|Photo courtesy of MorgueFile.com
Though I've had a few that were close...
The absolute worst was bad not only for the hair itself, but also the timing. TG and I were just about to set off on our Big European Adventure. We had sold the first house we bought (we'd been eating mac-n-cheese casseroles for a year and a half to make the mortgage payments) and decided the absolute best thing we could do with the tidy profit we'd made was to spend six months visiting my relatives in Sweden, and Eurailing around the rest of the continent.
(I know. Not really all that practical of us, considering we didn't have any jobs lined for when we got back. But, hey, "young and stupid" is a valid life phase, right? Besides, we didn't have kids yet, so we were only responsible for ourselves, and figured what the hell.)
Anyhoo, before we set out, I decided curly hair would be easier to take care of while traveling than straight hair. So, naturally, a perm came to mind. I mean, then I wouldn't have to bother with packing a power adapter for my curling iron. Or, yannoh, the curling iron itself. Brilliant, huh?
But I didn't really want to pay a whole lot for the permanent. I wanted to save every penny possible for our Big Adventure.
(You can see where this is heading, can't you? Uh-huh. Pinching pennies on perms is not a wise thing. But, hey, "young and stupid," right?)
So I selflessly chose the local beauty salon that was offering $15 perms. (I know! Stupid, stupid, stupid...)
Have you ever seen a $15 dollar perm? No? Well, you're not going to here, either, because I am no longer young or stupid -- I destroyed all the photographic evidence.
After my hair was totally fried by the perpetrator who went out to smoke a cigarette while the permanent wave solution "set," I went to visit my darling TG at the theater where he worked. Mainly to cry on his shoulder, but also clinging to the fragile hope that it wasn't as bad as I feared.
TG, bless his heart*, was getting the theater in shape for his imminent departure, and thus terribly, horribly, completely busy with all sorts of crap. So when I stepped up onto the stage, tremulous smile on my face, he could be** forgiven for walking right past me with barely a nod and not one iota of recognition on his face.
Yup, folks, that perm was SO HEINOUS my own husband didn't recognize me.
I (of course) burst into tears, which was a totally cliched and girly thing to do, and something I couldn't have prevented even if Gloria Steinem had been standing there shaking her finger in my face.
The tears finally got his attention. Have you ever seen a deer caught in the headlights? But, in spite of his fear, TG stepped manfully up to the plate and told me I was beautiful. Hugged me until I had it under control, offered me his hat, and took me out for ice cream.
And that's why we're still married.
*Anyone from the South knows exactly what this means. For those of you not from below the Mason-Dixon Line, let's just say it's not as complimentary as it sounds, and leave it at that.
**Could be, but wasn't...not before many, many trips to Baskin-Robbins, anyway. Even now, if the subject comes up, he offers to take me out for ice cream. It's almost a Pavlovian response.
What's the worst hair day you've ever had?
(If you've never had a bad hair day, I'm sorry but I'll be forced to hate you.)