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My Dad was a strict man and very proud of his son ME. It had only been him and me since my mom passed on when I was 5.

Dad and I were a great team.

On my 13th birthday, dad declared that I was now a young man and to celebrate we would be going out to a fabulous dinner, just the two of us, no longer just dad-son but the best of mates, (I seconded the motion) dad also get me my first suit, I was really eager it get dressed up for the night.

In the afternoon when dad picked me up from school dad said that it was time I got a proper haircut and took me along to introduce me to the barber at his (men’s) barbershop. I wanted to go home to change first, but dad said that the school shirt and tie would actually help the haircut because the hair could be cut above the collar neatly. Today I discovered why dad always made me button my collar whenever I went for a haircut( he always made me wear a shirt).

Joe almost insists on this because he says it ensures a good cut, because different peoples collar reaches to a different height.

Joe was a great barber and a very nice man, He was also one of dads closest friends, as I found out that day.

I had always had a short bowl cut, which truth be told did not really suit me. but I was not very keen to get a short haircut.

when i got in the chair, I saw dad whisper some instructions to Joe and the both of them grinned, I was not very scared as I trust dad intently.

Joe was about to turn the chair away from the mirror, but I asked him to let it be so I could see what he was about to do,.

I had about 3 to 4 inches of hair on my head.

Joe put a attachment on his clipper (A number 4 I later learned) and started the clippers, a soft humming filled the hair. Joe asked if I was ready and I gulped and said yes. Joe grabbed the back of my head, moved the clippers to my crown and ploughed a path right through the top of my head. My eyes almost popped out with shock, I was about to jump up when I felt a strong hand squeeze my shoulder, I looked up and saw dad smiling at me, I suddenly felt better and told Joe with a big grin to get it on, Joe smiled a proceeded to buzz my hair completely, Once Joe had buzzed my entire head, and stepped away, I was about to stand when Joe told me to sit down again he was not finished,

He said he was about to give me one of his specials, Joe said a crew cut did not look smart… enough

Joe took up a number 1 attachment and proceeded to buzz my hair down to 1/8th of an inch, So now I was almost bald, I was starting t get scared again. When Joe turned around with no attachment on the clippers, and proceeded to run it up my back and sides and high above my ears. I was now clipped clean almost to the base of my crown. the air conditioning n the shop was now chilling my head.. Joe then took a razor and cleaned around the base of the haircut. And finally told me to get up. I got up and straightened my shirt and tie. Man I looked sharp. I thanked Joe and then went up to ask dad whether Joe could join us that night.

Joe, and Dad remained my closest friends till they both passed away last year. And I’m still waiting to find a barber who can give me something remotely like a Joe special. I hope that I can be as as strong to my son’s as my dad was to me that day.

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