Just Make Me Look Handsome

In September our family visited Disneyland. I spent a lot of time waiting in lines only to be shuffled away on some ride I knew nothing about. Half the time I didn’t know whether I was supposed to be frightened or amused. Someone else was in control and I was merely along for the ride.

That’s how I feel when go in for a haircut.  haircut

I don’t know when I stopped having input in how my hair was cut, but it’s been a while. When I was a young boy, my dad would take me to the barber. I hated going to the barber because his goal was to make my head feel naked. He’d pull out the clippers and buzz around my head as if I were joining the Marines that day. During the winter it was cut short. During the summer it was cut shorter. All I wanted was for the back to grow out just enough that it would curl.

Then I’d be cool.

Like Andy Gibb.

The old metal clippers were loud and vibrated so violently that I felt I was seconds away from having my ears cut off. The only part I enjoyed was the end when he’d suck all the hair off my head with a powerful vacuum. Sometimes he’d stick the nozzle down my back to remove the hair that made its way down my shirt. It tickled like crazy!

But getting a bad haircut as a kid is a rite of passage.

One might assume that when I got to the age where I was paying for my own haircuts my influence would increase.

It hasn’t.

Take my haircut last week for example. I sat in a cushy black chair while the stylist placed a plastic tarmac over my head before she wrapped a layer of fine sandpaper around my neck. Then, as she grabbed the scissors from the beaker of lime Kool-Aid, she casually asked, “How would you like your hair cut?”

But she’s only half listening. In fact, she’s already started trimming a little off the top before I can say anything. “Maybe an inch off the top with a number 4 clipper around the sides and back”, I reply.

She nods. I act like she’s listening. But I know she’s taking my words about as seriously as when I’d ask my mom if I could take our Plymouth Duster out for a spin when I was 14 years old.

Maybe I’m not all that particular when it comes to getting my hair cut. I’m usually satisfied with how my hair looks, and I base my tip on how relaxed I feel during the shampoo. A few months ago the stylist shampooed my hair twice, worked in a  conditioner that didn’t leave me smelling like I bought cologne at the 7-11 and gave me a scalp massage. She earned a nice tip for her efforts.

Oh well.

Next time I go in, I’m going to tell the stylist, “Just make me look handsome”.

Picture taken by Pancho

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7 thoughts on “Just Make Me Look Handsome

  1. “Just make me look handsome” <- great line.
    I should try that once my hair grows back out.

    I was never anti-barber, and in fact learned to deal w/it much better in the Navy. Got used to the clean feel after a cut. Was even better when they still lathered up your neck for a razor shave, but alas that’s no more.

    Fun post.


  2. Stylist?
    So you probably pay more than $10 for a style? And still don’t get what you want?
    I get a haircut. From strip-mall-chain-chicks. I tried getting “something” different but they didn’t have a clue. I think it is my age. They don’t know what to do with geezer hair.
    This past summer, I went with #3 buzz all over – bought a hair trimmer at Walgreens. That worked. Nancy did the trimming.
    But it’s cold and I’ve let my hair grow.
    I WILL NOT pay more than minimum for haircut.
    Plus I’m lazy and don’t want to screw with a high-maintenance do.
    I’m going for the “Tripp Darling” look from Dirty, Sexy, Money.


    1. Well, I say stylist because the place I’ve been going doesn’t hire men although it’s fashioned after an old school barber shop. Can women be barbers?


  3. Funny post. My kids probably feel the same way you did. I file them into the bathroom one at a time and buzz their hair off. It’s past time to do it again too. Hattie has the shortest hair in the house right now.
    In high school I was really particular about who cut my hair and how. Not so much anymore. I go to the students at Gene Juarez and just give them a few pointers, “don’t want to lose any length; maybe an inverted bob would be fun; do whatever, it grows back.”

    Who’s in the picture?


  4. The first time my wife cut my hair was while we were engaged. I have never gotten my hair cut by a stylist since. Either she does it or I do it. We bought a good set of ceramic blade clippers from a friend that owns a solon so instead of guards 1 – 6 it goes in increments of 3mm, 6mm 9mm, 12mm

    My sons get their hair cut with 3mm or 6mm and I get the 3mm. In fact I am do for a cut today and I will probably do it myself 🙂


  5. Except for when I was on my mission, I guess I’ve never really had this fun experience. My Mom was a beautician who owned her own shop for awhile when I was a kid. So with some rare exceptions I can probably count on one hand, I’ve always had the same person cutting my hair. It has been quite convenient not having to go anywhere growing up to get a hair cut and even now she’s only 3 miles away. And the added bonus was that nobody could make fun of me for having my Mom cut my hair because it never looked like the jobs all the other moms did, it always looked professional because it was.


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