I’ve heard that inhabitants of some places of the world do not talk about the weather. That’s not Austin. Probably it’s not any of Texas. Not spending much time talking to people outside the city limits (unless I’m talking to Austin residents while outside city limits) I couldn’t say.
Though every summer it is unfailingly hot we will still comment as if it is genuine news. This year, while sweating in the feels like 101 degrees we will also comment about how, really this is such a mild summer. Because we all must make the best of it. Which will then lead to a friend’s reminiscence about a childhood where what we now consider mild was in fact typical. Because becoming acclimated to thirty plus days of 100 plus temperatures doesn’t make it liked.
I only get to participate in the first part of the conversation. My childhood memories include playing in the rain as a novelty and wondering if a hot seat belt could in fact cause a burn while I attempted to stop it from touching me.
The heat ruins everything. While everyone else is canning this year’s incredible tomato harvest I’m pureeing cold cucumber and avocado soup. It’s great with a cold cheese sandwich. While so many of my friends have been twisting their long locks into loose chignons and side braids I decided to get one more haircut to see me through the rest of the summer. Then I’d happily grow it back out again until it was nice and long next summer when I, too, would finally master the messy knot.
That’s the story I gave when I went to get my hair cut. “Not too short,” I said and showed a picture of a mostly blunt cut with a little bit of framing around the face. She quickly glanced at the picture and nodded her head knowingly. I, as usual, mentioned my concerns about my ringlets and waves becoming too poofy. “I know what you are talking about, but don’t worry I’ll blah de blah blah blah and your hair won’t get poofy at all,” she said.
And then she cut it all off. Except for the ringlets in the front which now look kind of poofy sticking out from my cheekbones. Did I mention she cut off all my hair, but not because I asked her to? After closing the scissors, she proudly turned me to the mirror and said “what do you think”? Garbling speechlessness, I pulled at the feathered duck’s tail barely brushing my neck. It did not look at all like the picture she “was trying to make it look like.” Starting to lose my temper while she argued with me, and tucking the brushed out curls behind my ear I said it was fine, it would grow back, it’s just hair.
This haircut will not be with me the rest of my life. Unless I die and come back as a ghost because everyone knows that ghosts don’t get to change their clothes or appearance or hide their death wounds. Which is really unfair that ghosts have to always look however they looked when they died. This seems a really good time to be extra cautious.
Friends have described it as both very Downton Abbey and very modern which I’m assuming means it is very fashionable in the now. The cut has received lots of compliments, I’m getting used to it, and trying to make the best of it with hats, scarves, and clips, but it doesn’t mean I like it.
It’s a great summer cut, but it’s still too hot for standing over boiling pots canning anything. Though learning to can was a goal of mine this year. Canning is really hot, hot work. I’m staying with raw foods. Just maybe I might even bake raw. It’s been a temptation I don’t usually go in for. Butter is so good.
A bad haircut doesn’t equal to all the really bad things happening in the world. I get that. Really, I do. I am completely capable of seeing that perspective and genuinely feeling for those going through things way worse. I am lucky. After all I made it into my thirties before getting a bad haircut.