Back Around the House II: Doctors and hairdressers


Something I have learned as I have grown older is always be sure your doctor, your dentist, and your hairdresser are younger than you are.

Health care is a whole lot easier if you are dealing with people who are familiar with your particular quirks. For example, if your doctor knows that when you say “ouch” you mean “OUCH,” it saves a lot of time, not to mention pain

These days I realize it isn’t always easy to find a doctor, let alone one younger than you are. With all the restrictions various forms of health insurance pose on clients, you are lucky to find any doctor within 40 miles of your home.

You may have more luck choosing your hairdresser.

When I chose my last hairdresser, Evie, she was younger than I was. She still is, but she retired, and I didn’t even know it. Granted I wasn’t her best customer, but I usually dropped in every six months or so.

She would cut my hair and straighten up whatever chopping I had done. She’d give me a perm, and then after three trims or so over a period of several months, it was time for another perm. She could always work me in on short notice.

I trusted her implicitly. I put myself and my hair into her hands and sat back and listened to the current gossip and new jokes.

Then I called for an appointment, and surprise, she had retired. I can’t blame her, and I wish her every happiness even if she did throw me out into the world of modern beauty salons and hair styles.

First I checked with my daughters for recommendations. I settled on a stylist who did both males and females from little kids to senior citizens. I called for an appointment but had to wait two weeks. The day came, but so did the flu., so I had to reschedule.

By the time the flu passed I was really having bad hair days, so I asked for the first appointment I could get. It was at 7 p.m. in the middle of the week. I hadn’t had my hair done that late at night since the old home permanent days when I had to wait until all the kids were in bed asleep.

As I waited my turn after arriving at the salon, I looked at the posters of different hair styles displayed on the walls. It looked like they soaked the hair and then pointed it in all directions and called it style. So when Kim, my new hair stylist, sat me down and asked if there were any style I preferred, I pointed to the posters and told her I didn’t see any style. She told me those were called “attitude.” I told her I had enough attitude without including my hair. I think maybe she was ready to go home, but I thought she would be fine.

Poor Kim began to try to find out what I wanted. I was amazed at my own ignorance. I didn’t even know how Evie cut my hair let alone what kind of rollers she used. I was only able to tell her what I did to my own hair between appointments.

Next thing I knew she was putting some kind of glop on my hair. “Uh, what’s that?” I asked

“Mousse,” she replied, looking puzzled. “Would you rather have gel?”

I began to feel panic. I remembered a commercial for hair gel years ago when it first came out that was so offensive I swore I’d never use it, and I haven’t. A few years later mousse was discovered. One day I accidentally touched a student’s head. She had moussed her hair until it felt like a helmet.

“If you want, I can rinse it out,” Kim offered. I think she had read my mind and knew I was about to bolt out of there, wet head and all.

But then I realized it was time to enter the new century of hair care. I told her to go for it. Sudden courage? Not really. I knew I wouldn’t get out of there until after 9. It would be dark, and I could go home and wash it out if I didn’t like the way it looked.

By the time Kim was done with me, my hair looked quite presentable. It was a shame I had nowhere to go but home. Next time I think I’ll try a morning appointment so I can have good hair all day.

AUTHOR’S NOTE: This column was first published in the Daily Advocate Jan. 14, 2004.

By Kathleen Floyd

Back Around the House II

Kathleen Floyd is a volunteer citizen columnist, who serves The Daily Advocate readers weekly with her column Back Around the House II. She can be reached at [email protected]. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.

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