As you may recall, a few days ago I wrote about the oppression and disrespect that bald men (or, as we prefer to be called, "Shiny-Americans") have been putting up with for years. We hear it from our friends and co-workers, we get ridiculed out in public, and even the mainstream media has gotten into the act with hairist caricatures like Mr. Clean. I thought I'd gotten all that "anti-bald" frustration out of my system, but apparently not, because this morning I was the target of prejudice right in my own home.
I was getting dressed when Theresa called to me from the shower. "Chris, can you go out to the hall cabinet and get me a new bottle of hair conditioner?"
First of all, what the hell is "hair conditioner"? I vaguely remember shampoo, as I used it regularly until it became unnecessary in the mid-90's. But more importantly here, what about my goddamn feelings? Would you send a legless man down to Footlocker to pick you out a nice new pair of Air Jordans? I doubt it. When I opened the cabinet, though, I forgot all about Theresa's insensitivity because this is what I saw:
I mean, holy freaking crap, what is all that stuff? Shampoo, hand soap, body gel, body wash (which is apparently not the same thing as body gel), air fresheners, hand lotion, two turtle doves and a partridge in a pear tree. My God, she's a hoarder! There's so much junk in there that if disaster were to strike leaving us trapped in our home, and assuming that we still had running water, Theresa's hair would be able to maintain its luster and bounce until approximately the year 2028.
Even so, I couldn't find the friggin' hair conditioner anywhere. Oh, and please be advised that the large bottle of white stuff in the very front of the picture is NOT conditioner, it's shampoo. That's important later on in the story.
"What's taking you so long out there?" hollered Theresa from the shower.
"I'm navigating my way through the Valley of the Lotions, give me a second!"
After knocking over a half-dozen squirters of hand soap and a couple hair sprays, I was able to locate a bottle of Alberto VO5 grapefruit mandarin splash Vitaburst volumizing conditioner which, according to the bottle, is bursting with vitamins B, C, and E. I'm not making that up, it actually says, "bursting with vitamins B, C, and E." The bottle also says "new", but given the ridiculous amount of shit Theresa has in the cabinet, this bottle may very well have been purchased in 1993.
I took the bottle to Theresa. "You find it?"
"Yeah, all the way in the friggin' back." We then engaged in the conversation that inspired this rant.
She then went to the cabinet and said, "Look, there's a bottle of conditioner right here in the front, I don't know how you missed it." This was an attempt to either make me feel stupid or make herself feel better about the fact that she basically runs a shampoo museum.
"Let me see that," I said.
She handed me the bottle, a smug look upon her face.
I read the label. Suave coconut shampoo.
"Look here," I said triumphantly. "SHAMPOO!"
"Oh," she said.
Damn right, "oh". Somebody got sham-punked.