A month or two ago, I was thinking about my personal appearance, and I decided that I needed to have my bangs trimmed a bit. They were constantly falling into my eyes, and I felt like I looked a bit too emo for the sheer amount of pink that I consistently insist on wearing. And then, it happened. In a fit of pregnancy madness, I seized some scissors, and attempted to trim and style my bangs on my own.
A big mistake.
I lived with my mistake instead of going to get it fixed in an attempt to impress upon me this valuable lesson learned: Don't. Just don't. I also lived with it because I have some awesomely wide headbands that don't give me headaches and cover up most of my bangs. That meant I didn't have to see my bangs, or let anyone else see them, while they were growing back out.
Fast forward to last Saturday. Andrew has been pining for a haircut for some time, but he's afraid to go in anywhere to actually accomplish the job. Why? Because haircut people down here are insane, and don't really know how to cut his hair without making him feel like a foolish child. They always cut it too short in the back, so that it sticks up all over the place, instead of listening to him and giving him a haircut like Han Solo's. Maybe haircut people down here just don't watch Star Wars by rule.
But it had gotten to the point where it was either look like a foolish child with rebellious hair, or look like a slob. I don't like when he gets his hair cut because I like the curls that form on the nape of his neck. Andrew prefers looking like a gentleman with tidy hair. I support gentlemanliness, so I allow him to get his hair cut.
We went to a hair salon- actually, lest you gather from the word "salon" that this was a fine or spendy establishment, I shall be frank. It wasn't. It was Great Clips. But it is possible to get a good haircut there. We were ushered to our stylish stylists' chairs at the same time. And thus began the horror.
I will take a moment to say that the girl cutting my hair did an excellent, albeit incredibly slow, job with the back of my hair. Some stylists have a hard time with long layers, but she was wonderful with that task. I was very pleased with how my layers came out. That being accomplished, I will now inform you of what happened to the front of my head. I asked her to start the bang at my right eyebrow, and swoop it down to my left cheek bone. A side bang. A swoop bang. Here is a picture of what I could see since the stylist was standing directly in front of me and was blocking the mirror.
That large mass of pasty whiteness is my skin, yes. And that horrible claw-like appendage is meant to represent the stylist's hand. But pay more attention to the hair flying everywhere. She didn't put any water on my bangs, so with every snip of her sheers, hairs shot out explosively like so many bits of shrapnel. That especially large brown blob was a hair that tried to take up residence in my eye. I kept my peepers firmly shut after that, but I could still feel the little rain of hairs sticking to my nose, cheeks, and lips. At one point, the lady actually dabbed at my face with a cloth to try to alleviate this surfeit of unattached hairs.
But the worst part of it all was this: Look at how she's cutting my bangs. In a straightish line. Does that look like a swoop to you? Nope. It doesn't. And if you tried to say yes, you're wrong, because it doesn't look anything like a swoop. Go get an education.
When she stopped to ask me how I liked it, I just stared in the mirror for a moment. They were very short bangs. Very short. I saw that she had added a bit of a slant to my bangs. Unfortunately, instead of being a sweeping swoop from one side to the other, it started and ended within half an inch. Right at the end. It looked something like I had tried to do it. Since I had asked her to feather it a bit (I have very thick hair), she grabbed her thinning sheers, and snipped at my bangs. That meant that half of my bang hairs were short than the other half. Right next to that cowlick on my forehead. Yup.
Basically, if you spread and curve your fingers into a claw formation, as if you're pretending to be a monster or something, and then stick that up by your hairline, that's what my bangs looked like.
Since she was waiting for an answer, I turned to ask Andrew what he thought.
He wasn't at all reassuring. I looked back in the mirror, then smiled at the lady, and said, "All done now."
We paid, then left. However, instead of being able to rush home and fully assess the damage done, we had to go grocery shopping. As we walked into the store, a breeze rushed past us, lifting my hair as if I were in some commercial. Only, I don't know what I was advertising. Maybe something like this: "Get your hair cut, and you too can walk slow-mo through a door with bits of hair shrapnel flying off behind you and your bangs sticking all about like a hideous loon!" Not very persuasive. Too bad I was the poster child.
When we were home, I decided that I would just have to wear my faithful old gray headband until my bangs grew back. It was too short to be able to fix with more cutting. I seized the headband and donned it. I dropped my head on the counter. My bangs were too short to stay up in the headband. Too short and sticking out all over the place. I wailed in frustration and went to bed.
The next morning was church. I managed to get my bangs to stay back with a double headband approach to styling. When I got home, I switched to my gray (more comfortable) headband, but kept the band just barely on the hairline. I looked pretty clever.
I started becoming worried that someone would bump into me and knock my headband off. Then I wouldn't be covered in its protective concealment. I knew that if that were to ever happen, dramatically loud chords from The Phantom of the Opera would instantly start playing, and that there would be screaming and general horror all about.
Then I would have to give up the one person that I loved, and go live by myself in a cave somewhere with a little toy wind-up monkey that played "Masquerade." And people might even try to kill me. Not good on either account.
So now I'm trying to decide which is better: Being seized by a fit of pregnancy madness and mangling your own bangs, or paying someone else to make you into the hair version of the Phantom. Only without that sheer musical genius, which at least would be an upside. But also without the homicidal tendencies, which is at least one bright point in all of this.
I think it's the fit of pregnancy madness - because at least that's free ugliness.