Monday, May 4, 2009

Holy haircut!

I suffered a new haircutter person this week. My former cutter of many years retired due to cancer. I decided to take a risk, spend more money than the usual $15 and try out the place getting all the publicity nowdays. Studio D, situated halfway between home and work. I made an appointment with Sarah somebody, the telephone Enthusiasm Queen. YES, she would love to touch my thin, fine, gray hair. OUCH!!! $35.00 minus $10.00 for being a new client. OK so---I walk in and right away notice:

1. My $35 will be paying for the gorgeous layout, decor, and streamside setting
2. My $35 will be paying for the drinks they keep plying while I wait for Sarah
3. My $35 is paying for a shampoo/conditioning/head massage that takes twice as long as I spend in the shower daily. But I concede the massage just might be worth it.
4. I am decades older than anyone (client or stylist) in the building.
5. The woman Sarah has just styled looks like a skunk. As in bright, bright blonde hair on top. Black, black roots & underneath hair. Sarah has evidently also fried the blonde parts with a straightener giving the top tuft a straw-like appearance. But the customer is happy and still preening before the mirror as she pins her hair into a perfect bump-top ponytail.

"What-the-heck" I think as I unfold the 2 photographs I pulled off the internet the night before. Go ahead, Sarah. Try and make my hair look like an approximation of these pictures. Sarah studies the pictures and says "mullet" under her breath. She questions me carefully about length of hair on my neck and here's where I make my fatal mistake. I tell her the length I want, but forget to mention how much my hair shrinks from wet to dry. WHACK go her scissors and there will never be a mullet again. Me and my naked neck are still in shock. However I do like the rest of the style and other people seem to be complimentary. Sarah used the straightener appliance on me too, so I have been using Arielle's here at home. I'm able to do a decent job of looking more contemporary, spikey, strawish or whatever.

Will I go back? I'm on the fence, mainly because of the price. By the way, this is such a fancy schmancy salon, they even scanned my internet photos into their computer, expecting they have snagged a lifetime customer.

Wouldn't it be great if we had a functional camera right now?
Have I explained the latest about my work, the economy, and how CHI plans to handle things? Here goes.

After months and months of emails from CHI headquarters bemoaning their sorry state and how employment freezes, retirements, and possible layoffs are the order of the day, we are notified of a special meeting on May 1. On May 1, we meet for a power point presentation where we learn:

1. One year earlier, before the economy tanked, CHI paid $6 million for a consultant group to study the revenue-generating process in CHI's 81 hospitals.
2. The consultancy says CHI is missing out on a considerable chunk of cash because of poor registration procedures when a patient checks in.
(I won't explain that, but it is a legitimate problem area.)
3. Registration departments need to be trained and trained and trained. (Never mind that this is an area of high turnover because of the in-your-face-stress of handling emergency situations. You can train and train all you want and the next day, you might have all new employees because this month's hires gave up.)
4. In order to accomplish all this needed training, CHI will divide their 81 hospitals into 7 geographic area and HIRE 26 NEW EXECUTIVES to
administer the training.
5. How will the new exec's be paid? Why of course--with all the additional money generated by improved registration procedures.
6. There will be no layoffs for us.

Listening to this, I'm running a simple math equation in my head. X (new money generated) - Z (salaries of new execs) = $0 Why not just improve registration processes and make more money? You gotta love consultants. If they don't stir the pot, they're not doing their job. But at least I'm not losing my job. I just have to work harder to pay for more middlemen.