I have a rule when I go to get my hair cut. It seems pretty simple and straight forward to me, but you’d be surprised at just how much struggle I encounter with it every single time I set foot on that hair-encrusted tile floor. I think you’ll all get it because the bulk of you are smarter than the average toaster just for reading my column on a weekly basis, but enough flattery – here it goes:

“Don’t talk to me – just cut my hair.”

Simple, right? Yeah, I thought so, too, but over the recent years I’ve determined that at any given point, I have about a 83% chance of putting my scalp at the mercy of someone who clearly can’t grasp this simple concept. And boy, do I relish those remaining seventeen percent, when I can just sit back, stare off into space, and get my freaking hair cut without having to interact with anybody, except possibly to respond to a “tilt your head this way” or a “tilt your chin up, please.” Ahhh yes, those are the days!

Now allow me to explain because I’m sure at this point yours truly is sounding just a bit like an anti-social curmudgeon, and that’s not to say that I’m not, but I do have my reasons, you must understand! You see, much like any other guy on the face of the planet, I’m not too fond of many of the aesthetic rituals that the general public expects me to partake in if I’m to be a member of, well, the general public. Buying clothes, shoes, and toiletries – I know I’m not the only guy who’s at least once walked out of the store with two different sizes of shoes because he hated shopping for them that bad, and in my particular case, the same thing carries over to hair care as well.

Of course, it didn’t use to be a problem because there was a time when I really didn’t frequent said hair stylist all that much. It was during my “I want to be a rock star!” period that I had hair down past my shoulders as it was and really, with a mane that long, what’s the sense of going to the barber when you can just pull the whole mess back in a pony tail anyways?! And so that’s what I did, maybe stopping by once every six months or so to have the manifestation trimmed up a bit here or there, and it wasn’t until many, many years later that I finally crossed over the line, cut off my grungy, Seattle-inspired dew, and brought my hair back down to a manageable level once again. I also got an adult job that was willing to pay me more than those other ones who don’t really care if you look like Kurt Cobain, so at least I can admit that the extra money made it easier to sleep at night…

But back to our story, the problem with having short, adult hair is that you have to visit the hair cuttery much more often to keep it looking like you don’t have a deceased muskrat residing on your head. Statistics show that it doesn’t even matter if the muskrat’s name is Suzy or Sam – the opposite sex finds all those with muskrat hair dramatically less attractive than even those who have absolutely no hair at all, so it’s really just one of those things that has to be done for the good of humanity…or sexuality…or something like that.

So the reason I bring all of this otherwise-considered-nonsense up is because earlier this week, I did have to make one of these fabled trips to my local hair stylist and boy, was it not pretty! The best way for me to describe it would be if you were to get your hair cut by the head cheerleader…half an hour before the big game…and she’d just hung up the phone with her very bestest friend in the whole, wide world who just got proposed to by the captain of the lacrosse team and now she’s oh so happy that they’re going to get to go shopping for bridesmaids’ dresses because she’s totally already got, like, the most perfect shoes for a June wedding. Also, she may have been on speed, but I think you get the picture…

I’m sorry, but I have this thing where when I go to a place of business to have a particular service performed at my cost, I like them to actually do it while I’m sitting there watching…or at least pretend so that I feel like I’m getting my money’s worth! Like when I go to the auto mechanic because my car is a pile of crap, I know that they’re not necessarily fixing things the entire three hours that I’m stuck there watching Alien Transvestite School Marms Week on Maury, but for what it’s worth, whenever I look through the glass out into the shop, they’re banging around wrenches and tire irons, all covered in grease and looking three shades beyond death, so at least they’re providing the illusion that they’re actually working out there! But not my hairstylist, no – she’s taking personal phone calls, chatting it up with her friends that keep coming in the store, trying to get me to help her decide where she should go party later on that night because she’s, like, totally had such a rough six hours today.

But despite that longing desire to go borrow a tire iron from the auto shop that certainly doesn’t actually need them down the street, we just sort of keep our mouths shut and deal with it, don’t we, guys? And why to we fight the urge to tell the prom queen that we couldn’t care less about her dreamy boyfriend because we really just came in for a cheap, twelve dollar hair cut anyways? One word says it all: mohawk. Nope, some wise men long before us learned the hard way on behalf of all hair-bearing souls that you don’t say anything to piss off someone holding a pair of scissors to your cranium unless you’re ready and willing to wear a hat for the next two or three months while it all tries to grow back in. It could be a mohawk, it could be just random patches around your skull, but regardless, if we’ve learned anything from our time here amongst peers, it’s that toupees are best left to Donald Trump because whether your friends think it looks good or not, the only think that will truly change their minds is if you have a million, ba-jillion dollars in the bank to back that muskrat up.

That’s right, Suzy. Just be kind to your hair stylist and everything will be alright. Next time I’m going to try bringing ear plugs to see if that will help at all. If it works, I’ll be sure to write about it here; if not, I’ll be the one in the fedora…