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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

On Haircuts

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I recently got my hair cut. You know, there’s nothing quite like going in as one person and walking out feeling like somebody entirely new—lighter, freer, happier

Of course it always feels nice to look nice, doesn’t it? Funny how something like that never really seems to go out of style…

I drove myself to my usual haircut place and signed in. I plopped down on the nearby waiting-area couch while an old episode of “The Office” played on the TV. I snatched up a few old issues of Entertainment Weekly so as to catch up on the latest from tinseltown.

I caught myself glancing over a few times—to pilfer a glimpse or two at those getting haircuts. It was amazing to see the many different transformations taking place right before my eyes.

I returned to my intermittent reading, and snatches of Dwight and Jim’s pranks as well.


The sound of my name drew me from my other world—reading up on the latest in box office record-setters, and the duds. It had finally come to be my turn to sit upon the ascending and descending throne.

The barber quickly ascertained which type of style I was going for and then set to work, deftly orchestrating both scissors and buzzers; her hands flying with lightning speed.

I glanced around at those who were waiting for their own turn at renovation; that’s when I noticed that I was being watched. However, each time I looked toward someone who’d been looking at me, they’d quickly look away and pretend that they hadn’t been looking at all.

This really does seem to be the human condition, doesn’t it? You know, that general feeling of discomfort making eye contact with those to whom we do not speak or know. I thought about this as Emily continued to cut my hair and chatted on about this, that, and the other.

It was that that moment that I decided to that the next time I managed to make eye contact with someone who’d been watching me, I’d smile at them…maybe wink, too. Really it would be brilliant; an entire species of look-awayers would be freed from their shackles; they’d realize that looking at someone was really okay. However, there was a problem…by the time I’d discovered someone looking and managed to crack a smile, the person had already looked away, pretending that they’d just been glancing around the room.


I thought about just staring at someone until they looked at me, and then giving them a charming smile. I changed my mind…something like that would be uber-creepy and that was most definitely not what I was going for.

All too soon my haircut was finished. My alteration was complete. Emily was vacuuming up the last-minute cleanups.

I made another quick scan around the waiting room, hoping to catch someone off-guard. Like onlookers at a crash scene, they looked away when my eyes swept over them.

Perhaps next time I’ll have better luck.


Rachel said...

LOL! GUILTY! I'm a look awayer. You'd have not caught my eye and if you had.....and winked.....and I didn't know you.....I'd have been creeped out and for sure never looked at you again!

Best go for the charming smile. That's if you can catch my eye.

Crustacean Queen said...

"the ascending and descending throne"...OH dear, I love it! When I grow up I want to be just like you. Life is certainly more interesting when you look through Teachinfourth colored glasses. ☺

Lars said...

Too funny. You contemplate offering up winks and charming smiles to "onlookers at a crash scene", no wonder you ended up with a stalker after a date. ;)

Gerb said...

Wait... you go by "Teachinfourth" when you get your haircut?

It's interesting to me that when we are surrounded by human beings, the most interesting and unique things on this planet to look at, people are embarassed to look a stranger in the eye. I had someone make eye contact with me in a traffic jam on the freeway once and acknowlegde me with a wave when I stared back and smiled. That was awesome.

tiburon said...

I am a big smiler at people when they catch me lookin at them - now I will throw in a wink. Just.for.you.

Just SO said...

I smile at people most of the time....sometimes even start up conversations with people like I've known them all my life. I think it weirds people out but I'm okay with that.

Lori said...

That's so weird...my comment disappeared! ;( Oh, well--I love the way your mind works. Only you would be concerned about making people feel okay about staring, and then worry that you were looking creepy if they caught you staring at the wrong moment...

Teachinfourth said...

Rachel - I always suspected that you were really a look-awayer...now I really know.

Rhoda - It isn't always a pretty place, but I try to make it so as often as I can.

Lars - I figure that somebody's gotta have them, right? I can take one for the team.

Shanna - I think that that is about the coolest thing ever. Imagine how great the world would be if everyone were just a bit friendlier.

Lori - It's all about appearances, you know...well, sort've about appearances.

Gerb - Yeah, it's pretty strange really. I guess the fame of my blog has spread all the way to downtown. Somebody asked me why I'm not 'teachinfifth' now. Like somebody goes and changes their name...sheesh.

Tib - I am honored. Truly.

Corine said...

I have to admit, I have the same vanity, and irresistible urge to flirt THAT YOU HAVE :) (Yes, you do, and you know it!). Only, your single, so you can do it anywhere, anytime. I have to contain myself and resist the urge to flirt - with exceptions of brothers, and adopted brothers. ;D

Corine said...

PS - It really isn't fair! ;) ;)

There. I got a little flirting out of my system! Ha! :D

Farscaper said...

Ok... if I catch people staring at me and we're in a confined location (no one is going anywhere) I talk to them. Seriously! I have a ton of anxiety so you'd think I would clam up but to me the stares and silence increases my anxiety. If I start talking to people I feel more comfortable around them.

You should ask my husband! Nearly every time I come home from the grocery store I have a story to tell about someone I met there.

What can I say... it's how I deal with anxiety.

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