I use Pantene Pro-V Relaxed & Natural for Women of Color Intensive Moisturizing Shampoo, mainly because it has an absurdly long name, and because I am without a doubt relaxed, natural, a woman and a color. It works fine for me, mostly likely because I am a qualified user, but I was extremely alarmed to find that my roommate Kaitlin had used my diva wash. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about sharind (let’s be real, I’ve had more than a couple of her Wheat Thin Flatbread crackers), but she obviously didn’t notice the warning on the back label:
PANTENE PRO-V RELAXED & NATURAL FOR WOMEN OF COLOR INTENSIVE MOISTURIZING SHAMPOO IS ONLY TO BE USED BY 1. WOMEN 2. OF COLOR 3. WHO ARE RELAXED 4. AND NATURAL! IF ALL OF THE FOUR DO NOT APPLY TO YOU, STEP OFF!
Kaitlin is a great girl, and she made three out of four, which isn’t bad. She is a woman, strong and proud. She is certainly relaxed (she wasn’t even PO’d about the Wheat Thins), and she is definitely natural. I have rarely seen her wear make up, and I’m pretty sure she hasn’t gotten Botox yet. But, well, she’s white. On Saturday, she’s going to the Bruce Springsteen concert. That’s white.
So I was very confused when I woke up one morning to hear Jill Scott tunes flowing from our living room. I walked in to see Kaitlin, her hair in tiny, neat dreds, sporting a pair of skin-tight studded Baby Phat jeans.
“Ooo, this is my jam,” she said, rocking her neck, as “Golden” began to play. “Hey, girl. Ooo, you look too cute in that dress.”
“Thanks, girl,” I replied, unsure of what was happening.
“What are you doing tonight?” she asked. “My girl and her boo are going to a spoken word open mic in Harlem. You should come.”
“Oh, girl, I meant to tell you. I ran out of shampoo, so I-“
“No,” I said. “Don’t say it.” Then everything began to happen in slow motion. She stood up and began swinging her hips to the Jill Scott.
Good God, I thought. I can’t let her leave the house like this. She’ll be beaten immediately.
“Come on,” I said grabbing her hand and running to the bathroom. I rummaged through the shower, finding a variety of white people shampoos.
“Why didn’t you just use this?” I asked, picking up Becca’s Herbal Essences.
“I wanted to mix it up a little, you know,” she said. I threw her into the shower and grabbed the Herbal Essences and the Nexus, for reinforcement. “Be careful,” she said. “I’m tender-headed.” I used half a bottle of each on Kaitlin, until the dreds disappeared and her light brown waves returned.
Wiping the soap from her eyes, she shook her head. “What just happened?”
“Nothing,” I said, stroking her wet white people hair. “Nothing at all.”