Today’s writing prompts at The Daily Post is the word, scorched.

I was cursed/blessed with naturally curly hair. During the 1970s when I was a teenager, this was not cool. Older people told me how lucky I was and  that I’d never need a perm.

“Don’t worry,” they’d say. “Curly hair would be back in style someday, and then you’ll be glad.”

Someday? Who cared about someday? I’d probably be dead by then.

I needed straight hair now.

Keep in mind that we didn’t have the products that are available now. My options were limited to and ironing board & iron.

Having watched an old episode of Patty Duke, Gidget, or some such, I knew all I needed to know. If it worked for the chicks on TV, what could go wrong?

Heh. Lots.

First, I filled the iron with water (steam couldn’t hurt) and set it to “cotton,” its hottest option. Next, I found an old pillow case to place  between the styling tool and my kinky locks.

When the iron started sputtering, I got into position and man,  was it an awkward one. Of course I couldn’t see what I was doing, crouched down with my head level with the ironing board, but that didn’t deter me. The price we pay for beauty, no?

Sizzling, singeing, and scorching ensued—not only my hair, but my scalp and fingers.

By the time I decided enough damage had been done, the pillow case was permanently tattooed with couple of deformed brown triangles, and what was left of my hair was fried.

There was no hiding any of it from my mom. She took me to the beauty shop where I ended up with a pixie cut.

I was also grounded until I learned the proper use of an iron.

Eventually I made peace with my curls, and “they” were right.

I’ve never had to spend money on a perm.



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