Russian Craps

Sunday was hair cut day. After giving Bill his six week trim, I moved on to Mom. I rolled one of the kitchen chairs into the living room so it faced the TV, helped her move into it from the loveseat and settled her feet onto her ottoman. After cocooning her in a big beach towel and wetting down her hair from a spray bottle full of warm water, I proceeded to comb and section her hair, preparing to bring some order to her shaggy, over-grown pixie cut.

“Make sure my bangs are straight,” she interjected as I drew a straight part along the top of her head. “The hairdresser made them crooked the last time.”

“Uh huh,” I murmured, not bothering to correct her memory lapse and remind her that I was the hairdresser for her last several haircuts.

The snipping and clipping began and cuttings fluttered along her towel-draped shoulders and onto the floor. “So, what’s this program about?” I asked, making official hairdresser conversation. “It looks like those guys are some kind of bounty hunters.”

“Maybe,” she mumbled, her chin tucked firmly down as I shaped the hair down the back of her head and along her neckline. “I’m not sure because I can’t see it.”

“Well weren’t you watching it before I started cutting your hair?” I continued.

“I suppose so, but I wasn’t really paying attention,” she replied.

“Then why did you have this channel on if you weren’t really interested in the program,” I asked, snipping carefully around her left ear.

“Because something else might come on that would be more interesting. You never know.”

“Well using that logic,” I continued as I moved in front of her and began shaping ‘straight’ bangs above her eyebrows, “why would you ever change the channel at all?”

“Because I know where the good stuff is, just not all the time.” she explained. “Besides, the weekends are different. Programs change and they keep screwing it up with sports and stuff so I don’t know what’s on all the time. So I have to play that game, the craps one.”

I paused and carefully lifted the scissors away from her forehead. “Craps?”

“Yes, Russian craps. You know, that game with the gun. It’s some kind of Las Vegas thing,” she explained.

“You mean Russian roulette?”

“That’s the one,” she said, lifting her hand from beneath the towel and gently feeling along her newly trimmed bangs. “Make sure they aren’t crooked. My last hairdresser did a terrible job.”

“I’ll try to do better,” I replied as I made a final, delicate snip over her right eyebrow.

“I don’t think I tipped her much, either,” she said.

“I don’t think you tipped her at all,” I mumbled.

Patty the Hairdresser



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