Stephanie made up her mind. She can’t live like this. She looks like a ghost from the past, 1960 to be exact. Everybody looks at her. She’s going to have it out with Edna. If she gets fired, so be it. She’ll work at a fast food place. They’re always hiring. When she arrives at work, she sits in the car a minute gaining her courage. She walks to the door, takes a deep breath ‘OK, this is it’ and walks in.
“Edna, we’ve got to talk,” Stephanie demanded. Stephanie heard herself and couldn’t believe what she heard. “I mean, I’d like to talk to you please.”
“No time now dear. Headin out,” Edna says as she picks up her keys. “Going to see my Granddaughter’s school play. I think she’s a flower. So cute. They’re all so cute at that age. We can talk when I get back,” her voice fading as she hurries out the door.
Stephanie just stands there in shock. She was all ready. Now she’ll have to wait. As she heads over to her station, Martha sees her.
“Hi Stephanie. How was the big weekend with the in-laws? Did you show them around?”
Stephanie just looks over at her and bursts into tears.
“Stephanie, what’s wrong dear?” Martha asks as she walks over and holds her. She backs away holding Stephanie’s head in her hands, looking straight into her eyes. “Now, tell me dear, Martha’s right here. I can help.”
Stephanie grabs her and holds her. “Martha, you guys are so nice to me here. I love it. I really love it here”, she says while whimpering and sniffling. You treat me so good. You take all that time to fix my hair, but sometimes it’s too much. But, sometimes it’s just too much. I can’t take care of it properly. People are always looking at me. Tom can’t even run his hands through her hair anymore and he used to like going that. I can’t even sit straight up in a car all the time.” Again, a big burst of tears. More sniffling. “Martha, what should I do?”
“There, there, dear. Martha will take care of everything. We just got carried away. We’re not used to having such a young beautiful girl being around. We just took advantage of you without taking your feelings into consideration. But, you do know this is an older type beauty shop and you can’t really wear any of those new fancy styles.”
Stephanie pulls back and looks at Martha. “Oh, I know. I know. I’m not asking that. Just something not not so extravagant all the time. Something I can take care of.”
“I understand. I completely understand. Well we better do something about this today then,” Martha pulls back and looks at all sides of Stephanie’s huge hairstyle. Then she pulls her close again giving her a hug. “Let me check my book and we’ll get it done. ASAP. And don’t say anything to Edna. She loves you so much. She just wants to make you happy. I’ll explain it all to her.”
Stephanie gives her a big hug. “Oh Martha, you’re so good to me. You’re all so good to me.” Stephanie heads back over to her station. “You guys are the best.”
“Family dear, were all family,” Martha calls back.
About 1:00 Martha calls Stephanie over to her station. “Are you ready? I was thinking. How bout a nice flip. Here we can tease it up and give it a curl and at home you can flatten it out and wear it straight if that’s what you want. Just don’t let Edna know. She wants to keep a certain image in this salon.”
“Sounds great Martha. Let’s give it a try. And don’t worry I won’t say anything to Edna about styling it any different at home.”
“Definitely don’t. I’m not sure how she’d take it”.
As Martha begins shampooing Stephanie, Edna returns.
“Norma, can you finish up washing Stephanie’s hair for me? I need to talk to Edna for a minute.” Norma’s red hair is still piled high on her head in her signature 60’s beehive.
“Sure. Love too. Her hair so so young.”
“Stephanie, I’ve got to tell ya. You have got the most beautiful hair. The condition is remarkable. Especially after what’s been done to it. And those styles that Martha has been doing on you are ‘so rad’. I’m hoping that someday Martha will let me try one on you,” Norma remarks as she walks her over to Martha’s station and starts combing out her hair.
“Not so ‘rad’ anymore. Martha’s going to tone it down from now on.”
Stephanie looks at herself in the mirror. This is the first time since her first hairstyle with Martha that she’s been able to see herself in a mirror with her hair down. She notices it’s really not that short, still below her shoulders and it’s really not in bad condition. She had no idea what to expect after seeing those hunks hair flying when Martha’s doing her hair. She’s both surprised and relieved at the same time.
Edna rushes in ahead of Martha almost out of breath. “Stephanie, I am soooo sorry for what we put you through. We meant no harm. Martha explained everything to me. We were just excited to have a new ‘young’ lady join our little ‘family’. No more elaborate, ‘crazy’ hairstyles you can’t manage. I promise. And more importantly always something Tom will be able to run his hands through. Martha says you guys are going to do a flip today. That sounds nice, can’t wait to see it. But you know dear, we still have to keep that certain image for the salon. It’s who we are.”
Martha joins them. “Thanks, Norma. Now let’s get started Stephanie.”
Again she turns Stephanie away from the mirror. “Martha, can you have me face the mirror so I can watch what’s going on.”
“Of course, dear.”
“Did you explain everything to Edna? Did she take it OK?”
“Let’s just say I explained enough and yes she took it just fine.”
With Stephanie facing the mirror, Martha proceeds to trim about an inch of hair across the bottom to even it all up.
“Stephanie, would you like some bangs with your flip?”
Stephanie was in shock. Martha actually asked her if she wanted bangs. “No. No bangs this time,” replying negatively to really test Martha and see if she really would listen to her.
“OK. No bangs it is.”
“Norma, will you bring the roller trolley over for me. Make sure it’s got those big green rollers in it.”
Martha takes a section of hair and spreads a pick gel on it before she puts it in the roller.
“What’s that Martha?”
“Dippity Do, it will help hold the set. And you can brush it out for the weekends or anytime for that matter at home.”
“Dippity Do” link
In no time it’s off to the dryer for a good half hour or so. While she under the she hears Edna, Norma and Martha voices. She can’t make out everything they’re saying but she knows they’re talking about her. She hears parts of their conversation but not enough to make heads or tails from it. She did hear that it’s important to make Tom happy and something stylish yet easy to maintain.
Finally, Stephanie was done. Off to the styling chair again. This time she was facing the mirror as Martha removed the rollers and starting styling her hair. Stephanie was amazed at how quickly and efficiently Martha could style her hair. She even took extra time to show Stephanie how to do it herself and even had Stephanie do some of the teasing herself. When finished there she was almost the ‘old’ Stephanie wearing a teased flipped hairstyle. Not necessarily the way Stephanie would style it, but very acceptable and more importantly easy for Stephanie to modify into a young modern style.
Stephanie’s finished flip as done by Martha –
On weekends of anytime Stephanie wants to modernize it. She basically flattens it out and wear’s it straight or even in a pony.
Stephanie’s flip after Stephanie modifies it –
This worked out so well for Stephanie. She would flatten out the teasing. Brush the sides a little and ‘wolla’ she had a very cute modern flip. Not only could she have a nice flip, but some weekends she would wash it out and blow dry it dry straight. On weekday mornings when necessary she would tease her hair and put a big flip in it making somewhat acceptable for Edna. And on Tuesday’s, like clockwork (Stephanie and Martha changed her styling day), into Martha’s chair for a touch up and the whole process would start again.
A couple months went by and Stephanie loved every aspect of her job now. She even had her own clients who asked for her and she was quite good at creating older looking hairstyles. She could set and tease hair like the best of them. Although she still had a long ways to go to match Martha’s skills. She fit in beautifully. She even got a raise, a big raise. And she was very comfortable with her hair. The way it was working out was perfect. If she didn’t have anything special happening on weekends, she would just brush her hair out and let it be.
One Sunday Stephanie and Tom were out for a quick trip to the store. While there she saw Edna down one of the isles. ‘Oh no’, Stephanie was in a panic. Her hair was a mess. It just hung down, tangled. She headed down a empty isle and pulled out a scrunchy to put it up, but it was too late.
“Stephanie Stephanie. I thought that was you. Out doing a little shopping?” Edna said while she was giving her hair the once over. “Trouble with your hair, dear?”
“Oh no, I was helping Tom paint and it ended up I needed to wash it and didn’t have to get it set yet.” It was the first time Stephanie actually saw Edna somewhat upset with her.
By this time, Tom joined her. “Hi Edna, house is a mess. Stephanie is quite the painter. Really good.”
“Oh once I get home I’ll fix it up, I just didn’t have time,” Stephanie added.
“Oh, I’m sure you’ll have it under control by Tuesday. Tom, does your mom still have those cute little dogs. Poodles I think you said they were.”
“Yeah, she just loves them. Those cute little fur balls. Why”.
“I don’t know, I just remember us talking when Stephanie first started and you telling me about them. Nice seeing you Tom. Good luck with the painting. See you Tuesday, Stephanie,” with that Edna went over and checked out.
“Oh Tom, that was close. Do you think she bought the painting story?”
“Sure she did. Why wouldn’t she. She’ll be fine as long as your hair looks good when you go in on Tuesday.”
“Yeah your right I sure hope so,” Stephanie said doubting herself.
When Stephanie gets home she heads straight up to the bathroom and washes and sets her hair. She was even using ‘Dippity Do’ knowing Edna was going to give her the once over come Tuesday.
Looks good. Looks just like when Martha sets it, she thinks. She’s home free. All she has to do is comb it out and she’s good to go. Stephanie woke up early Monday giving her plenty of time to style her hair. She carefully removes the rollers. ‘Looks good.’ Styling it is a different issue. Oooooo. Time is going by. One hour. Two hours. Her hair looks like a rats nest. It’s almost noon now and she begins to panic. No matter what she tries it keeps getting worse.
“Tom, Tom. Look at me. I screwed up my hair. Look at it. It’s a tangled mess. I can’t go to work like this. Edna will have a cow. I could tell she was upset just seeing me out without my hair looking good. She’ll really be pissed off if I show up to work like this. What should I do?” Her hands were shaking and her voice is cracking. Tears are starting to roll down her checks.
“That’s why you’re trying to fix it up on Monday. It gives you plenty of time to work with it. Hey, maybe if you can’t fix it you can call Martha and have her fix it today or early before Edna gets in.”
“I can’t do that and besides I don’t even have Martha’s number. TOM! Think of something.”
There’s a long pause. “You know if you can’t have Martha fix, find another salon that does flips and stuff like that. Let them fix it. Nobody will be wiser.”
“Tom, that’s brilliant,” she runs over and gives him a big hug. You get on the internet and look for old vintage style salons. I’ll look in the phone book.”
“How do these sound. ‘The House of Beauty’ or ‘Wanda’s Beauty Shop.’ How bout ‘Marie’s Beauty Lounge’.”
“I’ve found a couple too. Listen to these, ‘de Beaute Parlour’ or ‘Oh La La’ or get this one ‘Va Va Voom’.” They both crack up laughing. Yeah, I can see somebody telling their friends. I got my hair done at Va Va Voom.” They both burst into laughter.
Stephanie starts calling. First she calls The House of Beauty. Followed by ‘de Beaute Parlour’ and then Beauty Marie’s Beauty Lounge. No one answers at any of these. Oh cripe everybody’s closed on Monday.
“Tom, this isn’t looking good.” She calls Wanda’s Beauty Shop but they can’t take her until Wednesday.
“Tom, look again. I can’t go to a place called Va Va Voom or Oh La La. I’m going to call the others again. Maybe they just couldn’t pick up.” Again, she starts with ‘The House of Beauty’, then ‘de Beaute Parlour’. No luck. She’s is beginning to panic again. She’s just about ready to hang up on ‘Marie’s Beauty Lounge’ when she hears, “Beauty Lounge, how may I help you”?
“Oh my god, thank god you’re there. Do you do vintage hair styles, specifically like a 60’s teased flip?”
“Of cause we do. That’s what we’re in business for. Would you like to make an appointment?”
“Oh thank god. Can you do me today? I need it done by tomorrow morning.”
“Oh, I’m sorry my dear. We’re closed today. I’m just here, cleaning up a little. But, I’ll tell you what I’ll do. I will come in early tomorrow to do you if that’s what you want. Sayyyyyyy 7:15.”
“Just a minute,” Stephanie says still panicked. “Tom, they can do me. Buy not until tomorrow morning. She’ll come in early for me.”
“Isn’t that sort of pushing it? You need it done by 10 for work. And if it’s not what you want. You don’t have any time to fix it.”
“Miss, MISS” Stephanie hears from the phone. “MISS”.
“Yes, that will be fine. 7:15 I’ll be there.”
“That will work fine then. Let’s see, 7:15 teased vintage hairstyle. No problem. I’m up early anyway. Name?”
“Stephanie. And and not just any .” She’s interrupted.
“Ok Stephanie, see you then.”
“teeeeased style “, Stephanie’s voice fades as she hears a click on the other end of the line.
“We’ll Tom, I guess I’m living on the edge.” And she bursts into laughter. “How hard can it be to put my hair in a flip in three hours. Martha does it in less than one. And looking at their ad, they do exactly what I need.”
To be Continued: (FYI – I will be out of town for 2 – 3weeks)