This morning I got up not-so-bright and early, and headed to the supermarket, where I purchased the bottle of Head & Shoulders Citrus which I should have just bought the second this whole “orange hair” saga started.  Well, you know me: if there’s an easy way to do things and a difficult way to do things, I will choose the difficult way every time. Every time.

Well, I came home and shampooed my orange hair with it. Then I shampooed it a second time, just for luck. And I had absolutely zero hope of this making even the slightest difference. In fact, so zero were my hopes that when I got out of the shower I sat at my desk, still wearing my towel-turban, and started frantically Googling the phrase, “OMG, everyone always says red hair dye fades quickly, but mine won’t fade AT ALL, EVER, WHY?”

Then I blow-dried it and…

Amber of Orange


(Actually, this photo is from a couple of days ago, when it was still totes orange. But the orange was so camera shy and elusive, the pimpernel of hair dye, really, that this photo totally failed to show the extent of the orange, so I’m using it anyway.)

Well, I mean it sort of worked. It’s still a little brassy, and I have a couple of orange-ish streaks at the temples, like a reverse Geri Halliwell, but the good news is that I can finally stop talking about this now, and I think we’re all glad about that. In fact, how about we change the subject rightthisverysecond, and start talking about… hmm, let’s see: how about The Others, instead?

You know that thing they do? Where you’re standing in line somewhere, like a supermarket, say, waiting to pay for your magic orange-removing shampoo? Everyone is standing there patiently, in a neat, orderly queue, such as we British are famous for, and then suddenly an Other appears and, rather than simply joining the queue, like everyone else did, the Other just kind of stands there, open-mouthed, gazing at it. And everyone already in the queue feels a bit awkward, really, so they all shuffle forward a bit to make room – even although there is ALREADY PLENTY OF ROOM – but the Other still doesn’t join the end of the line. Instead, he tries to kind of MERGE with the line, singling out the orange-haired girl at the end of it – the one who’s standing there thinking, “please not me, please not me, please don’t try to merge with me,” and then coming to stand BESIDE her rather than BEHIND her, which is the normal queuing etiquette. And then, every time she moves forward, The Other moves forward, too. And every time the orange-haired girl looks at the Other, all, “This is my space: don’t you even THINK about trying to steal my space or I will cut you,” the Other simply smiles benignly, as if to say, “Gosh, isn’t this fun, us simultaneously occupying exactly the same spot in the queue? Also, as soon as you get to the front, I’m cutting in front of you. Have a nice day!”

That happens to me EVERY SINGLE TIME I have to stand in a line for something. EVERY time. It’s like I have some kind of sign on my head which reads, “Hey, Others! If you’re looking for someone to make uncomfortable in the queue, I’m your woman!” A bright orange sign, naturally…

  1. I hate the others. I’m thinking about never leaving the house ever again as their numbers seem to be growing.

    Queuing. Not hard!!

    1. Right? Why is it so hard for them to grasp the idea of queuing? Sometimes I think they’re just deliberately trying to make me feel awkward. Because that’s the kind of thing They do.

  2. Bleh…The Others. *Shudders*

    I’m not keen on the people who think it’s ok to stand so close to you in the queue that they knock you with whatever they’re carrying. Had a kid in a pushchair so close to me once the blighter was able to kick my legs and I had nowhere to go. I’ve been tempted to lose my queue place and start again sometimes.

    Gosh I sound like such a Grinch! LOL!

    1. Oh, God I HATE that. And that one seems to happen a lot, too: I’m standing there patiently waiting my turn, and the next thing I know I feel someone’s BREATH on the back of my neck… then, as soon as I step forward to get away from them (I’m big on personal space), THEY step forward, too. I particularly hate it when I’m paying for something with my card and someone comes and stands so close to me they can see me enter my PIN. Last week, a little kid actually came up and stood and stared intently at the machine while I was entering the PIN: I mean, I know a small child is probably NOT going to wrestle me to the ground and steal my card but a) I’m paranoid about this and b) she was old enough to be told that it’s not really the done thing to try to get a glimpse of someone’s PIN, but her mother just stood and watched her.

  3. Yay, I’m glad the shampoo worked!

    I don’t get the queue thing, but I am the girl that every weirdo on the bus sits beside or starts talking to. I think I look too non-threatening…

  4. I hate the Others. I’m also huge on personal space and not adverse to making sure I keep it.
    A few weeks ago, I was at the grocery store, standing in line. This mouth breathing SOB buying a case of beer and chips comes up and stands RIGHT behind me, closer than my husband would. I step forward, to alleviate the pressure. So does she. I shift a few inches left. So does she. I step a few inches back (in spiky heels) and find a flip flop clad foot. I hear a screech and a couple of hops.
    “I was standing there!” she hollers.
    “I know.” I reply.
    “An apology’d be nice!”
    “I bet it would be.”
    Silence, then she finds another lane.
    (Did I mention I was serial killer dead pan when I spoke?)

  5. This is why I like having my dog with me. Of course you can’t enter every shop with a dog, but when its allowed, I’m sure to take him with me. You get plenty of room, when you’re accompanied by a furry hyperactive snot nose. Even though he is trained to just lay down calmly he will have an eye on everyone stepping near (just in case he gets some stroke).
    But I have to admit, that I can become an absolute asshole, when someones shoving me. I just don’t care enough how other people might think about me.

  6. Amber – for future orange hair incidents you could use a tip that my hairdresser gave me. Mix any anti dandruff shampoo with any baby shampoo and it will strip out everything in one go.

    I’ve had to use this tip more times than I want to admit to but it does work 🙂

    My pet hate with the Others is self service checkouts – do you have to put your basket on the side while I’m paying, getting change, collecting my receipt and shopping? One person actually started scanning her stuff through while I was still there. Unfortunately her items ended up on the floor as the clumsy, very slow person in front just couldn’t seem to get out of the way 😉

    1. Oh, thanks for that! You know, it’s weird: when I wrote this post yesterday, I thought it was more or less back to normal, but when I got up this morning and looked at it, it still looks really orange! It’s MUCH better than it was, but damn, that stuff is stubborn! Will pick up some baby shampoo at the weekend 🙂

      And yes, their general checkout behaviour is so annoying… even with the regular checkouts I’ve more than once had the cashier start checking through an Other’s shopping along my own because they couldn’t be bothered to use one of those little divider things, and crammed all their stuff next to mine. It’s not hard, people!

  7. Queuing is one of the times when being British AND American comes in handy. I have no qualms about telling them to back off and queue properly. Plus, my accent means they just think I’m a stupid American and they don’t want to get any stupid on them so they want to stay away; win-win.

  8. Argh, The Others. I always seem to get the ones in the 10 Items Or Less queue who seem to think it’s OK to go through with a trolley full of roughly six million items because they’re special and no-one will mind, due to aforementioned specialness. People do mind!

    And yes, I may be somewhat of a pedant to be taking note of the exact number of items in any given Or Less queue. I blame The Others for bringing this behaviour out.

  9. Amber, what is this conditioner you’re using that’s powerful enough to have such a great effect on your hair color? I’d love to know because I dye my hair red from my natural dirty blonde color– and unfortunately, red dye fades particularly fast. I would love to find a red-hair conditioner that’s able to give me the kind of color boost you seem to be unintentionally coming across! Very much appreciated. =)

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