“I booked my annual touch up,” she said, legs tucked underneath her on the blue easy chair in the corner of our living room with a small bowl of potato chips in her lap and phone in hand.
“Touch up?” I queried, mindlessly thumbing through my Facebook feed on my iPhone.
“Yeah, remember unicorn farts?” she said, referencing a previous Saturday Morning Story where I, ahem, rather uniquely described her trademark hair color.
“Nope,” I said without breaking my thumb’s mesmerizing swiping motion.
“How don’t you remember? You told the entire story of the first time I colored my hair,” she replied, clearly irritated that I didn’t remember my own story.
“Dunno,” I responded as my thumb continued to be a metronome across my phone’s screen.
Her lips curled ever so slightly, her eyes narrowed, and her eyebrows furrowed deeper into her forehead as she watched me continue to stare at my phone.
“I’ve booked it for the week before Night of Artists,” she said tersely.
So, now, I had a choice to make. Do I look up and acknowledge the error of my ways? Or do I dig in and keep my head buried in my phone?
At this point, despite my phone focus, I sensed that my one-word word responses had struck a nerve. So, now, I had a choice to make. Do I look up and acknowledge the error of my ways? Or do I dig in and keep my head buried in my phone?
I dug in.
“Um hmm,” I responded.
Realizing my mistake (too late), I frantically searched my website – this website – for the story I had shared last year.
Ah. There it was. I clicked the link and began quickly reading it as her eyes drilled a hole through my skull.
As I reached the end of the story and my eyes remained glued to my phone, I had two immediate thoughts:
- Thank goodness I wrote this story so I could remember.
- How do I get myself out of…
“Are you even listening?” she asked, interrupting my thoughts.
“Um, yes. Yeah, ahem, unicorn farts,” I said. “That was a good one.”
She just shook her head and buried her face in her hands as I looked up from my phone for the first time since the conversation started.
Since her initial foray into full unicorn farts, she has slowly focused on purple as her hair color of choice. But, it had been so long since her last annual touch up. About a year, by my estimate (and by definition, I suppose).
I forget a lot over the course of a year, which is why I was privately indebted to her for her unintended reminder that I had written about it.
As a result, I was able to remind myself of how important these annual touch-up days were.
Her colorful hair blends well with her colorful artistic style. More importantly, however, it boosts her confidence in herself; which is critical for every artist.
I will always remain grateful that she took the leap of faith oh-so-many years ago to make the change; even if I need to write a story and share it publicly as a way to remind myself.