Friday, February 5, 2016

What Makes a Good Hairdresser

Beyond the obvious, here is what I think makes a great hairdresser:

- ability to negotiate effectively under duress
- willingness to listen for hours on end
- display poker face at critical moments

Adam is one great hairdresser. Managing his own place since his early twenties, he's been in the business for almost a decade. "I can't take new clients," he told me last time, beaming with pride. He is an expert communicator with the ability to keep quiet at critical moments. This is a must in a field where communication is key. He opted to stay close to his old neighborhood where he runs a small studio. What he offers is a world class service at a decent cost, delivered with charm and finesse not unlike the diplomatic skills of a high ranking UN representative. Adam's place is my best kept secret. Anyone can stumble upon it and some might even get lucky enough to book an appointment. But it is not easy.
So I was really surprised when yesterday, as I was sitting there getting a haircut someone just stepped into the shop, asked for an appointment on the spot and was granted one for next week. It happened in just a few minutes. She even managed to shot an ice cold look at me as she was leaving. And before I could blink, she was out of the door. I'd just like to note here that I happily waited for my appointment for 3 weeks.

Monday, February 1, 2016


As I walked through an underpass yesterday, I heard a violin solo. It was a classical piece too good to be coming from an amateur street musician. I just knew I had to stop and listen to it. I changed my course to get closer to see the performer. With his eyes half-closed, he was fully absorbed in the music. I wanted to tip him, but had no money with me. I had to cross the underpass to get some and walk all the way back to the violin case that lay open a few feet away from him on the ground. I dropped a handful of change in the case. He nodded without looking up.

I wish I knew what he wore, but I was too captivated by his music to see his outfit. What I remember though is his winter coat. He wore a heavy black winter coat partially open. It was an especially cold night. I was shivering. 


Monday, January 11, 2016

World of Wearable Art

From the land of some of the friendliest folks on the planet and the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy comes the design competition called the World of WearableArt. If you have a creative spirit and wish to enter, check out their great new site HERE.  

See the video, An Incredible Journey with founder of WOW, Dame Suzie Moncrieff, HERE.

"Everyone has a creative spirit but not everyone has the opportunity to explore that side of themselves and WOW gives that opportunity to people."

Dame Suzie Moncrieff

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Black and White

This is K. from a couple of summers ago. She is wearing her new black-and-white dress. She is holding one of her most prized possessions, her cell phone, in one hand while shielding it with the other.

Encouraged by a friend, she decided to enter a beauty contest this past winter. She made it to the first round. For the second round, participants were required to take lessons to learn how to dance in high heels. At this point she changed her mind because she did not like the requirements.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Happy Holidays!

Växtglädje. Illustration on a gift wrap bought at Ikea in 2013. I wish I knew who the illustrator is. This is one great dress in my favorite color. I love the three-quarter sleeve and the length that seemingly goes on-and-on forever. It is definitely evening wear. A floating maxi dress can be very flattering. However, it could be problematic to wear for a regular city dweller. Look how beautifully the skirt drapes. I can only see it draping like this when it floats in the air.


If this magical dress was meant to be worn by elves on a swing at Christmas time in an enchanted forest, then let it be. I bought the gift wrap for the illustration. Speaking of forest, I hardly wrap anything except for Christmas presents. I carefully unwrap presents to save and reuse paper. I recycle what I can't reuse. I can't help but think of the life of a tree and the number of years or decades required for it to grow old enough to be harvested and processed to make paper. And then comes the fleeting moment for a gift wrap to be admired then ripped off and discarded. 


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Thrift Store Find

The black skirt in this post is the same item that appears HERE in a previous post as a black top. It is a sleeveless top which comes with a diagonal strap to hold it in place, but I find it more comfortable to wear it as a skirt. It could be a bit risky to wear a top as a skirt if it wasn't designed that way. You might need a belt to prevent your 'skirt' from slipping in case it doesn't fit well. The black top is a leftover sales item. Both items are from a thrift store.

Black top that serves as a skirt, Repeat

Beige top, J. Taylor

Monday, December 14, 2015

Almost Perfect

As a native speaker of the English language, some of you might wonder how I can write complex structures and still make some basic mistakes. That's easy. When I go on auto pilot and just jolt something down thinking 'Wow, it's so darned easy, it must be this way.' it's usually not. I started to write this blog to hang onto my English and, at one point, I stopped worrying too much about it. That was the final push for me to write. My verbal skills are good, but I am not perfectMy real strength is in creative writing. I am my own editor. If I really start wrestle with a topic, it seems that my English catches up and gets better.

I have the skills to do some wizardry with grammar and yet, I can't help making mistakes. There are times when I can't see them so they stay to hunt me. It's a never-ending battle. And it's fun. Instead of feeling sorry for myself, I understand now that I will never be perfect -- no matter how good I am or how hard I try. If I don't practice, I loose my grasp and get worse. I just try to push on. I try to achieve clarity and consistency and stay grammatically correct as much as possible. I can get pretty good at that, but it is time consuming and not easy.

There are times, when what I write is good as is and I might think that there is something still wrong with it. While other times, I just can't see the obvious. It always depends on the particular text. It's like ghost hunting. I might see a ghost where there is none or can't see one when it's right in front of me.

When it comes to writing this blog, I see myself as a street performer. It serves me as an inspiration. My visitors are passerby. Some will stop and listen and might enjoy my performance.

Note to self: write in complex structures