Jen and I Get a Haircut

DSC_0005By now we all know that I am no Jennifer Aniston. This important piece of information came courtesy of my 10-year-old-son recently who, upon learning that Jen was just a couple of years younger than his withering mother, suggested I consider following her “tips.”

Thanks for pointing that out, guy. It’s not like I don’t own a mirror or anything.

And that’s okay, usually I’m pretty good with just being Amy.

Sure, I’d like Jen’s legs, abs and income to buy some of the cute stuff she wears, but I’ve come to terms with having to work with what the good lord gave me and a bank account limited by the care and keeping of four children.

So while I inherited a short torso, healthy thighs and problematic skin (or, as my girlfriend likes to call it, “Cheap Irish Skin”), I did walk away from the genetic melting pot with thin ankles and good hair.

And this is where I could give Jen a run for her money.

For a number of years, I sported very long, layered hair in varying degrees of blonde (eg: I just keep getting blonder), similar to Jen’s.  I really liked it a lot and dedicated a significant amount of time, money and energy to its care and keeping.

But then, one day early this year, I chopped it all off.

I just woke up one morning and was grossed out by all that hair.

I walked into the place where I get my hair cut like two or three times a year armed with a couple of photos and told the owner what I wanted.

Okay, we need to back up right here because I really need to set the stage for this.

I only get my hair cut a couple of times a year because it’s outrageously expensive. And while I’m happy to share with you most things about me, I am too embarrassed to tell you how much I spend per cut. It’s shocking.

It’s especially shocking because, if you didn’t know any better, you’d assume the salon was just another Korean nail place tucked into a New Jersey strip mall. It’s flanked by a Dunkin’ Donuts and dry cleaner and inside it’s pretty nondescript.

The owner is a tiny Korean woman who could best be described as an anime character crossed with maybe one of the sexy locals one of the officers would fall in love with from time to time on M*A*S*H. She’s got her long hair piled up on the top of her head and I’ve seen her wear a skirt made of fur in like February and teeter around in impossibly high heels.

But she’s also all business and is literally a one-woman operation. She usually has an assistant on hand to do the hair washing and combing, but the owner does all of the cutting and blow drying and moves women through as if on an assembly line.

It’s not unusual to walk in on a Saturday afternoon and find the waiting area filled and a line of women sitting in a queue with wet hair wrapped in towels, waiting to get combed out and moved towards the main chair.

Henry Ford had nothing on this woman.

It’s a very strange experience, really something out of Seinfeld, and you’d never imagine you’d fork over $50 for this service – much less lots, lots more – until she performs her magic on your hair. There seems to be no rhyme or reason to her cutting method but she zips the scissors here and there and pulls out her big, double-barrelled hairdryer and blows your hair dry like no one ever has before. It’s bouncy and chic and you could never replicate it at home. It’s just sexy.

IMG_1960So when I went in that day to lop off like eight-inches of hair, the normally non-plussed owner was like, “Whoa.” She even had to walk away down the hall and come back. And by then, she had a plan.

It was the first time I ever got a drastic hair cut that I didn’t regret. I must have been really just ready for it.

Of course, the first people I see after are my kids who were basically like, “What the fuck did you do to yourself.”

Confidence boosters, they.

Naturally, I would see pictures of Jen from time to time in People and admire all her hair. But I had moved on.

And now, so it seems, has she.

Huffington Post

Huffington Post

Seems like Jen might be trying to be Amy, because last week she chopped all her hair off. It’s chin length and looked pretty chic in the blurry photos I saw of it online.

And just like that, I decided I needed to lop off whatever length I’ve started to grow over the last few months since my last cut (my ponytail was finally moving past the super-stubby stage).

And I love it. It’s short and chic and fits where I am right now.

Of course, after I am inspired by Jen and get all mine cut off, I read on HuffPo that her new do was the result of a Brazilian straightening gone wrong and she was kind of regretting it.

But I stand in solidarity with my hair sister. Because while I will never be Jennifer Ansiton in many respects, it seems hair could be the great equalizer. As long as no one looks down.







Mom, You Are No Jennifer Aniston


Sometimes cabinets need to be used to contain bulletin board spillover.

I have always had a penchant for collecting and pinning random things that caught my fancy to a bulletin board and later, as a grown up, on a refrigerator.

You’d think I’d be really into Pinterest because of this but if you’ve clicked on the cute little icon on my blog that urges you to follow me there, you’d be greeted by chirping crickets. I just can’t spend any more time on anything else right now (I have an acute case of Netflix Fever).

When I worked in an office out of college I took to collecting and cataloging strange hairs my coworkers and I would find around our cubicles and created a Hair Musem, pinned to the bulletin board above my desk alongside important memos and pictures of my dog.

It all sounds really weird now but at the time, this is what helped take the edge off of being low-level and underpaid workers at a women’s magazine trapped in a windowless space for 8 hours a day.

Then I became a mom and had the whole expanse of a refrigerator to work with and let me tell you, I had a lot of magnets and sometimes, even they were the star of the show. My favorite was a crying wooden baby sitting in a highchair with its little arms raised in the air. It perfectly captured that moment in my life.

The frig would be covered by photos that struck my fancy, invitations to weddings at first, then birth announcements and later, birthday parties at Chuck E. Cheese’s. Then I’d add postcards the grandparents would send from their annual excursion overseas or a few-odd Baby Blues or Family Circus comics cut right out of the newspaper.

My frig canvas fell apart in 2005 when we redid our kitchen and got ourselves a big, fancy number sheathed in cabinetry to match the rest of the kitchen, which was beautiful but alas, not magnet friendly.


This just makes perfect sense.

It wasn’t long though before I was Scotch taping crap onto the frig instead and now, there’s an ever-evolving collection of Honor Roll certificates, a panoramic image of the inside of the 10-year-old’s mouth (showing teeth trying to emerge at odd angles) and my favorite New Yorker cartoon.

Lately, I’ve also taken to taping photos of celebrities on the refrigerator, as if I was a teenaged girl. And I guess because I live with a few of that breed, I get confused sometimes.

Anyway, this is a very long-winded way of explaining why there are a bunch of Ryan Gosling pictures taped to a 47-year-old woman’s refrigerator.


He is always being a creep and staring. Anywhere you go in the kitchen, the Gos is watching. I kind of like it.

He’s just become, like, this ongoing jokey love-interest around here, so when any one of us comes across a good Gos picture — or one of the kids makes me, say, a Valentine’s card featuring the young actor proclaiming his love for me — it is immediately taped to the frig.

There’s also one photo of Jennifer Aniston up there, she of the fabulous legs. It’s some red carpet shot and it is complimentary to both her upper arms and shapely gams. Traits I admire and envy.

So yesterday, it seems my 10-year-old son noticed the photo of Jen, who has been hanging there at his eye-level for about five months, for the first time.


Does this photo have a 100% success rate in preventing me from grabbing the Ben & Jerry’s out of the freezer drawer? I’d say no. She does look fab, though.

We were standing in the kitchen and he asked me why I had hung the picture on our frig as he started reading the caption beneath the image, which included her age.

I said, “Well, I think she has amazing legs and I’d like to remind myself of what I’d like my legs to look like every time I go to the refrigerator to look for something to eat. You know, like, inspiration.”

“Whoa, she’s 44?” he said, obviously shocked that this woman was a mere three years younger than his own mother.

“She looks so young,” he continued, looking up at me. “You should use her, like, tips.”

Well, thank you, little boy. I’m so glad I spent all that time breastfeeding you and taking you to Disney World.

I could have been working on my legs instead.


The kids know I am crazy for the handmade cards and ones that star the Gos need special attention.