The Haircut

Allow me to be shallow for a minute…

I have hair issues. For most of my 35 years, I’ve had the exact same style – short on the sides and back, with an incredibly straight part on the left. It’s the kind of style you see when you watch wholesome family shows from the 1950’s.

When I need a haircut, I almost always go to barbers. I started with John the Barber as a kid, and then went to a variety of cheap places in Kingston when I was in school (i.e. Shaky Bob and his $4.00 haircut). There’s something comforting about an old-school barbershop – that smell of talcum, the combs resting in the jar of blue stuff on the counter, the mounds of hair piled in the corners, the photos on the wall of various hair styles that haven’t been popular in a generation. It’s one of the few remaining male sanctuaries.

In the past year, though, B has been urging me to take some risks. New job, new style, get rid of the part. So, I’ve gone to her stylist at the spa a few times. Wow, is it ever cool. They take your coat, offer you a drink, and then some cute little thing spends five minutes washing your hair and massaging your scalp. John the Barber certainly never made me feel all tingly like that, which when I think about it is probably a good thing.

The only thing I don’t like about going to the spa is that I find it impossible to recreate what the stylist has done once I’m home. She has some kind of voodoo magic that allows her to do cool stuff with just her fingers and some product. I try to do the same thing when I get home and it turns into a swallow’s nest.

I was in a rush yesterday, so I had a setback and went to a new barber across the street from work. As I settled into the chair, I noticed the barber had been working on a drawing, and I asked him what it was. Bad move. It turns out he is a major Star Wars fanatic, and he was drawing a picture of his personal bounty hunter character.

During the next 20 minutes, I found out more than I ever care to know about Boba Fett, Jango Fett, and Mandalorian culture (apparently the Fetts are Mandalorian). He had pictures of the armour he’d made for him and his wife, the fan he’d put in his helmet, and the night vision goggles he was going to incorporate into the costume. He told me about the character he created, how Boba Fett was his mentor, and how he took Boba’s helmet from him after he died as a mark of respect. I found it slightly awkward, and I spent most of the time worrying about keeping a straight face.

So, sometime next month, I will probably head back to the spa and hope that Tiffany isn’t offended that I sought comfort in the chair of another man. God knows there’s nothing worse than a woman scorned wielding a pair of scissors.

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