Almost Clipper Short In 3rd Grade 1975 by John Nelson
I was in 3rd grade in 1975. Almost all boys had hair long enough to be over their ears. This was fine with me. I had this thing about my ears. They weren't big or didn't stick out really. They weren't pointy either. They were pinched in around the tips and kind of dented. I always wanted them covered. They weren't too awful but I thought they looked funny.
I had nice straight light brown parted on the side. It was always over my ears since I was 3 or 4. Now in 3rd grade I was about 8 years old. I liked long hair, it was in style and why not.
About every two or even three months my mom took my brother and I to get haircuts. I dreaded this more than anything. I liked the long hair and didn't want it cut to expose those ears. We always went to the same local barber shop the was very traditional, not a style place. The barbers wanted to cut hair like they'd been trained, clipper short! It was the 70s so not many young people wanted clipper short. One barber there always begged kids to let him cut the hair up over the ears. I heard him all the time. They said no.
Well one day after school my mom said we're getting haircuts. My brother and I went together with my mom. He never cared if his hair was long or short. Usually he'd get it a little short with the ears showing. This trip turned out to be the closest I ever got to getting my hair clipper short over the ears. The ears I didn't want exposed!!
Here's how it almost happened. Just by chance my good friend David was there too just finishing his haircut when we came in. He had cut his hair super short to my shock. His brother was next so he sat in the waiting chair across from the barber chair I just hopped up into.
The minute I got that cape on the barber told my mom this kid's hair is not the kind of hair to have long at all. What?!?! Oh no! He said it needs to be clipper short. The hole shop froze. Everyone in their but me wanted to see my great long hair sheared off. I had to think fast. Then my friend David said yeah get it short the hair isn't good long. My mom said he wants it long. I couldn't say anything right then , why. Oh no say something I told myself. He actually had the big clippers in his hand! Any second it would be too late.
Then my friend David said just cut it short like the barber said. Then the barber kept telling my mom it needs to be clipper short up around the ears. Then my mom asked me what I wanted. I finally said well I could try it. What? I told them that!
Oh no. Then my mom said no keep it a little long and covering the ears. Oh boy I was off the hook. He said well ok , but it should be short.
I was so releived. I had dodged another bullet. The irony was that two years later in 5th grade all that long hair would be sheared down to a zero flat top. It happened by accident with another barber. The ears I tried to cover up would never be covered again after 5th grade. I got used to the ears exposed and loved the cool air on my shaved scalp. I was about the only kid in the late 70s who always got flat tops. Amazing how after doing it once ended that fear of clipper short hair. My ears even seemed kind of cute with the shaved zero sides and back. I never put
Gell in the flat top so it kind of looked like a shaved head.