This is a little short story a friend asked me to write for a contest she was entering to win 4000 bottles of curl straighter or something from Pantene. I don’t think we won. I don’t know if she ever entered it, actually. Though her hair has been stunning lately…
I awoke to the crackling sounds of the radio as our local weatherman delivered the horrifying news.
“Today 100% humidity! And hey, here’s an idea, why don’t you go out and get yourself some new technology! What the heck you doing waking up to the sound of a crackling radio?? Afraid you’ll miss the next episode of Little Orphan Annie? Get yourself a freaking Ipod!”
Fear gripped my heart. 100% chance of sarcasm AND humidity! A double whammy. I touched my hair, and could feel it already beginning to kink up in new and horrifying ways. I threw on my fuzzy bunny slippers and padded to the room next store where my roommate lie sleeping.
“Julie, wake up! Today is 100% humidity!”
Julie’s eyes sprung open and she sat bolt upright in bed. With her curly hair scrunched and piled on her head, she looked like the Bride of Frankenstein after the lightening strike. Our nightmare had already begun.
“Nooo! We’re not prepared!” she wailed. “The last time this happened your hair poofed up so much we couldn’t get through the door and you lost your job!”
“I know,” I said. “That was the only silver lining.”
Together we pulled out every cream, relaxer, conditioner and curling iron in the house and piled them in the middle of the Panic Room we’d had built for just such an emergency. It was a roomy closet with a dehumidifier in it. Then we went to work.
After three hours we surveyed our progress. Julie looked like a drowned rat – her once beautiful curly blonde hair now droopy and lifeless. She looked like an Afghan Hound caught in a monsoon. We had tried to smooth out my locks with a flatiron and now it resembled burnt straw, the ends so sharp and jagged I feared I’d accidentally cut my own throat with it. Strange right angles were crimped into the strands. I looked more like a geometry project than a girl.
“This is a curltastrophe!” I shreiked.
Julie nodded in agreement, her eyes welling with tears. It was then I saw the advertisement in the newspaper we had lined the floor with to sop up the conditioner. It was a line of curly hair products by Pantene.
“Hey,” I said, reading the ad. “I think I might have a solution!”