If there was just one rule of the hair salon, it should be this: never go with a GBF (gay boyfriend). I know, I know,
you’d think this would be a perfect pairing, but in reality it’s a perfect storm. Trust me on this one.
I should have known better after the disaster with Glenn. But then again, I hadn’t even realized what a train wreck
that was until after the fact. Obviously, that memory had started to fade.
Because here I was on a Saturday morning, almost a year after the Glenncident, meeting Scott for a burger and
a beer a few hours before my cut and color at a new salon.
We texted each other ahead of time, agreeing that we would both be good. Bellied up to the Strip House bar, our resolve crumbled when Abby pulled out the Zing Zang. One Bloody Mary won’t hurt. Just one. It was noon on Saturday after all. Well okay, just one more. We barely had time for food before I had to head out to the salon.
Scott decided he could use a pedicure for his trip to Gay Days Orlando, so off we biked, from one end of the island to the other. A sense of déjà vu was creeping up on me. I never expected to be off to the salon with a GBF again. This time it would be different. I’d stay in control. Yeah.
I was armed with an arsenal of knowledge. I knew how a fun afternoon could turn into a disaster at the salon. Last year, the morning of the Glenncident started out on a similar note. Glenn and I had flexible work schedules, and would meet for breakfast some Fridays.
This became more frequent when it was clear he would be forced to take an unexpected temporary, yet still painfully long trip back to England. Who needed Sunday Funday? We rocked Friday well into sunset.
That Friday morning I warned him I had a hair date that couldn’t be missed under any circumstances. That was
the only obligation on my plate. We started at Schooner Wharf, but breakfast was over.
We had a Bloody Mary (okay, maybe two) while we decided where to go next. Let’s just say that first Bloody Mary was the beginning of the end. I can’t remember all the details of the day, until we ended up back at Glenn’s pool, swimming and drinking champagne until late afternoon when my date rolled around.
I hate cancelling appointments, but especially hair because stylists take their sweet time rescheduling you and my
roots couldn’t afford to wait another day. All I needed to do was sit it a chair for two hours.
Easy enough. The hardest part would be getting there. Glenn decided he’d keep me company, so hand in hand, we stumbled off to the salon. Seriously, how gay is that?
My stylist was running late, and we were offered a glass of wine. Which of course we accepted. You just don’t turn
down free salon wine. Raise the curtain on the final act.
We were the only ones in the waiting area. Glenn’s elderly mum called and he chatted with her on the phone. He said he was at the salon with a hooker. Being in the state of mind I was in, I didn’t pick up on the slang, and worried what this proper British lady I never met was thinking of me. So I took the phone and reassured her that I was not, in fact, a hooker. Again and again, apparently.
My name was called; Glenn sat in the chair next to me, laughing at the foil antennas being formed on my head. Overcome by chemicals, he went outside to smoke a cigarette. I didn’t hear from him again for two days.
Surely I’m not the only person who’s ever shown up or gotten tipsy at the salon, right? I figured after six weeks
all would be forgotten. But the next time I climbed into the chair my stylist said, “You and your friend…you were really having fun the last time you were here.” Hee hee. Yep. Then another stylist chimes in, “yeah, you were yelling to someone on the phone about not being a hooker.”
Wah? Yelling? I’m not one of those jackasses who yells on a cell phone indoors. But oh my god, I was. And that’s when I realized that no matter how much time goes by, every time I would walk into that salon I’d always be the hooker. I’d always be the drunk girl.
I never went back.
Finally I found another stylist I liked, at a salon that did not serve wine. After my third appointment she told me
she was moving to my hooker salon. So not only did I not want to face the stylist whose client list I disappeared from, I couldn’t risk going back and being the drunk girl.
Now here I was with Scott, entering a new salon and vowing to myself that I would not be the hooker here. I mentally willed Scott not to make me the drunk girl. Please. Have strength for the both of us. Because I’m just a girl who can’t say no.
Unfortunately, so is he.
Naturally, as soon as I checked in the receptionist graciously asked if we’d like mimosas while we waited. Three, two one…why yes, yes we would.
They had to call in a specialist for Scott’s toes, so he went to a bar around the corner and thoughtfully picked up a
couple of Coronas and brought them back for us. At this point I let him…no, maybe even encouraged his taking photos of me with foils on my head and posting them to Facebook. As if on cue, Glenn immediately posted a comment: ‘Is this the same hairdressers which we both turned up twisted?’ Ah, those Brits can make anything
Cut, colored and coiffed, I was out of the chair, the pedicure was underway, and the salon was dry. Scott implored—no, begged—me to go on a Corona run. Now that I was in control you’d think I could have gotten just one beer. Just the one, for Scott, but I was past the point of no return. The bartender offered plastic cups for the beer in case I was walking to Duval and I said no, I’m just going back to the salon around the corner.
She said “Oh right, your husband was just in here.” I just nodded my head in agreement and laughed to myself as I thought of my “husband,” who at that moment was having all the colors of the Gay Pride flag painted on his big toes.
Then it hit me: my most fun, most memorably unmemorable salon days are the ones with GBFs. And from now on, I won’t have it any other way.