Accidentally Dyeing My Body Blue, and Other Acts of Love
My goal was to have quality time with my daughter Heather, and I left the options wide open on the different things we could do together. She didn’t come up with any ideas, gave “maybe” as the answer to others, but when I suggested she help me get my hair cut and dyed, her response was that she’d be down with that. And I’m with it (cool? hip?) enough to know that “down with that” is a good thing. So that’s what we did.
For the next two days.
Not two hours as is typical, but two days because the adventure included things like having to fix, and fix again, the attempt at getting a particular style.
And then there was the whole accidentally turning my whole body blue part. That part took a while to fix too.
I usually go for variations of the natural colors of my hair: browns, reds, maybe some copper. However, I mentioned the idea of playing with blue since I have seen this done well by others in my circles. Heather was very encouraging of this. She seemed more than just down with it –something even bordering enthusiasm. Since the salon didn’t have a blue that would stay in for more than a single wash, Heather headed to Hot Topic to get something called Manic Panic Rockabilly Blue.
In anticipation of this amazing blue, the salon gave me a base of black with highlight strips. However, when we got home, we realized that the strips were too subtle for what we were envisioning. Since we couldn’t just paint the blue onto the strips as originally planned, Heather handed me the bottle to use on my own, without any supervision (she should have known better). I applied the entire bottle of Manic Panic to my head. In hindsight, I probably only needed about a fourth of it to cover my short hair. Also in hindsight, using less of the dye might have prevented what happened next.
My previous experience with home hair dye didn’t prepare me for this. In the past, it was perfectly fine to hop in the shower and rinse out the hair until the water runs clear. This time, it took longer than normal for that to happen. Streams of blue ran down my body, from head to toe, and across the base of the tub. Even when the water started running clear, the tub color stayed blue, as did my body. I was absolutely Avatar! Only, short. And not nearly as athletically impressive. So I guess I was really just… Smurfy.
Heather had to go to work and couldn’t take the time to help me, so I grabbed some make-up remover wipes and did what I could. However, I realized that there were parts I couldn’t reach, and Kevin wouldn’t be back to help me in time before our appointment for a couples massage. I called to cancel, apologizing for it being so last-minute, explaining what happened. You know that strained tone in a person’s voice when holding back laughter? The receptionist managed that before giving up and letting the giggles bubble up. But she did find a slot for us the next day. I just had to desmurf by then.
Kevin appreciated how the black hair reflected blue like a raven’s wing, but he agreed to help me get the blue off of the rest of me. Back at the hotel, he went to work with the remaining wipes, using each one to the point it couldn’t pick up any more blue. Scrubby-scrubby. Everywhere – especially areas I couldn’t reach or see well on my own. Scrubby-scrubby. Even when I pointed out that, “Sweetheart, I’m pretty sure the massage therapist won’t go there!” Kevin made some noncommittal sound and kept at it. Scrubby-scrubby-scrub.
The next step was to get into the hotel shower, but Kevin realized that my hair would likely bleed out more blue dye, wasting all of his efforts up until that point. He used towels to make a soft pallet for my knees, and my naked (but now less smurfy) body was draped over the tub with Kevin washing my hair while I shielded my eyes. All this massaging and scrubbing could have been a relaxing – even sensual – experience, if it weren’t for the absurdity, touch of embarrassment, and giggle-fits dominating the mood. The mood was sealed when Kevin said, in a beautiful sing-song voice, “This is what we do for loved ones…” Scrubby-scrubby. “Like picking off lice or ticks.” Scrubby-scrubby-scrub.
The next day, Heather used color correction with a highlighting cap to pull out some of the color and give the multi-color definition I am used to having in my hair – only a blue version of it. If anyone can recommend a vibrant color dye that behaves more like regular hair dye, please let me know! Also, any recommendations of ways to spend quality time with teenagers – I’m open to suggestions here too. Meanwhile, Heather did ask if I would be available for an upcoming rave, and I’d be down with that.
Smurfy Holidays Everyone!
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