Do your kids hate haircuts, I asked the stylist who trims and dyes* my hair every six weeks.
They did, she said. Why is that? I thought hating haircuts as a kid had to do with going some place dull, sitting still and then being made to look ridiculous. If your mom is this totally cool, very gifted haircutter (don’t judge her work by my mess of a head), why wouldn’t you love it?
Back in the day, Baltimore kids got their hair cut at the barber shops attached to local Hess Shoe stores, where squirrel monkeys scampered in the windows. I gave this memory to Tess Monaghan.
Later, I started going to my mom’s “stylist,” Pietro. My mother, whose hair has been a striking silver-white since, well, shortly after my birth was born to wear the short, short styles of the time. PIetro did well by her. As for me? Let’s just pay the therapist’s bill upfront and say that my dad called me “Larry” whenever I returned from a trip to Pietro. Between that and the fact that I am frequently called “sir” in public — see the archives on the website, look for a 2004 essay, “Call Me Madam” — I have a few issues.
Pietro’s shop is in a neighborhood that’s now considered “bad,” so bad that its longtime grocery has closed down and no other store wants to locate there. Meanwhile, I have found changing stylists more formidable than changing doctors. I’m on my fifth or sixth one in Baltimore, largely because of retirements, relocations, etc. The place I go now has trays of fresh fruit and cheese and cookie. But all I want is Valium.
Anyone else traumatized by a hair cut?
*The fact that I have dyed hair is the only personal information on my website. Oh, I suppose all this is personal, too, but it wouldn’t make it easy to track me down in my lair.