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Old 05-06-2005, 11:44 PM   #1
Hildegard_von_Knittin
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OT: Bad Hair Day
Picture me INFURIATED Long post, too.

So, as most of you wonderful KH friends know, tomorrow I'm graduating with my master's degree. Even though I am, of course, gorgeous, I thought today might be a good idea to go in for a trim, just so I looked neat tomorrow for the occasion.

Through circumstances beyond my control, I was held up after school and had to cancel with my regular stylist, who I adore. After the situatioon was handled (let's call that "asinine parent has inapproprite response to stimulis") , I decided I still wanted a trim, and went to Great Clips in town. I'd been there before for some quick fixes, and thought the people were nice and service okay... but not up to par with my usual salon for most larger hair operations.

I got right in, and the women asked if I was getting a trim, so I said "yes, just a bit off... I don't like my back hair so long, and I'd like if off my neck." She then she preceeds to squirt my hair with a water bottle. At this point I'm thinking "uhh, isn't a wash included in a hair cut?" but thought that since I didn't tell the host guy who took my name I wanted a shampoo also, I wasn't getting one. Then I noticed that the water smelled "funky" (to me, but I am sensitive to that stuff),so I asked the hairdresser if I could get it washed too. She wasn't what I would call a "peppy" person, but I don't expect people to be happy all the time, so I ignored it... anyway, she said "Well, whatever you want to do, it doesn't make a difference to me" and I said "well, the water smells a little strange to me, and I just thought a shampoo would be included, anyway." She said, no it wasn't included, but she could wash it.

So i expected a nice relaxing shampoo... what I got was freezing cold water and a 10 second "scrub" on my scalp. In lieu of recent "parent having inapproprite response" events, I reminded myself that she probablly isn't meaning to seem nasty , or in a hurry, and I'm not the center of her world, and etc. So after the less than satisfactory wash, we go back to the chair, and she says "So whatare we doing again"... and I said "Well, just a trim, but could you part my hair on the right since instead of the left? That's how I usually do it." Apparently this was an unreasonable request, and I got alook in the mirror, which I ignored, but didn't forget.

So here's what I said, now for the second time " It's too long in the back, so I want it off my neck. Then, I want the rest trimmed so it is proportionally shorter all the way around. It's in long layers now, I like the look and I like the style; I just want it off my neck." Well. We went around and around and around with just WTF that actually meant... asked if i wanted a bob, do I want it short in the back and angled long in front, do i want it all one legnth... and I'm like "No, I just want it TRIMMED SHORTER in the back so it's off of my neck, and then I want the side TRIMMED so they are equally shorter than the back as they are now"... She says "I'm sorry, I'm just confused" and it was very plain that i was pissing her off.
I said "How long are the sides now?" and she takes a few strands, holds them out, and says "ABout this long" and looks at me like "don't you know how long your own hair is you dumbass"... so I said "Okay. How long is it in comparison to the back?" and she said "well, there's really close to being the same" Finally, i was tired of arguing with her and I said "I'm sorry, I just don't know how to communicate to you whatit is I want. Just take a half in off all the way around, that will be fine" So she says "good" and reaches for the scissors... THEN I thought "no, carolyn, you're paying for a SERVICE, and if you're not getting what you want, don't get it!"

So I said "you know, never mind., I'm just not comfortable having you cut my hair, and I think I should leave" so she says "fine" and rips the cape off me. "I guess I could towell some of the moisture out of your hair..." and I looked right at her and said "No, I think I just need to leave." As I bent down to get my purse and my glasses, she gives me the i can be a bitch too look, and says "DON'T forget your glasses" in a sweet sing-song type voice.. so I gave her my nastiest smile and said "Oh I won't. And don't you forget that customers are what makes a business successful." THEN i did something totally passive aggressive, which I shouln't have done but it felt good anyway: I squeezed the water from my hair directly onto her chair.

As I was walking out the door, the guy who took my name comes Up behind me "Ma'am? Ma'am?' "Yes?" "Is there a problem?" well yes you moron there's a problem... "Well, the problem is that I just can't seem to communicate what it is that I want, so I think I'm just going to go to my regular stylist." I was trying to take ownership of the situation, because that's what professionals do, AND not make a scene. He said "well, we can set you up here with someone else" and I said "No, I really just prefer to go elsewhere." and left.

i was so angry when I got in the car that I started to cry, which is not usual. I went to my regular stylist dripping wet and she listed calmly to the story, said she was sorry that some stylists don't think about the customers, but she understood and could do it, but not until a time 2 hours later. There were swamped and someone called off, and she said she was sorry, etc etc etc... So I just said that's okay, thanks for listening, I just wish I could have made my appointment with you, thanks anyway, and left.

SO I went back to school, got the phone number for great clips; I wanted to call and find out the name of the hairdresser there so I could write a letter to the manager, the district people, and other higher ups expressing my dissatisfaction. I called and said "Yes, my name is Carolyn, I was in there about 30 minutes ago, and I just wanted to know the name of the stylist who was trying to help me" and the guy who answered said "Well can you tell me what the problem was?" I asked him his name, (dave) and said "Dave, are you the manager?" and he said "No" so I said "Well, how are you going to be able to fix my problem? I already told you the problem when I was there before," and he said "yes, I understand, and I told you I could have set you up with another stylist here." (now i'm getting angry at him, because he's arguing with me) "Well, I told you after that that I didn't want another stylist, and if that's your current soultion, you're not helping me any. I really just would like to know her name" and I hear in the backgound "do you believe this? it's that woman again!" So dave says "Jennifer" so I said "Thank you..." and he interrupts, saying in what i thought was a nasty tone "And, uhh, you got a shampoo, that you , uhh, didn't pay for..." and I said "Well I'm at my place of work right now, and since you have my home phone number in the computer I would be happy to have you call me at home so we can set up a time to meet with my lawyer and discuss how to get you your 4 dollars" and he said, laughingly, "No, well, that's okay" "You mean it's not worth your time to place a phone call" "(still laughingly) "No" ... "You mean it's not worth YOUR TIME to make a phone call in order to KEEP a CUSTOMER," "No, it's not" (laughing openly now) and I said "well, thank you Dave, you have made the Great Clips policy of customer service very clear. If you want your 4 dollars, you can sue me." and hung up.

I wish that I had (appropriate) words to express my rage. The icing on the cake was, later I saw a kid in one of my classes, and he says "Mrs. Coss you look mad" so I told him the brief version of the story, and he goes "well that's stupid, what didn't they understand? I understand!" and i laughed and said "I KNOW! and you're 16!!!!!" and he said "well don't worry, we just won't go there anymore. " which I thought was funny, his trying to be gallant and stick up for me and all. But OH MY Gs what the heck happened here?????????

Anyway, I just needed to vent. So tomorrow I'm going to graduation with imperfect hair. I guess it could be worse... :-)
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Old 05-07-2005, 12:17 AM   #2
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I'm sorry you had such a bad experience :( But I am very impressed that you had the guts to get up from the chair!

I can't believe companies can run a business like that.

Happy Graduation!
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Old 05-07-2005, 12:19 AM   #3
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hey Ms. Coss!!! Was it at all possible to set a time limit with this parent? If it was upset parents shooting off their mouths, then tell them to meet with you later. You know the parents I'm talkin' about. You know they'll come back later. They always do. You can never get rid of them. Their kids are always the ones that never get sick either :rollseyes:

Don't worry about the hair. They make you wear a hat anyway. Congratulations for graduating!!
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Old 05-07-2005, 12:47 AM   #4
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Thanks ladies... Nuno, 2 or 3 years ago I *wouldn't* have gotten out of the chair, I would have just let her do whatever... I used to go into the salon and say "you're the professional, so do what will look good" But I started verbalizing more what I wanted after a not bad but not great experience back home in Baltimore, and now, wherever I go, in any situation when i am paying for a service, I make very plain what I want, and if I can't get it, I leave. There's lots of other places who can give me what I want. People who give me attitude like I should be grateful they are blessing me with their presence, or it's a chore for them to do the job they're being paid (by ME) to do do not get my business. DH says I am too demanding and always tells me to be nice... I AM nice, just direct. We went to the grocery store once and I asked for a certain kind of cheese at the deli, and the young girl said "i Well do you want any thing else" in a nastyish voice, and I just LOOKED at her and she says "Because that's really messy cheese and I would like to cut other stuff first becasue it's easier to clean." and I said "Oh, I didn't see the sign detailing the procedure for ordering cheese" and walked away. I'll get my damn cheese somewhere else. DH said later he couldn't believe I "did that" and he was SO embarassed. I said, well, I'm sorry you felt that way, it wasn't my intent. *sigh*

Beldie, this was a parent who had a problem with something my student teacher did last week; as she was screaming at my student teacher, she interpreted her arm crossing (a natural defense mechanism when you're being attacked) to mean that my student teacher was being smug and smart-alecky as she put it. The situation was handled by the VP at school, but the parent decided it would be a good idea to further exaggerate her misintrepretation, and send an email to the superintendant, and the entire school board; I was berrated in the email, just because I'm the cooperating teacher, and yadda yadda, now the university wants to kick my student teacher out of the program, a week before graduation. I was trying to diffuse the consequences at the univsersity level, because the parent's claims were ridiculous and unfounded... and my student teacher, for all she is flighty and wierd sometimes, is a good teacher. I felt like I had to stick up with her. SOOOOO the meeting was sort of an emergency, but the parent wasn't there.

anyway. what a day!
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Old 05-07-2005, 01:00 AM   #5
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YOU ARE HILDIE! HEAR YOU ROAR!!

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Old 05-07-2005, 02:36 AM   #6
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I think you were absolutely right to walk out of that salon. You were expecting to pay for a service which you didn't get, that gives you every right to complain, walk out, not pay etc etc.

You might consider writing a letter to your newspaper, or the ombudsman because seriously, a business like that should be looked at carefully. Really, who laughs at the customers?!!

It's really too bad you didn't get to your regular stylist.

So how did the graduation go?!
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Old 05-07-2005, 09:05 AM   #7
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I spent most of my working years in salons in one capacity or another and your experience is inexcuseable. Though I am not familiar with the salon you named it sounds as if it is a chain or franchise and you should take the time to complain to the main office or owner. You should not need the name of the stylist, only the time and date of your appointment and your name.
You were absolutely right to get out of the chair and walk out, it's your hair and you have every right to have it done to your preference.
If you have a regular stylist that treats you well and follows your instruction treat her like gold because many in the business don't feel this way. Would you hire someone to paint your house and let them to paint it purple when you asked for white? I would not hesitate to find the company or owner of this salon. They'll try to get you back in to "solve the problem", make it clear to them that you would not set foot in the place again and you are calling them because if they keep a staff with that kind of attitude they don't deserve to be in business and won't be very long if they treat everyone like they treated you.
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Old 05-09-2005, 03:42 PM   #8
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Since I'm a few days late here, first I'll say:

Happy Graduation Hildie!!

Congrats!!

--------------------
Now I'll share in the saga if you're not tired of it already.
MAN, that sounds like a horrible experience!

Way to go for getting up and leaving! As I was reading, I kept thinking: uh-oh, what's this person going to end up doing to her hair?! So, phew, I was glad you didn't give her the power to wreak her vengence (or plain inneptitude) on your hair!

I once paid $70 at my only-ever high-end salon experience, for a dye job that didn't even TAKE. My hair looked just like it did when I came in! Not only did I pay, but I tipped the (friendly, but innept) lady. Now I wouldn't do that! Not that I'd make a negative issue out of it, but I'd be like, well, if you want to try a different dye or something.... I wouldn't pay $70 for nothing!

I think I would have done the same thing. Including crying afterwards, because I hate having to go through that angry crap! It's so draining. It's twice as bad that the manager-wanna-be also thought it appropriate to argue with you. He could have at least acted as a neutral mediator, instead of fueling the flames (not that mediation skills are easy to come by or common, but that would be my hope from someone whose specialty is customer relations).

I personally wouldn't write to the paper about it. Only because that would require you staying in an angry and worked-up place for even longer. The sooner you can come out of that place, and even try to forgive them, I think the better things will be FOR YOU.

By the way, on a side note... What you said on the porn thread, something about communication can go wrong, but your feelings are never wrong, was very wise. DH & I had had a fight that night and when I read that it was just what I needed to hear, it helped me understand where he was coming from and validated my feelings too. Thanks for that.
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Old 05-09-2005, 06:30 PM   #9
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Oh, good, glad thatwas useful Amy!

I did write astrongly-worded letter to the salon, their district manager and cooporate HQ. We'll see what happens... I bet I'll get a coupon for some $ off on my next service there hahahahaahahaha. I thought about writing a letter to the editor, and i woul dhave except that since I'm an educator in that relitively-small community, I don't know who knows who, and figured I didn't need negative attention drawn to myself. So when i hear a response I will let everyonbe know! Thanks for the votes of confidence... I k*knew* i was doing the right thing, I just needed to vent. I was talking to my mom aboutit on the phone, and she said she was surprised I held out so long :-)
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Old 05-09-2005, 07:21 PM   #10
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Good for you... Sometimes I just can't believe the lack of quality service.
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