I should have known. I really should have known. Amy, alone in her room, had been too quiet, for too long. And by the time I decided to investigate, it was too late. Oh sure, I saw the red flags that waved across those moments of relaxation I had been enjoying. But I chose to ignore them.
The scene that came into view, just beyond the doorway of her room, surely must have resembled the beauty parlor from H-E-double hairspray bottles-one where a beautician with a grudge against hair, or some misguided sense of style, has been at work.
Hair and fur were EVERYWHERE. It took me a minute to sort out my confusion. Amy’s own curls were reddish blonde, and plentiful snippets of her hair lay scattered about. But I also saw clippings of black and brown fake fur, tufts that looked like real fur, and trimmings of green fake fur, too. There may have been other colors that I missed. It was hard to tell.
Amy, I can say with certainty, was a fast worker. When I mentioned that the quiet in her room had lasted too long, it could not have been more than 15 or 20 minutes. But put a pair of purple plastic blunt tipped scissors in the hands of a child on a mission, and it’s long enough.
I don’t know on whom she started cutting first-herself, or one of her many stuffed animals that fell victim that day. I do know that no one was spared. Not even Willow, our dog, who relished any form of attention-even if that attention made her look like a character from a Dr. Seuss story.
Of all the hair cuts given that day, they had one thing in common. They were all bad. (Amy’s was a real piece of work-cropped down to her scalp in several places.) But at least her haircut, and Willow’s haircut weren’t permanent. Not so for “Pinky” the bunny, “Flingo” the flamingo, “Dot” the cow…
And what did Amy have to say for herself when her handiwork was discovered?
“I didn't do it. My stuffed skunk did.”
So what do you say to a three year old renegade hairdresser, who is impossibly cute, telling a bold faced lie while holding a pair of safety scissors in her hand, and covered with hair and fur?
“Well I guess we should send skunk to beauty school then. If’s he’s going to be giving haircuts, he should at least learn to do them right.”
The TRDC prompt this week was to edit a piece we had written in the past. This story was originally published November 3, 2010.