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Rescheduled

November 18, 2010

I was on my way to see Art, my awesome hair stylist this morning when he called me. “I’m on my way,” I said from the parking lot I pulled into to get the phone.

“Art?”

“Art?”

“My dog passed away. He just passed away,” he said.

My heart breaks for him. I know how hard it is to lose a pet. His salon is filled with pictures of his dog. Art loves that little guy.

Of course, we cancelled the appointment and I hung up the phone. I wasn’t sure what to do — what’s the etiquette for when your hairdresser cancels on you because his dog just died? I called my super-efficient friend, the one who turned me on to Art in the first place when my hair started growing back and I desperately needed him. As it turns out, she had an appointment to see Art that same afternoon, so I ran out to the florist and got an orchid and a sympathy card in which I wrote “May he go on to the place good dogs and bad rabbits go,” a phrase courtesy of my brother-in-law. I met my super-efficient friend at school, gave her the loot to bring to him, and went to run some errands.

I’m a coward.

I should have driven the flowers over myself, but I don’t have the courage to see Art in the first fresh ravages of pain. It doesn’t mean I don’t care. I do. I adore Art. He’s the epitome of a perfect hairdresser — he’s a great listener, and, when I have the smarts to shut up while in his chair, he’s witty, funny, clever, wise, and kind. Plus, he is brilliant.

I’m like the scores of my own friends who, when I was ill, dropped meals off, rang the doorbell, and drove off because they did not have time, or courage, to stay and chat.

I got it then. I get it now.

We all do the best we can.

I hope the orchid I got him helps to assuage his grief.

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