Thursday, January 24, 2008

Audition Blow-Out


            A muffled voice said to come in.  Sitting behind the vast glass-topped desk was a very thin blonde woman with giant collagen lips.  She wore glasses and a headset and looked at papers in her hand.  

“If it’s not there than where is it?” She said.

She looked closely at the sheet and after a beat looked up at me.

“ Oh Yes. Hey.  Have a seat.”

A board that covered one wall listed upcoming projects: “Ambush Makeover March 11th  “German Vogue April 2nd” “Mother/daughter” shoot date to be determined.”

“One more minute...” Nicole said.

I wasn’t sure if that was directed to me, if she was on a call, or if the headset was a prop.  The silence in the room was huge as I sat back on the clear-plastic chair.  Why did I have to be so late? I’m never late!  If I was on time Paige would be here, nice, tattooed, funky Paige who had given me a firm and friendly handshake last week and told me not to be surprised to get a callback.  Nicole peered at me over her glasses.

“So, yes alright let’s get started, I’m Nicole.  Michael right?”

“Yes, Hi.”

She sighed and leaned back in her chair.

“Sorry, I have a deadline and am not getting too much help around here.  First things first.   You’re aware that we have an affluent clientele here and we expect work of a certain standard.”

“Yes, sure.”

“As President of Myles.Studio I need to reiterate that fact to potential employees.  Please go and style your model.  Myles will be out to check your work.  Thank you.”

 She adjusted her glasses and turned away.

            “Thanks.”  I said and got up.  She said nothing.  Any hopes that the job was in the bag vaporized as I walked out to set up my gear.  Where was Myles anyway?  Was he hiding in the recesses of that office?  I passed down the hall that had framed articles about Myles.Studio-- doing makeovers on women in the Army, Myles talking about styling Roseanne’s hair, A mention of Myles.Studio “Disco Gel” in Cosmopolitan… would I be part of this gallery?  The music was low and my footsteps loud as I tried to just do my best and to think lightly of the moment, but my gurgling belly and failing antiperspirant said otherwise. 

            I quietly washed Sue’s hair and got right to styling her.  As I tried to focus, Nicole’s declaration of the “Studio standard” took over and Sue’s hair got bigger with each section till she looked ready for the Grand Ole Opry.  I tried to pat and flatten it, but it bounced back with untamable body perfect for a 70’s shampoo ad.  While I sweated and fussed Myles came out wearing a skullcap and a tight t-shirt with the word: “Whiteboy” on it.  He looked at the Texas-do and said:

“Um it’s a bit “done” for my taste.   Can you make it kinda more mohr-derhn?”

“Sure thing.”   I said and got to pressing with my flat iron. I sizzled each section and pulled the hell out of her hair and she took it like a trooper.  I downsized her to a current Loretta Lynn and decided to step away, sinking in the chair next to Sue.  I felt like I was eight years old and sitting in the confessional before the priest slides open the partition.  Myles popped out again and raked his hands through her hair with a brute force that made her whimper.  He said:

“Yeah-ar, that’s more how I like it.”

 He grasped Sue’s shoulders, thanked her for coming in, turned to me and said              “Come back to the office when you’re red-aye!”

And off he ran down the hall again.  Sue sat holding her head while I packed up and readied to face whatever was waiting for me in the office.

“Geesh, that guy’s hands should be registered weapons.”  Sue said rubbing her crown.

“Sorry for your second manhandling session in a week, I’ll make it up to you!”  I said.

“Just when the burn marks were healing from the other day.”  She said, half-smiling as she left.  I made my way down the Hall of Fame once again and spied an article featuring Nicole in a white suit lounging on a sun chair.  The piece was a Q and A from “Boutique Business” magazine titled “President and First Lady.”  Nicole clearly had the dick here, was it going to swing in my direction? 

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Three's a charm....

 I was almost a half-hour late when I dashed into the Studio.  I didn’t have a cell phone yet so I couldn’t call to let them know I was on my way.  My hopes of becoming part of the magic dwindled with each traffic light.  When I finally arrived Addison, the-even-cuter-than-I remembered concierge, told me that Paige had left and I was to speak with “Nicole” (Mrs. Myles) before my try-out.  He showed me to the same blue chair and I sat and palpitated.  Where the hell was my model Sue?  If she didn’t show up I was double screwed.   The only other people in the giant room were two female Asian stylists who fawned over a single client.  I flipped through a magazine and tried to cheerlead under my breath--“You’ve got the goods, this is no big deal, you can do it and do it well! Sue will show up at the perfect time and this is actually going to be lots of fun!”  These lies rolled by like movie credits and were as easily forgotten. 

            The magazine on my lap was turned to an ad for the army.  A group of khaki-wearing teens were rock-climbing and having a ball.  The quote was “Making money for college was never so adventurous.” Was it too late to go to college? Or could you put the money in retirement if you wanted to?  Did they take forty-three year old hairdressers? Don’t ask don’t tell was still in effect right?  And if it is, is that a good thing? 

            One of the Asian girls looked at me--did I just say “good thing” out loud?  I tried to turn the page but my moist fingertips were stuck to the ad.  Addison’s angelic face peered out from a sheer curtain separating us and said that Nicole was ready to see me.  Then Sue entered the Studio panting and I pointed at the seat I vacated.  Addison walked me back to where I had talked with Myles the previous week and knocked on the door. 

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Hairburner take number 2

Here, humble readers is tidbit #2, I'm new to this blogging thing and was unable to get back into the site of my first posting,,,,,god willing that will not be the case with this one.  And without further delay I present mo':

 A posting on Craigslist caught my eye.  It was for a stylist interested in working in a hip and cutting edge “Studio”, a space that serviced clients and also hosted fashion shoots.  I don’t consider myself particularly creative or trendy, just a good everyday burner with occasional incidences of flair.   But after repeated readings of page eighty-four in “The Power of Now” and a good third of “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff” I faxed my resume.  I got a call the next day from Paige, the studio manager, who enthusiastically set up a time for me to come in.  I knew this place was not for me, but I looked at it as good practice-interviewing.

            When I walked into the huge modern loft I was blown away: skylights filtered the sun, real Warhol’s lined the walls and a handsome, blazer-clad concierge greeted and directed me to a sky-blue designer chair where I sat and found myself praying to work there.