, she so graciously handed me the clue that should have sent me racing out the door. Unfortunately I didn’t, and Lizzy made the first snip with her scissors as these words fell from her lips, “Cute glasses. I always forget to wear mine. I usually wear contacts. I’ve noticed I get better tips when I wear them.”

Could I just say right now that I was trying to be nice and give a young girl the benefit of the doubt? Oh, and did I forget to mention I wasn’t wearing my glasses at the moment? Lizzy asked me to place them on the counter so they wouldn’t be in her way. It wasn’t long before I wondered if there was another reason why she didn’t want me wearing my glasses.

The first thing I noticed when Lizzy handed me a mirror was that my hair was longer on the right than the left. No problem. Lizzy promptly trimmed it up until it was longer on the left than the right. But I could fix that myself. No need to make the poor stylist feel bad.

And yes, I left a tip.

Unfortunately, I noticed a few oddities the next morning. Not only was my hair still a little longer on the left side, I had dozens of scraggles hanging down from the underside of my hair. But that wasn’t the worst of it. My bangs were cut in a line so straight Lizzy must have used a ruler while I couldn’t see what she was doing. Unfortunately, that straight line went in a diagonal from the top right of my forehead to the outer corner of my left eyebrow.

To make it worse, the right side of my bangs has more cowlicks than I can count. Those were highlighted nicely still there.

“Don’t worry,” my coworkers said. “They’ll grow out.”

Clearly they don’t have as many bad hair days as I do. Bangs grow when they want to. Not when you want them to.

Oh, and did I mention this was just about four weeks ago? Two weeks before I leave for a writer’s conference I’m planning to attend? Yup. One side hasn’t quite caught up with the other. Perhaps, sometime during the next two weeks, a hair miracle will happen.

Does anyone know of a “Miracle Grow” for hair?

If you’re planning to attend the same conference, please, whatever you do, don’t notice my hair.

Also, if you’re shopping for evening wear, I have it on good authority you should never pull a Spandex camisole over your head. For those not in the know, once it makes it over your head, it snaps and rolls and tries to squeeze you tighter than a boa constrictor before you can even blink – leaving you to stand helpless in a department store fitting room with your arms straight up in the air while you panic and try to figure out how to get yourself out of this newest pickle.
Looks innocent, doesn't it?
Don't believe it!
I tried to find some spiritual content to relate this to, but I’m still feeling a bit humiliated by the Spandex camisole/dressing room hair salon incident. So instead I’ll just say, I wish each of you good hair days and Spandex-free camisoles.

True North, Suzie Johnson’s second novel, will be released in January, 2014. Her first novel, No Substitute, a contemporary inspirational novel, is out now from White Rose Press of The Pelican Book Group. She is a regular contributor to the Inkwell Inspirations blog, a member of ACFW, RWA, and is the cancer registrar at her local hospital. Suzie and her husband live in the Pacific Northwest with their naughty little cat on an island that is definitely not tropical. Together, they are the parents of a wonderful grown son who makes them proud every day – even though he lives way too far away. You can visit Suzie at the following places:


  1. Suzie, bad hair cuts grow out.

    Frizzy wads of witch hair only get bigger.

    I will challenge you to bad hair days and win every time.

    Have you ever seen a photo of me in a bandana? Do you think it's because I want to look like I'm dating John Denver?

    I don't usually go for one-upmanship, but honey, come on. Stay on the porch. you can't run with the big dogs.

  2. Deb. I I used to have that frizzy wad of hair. Sadly, I know all about how it grows. I used to sleep with a bandana on to try and flatten it. Medicine I've taken over the years has helped with tthat. But still, no matter what I do to it, it looks the same. When we're in Indianapolis, it will probably turn into a ball of fluff, though, from the humidity.We have to stick together, you and I, and anyone else with frizzy cowlicks or other crazy hair issues.

  3. Oh, Suzie, I'm so sorry. Reminds me of when I asked for "subtle highlights" and ended up with skunk stripes.

    Then, when I went back a week later to ask the stylist to fix it (showing her the two inches of black at the roots of my hair before it was suddenly blonde (in that particular stripe), only to have her say that was how much it had grown out since she did it -- in a week? MY hair? ahem)she did it just the same.

    No subtle highlights here, thank you.

    I had to pay someone else to do it all over. Gah.

  4. oh, dear suzie, you crack me up! and i feel bad laughing at your horrible hair cut experience. yet i keep laughing.

    yes, bad haircuts grow out

    but it's living with them in the meantime.

    A few months back I got my hair cut. Told the girl I wanted three inches off the length and then adjust accordingly becuase I didn't want to lose layers. I did momentarily pause when she finished in only a few minutes, but I had been texting and hadn't been paying attention to what she did. Got home to realize all the did was make a straight cut across the length. blunt cut that was, strangely, uneven. So I tried to angle up the sides a bit. Only made it worse. So for the folloowing months, I scrunched my hair when drying so it'd be wavy and then the uneaveness would be lesser notice than if I used a flat iron.

    If I'd gone back to get it cut properly, my hair would have been far shorter than desired.

    Fun post, Suzie!

    And . . . cute glasses!

  5. Its still better than coming out of the hair dresser looking like your grandfather!!! i told a little girl one summer not to be afraid to cut it,,,and gave her a picture front and back of how i wanted it cut,,no lie,,it was about 3/4 of an inch,,,all over,,,it took forever to grow back its the only summer in my life i wore makeup all summer not to be mistaken for a little old man,,,and when i could a hat!!! horrible i dont ever say those words in a hair salon "dont be afraid to cut it" :)

  6. Wow, DeAnna, skunk stripes! Oh my. If it really grew two inches in week, that would qualify as a miracle. Sorry you had to pay ssomeone else to fix it. Isn't that always the way?

  7. Gina! I can identify with fixing and making a bad haircut worse. I have totally done that before.

    My most disastrous hair cut (at least it seemed that way at the time), was for my wedding. I was "talked into" a perm for my already curly hair. The stylist had a visitor and they started talking. I thought she said because of my "fine" hair, the solution should only stay on five minutes. After the timer rang and she didn't come back, I went to find her. By the time she got it all washed out, it was too late. My hair burned and broke off over the next several days. My hair was less than two inches all over. Luckily my mom's friend came to the church and made it look good for the wedding.

  8. Hi Tana! I don't think I'd want to come out looking like my grandpa. He had very thin hair. In fact, I think the baby gorilla in the picture has more hair than my grandpa. Ohh, that is truly a disaster, Tana!

  9. LOL. Thanks, Suzie, I TOTALLY needed that chuckle today!

    I cut my own hair these days. Partly because I'm horribly cheap, and partly because if I don't like it or it looks bad I can't lay the blame on anyone else. As much as I would like to grow it out and have long, luscious locks, I know it will never happen... my hair is too fine and too straight. I think whatever hair you have you want the other kind.

    And I can completely relate to the Spandex trapped-in-your-own-clothes nightmare. Those camisoles should come with warning labels.

  10. Niki, your hair is adorable. You look good with short hair. I can't believe you cut it yourself. Wow. Yes, warning labels on Spandex, please. In fact, the lady said if she knew that's what I was trying on, she would have warned me. Lol!

  11. Oh, Gina, I forgot - thanks re the glasses. There's a whole other disaster story related to these. But every writer should have at least one pair of glasses that say "Pulitzer" on them.

  12. Ha ha! That was so much fun, Suzie. And I good reminder of why I cut and color my own hair. At least if I mess it up (someday ask me about the mislabeled hair dye incident) it was free and I only have myself to blame. With my long hair, pony tails and up-dos cover a multitude of bad hair days.

  13. Dina, you have beautiful hair. You clearly know what you're doing. I colored my hair once. My sister-in-law told me I should color my hair for more body. I love her, but! Let's just say I looked like I had a bowl of straw on my head. Sigh. And the few times I tried to cut my own hair, I ended up making an emergency trip to the beauty shop.

  14. Oh my goodness, Suzie--you poor thing! I'm getting my haircut today..oh I hope it isn't a horror story! I've had terrible hair experiences too.

    Anyway, I won't be looking at your hair at conference.

    So how do you put on a spandex camisole?

  15. Susie, you step into it like you would a swimsuit, and pull it up. It's very easy that way. Over the head ... after that particular battle, let's just say I couldn't raise my arm over my head the next day.


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