Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Plus, for only 50% more, we give you what you’ve already got…

I lost a faithful friend last week. It is the one and only thing that can ever get a curl into my hair that a) doesn’t cause my hair to immediately split all the way up to my scalp [for examples please see my hair after I use any of the following: dry rollers, curling irons, blow dryer] and b) will last long enough for me to grab hairspray and squirt it onto my hair: The Caruso Molecular Steam Hairsetter. (If you want one, do NOT pay more than about $30 for it…that $50 price tag is ridiculous. Just sayin’.)

I plugged it in one morning because I wanted to look a little less ratty and ::POP!!::

No more curler. It had shorted out, and all my attempts to resuscitate it were in vain.

The grief was so overwhelming that I wept.

OK, not really.

But I did cuss. Rather stridently, too.

Stop laughing. It was serious! Seeing as how I am having to frequently go about among the fashion-judging public these days (read as: I’m interviewing and networking like a crazy person) (hence, by the way, a certain amount of Blog Silence on my part), it was kind of important that I have some way of getting my hair to look, if not good, at least like I gave a @*^&@.

Of course, this comes to you from the woman who went to a networking event all dressed up and only on the way home noticed that not one, not two, but THREE enormous, long, ugly, BLACKER THAN BLACK hairs were waving from her chin…nice…you know what made it even worse? The makeup. I’d put on makeup, right? (And I am just ever-so-adept at that, too…) This did not cover the chin hairs I didn’t notice, even though they were as thick as 000 knitting needles and as black as tar.

Oh no. No hiding under the makeup. No. I highlighted the @*^&@ers. Big black hairs, with a light powdery coating of “urban beige” or whatever that ‘not ivory because ha-ha, your “ivory” days are SO behind you now’ color is actually called.

If you missed them when they were just black wires, you couldn’t possibly miss them as black-with-not-ivory-makeup-highlights wires. NICE.

You know…I thought I told myself never to think about that again. And yet, here I am. Still obsessing about the stupid chin hairs. Probably because I had gotten all smug and self-congratulatory, thinking (as I did) that the reason the guys at the networking thing were looking downward was that their attention had been drawn to my…well, a little lower than my chin because, yeah, ha ha, this is not something that generally happens to me unless a child has just walked up and yanked my top down and exposed areas that are Not Generally For General Viewing due to having a chest like a ten year old boy and I was all, Wow, I’ve got to remember what style of bra it was I got on sale that last time, because baby, it’s Workin’ Fer Me!…and then I get in the car and look at myself in the mirror to make sure I don’t have coffee-foam smeared on my nose or something and HELLO! GIANT BLACK HAIRS WAGGLING AROUND ON YOUR CHIN LIKE SOMETHING OUT OF A HORROR MOVIE!!!

“Weeeeee come to deeeeestroy yeeeeeer plannnnneeeeeettttt…weeeeeeeee burrow into your chiiiiiiiiins and eat your braaaaaains…”

…stupid chin hairs…GET OUT OF MY BRAIN!!!!...

Never mind. Anyway. Where was I? Oh yeah. Hair. Head hair, curling thereof. So! I went forth in search of a new molecular steam curler. Because people, I am going to say it again: This stupid thing is the one and ONLY thing I have ever found that can get a curl, or anything like a curl, to stay in my hair. Well. Unless I shampoo my hair, braid it tightly (like, in corn rows) and let it dry for about, oh, 24 hours. Or so. Then I will have some good wavy stuff going.

But it’s kinda time consuming, and also limited in look. And the ends kind of frizz up and wave at people yelling, “HI! SHE DIDN’T REALLY CURL US, YOU KNOW – THIS IS JUST A LAME ATTEMPT TO AVOID ACTUAL WORK BY UNDOING THE BRAID AND CALLING IT A ‘STYLE’!!”

So I finally ended up at a local beauty supply place where glory be, they had one (1) in stock. WOO HOO!! I grabbed it (and a set of extra curlers, which were FREE with PURCHASE of the CURLER, WOOT!) and ran for the counter.

The nice child girl fully working-age lady range me up and then asked if I wanted to purchase the warranty on the curler.


“It’s $12.99?” she added.

“Uhhhh…what does it provide?”

“Well, for one year? If it breaks? You can bring it back to the store? And they’ll replace it?” (Question: Why do so many people taaaaaaaalk? In draaaawling? Broken phrased? Questions? When they’re actuaaaaaaaaally? Telling? Yoooooooooooou? Sooooooooomethiiiiiiiiiing?)

So, under this plan, I can pay $13 to get exactly what I get free of charge through the manufacturer’s warranty.

“No, that’s OK,” I said cheerfully.

“Well, but, if it breaks? You can bring it back? And we’ll order you a new one? From the manufacturer?”

“But if it breaks in the first year, I can also just send it directly back to the customer service department myself get a new one!” I informed her. (Note: I did not? Ask? Her? I told her! Like this! With Exclamation Points!)

“But…you’d hafta mail it,” she said doubtfully. (Ah! No questions! Progress!) “And that’s? You know? Expensive?” (Damn.)

I looked at the curler. I figure maybe six bucks to mail it via UPS (this is an experienced eBayer talking, which is perhaps an unfair advantage and all but still – there it is). The chances it will break within that first year seem pretty slim to me, frankly. I’ve owned three of them and never gotten less than five years out of any of them – more when I’ve been diligent about keeping it clean.

“No thank you,” I said firmly.

“OK,” she said cheerfully and finished taking my money.

And then I realized why I am not in sales or marketing. I was envisioning a sales flyer for the ‘extended warranty’ offered on electronics at this beauty supply store.

“ASK ABOUT OUR EXTENDED WARRANTY PLAN! That’s right, for only 50% more than you are already paying for your Can’t Live Without It Doohickey, we guarantee exactly the same service you would receive under the regular manufacturer warranty…only pricier, and with the added convenience of having to keep track of another slip of paper, without which we cannot honor the agreement!”

Call now, representatives are standing by…(with big poofy hair, another thing the Caruso is very good at providing…) (shut up, in the 80s that was a major selling point…)


Carrie said...

I've been looking for one of these for my daughter's impossible-to-curl-without-industrial-strength-hairspray hair. Sticky hairspray isn't attractive on a 5yo, but curls can be fun sometimes. :-)

Anonymous said...

Have you thought about getting a hairstyle that looks good without curls? A good hairstylist could give you some good ideas.

Science PhD Mom said...

I bet I know why the whole "new cut" that works with your hair won't work. It's the frugal thing, isn't it? As a woman who gets her hair cut maybe twice a year, I just can't stand paying $50 a pop for a decent haircut. And the thought of doing so every six to eight weeks gives me the heebie-jeebies! 'Fess up, that's you too, isn't it Tama? Don't worry, there are lots of us out there--women who start with a new short haircut and make it last in a passable style until it's shoulder length. You're not alone!

Lainey said...

All that warranty stuff ... so true! I notice Comet (an electrical place here in the UK) have now come up with a new trick to sell the useless warranty - when you purchase anything they take your house no. and postcode (zip code) not only so they can bombard you with useless flyers through the post, but also so that if you take their warranty and lose the slip of paper, then you only have to phone up and give your details and they can track you on their system.
I so sympathize with the no-curl hair - having spent £100s on various styling instruments and hours of time wasted only to have the curl disappear after 5 mins :-(

Lydee said...

lol! thanks for the laugh! here's to big hair!

Anonymous said...

HAHAHAHAH! That's great! My hair used to curl beautifully, but age has taken its toll. Now it's just straight...and grey. I color and curl, but it's an exercise in futility as none of it lasts. As for the chin hairs - I feel your pain. Makes me feel like a billy goat in training.

MadMad said...

Hair stinks, I swear. I broke my blow dryer? And now I'm on my third? Trying to replace it? And still can't find one that works the same? It's annoying? Who-da thunk a dryer was not a dryer was not a dryer, you know?

And chin hairs? Those stink, too. But you know what - EVERYTHING shows up in a car mirror (all those darn windows?) so I bet NO ONE saw them IRL. You know?

ellipsisknits said...

What is it with the chin hairs and popping out all of a sudden? They never *grow* they just *appear* full size and uggo like you haven't bothered looking in a mirror for the last month or so. (great, now I've admitted to having chin hairs on the internet...)

Also, my experience is that no haircut will make up for a lack of styling. At least on my hair, I don't know about yours. My solution thus far has been to traipse about unstyled.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said that maybe you should try a different cut. Actually, that might not be a bad idea. I think you’d look awesome with a chin length bob, slightly layered at the ends, a tad longer at the front (to give natural fullness), with bangs (a little shorter than usual to highlight your eyes) – something that you could wash, let dry, and brush (and if you wanted more fullness, just lean over brush, spray and fluff and ta dah!). A Coco Channel look (longer of course). Am I making sense? ;o)

knitalot3 said...

They were just stray eye brows.

I'm sure they didn't notice. Pluck and move on.

Michelle F said...

I remember when my combo hair dryer/curler doohickey died - it was the only thing my dyslexic hands could use to reasonably dry my dead straight hair in any style - took weeks to find replacement. You're lucky you found a replacement quickly - I haven't seen one of the Carusso things in a dog's age - mine rotting in the back of the closet - if your current one dies I'll ship you mine - it will be pay back for all the chuckles you have given me!