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It had been six weeks since my last haircut. I have extremely thick curly hair, and found the best way to keep it is to have as little as possible. Last time I went to have it cut, I noticed a barbershop directly across the street. The sign on the awning read "Vinnie’s Barbershop: Men Ladies and Children’s cuts". After writing my name on the waiting list at the salon I normally go to, I took a little stroll that found me going right past Vinnie’s. As I glanced in the windows I saw the row of old fashioned black leather barber’s chairs, and the young barber on duty wearing a blue work jacket over a shirt and tie.

Something weird inside me started to throb as I walked past, and wished so hard that I had the courage to go in there and ask for a haircut.
There were no other customers in there, and I had at least a 30 minute wait at the salon.

I just couldn’t bring myself to go in though, why did it scare me so much? The same thing happened yesterday when I went back after six weeks. A wait, a walk past Vinnie’s, and the disappointment I felt when I couldn’t bring myself to go in. I went back to the salon and waited until they called my name. I walked back to the chair with the stylist who tightly buttoned the hot pink cape around my neck and asked if I wanted the usual, short and choppy. I said "I guess so," then paused…

"Could you buzz the back with clippers please?" If I couldn’t live out my ultimate fantasy, at least I’d enjoy this experience.

The stylist took out her clippers and snapped a guard on it, a number 4 I’d guess, and ran it up my nape. She seemed unsatisfied with the result, and turned the clippers off. She put a different guard in it (a number 3?) and resumed. I loved the feel of the little teeth crunching away at my hair in such a vulnerable spot. Thick, half-inch clumps of hair were showering down onto the cape and rested on my covered shoulders and lap. When she was done with the big clippers she took out a much smaller pair with no guard and went around cleaning up the edges.

The smaller clippers were put away and she picked up her shears and comb. "Do you want any hair over your ears or should I cut it close?"
she asked. "Cut it close, please," I responded. She quickly trimmed the shaggy hair around my ears, and I then felt the sharp point of the scissors against my bare skin as she cut it very closely. The sides at their longest were then cut to maybe an inch at most. A good deal of length came off the thick messy top and hair was flying everywhere. She put the shears down and picked up the thinning shears. The top was quickly cut with them and even more tiny hairs rained down. There was so much short hair all over the place, but it wasn’t entirely noticeable I had gotten my haircut, until you saw the neatly clipped nape. The stylist unbuttoned the cape, and before taking it off all the way, grabbed her big bush to dust my neck and shoulders off. I loved the soft tickling feel on my sensitive nape. I sat in the chair as long as I could to savor the experience, then paid the stylist and left.

I saw Vinnie’s across the street as I walked to the bus… Maybe next time. I went home and showered to try and get rid of all the tiny hairs the thinning shears like to leave behind, and decided to shave the fine stubble on my neck. Those little clippers just didn’t get it close enough for me. I let the tub fill with warm water and eased myself into it. I smeared lather on my exposed nape, just over the parts with a bit of stubble, and slowly brought the mach 3 razor across them leaving bare skin in its wake. Satisfied with the feeling, I slowly let myself go in the warm bath water. Maybe next time I’ll have the barber do that part. If only I could get over my fear.

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