As I’m driving down the road, I see in front of me the shiny tail fins from a restored Chevy Belair. I hear what sounds like The Everly Brothers belting out “Bird Dog". I imagine this is blaring from some modern CD player in the car. As I pull up along side this classic ride, I see an older gentleman. A throwback to a bygone era, he is quite cleary attempting to regain his past through excessive spending and nostalgic crusing. He is obviously in his early to mid 60’s with a leather bomber jacket, white tee and 50's greaser hairdo. He smiles at me and gives me a nod of recognition, and that’s when I realize it. We both have the same hair style.
I desperately need a haircut. It’s getting out of control. I’ve gone nearly three months between clips and I’m having trouble keeping this pile together for a entire day. This last realization, that with a white t-shirt, leather jacket, and cuffed Levis I could easily look the same as a 1950’s greaser, has got me down. It’s not that I don’t admire this persons style, it’s just that I don’t want to be known as greaser with a pompadour and ducktail in 2006. Beside I don’t really know many Paul Anka or Pat Boone songs.
I’m always happy once I’ve gotten a haircut, but I dislike the experience itself. It’s hard to willing subject myself to something I'm not looking forward to, with the addition of paying sixteen dollars plus tip. Invariably there is always the uncomfortable small talk.
“Hello, so you want a haircut?” She asks.
“Umm...yes, that is the hope.” I say. “Do you have a package that offers a non-chat option?”
“Only with Pam,” she smiles, “but she will ignore your requests and leave your head looking like a wild mountain goat. And she expects a fat tip for it too!”
“Fine I’ll take the chat.”
They always ask me what I do. I explain that I sit at a desk all day type emails, check files, and move very infrequently. It’s not very exciting and certainly doesn’t fill up much of the cutting time. Sometimes I want to lie just to make things interesting.
Well... I work for the CIA. Today we cracked down on a rouge group of scientist who were very close to inventing a perpetual motion machine. I would then explain how the oil companies have been suppressing other neat stuff like cold fusion and magnetic hover cars for decades. I could end it all by saying that the President called and left me three voice mails but I hadn’t gotten around to listening to them yet. This conversation would probably be better than what normally happens.
“You have a lot of gel in your hair”
“I know. ”
“It’s hard to cut with all this gel.”
“I know. I’m sorry. I use more gel because it’s getting long, which is why I’m here.”
“What brand do you use?”
“It comes in a white container with colored squares on it. I buy it at Target because it’s cheap.”
“Have you tried-”
“Please just cut my hair. I don’t want any of your sudo superior products that make me smell like a chemical factory and cost a fortune. Thanks for asking though.”
“So... What do you do?”