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Why Wait til it Falls Out? by Ken
I was 23 and married for a year when we went to a family reunion picnic for the 4th of July. It was a nice time and my wife enjoyed it.
"Did you notice something about your family?" she asked.
"How like every man there is bald on top? And the few who aren't are either wearing toupees, or very thin on top. Even your older sister is bald."
"Yeah, you knew that right? Baldness seems to be a dominant gene in our family."
"I know," she said, "you're even starting to get bald patch in the back. Did you know that?"
I nodded. "Most guys in our family are bald by the time they turn 30. You probably noticed the toupees, right?"
"Oh yeah. So, what are you going to do when it becomes noticeable?"
"Not sure. I wouldn't mind trying a toupee. I suppose it would be better than being bald, right?"
"But won't it be weird, losing your hair, then getting a hair piece? Everyone will know you're bald, right?"
"Never thought of it, but yeah, I guess."
And that was that last conversation we had on the topic, but the idea found root in my mind. I mean, I knew I'd go bald like everyone else, and just figured I'd probably get a hair piece at some point, but my wife made sense. I'd have to be bald already, and everyone would know I was bald and wearing a toupee.
I was off for two days from work and had a thought. I'd take matters into my own hands, so to speak. Be proactive. Take the bull by the horns. I used a small hand mirror to look at the bald spot in the back of my head and it was only an inch or so across. Still, it was only starting and not long ago, I didn't have that spot.
I drove to a salon who said they could take my hair down right to the skin, if that's what I wanted.
"Okay, so what can we do today?" the young lady asked.
"Well, this may sound a bit unusual, but I want you to shave the top bald, but just leave a fringe."
"What? Why would you want that?"
"It's already staring to thin, and men in my family lose their hair young. If I get the top shaved off, I can get a toupee now, and avoid the falling out then getting a toupee."
"Okay, I guess that makes sense. Are you sure this is what you want?"
"Oh, yeah, I'm sure."
She turned me away from the mirror and picked up the clippers. She started at the top and she carefully shaved the hair on top. She worked slowly and carefully. "How much of a fringe do you want left?"
I put my hand up and pointed out with my fingers. "Two and a half inches, at the most."
"Okay, you got it." She worked more on shaving it, and I could feel her take more hair off. "I'll have to take some hair off on the side. When you're this bald on top, you also lose it on the side." She worked carefully, checking both sides regularly. "These are our balding clippers, but if you want, I can run the electric razor over it to make sure it's really smooth."
She slowly and carefully ran the electric razor over and over the scalp. There was a faint ticking noise at first, but then it went away as the light stubble was replaced with smooth skin. "Okay, I think we're done. I hope you like it," she said.
She spun the chair around to the mirror. I couldn't believe it. I had just a fringe left, the bald area went down the side of my head. She showed me the back and it was perfect. "Wow, great job. Really nice."
She smiled. "Thank you. I was scared but you know what, I think, if you plan on getting a toupee, this makes sense. You know, when you get your hair cut, you'll have to tell the stylist you have a toupee."
"Maybe I'll just come back here," I said.
I paid, gave her a nice tip and left. I looked at myself in the mirror and liked what I saw. Still, I had another stop.
I went to Tony's, a barber near our home who sold hair pieces. He wore a hair piece as well, and it looked nice.
I took a seat in the chair and told him I wanted a toupee.
He showed me one that was very nice. "How much," I asked.
"This is the top of the line. 240 dollars."
"Wow, that's a lot of money. Do you have anything less expensive?"
"Sure. What's your budget?"
"I was hoping to spend no more than 80."
"Okay, it' won't look as nice, but it'll do." He rummaged around in the back and came out with three light brown toupees in his hand. He placed each against my head until he found a match. "Now, this isn't a perfect match, but it'll blend in okay," he said as he placed it on my head. "I'll have to tape it on and trim it and then style it."
"Now that's better."
He used sticky tabs to stick it to my scalp once he trimmed it to fit my bald spot. He also trimmed my own hair to fit it. He combed it, sprayed it with water and trimmed it some more. It was kind of weird, actually, to be getting a hair cut on hair that wasn't mine. But finally, he was done, and it looked okay. Not perfect, but okay.
"What do you think?" he asked.
"I think it'll do, thank you." I paid him and left.
I went to the mall for a bit to walk around where there were other people. To see if anyone stared at my new toupee. No one did. I had a snack at the food court and the young lady helping me didn't give it a second glance.
I got home to wait for my wife get finish with work. When she did, I tried to act as casual as I could. I was watching a golf on TV and greeted her.
"You're home early."
"I've got an appointment at the salon," she said. How was your day?"
"I got a hair cut," I said.
"I see. It looks different." Then she stared at my hair. "Why does it look so different?"
"Not sure what you mean?"
She titled her head. "What did you do?"
She's observant, my wife. "I got a hair piece. I got the top shaved, then got a toupee."
"Well, what you were saying in the car the other day. It made sense."
"Can you take the toupee off, let me see the damage?"
I carefully took the toupee off.
"Wow, you're really bald on top. You look like your uncle. And you brother. And your sister, to some extent."
"Yeah. Maybe I can get a better toupee later. But this one will work for now. What do you think?"
"I think I like it," she said as she leaned over and kissed my bald head. "Well, look, I've got a salon appointment. I'll see you later."
She left and fell asleep with my toupee on the coffee table. When I awoke, my wife had just gotten back from the salon.
"Hey," she said. "How do you like my new hair?"
"You got it cut different. Is it longer? It looks longer. I like the color."
"It is longer. You inspired me."
"What do you mean?"
"It seems this getting a toupee idea was mine. Beautifully executed by you, I might add. But it seemed unfair that you'll have to wear this toupee forever."
"I don't mind."
"I know, but I didn't want you to go it alone."
"What did you do?"
She took off her wig. She was bald on top, with just a short fringe left. It looked like mine. "I checked the receipt from your hair cut that you left on the kitchen table. I went there and got the same hair cut. Then I went out and got a wig."
"I don't believe you," I said. "But I like it."
"I do to. I'll keep the top shaved and when you go get a hair cut, I'll go with you. We can get our fringes cut at the same time. What do you think?"
I smiled at the thought. "I like it. You're the best."
"I know." We went to be early that night, but didn't get to sleep until later. Turns out, I like a woman who's bald on top. A lot. I was looking forward to going out and getting our fringes cut together...
Maybe more of the story later?