Sunday, March 31, 2013

Confidence, and The Unfortunate Reality of Bangs.

My mother is a very confident human being. She is proud and self-assured, and persuasive. She gets what she wants, and, as if by magic, the world seems to tilt in her direction almost all the time. I've tried, unsuccessfully, to apply my mom's attitude to my own life, and it just never seems to play out in the same way.

Case in point, a few weeks ago, at a small Mexican salon. There was a severe language barrier, but I was feeling rather confident (thanks to four beers and some anti-anxiety pills). It had been over six months since scissors had touched my hair. I despise haircuts- more specifically, the process of getting a haircut. You sit in a mirror, staring at yourself and make time-filling chit-chat (how's your job? how's your dog? blah, blah, blah), while a person charges you $80 to cut two inches off the bottom of your hair, even if you asked for seven inches off and a wispy fringe.

Back to Mexico, where it came time to "trim" my hair. The stylist held up a few centimeters and nodded. I shook my head, and ran to the magazine rack. I flipped through stacks of old Spanish Vogues until I found a picture of the heavier Rodarte sister, with blunt, thick bangs and 6 inches less hair than I currently had (actual photo above). I pointed at the photo, and the stylist shook her head. As I held the magazine insistently in the air, she began to chop. "Lady?", she said, "Are you sure?".

The first thing I did when I arrived home was to go out and get a great pair of trimming scissors. The cut looked much better than I could have ever imagined, but the unfortunate reality of bangs is that they need regular upkeep. Obsessively regular upkeep. I Youtube'd how to trim my bags, which was a raging failure in the finest sense (but, like any time I ever get lost down the rabbit hole that is Youtube, I found some amazing disco house mixes, as well as a million baby bunny videos). I searched hair blogs and various other instructables, but in terms of trimming my bangs, I was totally, totally on my own.

With a healthy dose of confidence, I brought the scissors home. Watching my mom for years has taught me that if you believe you can do it, you can do it. I have started taking tiny, careful cuts out of the fringe every single day (as well as cutting the shit out of my hands). I used to get mad at my regular stylist here in Calgary because she would never cut me any bangs, but I understand now. I am anxious and obsessive at the best of times, and no matter how confident I pretend I am, I can't seem to convince myself that the bangs are straight enough, or short enough, or just puffy enough. I love the way my hair looks now, but for how long? Confidence is, apparently, not something you can fake.

Every day: chop, chop, chop, remeasure, chop.
See? This is why we can't have nice things.

~sarah p.

p.s. My most common re-occuring dream, throughout my whole life, is one in which I cut my own hair. I have been having these dreams since I was a very small child. I have yet to see if the dreams will continue to pepper my slumber now that I have brought them into the conscience realm. 

p.p.s. I recently figured out an amazing secret: if you want to listen to the finest, most comprehensive playlists on your i-tunes, just search by a singular word. Do it, and thank me later.

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