In an effort to reign in our household budget and because he likes his hair cut short during the summer months, Franck took it upon himself to invest in a hair clipper.
He proudly brought it home and asked me if I felt up to the task of cutting his hair.
“Bien sûr,” I said. “Especially as I won’t be the one who has to live with the results afterwards.”
The clippers stayed in their box for over a week after that. However, when I waltzed home yesterday afternoon after paying almost 100 Euros for a cut and highlights in Beaune Franck must have been goaded by my wanton spending. He broke out the clippers and insisted that I come and do my wifely duty of shaving his noggin just as I was also simultaneously bathing the two big girls, jiggling a crying Clem, unloading the dishwasher, and getting dinner ready. I know us women are supposed to be hard-wired for multi-tasking, but there are limits.
I had no problem whipping the clipper through the bulk of his hair, shearing it off in a very satisfying manner. Things got a bit dicey around the ear area, however.
By the time I attempted to clip over the left ear my attention had wandered to contemplating whether my pot of pasta was boiling over in the kitchen, and what exactly Charlotte and Camille had done to Clémentine to make her suddenly stop shrieking. The result was a very strange looking bald spot. Hmmmm.
“It doesn’t look so bad,” I pre-empted.
Franck examined himself in the bathroom mirror. “Laura!” He yelled after me as I scooted out of the bathroom. “What have you done to my head!?”
I busied myself with draining the pasta while trying to stuff down hysterical laughter. He kept calling after me to “get back here” in an enraged voice but I knew I couldn’t yet face his dismay without totally cracking up.
Franck’s roars died down eventually and were replaced with a few minutes of silence in the bathroom. When I had managed to collect myself I went back into the makeshift salon de coiffure to get the girls out of the tub. I was surprised to find Franck staring in the mirror at the other side of his head (the one I hadn’t decimated). I drew in for a closer inspection.
“Oh my God.” I gasped. “You screwed it up even worse than I did.”
Indeed, Franck had cut the hair over his right ear very high up and in a strangely straight line instead of a curve.
“Take me to your leader,” I said.
He sent me a black look. “Quoi?”
“You look like Spock from Star Trek.”
He was about to protest, then we both looked back at his reflection again and cracked up. Several minutes later, after we had wiped our eyes, I tried to salvage what I could with a pair of huge kitchen scissors (all we could find) but truth be told the whole ear vicinity still looks like something out of a bad science fiction movie.
“I guess it can’t be perfect the first time,” Franck admitted with admirable equanimity.
“And you don’t look like a Vulcan from the front,” I added.
However, every once in a while when we meet up in the hallway I can’t resist flashing him the Vulcan “V” sign of greeting.
“Live long and prosper, husband.”