I’ve just been for a haircut – that almost reads like one of those inane statements that people put on Twitter. I mention the fact only because I now find going to the barbers a somewhat intimidating experience. It starts with the young lads who are doing the cutting – nice lads but as they chat to one another with some strange music playing in the background you almost feel as if you are in the middle of some rap session. And the way they dress – now don’t get me wrong I’ve no problem with casual come scruffy, in fact it’s how Ann often describes my dress sense – but I can’t understand why these lads are wearing their jeans half way down their backsides! Surely it can’t be comfortable and who wants to look at their underpants?
Then there is the problem with modern day, barber language. When I was younger you sat in the chair and were given a short back and sides. Nobody asked you how you wanted your hair cut because there wasn’t a choice – there was only short back and sides. I listen to people in front of me asking for a number two here and a number 3 there, or a number two on the sides, a number three on top and we’ll go with a number 4 at the back! What on earth are they talking about? I just ask for a trim and they smile that smile, as if to say, “We’ve got one of the oldies in today,” then they usually say, “Will that be with scissors?” What else is it going to be with, I’m hardly likely to tell hem just to use whatever comes to hand! The comforting thing is that once they get going they always do a good job. I think they see me as the day’s challenge and don’t want to be seen as not being up to the task.
At the end of the ordeal they always ask if I would like some wax or gel on my hair. I always decline. I still remember those short back and sides days when the barber didn’t ask but just finished off by slapping dollops of brylcreem on your head, none too gently either. As a child I was intrigued as to why, when the barber was finishing off the young men, he would discreetly say to them, “And would sir care for anything for the weekend? For many years I assumed that he was trying to sell them an extra jar of brylcreem.