fter being charged an extremely exorbitant amount of money at a hair salon, one young man’s face has now become known across China.
The 18-year-old man named Xiao Wu says that on Tuesday he went to get his hair cut at a salon in Hangzhou where he was offered a complete hair and skin beauty treatment for “free.” However, before the treatment was even finished, employees walked up and handed him a bill of nearly 40,000 yuan ($5,854), with the hairline trimming alone costing him a whopping 8,800 yuan.
Xiao Wu was obviously shocked. 40,000 yuan is much more than free and much more than he could afford, making under 3,000 yuan a month as a real estate agent. The salon’s workers refused to allow him to leave, insisting that he should at least pay them 18,000 yuan ($2,634). Eventually, he got out of the shop by handing over 2,500 yuan.
As astonishing as this story is, what really helped it to go viral across the Chinese internet was Xiao Wu — his well-groomed face and his expression of utter bewilderment. Soon after the report aired, netizens started turning him into a meme:
Xiao Wu has said that he is rather surprised to have become an overnight internet celebrity, receiving calls from media outlets across the country and invites to events as an honored guest. His personal Weibo account now has nearly 90,000 followers.
Meanwhile, local reporters headed over to the hair salon to figure out how Xiao Wu had racked up such an expensive bill. At first, the salon’s owner attempted to claim ignorance about the shop’s pricing structure, which doesn’t list any treatment as costing more than 480 yuan.
However, with the local market regulator launching an investigating and Xiao Wu’s case drawing interest from around the country, the owner was forced to give in, firing the manager who was on duty at the time and refunding Xiao Wu his money.