MY SATURDAY MORNING HAIRCUT
by Charles C Robey
(Trussville, AL, 35173)
This "My Saturday Morning Haircut" blog is taken from the Down-Home series of on-going freelance articles relating to the author’s concept of past events, memories and experiences. Its literature reflects a combination of real life and fiction events, and is given for the purpose of light-hearted reading enjoyment and entertainment.
With all the progressive hustle and bustle of today’s hectic world, this God-created and blessed universe of ours (Genesis 1:31) can certainly use a bit of light-hearted entertainment. Diverting the overwhelming cares of the world, and recreating an atmosphere of that good old Down Home feeling is beneficial to both reader and writer.
Now for a look back to those good ole days as they were so appropriately labeled. It was a time of having your Saturday morning ruined at the local barber shop.
“No one remembers the former generations, and even those yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow them.” (Ecclesiastes 1:11)
For all you older than dirt, and twice as gritty super guys, I’m sure you remember the good old Saturday haircuts.. Those were days that always somehow seemed to abolish your week end play plans.
Was it that casual sideburns look, the junior ivy league, the fringe top, the GI Joe, the flat top or the hard part, that did you in?
I’ll never forget that time I suspended my nerves and got that keen Mohawk cut. After an infamous woodshed conversation, I couldn’t sit for a week. You see, Dad was of that Old Time Religion mindset.
"Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.” (Ecclesiastes 9:10)
So, what does it take to make you happy, these days? For me, it’s still a good haircut. “Please thin the sides and back a bit more this time around,” I always ask. Nevertheless, I always seem to get the same treatment. As they say, whomever they might be, the barber schools all teach the same criteria,” Don’t cut too much off, so they will come back soon.”
Somehow, I happen to look forward to such a day. I promised Dad I would go peacefully to that barber shop slaughter mill, if he would advance me on my dime-a-day allowance. I could then splurge on a giant bag of movie popcorn and an oversized bottle of pop while watching the Saturday double feature western adventures.
Dad used to tell me of my first haircut experience, of which thankfully I didn’t remember a thing. I was scared to death and jumped off the child placement board and quickly out of the chair, yelling, "Not now!" as I scampered back out to the car.
In Saturdays past, this young lad always seemed to be passed by a big, impatient bully, who would always quickly answer the infamous barber call of "Next!" as he made a beeline, pushing me out of the way and jumping up into the chair. How he knew to awaken from that catnap so quickly, I’ll never know.
Why the barber shop had all those X-rated magazines lying around on the seats in plain sight, is still beyond me. My prayers were answered, however, when the shop added a line of comic books to the mix.
It was good that I had no allergies for the dreadful cigarette smoke and rancid chewing tobacco smell would have surely done me in, not to mention the perfumed hair tonic. Stinking to high heavens, the barber would generously sprinkle it all over my hair and down the neck. “Please Sir, if you must, give me the red bottle. And please don’t stoke that ole pot-bellied stove again, I’m kind of allergic to smoke fumes."
I once knew a popular, local barber whose one handicap was not being able to speak. He would show his hand-written chart for me to point out my haircut preference; short, medium, long, etc., It really never mattered, however, as he always gave me the same infamous haircut.
Early in my married life, I kept a neatly cut flat top. When we moved away, and I couldn't find the right flat top barber ahead of the in-law visits, we would return back home about every two weeks, to our families. While the wife was visiting relatives, I would visit my old barber.
I do have my favorite barber, the preacher man, as he was rightfully labeled. I’ll never forget that big, black, leather-bound King James Bible sitting on his counter. He loved quoting the book of Ecclesiastes. He seemed to know the entire book by heart. His favorite verse was (Ecclesiastes 1:2-3).
And, as I look back in time to those exciting action-packed barber shop experiences, I can’t help but wonder, “Why I did I do the things I did? Why did I frustrate those dedicated barbers so?" Some may just call it those growing up years. But I tend to look at just the opposite; a youthful attack of being a high-spirited boy.
Yes, life was simple back in those good ole Fifties, but I must confess, I wouldn’t want to return to those times. Not unless I could take my iPad or my hand-held game board, to keep me occupied while waiting for the call of “Next!”
Thank goodness for progress! All I need do now is make sure I make my appointments ahead of time. Then, I go in a little early to wait for the overflow to thin out. As always, I get the same cheerful greeting from my hair stylist, “Please have a seat, I’ll be right with you.”
Now, I ask, you, have I given those nerves of yours a twinge? Can you relate to those times of yesteryear? Ok then, enough haircut reflections of the past for now. You get the picture,
If not, you can simply just ask your Pa-Paw all about it. He will be eager for a chance of bragging a little. That is, if you can wake him from his afternoon catnap.
I now take you back to this blog's intro Scripture. The wisest man who ever lived, King Solomon, might just be right. Does anyone ever accurately remember the past? It's an inspirational thought, I guess. However, I for one seem to spend a good deal of my time back there. “Alexa, please play the oldies but goodies music.”
Dr. Charles Ryrie may be right, “Even man’s past and future efforts to attain worthwhile accomplishments are soon forgotten.”
Hopefully, the musings of this blog will somehow bring back pleasant memories of your past. Need a haircut? Go ahead, I’ll wait!