I just imagined, briefly, whilst brushing my teeth and simultaneously pacing circles around my apartment, that there is someone else in the world who similarly wanders during personal dental care processes. Perhaps one day I'll run into this person on a sidewalk. Shaken, we'll stare nervously at each other, toothbrushes hanging limply from mirrored cheeks. We'll want to smile then, and we will, but only for a moment, before our lips self-consciously suck themselves inward to avoid dripping fluoride-rich foam across the concrete. And then, just as suddenly, we will retreat on shuffling slippered feet, to spit.
I just had this wonderful and weird idea for a story, involving a boy throwing his little brother's possessions into a well. I began writing about fifteen minutes ago, and it was all going, well, well. And then my parents' computer decided to freak out just as unexpectedly as my story idea came to me.
I may never get that page back, but I assure you, it was a good one while it lasted.
Imagined Dialogue Between Me and My Toyota Echo, as I Trade Him in for My New Toyota Prius:
I'm sorry, you know. You know I am sorry. I've told you this. I know. I'm older now. You're older now. These things happen. But lately, I've felt different with you. Different how. Smaller different. Like I... Like you deserve better. No. You do, though. I get it. I look at him, and I see why. He responds to my touch. Keyless entry. Yeah, I know. Could we just not, please? Aww, come on. You know I loved rolling up your windows. It kept my arms fit. Remember that time we were going 85 with the windows down? The way it felt. Yeah. Insane. You didn't like it? The truth is, I never felt really safe with you. You're telling me this now? I could have tried harder! It's just not in your nature. It's okay. So all those miles I gave to you. That just means nothing now. Of course it still means something. You've seen Ferris Bueller. You know that odometer doesn't run backwards. Again with the references. Always the references. You name me Akira. From Kurosawa to Hughes. We've certainly come full circle, haven't we? Ha. What? Circles. I'm gonna miss your turning radius. I'm not the only one who's turned. Don't. I'm saying goodbye, Akira. For him, though? Come on. 30 miles to the gallon wasn't enough for you? I know you're a poor college student but...yeah! How the hell can you even afford a guy like that? You and I both knew from the beginning that this wasn't going to last. I've been planning this for a long time. Saving up. I was a rebound, remember? Yeah. Me and your mom first. It's weird when you say it like that. This whole dialogue is. Remember that time in the park? With-- Quiet. Or the time you hid in my trunk and tried to--- Stop, please. Just stop. I feel so close to you now. Here. Where we met. It has to end. It has to. Don't cry. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to upset you. It's just... 60,000 miles. You've taken all your stuff, right? From the trunk. And the backseat? Yeah. He has a pretty big trunk. With a privacy screen. Good. I can't bear to watch. You know I really did. I really do. I love you too. I'm leaving now. I know. But could you... Yes? Could you leave the Spandau Ballet sticker? Does it mean that much to you? It's the last ironic reference we'll ever share, isn't it? I can't do this. Are those the keys? To him? Yeah. I have to... Just go. Jesus. 55 miles to the gallon. And a back-up camera. I'll have to watch you as I leave. In the mirrors. And the camera. And the camera. I'll miss you, Akira. He's grey. Perfect. I'm waving goodbye, Akira. 60,000 miles. God, I feel so old. Me too.
There really isn't anything like a good haircut. I swung through the door of the salon, the soles of my Converse slapping the swollen pavement, and for once I didn't feel the day's humidity festering between my thick, unruly locks. I wasn't moved to pull my hair back into a bandana. I arched my back and felt a breeze--an actual breeze, across my neck. And why wouldn't I feel the breeze on my neck? There was no hair there anymore to block it.
A lot of people are asking me what moved me to have my curly, shaggy coif whacked. It's a long history. For the past two years, I've been seeing two stylists, and every time I sat in the chair before this time, I'd say, "I want it short." And one of my two stylists would say, "short?! Really?! How exciting!" And then I'd put a stop to the madness and say, "not like that. I mean, just a little above the shoulder."
Then I'd leave, and by some frustrating tinge of buyer's remorse, I'd regret not having something different done. At least make it worth the wad of money I pay. Do something different. I've called myself a wuss in this blog before. But not anymore.
Maybe it was watching "Roman Holiday" last summer with my Culture Night girls. I'd seen the movie before, but seeing it this time, being a woman now, watching her face sink and then brighten almost instantly.
The way such a simple change can make you walk differently--can make you into a different person. It's what she needed to be, and it's what I needed to be. That's what I thought as I watched it, curled up in my basement with a group of the most smartest, beautiful, talented girls I know.
One year later, and I've got my change. I can't tell which version of me looks more like me now, and I love that. This new haircut makes me want to hug everyone! Miss Hepburn got to thank the Academy after "Roman Holiday," and now I get to thank her. And my stylist, Dana, for the best good-hair day of my life.
Oh yeah, and I should thank my supportive fella (seen above) for encouraging me to take a risk (whilst also warning me that shaving my head could have some undesirable consequences.)