This is as true of a story as you believe it to be.
I think I was six or seven at the time.
It’s my earliest memory of my father, Golden. He ran a successful spray tan salon in town. That’s where he met my mother, Misty too.
Anyways, I was there hanging out with my father one day after school when some rich gentleman came in and asked for the Metallic Bronze special. My dad asked me to grab the special cans from the back right away.
I remember it like it was yesterday. The tinting storage room was like a bronzing vortex. Any shade, any brand imaginable was available. I grabbed the Metallic Bronze and darted back to the lobby.
My dad and the customer were so happy that I did such a good job. After the customer’s tanning session, I was lucky enough to use the metallic bronze on my skin and I’ll never forget how good it made me look. Florida crisp without the effort. To celebrate, I remember my parents decided to take me out for dinner that night.
I quickly gained the reputation as Little Tanner, the go getting gofer that could find everything and anything in my dad’s shop. Lost a can of Tropical Blitz? No problem. Misplaced that batch of Himalayan Snow Burn? I’ll find it.
My point is, I was my dad’s miracle worker. A good luck charm that made all the customers happy.
They say all happy stories endure some sort of tragedy. If that’s the case then my story is no exception.
It was an early fall day and the leaves were changing color outside. In other words, it was prime tanning salon season because mister sun was getting ready to hibernate for the winter and couldn’t provide anyone that quality tan everyone deserved.
So, it was extra busy until one lady walked in and changed the game. She demanded a Solar Flare scorching to which I couldn’t find the bottle. I searched high and low and I just couldn’t find it. Luck wasn’t on my side that fateful day so low and behold but I let that customer down. I couldn’t believe it. I had failed.
Not only that, but I let my dad down too. That was the beginning of the steady decline of the family business. A few months later, my mom and dad and I were closing up shop as rival neighborhood spray tan salons were thriving.
We walked down a dark alley and the same woman who didn’t get her Solar Flare scorching popped out from around the corner and threatened to hurt my parents! Luckily, the spray tan community was a group of tight knit aficionados back in the day so Gus, from Gus’ World of Fabulous Hair and Tans came sprinting out of his shop with a broom in hand to chase off the crazed woman.
My dad’s business might’ve never been the same since but he was lucky enough to sell the salon for big money, cash out and bro down before the apocalyptic tanning salon crash of 2002 thanks to the trendy new fad of frappe bars.
Long story short, know your tans, ensure your inventory and just know that the tanning business is an intimate relationship between tanner and customer.