I don’t know whether it’s an innate part of your DNA, immaturity or whether you are just a dick, but some people seem to find it impossible to apologise.
As I get older, I find it much easier to admit wrong-doing. I usually simply say: “Yep, I stuffed up” so we can fix it and/or move on. Easy-peasy.
I used to work with someone – and have also made acquaintance with a number of people who would rather tell you that an apparition was responsible rather than themselves – for whom the blame game was his default position.
If a mistake had been made – no matter how big or small – he would argue that it was the computer, the light, the day, the moon, Donald in accounts or even me where the fault truly lay. Lord knows what the social conditioning was that created such an annoying deflection of a human being.
Until Saturday, I thought this person was perhaps the best – I actually mean the worst – type of responsibility repeller I had ever met. But someone even more skilled at shirking showed me their true colours.
I have been going to the same hair salon for a few years. It’s a bit posh and their idea of “fries with that” is to up-sell you all manner of hair products to strengthen, straighten or shimmer your locks until you supposedly look like Cindy Crawford.
A few days ago, I arrived at the salon for my appointment to find every single seat taken. There was even a snotty child coughing all over the customers so you could leave with a cold as well as over-priced, unnecessary products.
Even though I am a regular, I was plonked at the end of the magazine table and left to my own devices for a while. After about 10 minutes, a stylist who had never done my hair before crept up behind me and started applying dye to my locks. Alas, I presumed it was the right colour.
Sixty minutes later, I was still sitting at the aforementioned table with dye dripping down my forehead. Lucky I had my water bottle because no one asked if I wanted a glass of water let alone a bad coffee.
Sensing my simmering anger, yet another stylist washed off the dye, up-sold me an expensive treatment and I was plonked back at the table. I turned to look in someone else’s mirror and my mouth fell agape. My hair was orange – you know like Ronald McDonald.
I called out to the owner distressed. “Ah, this is not the right colour,” I exclaimed. “It’s supposed to be red.” She took one look at me and went to the computer to check it out. She called the stylist over and they conferred in hushed tones for a few minutes. Soon enough she sauntered over and began to ramble about it being the same colour as last year. I explained my last appointment was in January this year – not in November last year – and I had got a deeper red head-job after trying copper, which is really orange, and not liking it at all.
She quickly back-tracked and said she meant January plus, seemingly, it was never going to turn out the same colour on the second visit. What the? Surely if that was the case, the necessary adjustments should be made beforehand? That would have been impossible though as no one spoke to me beforehand. She carried on blaming a whole bunch of different reasons including my fine hair which luckily she had a $150 product to make more voluminous. She also offered to style my hair for a photo shoot for my new job. Like bloody hell.
I was speechless. The saviour on the day was a very congenial new chap who conferred with me quietly about the fiasco. No one offered to fix the colour then and there however. In the end I just wanted to get out of there. Never ever to return.
At the till, I was charged full price – $170 – and I am still kicking myself that I paid it. In the next few days I will likely go somewhere new to get my ginga turned into raspberry. I will probably then send her the bill.
In a wonderfully ironic postscript, I received one of those automatic surveys from a salon rating website a few hours after my appointment from hell. I was honest, polite and unknowingly wrote the first draft of this blog. An apology from her would have been easy – and potentially less detrimental to her business – in comparison.