breakaway from my notes about my current writing effort, a little sidetrip into reading and the bonds readers share.
My hair was getting long, really long, Doc Emmett Brown long. Really bad for jogging, and really, really bad for corporateland. Had to get it cut.
Usually I’d go to a hair cutter franchise in College Park. Called one week and they couldn’t see me. Called the next, got an appointment for that Monday, drove over there. On the way, I got attacked by a white FUV driver having a massive road rage seizure – it was so bad I ducked down a side street (what with him punching his brakes randomly in front of me). Don’t need that. Then I find out the stylist made a mistake, the guy isn’t in, that she’d read the wrong page of the appointments book and all that road warrior crap was for nothing.
Tried to go to the sister shop the next evening at Baldwin Park. Sure, walk ins are fine. Checked in at the front desk, was told two people were ahead of me, then waited ninety minutes. Ten people had come and gone. Walk ins, fine. Walk outs work too. Screw ‘em.
Anyway, following some recommendations, went to a little place in the Mills area, a neat little shop tucked into an old gas station. Was pretty interesting – very youthful, music and people and vibe, all that stuff. And that’s fine. After a short wait I was given to Brooke, this little girl with tats and a punky haircut. Fine. Seemed nice enough. Sat in the chair and squinted (no glasses, of course) – a book lay facedown and open on her counter in that paused-in-the-reading-of state. Steven King’s The Stand.
“You reading that?” I had to ask.
“Yes, second time. I kinda remember it and wanted to read it again.”
So we talked about it. She pointed out that King churned out good reads, but The Stand was a lot like The Cell. “It’s like he’s reusing his endings or something,” she observed as she clipped.
That was a good point, a very good point that I’d felt but never considered (does that make sense?). But we chatted about King’s Gunslinger series (again, his weak endings) and several other authors besides. Oh, I didn’t push her over Sabatinis and Dumases and stuff – no need to get pretentious. But I have to admit that I was gratified to talk, reader-to-reader, with another person. Outside of my admin, there are just not that many people who enjoy (and talk about) their books.
And, hey, eReaders – I’ve mentioned this, but had she left her tablet on the counter, I’d never have known what she’d been reading and never would have passed such a delightful thirty minutes.
But it was fun, very fun, to talk books with that slip of a girl in that gas-station barber shop. As I left, I got back in my car with an easy smile on my face, my weekend started right. You know, if that maniac in the FUV hadn’t tried to ram me, I’d have never given up on those lousy sheep-shearers and found a cut shop better, closer, and far more enjoyable. I guess that wasn’t what his intention was, the murderous maniac. But it worked well for me.
And now I gotta wait another three months, until I’m all shaggy again, to chat books with Brooke.