Those of you who know me will know that I have a "hate" relationship with my hair.
Hair has always annoyed me, simply because it keeps growing. Having to go to the hairdresser is a gross inconvenience and a waste of my precious time.
With this attitude, I generally last about 6 weeks after a haircut before I take to myself with the scissors. I figure that I can never go too wrong; it will never take too long for it to grow back.
This has never been much of a problem in Australia. I butcher myself in the endless hope that I can avoid a trip to the hairdresser, end up at the hairdresser 2 weeks later, the hairdresser notices my foolishness and she/he and I have a good belly laugh over it.
Basically, Australia lets me butcher my hair if I want to; it's my hair and I'll do what I want with it, etc.
Well, it seems that this self-cut (self-harm?) behaviour is completely unacceptable in Italy.
Today I learned this lesson the hard (embarrassing!) way.
I cut the sides of my hair a week ago (the sides always seem to grow faster than the rest so they have the capacity to turn me into a desperate scissor-wielding lunatic earlier than the rest of my hair). At the time, I decided to delay a trip to the hairdresser even longer and be more drastic than normal.
Everything was going well and to plan until, immediately after my scissor job, I noticed that I'd given myself The Triple Stripe treatment on one side. This occurs when one cuts a little too severely and creates three distinct lines where there is no hair at all!
Clearly, immediate rectification was required so I attempted to create The Triple Stripe on the other side.
While this was a sudden and desperate decision, it was not a sensible decision as I now had two sides with bald stripes at different angles. I kept butchering away in a desperate and oblivious manner to make myself (if not actually look better) at least look "even".
Thankfully, many years of such behaviour has left me highly skilled at hiding these sorts of mishaps. For the next 2 weeks, I moussed, gelled and dragged the hair onto my face to hide my new very radical "soccer hero" hairstyle.
After 2 weeks, I decided that the sides had grown enough to fool the hairdresser.
The hairdresser immediately found my botch job.
If I had stripped naked and danced around the salon she couldn't have looked more appalled. I did my usual thing and had a little giggle at myself before realising that she wasn't giggling with me. This was not a laughing matter. She thought I was completely ridiculous! I suspect that, if I had a greater grasp of Italian, she might have told me never to return!
I was suitably subdued. Sorry, I said, I will never do it again.
After she fixed me up, I left the salon thinking that I will never do that again...at least not in Italy...at least not in the next month...after all, 40 years of behaviour is a hard habit to break...