I just got back from getting a haircut. I sat in the chair at a local salon and reminisced about my childhood and accompanying my father to his weekly hair trimmings. We went to a pretty old-fashioned Mayberry barbershop in suburban DC that was the Italian version of Floyd's. The type of shop where the combs are all submerged in that unidentifiable blue liquid and all the chairs were hand cranked. The customers all knew each other and the only haircut available was the "regular". A place in which the customer to your left or right was just as likely to be getting a shave as a haircut and you could also get your shoes shined. They had that spinning blue and red barber pole outside and I think it was called Tony's. Each haircut I get these days reminds me of how good it feels to be freshly shorn and I wonder why I wait until I look like a surfer wannabe before I return. It's not the dough exactly (I can afford a haircut every two weeks if I wanted), it's more of what a hassle it seems to wait for so long in this age of immediate gratification. Maybe if they shined my shoes while waiting...

Two Replies to Hair's The Thing

Scott Hardie | April 24, 2009
I've had arguments on other sites by trying too hard to defend the old-fashioned barber shop against changing times, so I won't get into it here. But I'm still disappointed by what's available in this area. A new "barber shop" opened across the street, complete with red-and-white-striped pole and sports playing on the TV in the lobby. I was suspicious when they offered me bottled spring water while I waited. The place turned out to be a salon in disguise: Before they would cut my hair, they insisted on washing it and making me sit back with a hot washcloth on my face for ten minutes before starting. I asked twice not to have any gel in my hair and to have a shorter version of the plain haircut I walked in with, but I walked out with my hair moussed in five directions at once. I felt like such a clown, and it didn't help that my girlfriend squealed in joy at seeing it after we had argued so much about my conservative tastes. I dumped her and shaved my head, and later got a better woman and a better cut that both suit me just fine.

Aaron Shurtleff | April 24, 2009
Yeah, I just don't care enough. I'm no fan of the full-on salon hair-washing, scalp-massaging treatment (big surprise), but it usually doesn't matter. I'm all over the place with my hair usually. It changes with the day sometimes, it seems. :)

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