A Blonde Moment
Jean-Pierre stood at the window of his salon and smiled proudly. It was rare to have a quiet moment at Shear Genius; usually the clients were lining up, anxious for his personal attention. He thought back, as he often did, to his unlikely beginnings in this trade.
Born simply ‘John’, he was the only boy in a family of 5 children. He had 2 older sisters, and 2 younger, but no-one to play soldiers or war games with. He grew up surrounded by dolls, and girlie things. At an early age John discovered that it was fun to play with dolls, as long as they had long hair which he could trim and shape. The first time he cut a doll’s hair the sister who owned the doll cried and shouted for Mummy to punish him. Then they discovered that the doll actually looked rather good with the new hairstyle and he was given a free hand to work on other dolls.
He progressed from dolls to his sisters’ hair, and was only 12 when his sisters’ friends started asking his advice about style and shape. At 14 he got a weekend job in a salon. He started brushing the hair up off the floor, replenishing shampoo and conditioner bottles, making coffee for clients. When one of his older sister’s friends came in and specifically asked for him to style her hair, the manager was very dubious, but the result was so good that they allowed him to compile a short list of his own customers. By the time he was 18 he had saved enough to rent a salon of his own, and that is when Shear Genius came into existence, and John became Jean-Pierre.
As he stood smiling at his memories he saw a lovely young blonde woman heading towards the salon. Her gleaming hair swung in the breeze but Jean-Pierre tutted to himself when he saw what appeared to be a cell phone attached to her left ear. It ruined the line of the cut. She walked in and asked the receptionist if Jean-Pierre was available. “I’ve heard he is incredibly talented and want him to work on my hair,” she said hopefully.
Jean-Pierre strutted forward, introduced himself and led her to a chair for a consultation.
The young woman gave her name as Linda and confided that she had problems with other stylists because they always wanted to remove the blue box from her left ear. Jean-Pierre had wanted to do the same thing, but he bit back the request and discussed shampoos, conditioners, layering, razor-cuts, the usual topics of a first appointment. Linda repeated that no matter what, the blue box could not be removed. Jean-Pierre was a little irritated by this declaration, but decided to humor his client and do an exceptional styling for her.
Linda was delighted with his work, and became a regular client. Over the months Jean-Paul performed his artistry while listening to her mindless rambling chatter. She always went away thrilled, but each time he himself was less satisfied. He hated having to cut around the blue box, and although she told him he made her look better than any previous stylist, this did not console him. He was an artiste! He took great pride in his work, and if only she would allow him to remove the blue box he was sure she would be ecstatic with the results.
“No,” Linda insisted. “No-one must ever remove the box.”
When she had been a client for about six months, Linda came in to see Jean-Pierre with a request to make her look especially good as she had a big date that evening. Jean-Pierre gritted his teeth and prepared to do his best. Then he thought, “Only, it’s not my best! While she has that awful box attached to her ear my work is merely acceptable; I want it to be fabulous.” He looked at Linda, totally relaxed in the chair, her eyes closed, completely trusting. He came to a decision.
Very gently, he eased the box away from Linda’s ear.
Her reaction was immediate, and startling. She stopped breathing…her body became limp and she slid from the chair to the floor.
Aghast, Jean-Pierre tried to revive her, but couldn’t find a pulse…yelling frantically to the receptionist to call 911 he lifted Linda’s lifeless body back onto the chair. Then he picked up the blue box, and put it to his ear and listened.
He heard a calm, authoritative voice saying,
“Breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in….”
All rights belong to its author. It was published on e-Stories.org by demand of Ray Beynon.
Published on e-Stories.org on 12/17/2014.