Calgary ABA 2009 - Hey, You Can Be A Model!

This head was actually on top of the watercooler

The Allied Beauty Association threw their annual Calgary trade show at the Roundup Centre today, bringing in some of the best and brightest in cosmetics and aesthetics. The cutting edge (har har har) of hair care was present, and several new hair styles and colours were on display. Strangely enough, I was a hair model for the show. Photos and more under the fold.


I had been approached by the hairdressers in the salon below my office. I had gotten the nickname “Zoolander” from them when they saw me do a runway walk for them. Usually I’m slightly intoxicated when this happens, but I’m told it’s hilarious. I hadn’t the foggiest idea if I could actually pass as a model. As I had been drinking gin after-hours when they approached me, I naturally said yes.


I cut my own hair these days (having had the same barber in Portland for 20 years prior), so I hadn’t the faintest idea what was in store for my head. The hair salon was buzzing with activity, and my hair was coloured and tussled by three different stylists. I had to wake up at 5AM Sunday morning to get there on time, Saturday night was early-to-bed.


I understand now why people think that models are zombies: these people are tired from waking up at 5 in the morning. After Calgary Transit failed to bring me to Victoria Park/Stampede station, I hustled over from Centre Street Station over by foot, getting in 20 minutes late (still beating the train to Bridlewood). Fortunately, the organizers were very good at making sure there was coffee and food, so no one passed out from sleep or hunger.

Lots of gear

The hair stylists definitely know their stuff, and there’s a whole science to it I didn’t even know. They have intimate knowledge of the physical parts of the skull, which they also break down into easy-to-remember zones. There’s also a certain alchemy to getting hair colour just right, which would explain why I had such ugly hair in the Mount Allison days. I’m not even going to pretend that I understand it at all, but I will say that some of the models had beauty-school textbooks which had depth that would put a science textbook to shame.


There was a definite camaraderie, and I found all the models to be quite friendly. My hair got cut onstage, bringing the total of hair experts who worked on my head to four. Everyone was dressed up really snappy by a stylish fashion designer (and his sassy sidekicks), and everyone had a wicked cool hairdo by the end of the day. Sadly, attending the Monday show got pre-empted by my whole ‘job’ thing (who’d of thought it would cut into a modeling gig?). The Redken people gave me a cool bag of swag, which ought to keep my hair looking sharp for a while. All in all, I made off like a bandit, and I’d totally be willing to do this again.


The ABA (Allied Beauty Association) has a stunningly good website. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised :-P