Yesterday afternoon I decided to have a haircut (actually, I had all of them cut, but let's not split hairs). As usual, while my hair was going through the stage of being washed, I was offered the opportunity to have some sort of rubbish put on my hair:
"Would you like to try our peppermint conditioner?"
"Because it's been specially formulated."
"For your hair."
"Really? Wow, that's pretty impressive. Who knew? So what does this stuff do?"
"It's refreshing and makes your head feel cool."
I feel obliged to point out at this stage that we'd just that day received more dire warnings of Arctic weather on its way. Nevertheless, I didn't want to be responsible for this young lady's being so upset by my refusal to have the conditioner that she decided to throw in her new career before she had even really started.
"It's no good, mum. <sniff> I'm just not cut out for hairdressing. <Sob> They refused to have the peppermint conditioner! <Wail.>"
So, ever the sucker for a pretty face, I said "OK".
"Cool"? As I was chipping the bits of ice off my scalp I couldn't help thinking what a great future this girl had in PR, advertising or spin.
At the end of the hair-cutting, just as I was thinking how nice it looked, the hairdresser said,
"I'm just going to put some paste on your hair."
"Paste? You mean flour and water, that things stick to?
"No, it will give your hair malleability without looking shiny."
"Erm, well, OK, if that's what you think best."
And that's why when I came home my wife thought I'd suffered some kind of electric shock.
Peppermint conditioner? Paste? Where's the nearest barber's shop?