Kevin Brennan Writes About What It's Like
I don’t know about you and your tonsorial professional, but I’ve had a lifetime of bad luck with them.
When I was a teen, I had long hair something akin to John Lennon’s White Album look, so haircuts were a breeze. My mom gave me two bucks for “a trim,” and the barber would make cracks about my masculinity as he took off a quarter-inch from the bottom. The good ol’ days.
It was later that I began to realize that barbers, hairdressers, salonistas — whatever you want to call them — have motives and agendas. They aren’t always there to make you look your best. Like the gentleman in the mid-80’s who made me look like a country preacher circa 1884, or the Korean woman who told me each time I went to her that she really needed a male friend but one who didn’t want sex.
I had a fairly uneventful time of it in San Francisco for a few years, until the woman who handled both my wife and me jumped ship, and then came a parade of failed haircut relationships. It got so bad that in 2003 I swore off haircuts altogether and grew out a ponytail. Took two years to get it nice and luxurious, but then I was going to visit my mother and I didn’t think she could handle it so I had it chopped off. (I keep it wrapped in aluminum foil, hidden away for the Brennan Museum one day.)
I grew the tail because the woman who was cutting my hair just before that invited my wife and me to her house for wine and cheese one evening, then revealed while we were there that her housemate was “Lord Shiva,” who ran the household with benevolence and took great care of the wounded people who lived there. Of which she was one. Turned out she had but one leg. Another roommate had been held captive in a basement for some disturbing length of time. “You really need to meet Lord Shiva,” our hairdresser said.
That was the last we saw of her.
More recently I’ve had a dozen bad haircuts from nearly a dozen different cutters, until I had a realization two years ago: I’m old enough now that I can look however I want without caring what other people think! Two words —
So I bought an electric razor, and now I have the best barber in town. Me.
This has been another episode of Simple Solutions To Difficult Dilemmas.