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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

What I Have in Common with Justin Bieber and Jennifer Aniston

No, it's not the physique of a 12 year old boy or Brad Pitt (I wish!), but something else entirely: a much-talked about hairdo. Okay, I'm giving myself way too much credit here. Honestly, no one is talking about my hair but me. As you probably already surmised by now, I had my hair cut a couple of weeks ago and I'm still on the fence about whether it's a good look for me or not. I thought about starting a mini-survey on Facebook, posting it on my status - a like it or don't like it type of thing - but couldn't think of a way of doing it that didn't make me seem like a vain idiot with way too much time on my hands. So, guess what? I decided to blog about it instead. Much less loserish, no?

It all started a few weeks ago when I went to get a routine trim. I've had long locks for a very long time and have been reluctant to chop my hair for ages, even though my hairdresser has been telling me I need to for nearly two years. But trying to convince a girl to cut her hair short is like trying to wrestle away the remote control from a guy - basically it's a struggle. So, back to the trim: Lebanese hairdressers are really gung-ho about cutting. You have to be very adamant about the length you want (helpful hint: always say you want to trim about 4 inches less of what you really want; I learned this lesson the hard way!), or else you might as well say bye bye to your tresses.

On the day in question, I was, as always, very clear about wanting to cut only one inch so that I would get the desired four inch trim. My hairdresser again said that I should cut my hair as I looked old and drawn (his words). I immediately said, 'NO!' He then said, 'Before you say no, let me show you a picture.' So he showed me a picture, and it was nice and all, but I said, 'It's too short.' He then huffs and goes to show the pic to Miss HotStuff, who proclaims she loves the 'do. So the hairdresser comes back to me all smug, as if Miss HotStuff's opinion should be reason enough for me to chop my hair.

Hairdresser, insistent: See, see, she loves it.
Me, beginning to waver in my resolve: I don't know, it seems awful short.
Hairdresser, noticing a slight weakening in my stance: Trust me, you will look younger.
Me, thinking Hmmm, clever, he used the magic word: 'younger.' Very clever indeed: Uhhhhhhh
HD: Khalas [he grabs a chunk of hair from the back of my head and just cuts ... it ... all ... off], so you can't argue with me anymore.
I say nothing as my jaw drops in horror after he presents my severed ponytail in victory.

In the aftermath of the hair slaughter, I have gotten used to my new, shorter 'do. And luckily, Lebanese are very eager to give their honest opinion about how you look at all times, from weight gain to hairstyles (no sugarcoating in this country). So, it's safe to say that my short hair seems to be going over well with some people - 'Hey, your eyes don't look so deeply set in your skull,' said Mr HJNTIY - and not so well with others - 'Uh, not your best look, is it?' coming from Mr B.

And then there are some, who ... well, I just don't know what they think - 'Oh, you cut your hair, well, at least you got rid of that nasty red color.' Thanks eyebrow lady!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Naked Dudes and Shopping with Suitcases in Spain

So, it's been a LONG time since my last blog entry - but because I'm awesome, you'll all forgive me ;)

Dear readers (yes, I have more than one now!), I have just come back from a lovely sojourn in splendid Spain, where I spent a great week or so with none other than the still fabulous MadGlam. I won't bore you with the whole sightseeing spiel on the wonders of Barcelona and Madrid, but let's just say a lot of it was indeed cultural and a lot was ... hmmm ... let's just say interesting. (Did we see a grown man remove his pants, squat and then use the sidewalk as a toilet? Yes! Did I see two random men walking down a major street buck naked - oh, excuse me, one was wearing flip flops - for no apparent reason, except maybe they wanted even tans while getting some exercise? Yes!)

I will, however, tell you a little bit about our trip. First, traveling with a friend is definitely a lot better than going it alone. Although MadGlam and I are complete opposites for sure - she is the energizer bunny that, literally, never stops, and I am the relaxed person who is well ... normal. For example, I wear sneakers and a small shoulder strap bag; she wears heeled boots with a pink Balenciaga bag. She is madly glamorous after all!! We also differ in how we like to sightsee. I like to soak in the sights and take my time, take a rest when I'm tired, take a cab if I don't feel like walking anymore. She likes to see a whole city in three seconds without taking a breath, and cover the whole town ... in heels. By the end of the afternoon, she still looks MadGlam, and I look like I'm about to keel over. Many an afternoon she would still have the energy to walk around more when I would walk back to the hotel alone for some rest (thus my encounter with the buck naked dudes).

MadGlam is also, for some reason, in love with trains, which is how we got from Barcelona to Madrid. Oh my God! I can't think of anything less vacationy than lugging around your own luggage across a stinky train station, carrying them onto to a packed train and then lifting them into luggage slots. HOW IS THIS A VACATION? I felt like I was in a manual labor camp in Siberia. But MadGlam is like this mysterious contradiction: she dresses like she's going to a nightclub even when going on the Orient Stinkville, yet she is also able to haul a five ton suitcase without breaking a sweat ... or a nail. I was a disheveled mess. But unlike the other people on that train, I actually use deodorant.

Yes, MadGlam has no problems with suitcases at all, not even when going shopping. In fact, on the day we went to the outlet mall, she stopped by the luggage shop and said she wanted to buy a suitcase. 'But, we're at the mall,' I said, 'why would you buy a suitcase to lug around while you shop?' In the MadGlam world, that's how you shop, you see - you buy a suitcase so you can put all your purchases in it and then you just roll it around ... in a mall.

In case you didn't believe me, that's MadGlam, suitcase in hand, at the mall!!

'Everyone does this!' she tells me.
'Uhhh, no they don't,' I say. And believe me, I shop. I know shopping. And I have never seen a person buy a suitcase at a mall and then putting all their stuff in it and then rolling it around all the other shops. Ever.
'Well, what do you do with the bags?' she asks.
'Uhhh, carry them,' I say.
'No, no, this is much more practical,' she says. Yes, MadGlam practical. Did you not know this? No? Neither did I!

Anyway, as the shopping progresses, guess who gets stuck lugging around the suitcase? You guessed it. It started like this:
MadGlam: Anissa, do you mind taking the suitcase, I want to try this on.
Me: Sure [Ten minutes later, me window shopping, embarrassed as hell going around with a suitcase ... at a mall.]
MG: Thanks, do you mind taking it again, I want to go into this store.
Me: Alright [Another ten minutes, getting weird stares from people who are obviously not in on the MadGlam philosophy of how practical it is to carry around a suitcase ... at a mall. Oh, and did I mention it was an open air mall and that it was raining?]

I'd like to say that's the Lebanese way of traveling and shopping abroad, but it's probably more accurate to say it's the MadGlam way. But because she's MadGlam, she knows how to make it work!