Student - November 4, 2009

Me

My hair has it up to here. It's always been rebellious anyway (or I'm lazy), but since last week, there's no stopping it anymore. Had all my hair gone haywire, I wouldn't have complained. But that wasn't what happened. A small part of my hair had suddenly acquired a certain style, to the exasperation of the rest of my hairdo. My head resembled a high pile of conflicts with a sniggering little face underneath. Call it the Labour Party, but located on my scalp. Moreover, my four-star patented hair gel trickled into my eyes in the rain, and I'll be going to Scotland next week to do my traineeship. Scotland, where it does rain once in a while.

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I phone the hairdresser.
'Good morning, hair studio ...', mumbled a voice at the other end.
I want to make an appointment for Saturday.
'Oh, there's still place with me.'
I don't know who 'me' is, but 'there's still place' sounds good.
Come Saturday morning, I enter the studio. I have to wait. 'Me' has - although she doesn't admit this herself - made a little mistake in the appointment book. Besides my haircut, a middle-aged lady needs a dye. I sit for about half an hour among the reading materials and wonder about 'me'.
Her voice is muffled, her mouth stays open. The way she handles the cash register makes me think that many eighty-year-olds are quicker at money withdrawal. The contrast to her colleagues only makes the scene more miserable. 'Ya, I just can't sit still for any moment', she says. Step, step, step. 'If I sit down, my brain will say hey, what are you doing and I'll get up again.' Step, step.
It's my turn finally. There's no need for me to embark on a friendly chat. When the telephone goes, 'step, step' picks it up with 'Good afternoon' and carries on talking: 'Did she say good afternoon?', 'Yes', I say. 'Oh, it's afternoon already'. A sigh of relief.
My rebellious hairdo has taken on a lethargic, citizen's look. I don't remember looking so dull before. Ah, what does it matter. Outside in the rain, I draw my hood up, just in case. /Stijn van Gils

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