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I really need this haircut. I’m starting to look ugly. We walked into the salon. It wasn’t high class.
It was small, messy, and only had a few chairs in what they called, “The waiting room.” Still, the barber looked experienced and he knew what he was doing. He was short, skinny, and his long slicked back hair looked good on him. As I sat in the throne where I would soon have my hair cut off, I noticed the intimidating arsenal of clippers, blades, and razors. Someone else came over though, and it wasn’t the barber I asked for. This guy had to be at least 50 years old. His short, plump body matched his black heavy rimmed glasses.
”What happened to the other guy?” I asked.
“Oh, he’s busy. I’ll be cutting your hair today,” he replied.
”Trim it to a fingers length,” I told the barber. He said nothing in return. I hope he heard it right. I don’t want this new guy messing up.
“I’ll be waiting in the car,” my mom said. My mom was short and had hair going down to her shoulders. She was nice and forgiving, but cared about how she looked, just like me. Ok, she’s gone now. What am I going to do? I hate haircuts. They take so long, and they're so boring. It wasn’t long until I tuned out. I focused on the small details of the room to keep myself occupied. I found the distinct sound of the clock ticking mesmerizing. Just as I felt myself dozing off to sleep, I focused on something else. I counted the number of hair products on the barbers table. No, It’s not working, and I’m still bored. I felt a swift scratch down the middle of my head. The clipper had taken my hair.
“Ow!” I yelped as I clutched the armrest of the seat. The barber stared at me through the reflection of his mirror with an innocent face, like he had done no harm.
“That’s not what I asked for! Fix it!” He took a moment to think and then nodded. He continued to do what he was doing. This guy doesn’t know a thing about cutting hair! You sir, are the bane of my ugliness. He started to cut in different directions. Now my hair was patchy. Shoot. What am I going to do now? I guess he’s trying to fix it. He put down the clipper and took a smaller one. Once more, he shaved it all around my head, but this time he made it clean. Not a single hair to be seen.
As if exactly on cue, my mom walked in the door.
“Is your haircu...” she paused. Her eyes widened, and her face showed disgust. “Let's go,” she said urgently. As we walked out the door, I looked at the jar where you would tip the barber. You’re not gonna get much of those for a while. I smiled.
Next on our list was grocery shopping. As we drove to the store I briskly searched the car for a cap. No luck. I guess I have to learn to live like this. Ugly, plain ugly. As I walked through the store, I noticed someone staring at me wide-eyed with his poker face that said nothing. Another person did the same, and then another. I was the center of attention, like a glowing beacon in the night sky. It's not that bad. I kept walking. Then I saw another man. Tall, large, and buff, but still bald... just like me.
So, my life continued, just like normal. After a while, nobody cared about how I looked.
Nothing much changed and I got used to my, “new style,” and let my hair grow out. For 6 or 7 months that kept going, until one day the time came. Time for another haircut.