What Do You Do About a Bad Hair Day?

Afro Samurai

Afro Samurai (Photo credit: Beni Ishaque Luthor)

I am blessed with black hair that some would describe as a “Jewfro.” It is thick, coarse and kinky.

Go back 30 years and look at my yearbook picture and you’ll see “Jewfro” was a good description. I was 14 and determined to grow long hair like so many of the other guys but instead it grew up and out.

I took a lot of abuse for that photo which is only part of the reason why I cut it short, most of it was because it was just impossible to deal with. Bad hair days happened every day, although truth be told I was oblivious to it then.

A Cut Above

A year later I discovered the joy of the Flat Top and that is how I wore my hair until I was in my late twenties.

I loved it. It was easy to take care of and that is what I wanted. Hell, it is what I still want.

Unfortunately time and age have taken some of my hair from me so I can’t cut it like that anymore because it just doesn’t look right.

I complained to my barber about it and he laughed but maybe that is my fault for using a bald barber.

Almost 30 Years

He wasn’t bald when I first started seeing him. Twenty-nine years ago he had a full head of hair and so did I, but things change and we  have the option to roll with it or fight.

Since I am not interested in Rogaine, hair transplants or silly string I have had no choice but to adapt. Truthfully it has been a bit harder than I would have expected.

I attribute some of that to the past four years–they were a real bitch and I can guarantee that the stress is responsible for providing more real estate on top of my melon. But there is still far more hair than head so it is not a lost cause by any means.

A New Barber

I could use a euphemism for receding hairline, but why. The truth is that my hair has receded somewhat and it is the front that it has gotten thinner. What I have learned is that the best way to manage is to keep it short because when it gets long is when it looks bad.

And that is the situation I found myself in today.

Long hair that was blown every which way by the wind leaving my head in bad shape- how vain is that.

During the last 29 years I can count on one hand the number of times I have used someone other than my barber to cut my hair. If I knew for certain I was going to be in LA this weekend I would have scheduled an appointment but since I have no clue when I am going to go back I made the decision to try someone else.

The Replacement

So during my lunch hour I ran down the street to a local shop that takes walk-ins and figured that I would take a chance. I was more than pleasantly surprised by the job the woman who cut my hair did- this is the best cut I have had in years.

It is short, tight and looks better than it has in I don’t know how long.

I almost want to call my barber and ask him why he couldn’t do this. After 29 years we are very candid with each other so I really could do that, but there is no point. He is a good guy so I won’t hurt his feelings and tell him that he has been replaced.

Although I have to concede that it wasn’t just the cut that got my attention. It was the massage.

I hadn’t realized how tight my neck, back and shoulders were until she worked on them, but once she started I realized that things are really tight there. I think come payday it might be time to treat myself because I have one hell of a knot in my back.

And that my friends is the tale that was going to be told as “Hair today, gone tomorrow.”

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  1. Frank Strong February 28, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    That’s where I am too bro, keep it short! Double benefit it hides the increasingly noticeable gray.

  2. Julie Barrett February 28, 2013 at 3:30 am

    Yay for a good haircut and even for replacements. When I met my husband I had one requirement on my list – don’t be bald – so naturally, he was. When I saw the photos of what he looked like before 20s when he lost it, I couldn’t believe it was the same person. He had curly hair that wouldn’t grow long (he tried, like you did), it’s the Italian. So the key it seems is to cut to around 1/8 inch and have a proportionate beard, but you can only do this if you have a nice shaped head 🙂 Just for future reference.

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