Back Home Again in Indiana
I forget where I saw the 8 Minute Memoir, but it seemed like a good writing exercise so I figured I’d jump on board. I’m incredibly behind and have no idea when/if I’ll finish it. Such suspense!
It was 2005, and I was about to make a bold choice. Not as bold as the sassy sideswept bangs sweeping the nation but a pretty close second – a perm.
Like all girls with straight hair, I spent most of my childhood longing for curly hair. I dreamed of a perm once I knew it was a thing that existed in this world (thanks, Babysitters Club!), but alas I was destined to suffer for years with limp stick straight hair save for the ends that bend slightly to the right on both sides, making me forever look as if I have just emerged from a windstorm. But in 2005 all that was about to change.
A friend and I decided to throw caution to the wind and give ourselves the greatest gift straight haired girls can give themselves – a perm. I can’t remember the name of the fine salon we chose, but I can remember it was by Super Target in Southport and about one step up from Great Clips. Like I said, it was a bold choice. My friend had had perms before, but this was my first time and I had no idea what to expect. Little did I know this would be at least an hour long commitment filled with a scent that can only be described as limburger mixed with burnt carcass. Nonetheless, I walked out of that salon with no regrets. Regret didn’t even seep in the next morning when I woke up to my pillow reeking of perm solution.
In fact, my lack of regrets were so strong they led me to repeat the perm experience several times. My timing for this life choice honestly could not have been better – I was about to embark on an international symphonic tour (no big deal) and thanks to the permanent curls, I was able to leave my blow dryer and curling iron at home. For a girl whose only hairstyle options until this point had been straight or straighter, this was huge. I could just throw some gel in it, and it actually looked okay. Gone were the days of having to dry and heat style my hair, in were the days of sleeping an extra 20 minutes every morning (unless I decided I wanted to straighten my hair that day – remember, I had options now). A whole new world had opened up, and I wasn’t looking back.
Until. Until I ruined it all by mistakenly telling the stylist to use the rods a size down from what I actually wanted, and I walked out looking like Shirley Temple met an electric socket. And that’s where this journey ends. With a girl trading YOLO for OHNO. But what a journey it was.