A Good Night at the Theater by Shornlocks
Dawn looked up from her magazine the moment she heard the clicking of the scissors. A thin blue translucent curtain hung between where she sat in the waiting area and the two salon chairs where Deb and Stacey were, but the curtain stopped a foot and a half above the floor, giving Dawn an unobscured view of the base of the two chairs. A smile spread across her face as she sat back and waited for the first clumps of long hair to hit the floor.
Dawn was the 25-year-old manager of the only movie theater in Pleasantville, a tiny New England town nestled just south of the Canadian border. Deb and Stacey had been her part-time employees for a year now. Like most of the high school kids she’d hired over the years, they had started off as good workers, but began to slack off as time went on. First it was little things like failing to empty the waste baskets behind the concession stand. Then it graduated to things like giving their friends free soda and popcorn refills when they didn’t think Dawn was watching. Now, it had turned into everything from leaving the back door unlocked so their friends could get in free, to actually letting their friends sneak in video cameras so they could record the first-run movies. Dawn was all set to fire the two girls last week, when a more interesting opportunity came along.
The opportunity came in the form of new sanitary regulations that had been drawn up by Mr. Biggs, the theater owner. Mr. Biggs lived down in Boston and owned a dozen little independent theaters around New England. None was as far away as Pleasantville, however, so he hardly ever made the journey northward to check up on how Dawn was running the operation. The new regulations had arrived in the mail one day, along with a typewritten memo stating that the changes had been prompted by a rather unsatisfactory site visit to one of the other theaters by the state health commission. Most of the changes seemed routine to Dawn, until she turned to page twenty-two. There, in bold print, was a new rule which stated: all employees working in the concession area must wear a hairnet or other hair accessory which prevents the hair from hanging below the ear.
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Dawn was a little “put out” that the regulations did not specify non-managerial employees, as she herself would often have to help out behind the concession counter on busy nights, thus making her subject to the regulations as well. She chuckled at the thought of wearing a hairnet, opting instead to simply return to the days of wearing her long hair in a bun, much like she had done in college. As little effect as the new hair policy would have on her, they would have even less of an effect on her four employees. Norm and Ed, her two full-time employees, were middle-aged men whose baldness made the regulations laughable, and Deb and Stacey (her two little thieves) were about to take a trip to the unemployment line anyway.
Dawn couldn’t remember exactly when the idea came to her, only that it was one of her better ones. She had been looking for a way to get back at Deb and Stacey for their deceit, and right there in bold letters lay the answer: the new hair regulations. Mr. Biggs had printed the policy manual on his home computer, and had bound it in a simple one-inch thick, three-ring loose-leaf binder so that future updates could be easily included. Dawn immediately recognized the typeface as coming from the same laser printer she had at home, and all of a sudden what would otherwise have been just another boring night spent at home watching TV, became an exercise in sweet revenge.
A slow typist, Dawn spent nearly an hour that night re-typing page twenty-two of the regulations on her home computer, making one very important change. But, as she hole-punched it and entered it in the policy binder in place of the real page twenty-two, she knew that her time had been well spent.
At about 9:15 the next evening, as Deb and Stacey were beginning to clean up around the concession stand following the theater’s closing, Dawn called them both over to the ticket counter, where she sat totaling up the night’s receipts. “I have some bad news for you,” she said as she took out the new policy manual from beneath the counter. “Mr. Biggs has initiated some new policies for all his theaters, and there’s one here that I think will be of interest to you both. Here… I’ll let you read it for yourself.”
Dawn flipped to page twenty-two of the manual and pushed it toward the girls, indicating with her index finger the section in bold print toward the bottom of the page: “All non-managerial employees who work in the concession area must have hair that hangs down no longer than their ears. No hairnets or other hair accessories are permissible. NO EXCEPTIONS!”
Deb and Stacey stared at the section for what seemed an eternity.
“Any questions?” asked Dawn.
“That… That’s got to be a typo,” asserted Deb in a shaky voice. “I mean, an employer can’t just order something like that, no matter how powerful he is.”
“Yeah,” said Stacey, “I don’t care if I have to call Mr. Biggs himself before I come to work tomorrow… there’s no way he can order us to do something like that.”
“I’m afraid he can, girls,” replied Dawn with mock sympathy, “and I don’t know that I’d be calling Mr. Biggs about it if I were you. He gets pretty upset when people try to question his rules, and besides… frankly, I can’t let either of you work after today if you’re not in compliance with the new policy. This memo states that they’ve been in effect for more than three days now, and if I know Mr. Biggs, he’s probably traveling all over New England making sure they’re being adhered to. I’m sorry girls… I just can’t run the risk of having you working the concession stand with your long hair. I’m going to have to see if Norm and Ed can work double shifts until I hire two new part-timers.”
Deb and Stacey were shocked. They were among the few teenagers in this small, rural town who were fortunate enough to have jobs. Their popularity at school was at an all-time high, thanks to the spending money they had, and to the “freebies” they were sneaking to their friends whenever they came to the theater. Besides, Christmas was a little over a month away, and both girls had already picked out all the clothes they were going to buy themselves for the holidays.
“I… I can’t believe this,” said Stacey angrily, “you’re firing us?”
“Not firing… laying you off,” replied Dawn, still keeping up the facade of sympathy. “Don’t worry, I’ll give you both good references to find other jobs.”
“But they’re aren’t any other jobs around here… you know that!” said Deb, on the verge of tears.
“I’m sorry girls… I really am. But I can’t take a chance on having you work tomorrow. If Mr. Biggs shows up and you girls are not in compliance with the new policy, he’ll not only fire you on the spot, but my job will be in jeopardy as well. And, frankly, I’ve worked too hard to get this job to throw it all away on some… well, some hair.”
Dawn could see the anger in both girls’ faces crank up a notch when they heard how she had denigrated their precious locks. Both girls practically lived for their hair; Deb with her flowing honey-blond locks, and Stacey with her long cascade of shaggy, shimmering chestnut tresses. Both were about to object to Dawn’s last statement, when Dawn decided she’d had enough of this little charade.
“I’m sorry girls, but this discussion is over. Either you get your hair cut, or your employment here will terminate following clean-up tonight. There’s nothing more I can do.”
Dawn closed the policy manual and, grabbing the money box from beneath the ticket counter, began to walk toward the theater office. So far her plan was going according to schedule, and as she neared the office door, she began to count to herself: “One…… Two…… Three…”
Sure enough, on the count of three, Deb spoke up.
“Dawn? What… what if we were to get our hair cut? I mean… would we be able to keep our jobs?”
Dawn worked hard to keep the smile from showing on her face as she turned around. “Of course… then there would be no reason to lay you off. But you’ll have to get it cut before you come to work tomorrow afternoon, and I’m not sure how you’ll do that… what with today being Tuesday, and Bernice’s being closed on Wednesdays.”
Bernice Cummings, owner of Bernice’s Hair Salon two doors down from the theater, was the only hairstylist for miles around. About a year ago, Bernice had taken to closing on Wednesdays to better divide her work week. Income was never really an issue for Bernice, because she had no competition.
Dawn could see the girls contemplating this, and was easily able to anticipate their next question. “Could we work tomorrow night and… and get it cut on Thursday?” asked Stacey sheepishly.
“Again, I’m sorry girls, but it’s just too big a chance to take.”
Just as the final rays of hope were leaving Deb and Stacey’s eyes, Dawn threw them the bone she had been saving all night. “But… come to think of it, Bernice sometimes stays open late on Tuesdays to catch any stragglers who come in after closing. Perhaps I could give her a call and see if she’s still there.”
A mixture of joy and fear overspread the girls faces; joy that there might be a way for them to keep their jobs, but fear at the thought of going under the scissors tonight.
Before they could even respond to their boss’ suggestion, Dawn had already picked up the phone and dialed Bernice’s Hair Salon. She had spoken to Bernice yesterday, of course, and knew that Bernice would be waiting for her call tonight. Dawn knew that Bernice had hated Deb and Stacey ever since they began working at the theater. Their part-time income, however meager, enabled both girls to routinely get makeovers at Bernice’s, and the hairstylist couldn’t stand how bitchy and demanding the girls were. “‘I want this… I want that… can’t you work any faster?'” mimicked Bernice to Dawn after she had heard Dawn’s plan to divest Deb and Stacey of their hair. “Dawn, Honey, I can think of nothing my assistant Julie and I would like better than to get those two little bitches in our chairs and clip em both bald!” said Bernice excitedly toward the end of their phone conversation. “I’ll be sure to be there tomorrow night when you call.”
“Hello, Bernice?” the girls heard their boss say into the telephone. “I’m so glad I caught you while you’re still at the shop. I have a little problem here I was hoping you could help me with. You know my workers Deb and Stacey, don’t you? Well I need you to……”
Deb and Stacey hardly heard the rest of the conversation, so distraught had they become when they heard their boss speaking to Bernice on the phone. Sure, it might mean the girls could keep their jobs, but at what cost?
“You can? Great. I’ll bring the girls right over… we can always finish closing up here later. Thanks again, Bernice… you and Julie are real dolls for doing this. Bye!”
Dawn hung up the phone and turned to her workers. “Good news! I caught Bernice and Julie just as they were about to close up shop for the night. They said they would do us the favor if we hurry right over.”
Stark terror appeared on the faces of the girls as they realized the moment of truth had come. Desperately searching for a way out, Deb finally stuttered: “But… But I don’t have any money for a haircut tonight… we don’t get paid until Friday!”
“That’s okay, girls. As far as I’m concerned, this is a business expense, and it wouldn’t be fair to ask you girls to pay for your haircuts. I’ll take some money out of petty cash and pay Bernice tomorrow. Come on… we’ve got to hurry or Bernice will close up shop.”
“But…” Stacey heard the word come out of her mouth, but there was no coherent thought to follow it. Things were happening much too fast, and before she knew it, Dawn was leading her and Deb out the theater door.
“You girls go ahead while I lock up. Never mind the ‘closed’ sign in Bernice’s window… she’s expecting us.”
On wobbly legs the girls walked the twenty or so steps to Bernice’s front door. Even before they could knock, the forty-ish, slightly overweight figure of Bernice appeared. She opened the door just as Dawn caught up with Deb and Stacey.
“Come on in girls. Hi Dawn. You folks sure were lucky to catch Julie and me still here. We were just about to head home for the night… even had the ‘closed’ sign in the window and everything.”
“We sure were lucky,” agreed Dawn, “thanks again for agreeing to stay open.”
“No problem… from what you said you needed over the phone, I don’t think this should take long at all.”
Bernice, Julie and Dawn all tried to stifle a chuckle when they saw the reaction Deb and Stacey had to that last remark.
“One thing, though…” continued Bernice, “Julie and I just got done scrubbing the shampoo sinks, and I’d hate to have to clean em again before closing. You don’t mind if we cut the girls’ hair dry, do you?”
“Oh, not at all!” replied Dawn quickly as the looks of astonishment pasted on the faces of Deb and Stacey got wider. “Why, I doesn’t make much sense to shampoo it anyway, what with how much you’re going to have to cut off and all.”
Deb and Stacey turned pale when the truth of Dawn’s words sank in. Despite the many times they had been to Bernice’s, neither of them had ever had much more than a trim.
“Well, we may as well get started,” said Bernice as she motioned for Deb and Stacey to take their seats in the salon chairs. Nervously they did so while, from behind the blue translucent curtain that separated the chairs from the waiting area, they heard Dawn tell Bernice that she’d be over to pay her for the cuts tomorrow. “No problem, Honey… I know you’re good for it. After all, I know where you work!” replied Bernice with a smile.
Before she let Bernice depart to begin the cuts, Dawn motioned for her to come closer so she could whisper into her ear. “You and Julie are all set with what I want, right?”
“Definitely,” came Bernice’s hushed reply, “Julie and I have thought of a way to involve you in the some of the fun too. You just sit back and enjoy.”
Dawn nodded her thanks to Bernice as the latter disappeared behind the curtain to begin the cuts.
“Well, what have we here, Julie?” said Bernice boisterously and rhetorically. “Looks like these two young ladies are about to get their ears lowered, as we used to say when we were kids.”
Wordlessly, Julie stepped toward the small counter in front of the chair. She glanced into the large mirror before her, and could see in the backward reflection that Stacey was fighting bravely to hold back the tears. Quickly, Julie grabbed one of the two biggest pair of salon scissors Bernice owned and headed toward Stacey. A few feet away, Bernice was doing the same to Deb.
On the other side of the thin curtain, Dawn put down the magazine she had been thumbing through as soon as she heard the clicking of the scissors. She could make out the figures behind the curtain well enough to see that Julie and Bernice were still a couple feet away from the girls. “Just some practice snips,” she thought giddily to herself, “something to get my two little thieves in the mood, I guess!”
Dawn hadn’t seen which of the girls was seated in each chair, but she knew she’d find out as soon as their hair started falling in long, shaggy clumps to the floor. With her eyes focused on the foot-and-a-half space that lay between the floor and the bottom on the curtain — a space that gave her a good view of the base of the two salon chairs — Dawn sat back and waited for the show to begin.
Even without being able to see, it wasn’t difficult for Dawn to tell when the “practice snips” stopped, and the real snips began. The sound of the sharp, heavy steel scissors chewing through the first of Deb and Stacey’s thick tresses filled the small salon like nothing Dawn had ever heard before. Bernice had been kind enough to turn off the background music that she normally played all day, and the clicking and clacking that came from behind the curtain quickly reminded Dawn of that Holocaust movie a while back; the one where the women newly arrived at the concentration camps were having their hair cut en masse. Dawn felt a little guilty for thinking of such an awful movie, but she quickly put it out of her mind when, a moment later, the first foot-long section of shiny chestnut hair spilled onto the floor beneath the chair on the left, leaving no doubt as to which chair her little thief Stacey was sitting in.
“YESSS!!” she cried silently to herself with as much excitement as she had felt as a child when the first snow came each year to this tiny New England town. Within seconds, two more thick sections of hair had landed atop the first on the floor, and Dawn knew that her snowfall analogy wasn’t quite accurate. “Stacey’s hair is piling up faster than any snow I can remember!” she thought to herself, putting her hand over her mouth to stifle the laughter.
On the other side of the curtain, Deb and Stacey stared in shock as their lovely tresses were chopped from their head. Julie had begun by cutting the hair on the right side of Stacey’s head. She would grab hold of a small handful, tug downward on it slightly while she cut it, then would let it fall to the floor around the base of the chair as she took hold of another small section. Bernice, working on Deb’s long blond hair, had a different technique. She had grabbed hold of a huge handful of hair from the back of Deb’s head and, holding it out at a ninety degree angle, began hacking through it with all her might, not letting so much as a strand hit the floor until she had managed to sever the entire handful.
Dawn felt confident, judging from the height of the shadowy figures looming over the two chairs, that Julie was working on Stacey, and Bernice on Deb. “I wonder how they chose which one would do who,” she thought to herself, knowing full well how much Julie and Bernice had both hated the girls. She didn’t dwell on the issue, however, for she was too busy watching the rapidly growing pile of long dark hair accumulate beneath the chair on the left.
If Dawn had begun to wonder what was taking Bernice so long to cut to Deb’s hair, she got her answer as soon as she heard the loudest “SHHHHHHHHNNNIIIIIIIIK!” yet, and saw a huge, blond ponytail-like object get tossed to the floor several feet behind the chair on the right. Shocked for a moment by its thickness, Dawn marveled at how much cutting it had taken to sever it from Deb’s head. Her surprise soon turned to excitement, however, as she imagined in her mind how much of the girl’s precious blond hair there must be still to be cut.
The clicking and clacking of the scissors continued uninterrupted for several minutes while Dawn stared pleasingly at the growing collection of chestnut and blond hair beneath the respective chairs. Julie’s additions to the chestnut colored pile were regular and steady, gradually forming a neat quarter-circle on the floor as she made her way around toward the back of Stacey’s head, while on the right Bernice was taking what seemed like an eternity to hack off another monster-sized ponytail of Deb’s hair and fling it to the floor behind the chair. Dawn found herself unconsciously leaning forward whenever Bernice would toss one of the thick blond clumps her way. She was reluctant to stand up and get a better view of the shorn locks, uncertain how much of the floor beyond the curtain the girls could see in the mirror.
Bernice must have been thinking the same thing, for when she stepped around the salon chair to begin cutting the other side of Deb’s head, she quickly kicked a couple of the severed clumps beyond the curtain to where Dawn was sitting. Bernice looked in the mirror to see whether either of the girls had seen what she’d done, but much to her delight she saw that neither girl could see very clearly through all the tears that were slowly, quietly rolling down their faces.
“How’s it going over there Dawn?” shouted Bernice pleasantly.
Dawn had to stifle a laugh. That Bernice…. what a joker! “Pretty good I guess… how are they coming?”
“Oh just fine!…” replied Bernice as she finished cropping another huge handful of Deb’s velvety soft hair, “should be all done and cleaned up by… oh, I dunno… ten o’clock at the latest.”
Dawn glanced at her watch and had to smother another laugh. She and the girls hadn’t gotten here til about 9:35, and here it was less than ten minutes later. Both girls would be clipped practically bald, and all their precious, pampered locks tossed neatly in the garbage in less than half an hour.
Feeling good, Dawn reached down and picked up the two big clumps of hair that Bernice had kicked beneath the curtain to her. Holding them up, she saw that they were both about 16 inches long. Bunching together the two clumps into one hand, she sat for several moments fingering the severed ends where the scissors had chopped them off. As much as she had grown to dislike Deb for her thievery, Dawn couldn’t remember when she had felt anything so soft. Clenching her fist tightly around the hair at the point where the scissors had hacked it off, the jagged ends felt as thick and luxurious as fur; fuller and better looking than her own hair had ever been. Forgetting where she was for a moment, Dawn pressed the mass of blond hair against her face and breathed deeply, loving the scent and feel of it against her face. As she sat patiently watching for more hair to fall to the floor, she found herself repeatedly running her fingers through Deb’s long, severed tresses as she thought wickedly to herself: “Well, Deb… my hair definitely looks better than yours now, wouldn’t you say?”
Minutes later, the now three-quarter circle of chestnut brown hair beneath Stacey’s chair seemed complete, and there were so many thick clumps of blond hair scattered for several feet around the base of the other chair that Dawn began to think there couldn’t possibly be any hair left on Deb’s head to cut. Bernice had clearly enjoyed herself, saving the best cut for last. As Deb watched the shadows through the curtain, she saw Bernice gather up all of Deb’s remaining long hair, pulling it straight upward and clamping it with her meaty fist into a super-thick mass that would end up taking nearly two full minutes to chop off.
Then, as quickly as they had started, the sounds of the scissors stopped.
“Dawn? Do you want to come in here and take a look?” asked Bernice.
Startled a bit by Bernice’s loud voice as it broke the strange silence, Dawn glanced down at the blond hair she’d been stroking for several minutes and quietly dropped it to the floor near her chair. “Yup… I’m coming!”
Nothing could have prepared her for what she saw when she pushed back an opening in the curtain and stepped through. Dawn had been acquainted with Deb and Stacey for years, long before she had ever hired them to work at the theater. Yet, looking at them now, she wouldn’t have been able to pick them out of a police line-up if she had to. With short, uneven tufts of hair sticking out in all directions, Deb and Stacey looked like a couple of those 70s female British punk rockers, or like Dawn’s nine-year-old brother did when he’d awaken after twisting and turning all night in his sleep. The once thick, attractive manes that used to collect upon the girls’ shoulders and hang invitingly down their backs now lay in dull, lifeless piles on the floor, waiting to be swept up and thrown in the trash.
“Now Dawn,” said Bernice, “you said the hair needed to be above the ear. Did you mean above the top of the ear, or the bottom?”
Still stunned by the sight of her two employees, and by the thick blanket of tiny snippets covering the capes atop their shoulders, Dawn looked blankly at Bernice.
Sensing her partner needed help, Julie spoke for the first time, bringing Dawn back to reality, and directing her gaze toward a pair of electric hair clippers that Julie was holding behind her back. “You know, Dawn…” Julie said slowly and reassuringly, “some employers insist that their workers’ hair not hang below the tops of their ears, and others say the bottom. Which is it that Mr. Biggs wants?”
Sensing that Dawn was still a bit unnerved despite her best efforts, Julie subtly nodded her head while motioning with her eyes for Dawn to look down at the clippers still hidden behind her back. After several long, awkward moments, Dawn understood what Julie was getting at.
“I… ah… I… I think Mr. Biggs wants it above the ears. Above the tops of the ears, I mean.”
“Very well then…Julie, let’s get to it!” replied Bernice, subtly nodding to Dawn that she had made the right choice. Dawn began to walk back to her chair on the other side of the curtain, when Julie again spoke up: “Dawn… why don’t you stay here… we’re almost finished, and you must be tired of sitting all day at the ticket counter.”
Dawn quickly looked at both their faces, and saw that this was what Bernice had meant earlier about finding a way to involve her in some of the fun. Dawn took a step backward while Julie and Bernice both fired up a set of clippers.
Tilting the girls’ heads to the left, Julie and Bernice began quickly scraping away all the hair from the right sides of their heads. Thick chunks of blond and chestnut hair rolled down Deb and Stacey’s chests, respectively, and soon sizable piles began to grow in their laps. “Yessirree…” said Bernice as she happily guided the bare clipper blades up the side of Deb’s head, “you girls are lucky… Julie and I here will make sure those pesky new regulations don’t give you a problem for a loooooong time to come!”
Gaining her senses back after the initial shock of seeing the girls without their hair, Dawn watched quietly as Julie and Bernice worked their way around toward the back of the girl’s heads, flicking clumps of short hair backward over their shoulders after each upward pass of the clippers.
“You… you may as well take the bangs off while you’re at it.”
Bernice, Julie, Deb and Stacey all looked at Dawn after she said it; the first two with smiles in their face, the latter two with looks of hurt and anger.
“Consider it done, dear…” replied Bernice with a smile as she and Julie both interrupted their shaving of the girls’ heads and casually pushed the clippers through Deb and Stacey’s long, shaggy bangs, brush-cutting them and letting them slide down the girls’ faces. Without missing a beat, the stylists returned to their work and quickly finished white-walling the back and left sides of the girls’ heads.
“Now, what length do you want the top?” Bernice asked Dawn.
Before she could answer, Julie butted in. “I think we should ask the girls… after all, Mr. Biggs’ policy says nothing about the length of hair allowed on the crown.”
“I think you’re right,” replied Bernice, obviously adhering to a script she and Julie had worked out beforehand. “Girls… why don’t you each take your pick of one of these attachments…”
Bernice held in her hand three clipper attachments for the girls to see, the longest of which would leave their hair 1/8 inch long on top.
“Can’t… Can’t you leave it longer?” Deb managed to choke through the heavy sobs that now began to wrack her body. “My… My hair is blond and… and… if you cut it too short on top, it’ll look like… it’ll look like I’m bald!”
“Okay… I see your point,” replied Bernice, choosing not to point out to Deb the obvious irony that the sides and back of her head were already bald. Turning her attention to Stacey, Bernice quipped: “How about you over there? … your hair could probably stand being cut with one of these, couldn’t it?” Bernice moved her hand with the three attachments on it to within a few inches of Stacey’s tear-stained cheeks. For the first time the girl saw how truly short each of them would cut what remained of her pretty, dark hair, and she burst into a fresh fit of tears when she realized that even this little patch of hair atop her crown wouldn’t escape further shearing from the clippers.
“Alright, alright…” sighed Bernice in reply to the nearly hysterical Stacey. “Julie, use the longest one on her… I think this one wants to keep what she can of her hair as well… isn’t that right, Pumpkin?” Bernice’s sarcasm only caused Stacey to cry louder, and it was becoming clear that she and Julie should bring this little sheep-shearing event to a close as quickly as possible.
While Julie raked the clippers back and forth across the top of Stacey’s head, spilling the last few inches of chestnut-colored glory down onto the cape and floor below, Bernice used the clipper-over-comb technique to shear successive half-inches off what little remained of Deb’s blond hair.
“Nope… still too long if you ask me…” Bernice commented after she’d buzzed through about half the patch of hair atop Deb’s crown. “You don’t want it to look too spiky… it won’t look very good.” Then, of course, she’d proceed to shear off another half inch or so before stopping to say the same thing.
By the time Julie and Bernice hung up the clippers, Deb and Stacey could have passed for one of those guys on the Army’s “Be All You Can Be” commercials. Stacey’s hair looked like little more than a bad case of five o’clock shadow, and Deb’s hair, in addition to being light-colored and barely noticeable, had acquired something of a landing strip, thanks to an unfortunate “mishap” on Bernice’s part.
As though nothing had just happened, Bernice and Julie unfastened the capes from around the girls’ necks, lightly shaking them out so that what hair had accumulated on them was now added to the sea of shorn and severed locks on the floor. Silently, as though in a trance, the girls walked over to get their coats from off the coat rack, while Bernice stood back and surveyed the carnage. “Myyyyyy goodness you girls had a lot of hair! I don’t usually get this much on the floor in a week! You girls sure must love your jobs at the theater to part with all that pretty hair. Why, I hope you make good money over there… it sure enough is going to cost me some money now that you girls won’t be needing to come here for such a long time.”
If Deb and Stacey had heard Bernice’s final, parting shot, they certainly didn’t acknowledge it. Like zombies, they walked out the salon door and back toward the theater, where they still had about an hour’s worth of clean-up work ahead of them.
Back at the salon, as Julie began sweeping the mounds of fallen hair into two huge piles behind the respective salon chairs, Dawn quickly fished through her pocketbook for some money to give to Bernice
“Honey, you don’t have to pay me… that was just part of the act. Julie and me had the time of our lives shearing those little bitches… we should be paying you for the pleasure!”
Dawn found a twenty dollar bill and held it out to Bernice, along with two crumpled up plastic shopping bags. “Okay… if you won’t take it for the haircuts, then take it for the hair. I want all of Stacey’s in one bag, and all of Deb’s in the other. And please don’t forget that little pile over by where I was sitting. This little shenanigan will probably cost me my job as soon as Deb and Stacey’s parents see the condition of their heads tonight, so I sure as hell ought to at least keep some souvenirs from it!”