hair color

My hair started to run out of melanin when I was in high school. All of my hair color now comes from a box. After decades of painting my white hair canvas, I found myself with a batch of color that had gone bad. Instead of being the consistency of good conditioner, the color mix was thin as water. It poured into my eyes and pooled in the sink. Immediately after rubbing my eyes until they were red puffballs, I called the hair color helpline.

In hindsight, I should have showered the liquid off my head before I made that call. I was on hold for almost ten minutes with one hand holding the phone carefully away from my half wet head while the other hand repeatedly blotted a dry washcloth on the drips running down my face. The operator pleasantly took my contact information so that they could send a coupon for a new box of color. Then, she advised that my experience was a normal consequence of hair color being stored at extreme temperatures.

Am I supposed to interview retail chains about their storage facilities? “Could you please tell me if you store your beauty products in saunas or igloos?” I don’t think I can use this new information to prevent a repeat hair color flop. Lucky for me, the operator had one last bit of advice. “Wait 24 hours before you attempt to repair the damage this may cause.” Damage? Is my hair going to turn pink or fall out? I don’t have time for these shenanigans. I’m going to pile more color on there as soon as I shower this muck off myself. If my hair is pink, then I’ll buy blue color and be purple for the holidays.

I won’t buy it from the same store though.

anatomy of a migraine

Day one: Pain. Everything is pain. Smells and sounds are pain. Every moment is spent fighting nausea. Everything that you are and everything you even think about doing is lost in a thick fog of pain.

Day two: The fog is gone and your mind is racing with ideas and inspiration. Unfortunately, you can’t do anything because your skull is made of glass and every single movement causes painful cracks that threaten to shatter your skull. Your nerves are on top of your skin and you are acutely sensitive to colors and tastes.

Day three: You have accomplished absolutely nothing for the past two days, yet you are exhausted. All you want to do is sleep. All you are able to do is sit upright.

Day four: You feel human again. You are going to do all of the things. Except, you can’t because the entire day will be spent catching up on the past three days’ laundry and dishes. Your family acts like you have just spent the past three days on a luxury vacation.

putting the book on the shelf

If I finish a book that has a sequel available, I need to start the next book immediately. When I say immediately, I mean in the same breath that I put one down, I want to pick up the next one. If it’s the end of a series or a stand alone book, I can’t start another book for days. Sometimes, I am aware that I am mourning the ending of something that was part of my daily life and the departure of the characters from the back of my brain. Other times, I am less clear on the reasons. I have finished books that left me feeling happy and content, yet I still couldn’t begin a new book for a few days. Is this the appeal of book clubs? Are the members collectively grieving the book ending so that they can move forward? Do other readers toss the finished book on a shelf and promptly grab the next waiting book on their nightstand?

(not so) deep musings

“Where would they sleep in Dollywood?”
“I would have stayed in the White House.”
“I would go to Biltmore. It’s built to function without things like heat and a/c, plus the land is farmable.”

“We’d need an extra trailer behind the RV just for toilet paper.”
“They should be using ham radios.”
“Why aren’t there corpses everywhere? Did Carol go crazy burying them?”
“You know, nature should have taken over everything. It’s all too clean.”
“That’s because they don’t have weather. Do you think the oceans are dead?”

“If you left me behind, I’d drive back to the other survivors.”
“You’re supposed to remain where your party last saw you.”
“You left. There’s no rescue group looking for me. I’m going back to the group.”
“I’d go back to where I left you.”
“I’ll leave you a note. It’ll be spray painted on the road.”

Isn’t this how everyone watches Last Man on Earth?

Stereotyping publishers

I have come to realize that I handicap books based on the size of their publishing house. I expect the books from corporate giants to be perfect. Errors in spelling, grammar and aesthetics are somehow inexcusable. They are jarring distractions that take me out of the story. I don’t race off to type and snail mail an angry letter. I’m a different crazy than that. Instead, I mentally judge the book more harshly. “That’s one less star on Goodreads for you.”

Any and all problems in books from the tiny print houses make a voice buried deep in my head mumble, “Editor” as I imagine someone’s Grandma doing the editing for free. Continuity error? Editor’s fault. Font inconsistency? Editor did it. All mistakes in the books from the small companies are the forgivable fault of not enough budget for editors. Ignore and keep reading.

I read on a curve. I stereotype books.