The Crew by Bald K
Wayne got out of the funeral car and walked with his grandparents into their house after his mother’s funeral. Taking his suit jacket off and placing it back on its hanger in his bedroom Wayne walked back down the stairs and back over to his grandparents.
"Wayne I am proud of you young man." Wayne’s grandad told him. "At fourteen you acted very responsibly."
"Thank you grandad." Wayne replied. "It was hard but now it is just us."
"Wayne you will be living here so at least you have a roof over your head." Wayne’s gran told him.
"I know gran and I will be transferring school after the summer holidays." Wayne smiled.
"Hey Wayne you ok?" Wayne’s cousin Julian inquired.
"Yeah mate be good having you as a mate just round the corner." Wayne replied.
"Get you to meet few of my mates I have told them what has happened to you." Julian told Wayne.
"Cheers mate with my dad in prison and mum dying 1980 has been a crap year for me so far." Wayne sighed.
"Tell you what mate come out tonight with me and meet the crew as we are known." Julian told Wayne.
"Appreciate that mate." Wayne replied. "Be good to meet some of your friends."
"I will call for you at let’s say seven?" Julian suggested.
"Ok I will be waiting for you." Wayne told Julian.
"I am off now." Wayne told his grandparents as Julian arrived.
"Ok love be in by ten please." Wayne’s gran said.
"He will be gran and don’t worry I will look after him." Julian said as he walked into the room.
"Ok Wayne see you later." Wayne’s grandad said as he poured himself a beer.
"I am sure they will be ok John." Carol said as Wayne walked out with Julian.
"Where are we meeting your mates?" Wayne inquired.
"Over at the square." Julian replied. "Like the madness shirt."
"Love the music Julian how about you?" Wayne inquired.
"Yeah it is ok I guess." Julian replied as they walked into the square where a few of the crew were hanging about. "All hail the crew!" Julian shouted as he done the salute.
"Brother Julian welcome and this must be your cousin Wayne." A member of the crew replied as he done the salute. "Like the shirt friend."
"This is Chris a founder member of the crew and sort of leader." Julian told Wayne.
"Nice to meet you sir." Wayne aid to Chris.
"Nah Wayne you call me Chris." Chris replied laughing. "Over there is Jacob, Scott and Griff should be a few more along soon."
"How many of you are in the crew then Chris?" Wayne inquired.
"Nine of us but if you join up it will be ten." Chris replied. "Need to get approval though but with Julian it should be no problem."
"Who we got here then Chris?" Griff inquired as he walked over.
"This is Wayne, Julian’s cousin." Chris replied. "New member of the crew."
"Nice to meet you at last Wayne." Griff said to Wayne. "Need some new blood for ideas for the summer break from school."
"New ideas?" Wayne replied looking confused.
"Yeah last year we got the ear pierced and want ideas for this summer." Julian told Wayne. "Take you tomorrow and get you ear done if you are accepted.
"Sounds good to me." Wayne grinned. "My mum would not let me get my ear pierced."
"Yeah Grandad and grandma will be ok with it." Julian told Wayne as a few more members turned up.
"Oh s**t it is Tom will he learn that he is not welcome until he gets the ear done." Scott sighed.
"I will tell him." Chris told Scott. "Oi Tom f*** off till that ear gets done!" Scott shouted over.
"Why do we all have to be the same?" Tom replied. "I am a member and you cannot do anything about it.
"We will see." Julian said. "Shall we vote on Wayne now that there is seven of us?"
"Yeah let’s get you cousin joined up." Chris replied. "Oi brothers gather round we have a new guy that wants to join us." Chris shouted out.
The other members gathered round and looked at Wayne.
"This is my cousin Wayne he recently lost his mother and is now living with our grandparents and would like to join the crew." Julian told the crew.
"Got to get the ear done if he accepted!" Nick shouted out.
"He knows that and I am taking him tomorrow morning to get it done." Julian replied.
"Got to get the fags and cider from old Mr Harden as well." Nick said.
"Go and do it now if somebody has the cash." Wayne replied.
"There you go." Julian said as he handed Wayne a five pond note.
"Two bottles of woodpecker cider and twenty number six fags." Chris told Wayne.
Wayne took the money and walked over to the store and walked in and picked up the cider and walked over to the counter.
"Twenty of the number six please." Wayne said to the shopkeeper.
The shopkeeper looked at Wayne before turning round and getting the fags off the shelf.
"Two pounds ninety please young man." The shopkeeper told Wayne.
Wayne handed over the five pond note and took the change from the shopkeeper.
"Thanks mister." Wayne said as he walked out of the shop and back to the crew. "There we go boys." Wayne grinned as he handed out the fags and lit one with the match that Wayne had struck.
"Ok crew is Wayne now a member of the crew?" Chris asked the crew.
"Yeah he is one of the crew!" They all shouted back.
"Welcome to the crew mate." Julian said to Wayne.
"Thanks for letting me in." Wayne smiled as he took a drag on his cigarette.
The next morning Wayne woke early and washed and cleaned his teeth before going down to the kitchen where his grandparents were sitting.
"Morning young man how was last night?" John inquired.
"Yeah it was pretty good thanks as I got to meet some of Julian’ mate." Wayne replied. "Getting my ear pierced today if that is ok?"
"Of course you can love we are not like you father’s parents." Carol replied as she poured Wayne a mug of tea.
"May get some new clothes as well while I am in town I want my own identity now." Wayne told his grandparents.
"Get yourself a decent haircut instead of the hippy look." John laughed.
"Maybe when school finishes at the end of next week I will." Wayne replied as he spread some butter on his toast. "I know I am getting a fairly good monthly allowance as well as my trust fund when I hit twenty one."
"Just don’t go wasting it on stupid things love as you could always put it a savings account." Carol told Wayne.
"Don’t worry I am not stupid gran." Wayne laughed as Julian walked in.
"Ready to get a piercing then mate?" Julian asked Wayne.
"Yeah sure." Wayne replied as he finished his breakfast. "I will just get my shoes and jacket on.
Wayne slipped his shoes and jacket on and walked back into the kitchen where Julian was waiting.
"See you later." Wayne said as they walked out and walked towards the town.
Arriving in town Julian took Wayne into the jewellers and walked over to the counter with Wayne.
"Can I help you young man?" The lady behind the counter inquired.
"Yeah I would like my ear pierced please." Wayne told the lady.
"No problem just come and sit on the stool while I get a stud and the piercing gun." The lady replied as she walked from behind the counter.
Wayne sat on the stool and watched as the lady took a gold stud from a sealed bag and placed it in the piercing gun before wiping Wayne’s left earlobe with surgical spirit.
The lady lined up the gun and hit the button and pierced Wayne’s ear.
"That will be two ponds please and I suggest getting a small bottle of surgical spirit to help heal the hole." The lady told Wayne.
"One of the crew now Jules." Wayne said as he paid the lady and walked out with Julian.
"Yeah you are that but cannot really see it under that mop of hair.
"Yeah well I got an idea for what the crew can do this summer." Wayne replied grinning.
"And that is?" Julian inquired.
"Wait until we meet up and I will tell you." Wayne laughed as he walked into a clothing store.
"Will not be till next Friday as don’t forget we have my mums fortieth tonight and last week of school next week." Julian reminded Wayne.
"It will keep." Wayne grinned.
The following Friday Wayne and Julian arrived at the square and saw a few members of the crew hanging about.
"Hi guys." Wayne said as they walked over.
"Hey you got the ear done mate." Scott said. "Well done."
"Thanks Scott look I have an idea for a bonding we could do." Wayne replied.
"Go on mate I am listening." Scott told Wayne.
"Well thing is we all dress different and have different haircuts." Wayne said.
"Yeah well that is how we are." Brian said.
"Yeah but how about branding ourselves as a crew that needs to be respected?" Wayne inquired.
"We are listening brother." Scott replied.
"How about becoming we brand ourselves the riverside skinhead crew?" Wayne suggested.
"What you mean kit ourselves out with skinhead gear and the haircut?" Julian asked Wayne.
"I like the idea brother but we will have to put it to the others." Scott told Wayne.
"Yeah a single identity I love the idea." James told Wayne. "Always fancied getting a skinhead."
"I mean proper skinhead all off though no half measures like a number four." Wayne replied.
"Those who don’t do it can call themselves the crew but we will be riverside skinheads."
"Well I am not up for it." Tom said as he walked over.
"You could not get your ear so it is obvious you don’t want to be a skinhead?" Scott asked Tom.
"Yeah and I will still be in your crew." Tom replied.
"But not in the new riverside skinhead crew." Liam told Tom.
"Yeah the crew ceases to exist though if we agree to become riverside skinhead crew." Liam sneered. "Poor Tommy out in the cold consider that."
"Brothers, our newest member has suggested that we become the riverside skinhead crew as from tomorrow when we all get our heads shaved." Scott shouted out. "Those in favour raise their hands."
Scott looked round as the other members except Tom raised their hands. Looking round Tom reluctantly raised his hand knowing that if he did not become a skinhead he would be isolated.
"Brothers tomorrow is the birth of the riverside skinhead crew, we will meet here and go to old man Evans to get our haircut." Scott told the crew.
"Heard he does a proper no questions asked skinhead." Julian told Wayne.
"Just what I want." Wayne replied.
"We will gather here at 8.45 to draw lots to see who gets the first haircut." Scott told the crew.
"Was going to get mine done anyway as I got the outfit now." Wayne told Julian.
"We will make sure Tom gets in the seat first." Scott told Wayne and Julian. "Let’s celebrate the last night of the old crew."
"And tomorrow celebrate the birth of the riverside skinhead crew." Julian replied as he took a drag on his cigarette.
The next morning Wayne got up early and washed and cleaned his teeth before eating his breakfast before putting his jacket on and walked over to his cousin’s place and knocked on the door.
"Hi auntie is Julian ready?" Wayne asked his aunt.
"Hey mate yeah I am ready so let’s go meet up with the crew." Julian said as he appeared at the door. "Mum you got my haircut money please?"
"There you go and get a decent haircut for the summer not just the usual trimming of the ends." Irene told Julian.
"Yeah ok mum I will get it cut shorter." Julian replied. "Come on Wayne don’t want to be late."
Julian and Wayne made their way to the square where Scott and Jake were waiting.
"Hey guys ready to lose the hair?" Scott asked Julian and Wayne.
"Yeah the birth of the riverside skins is imminent." Wayne replied as Brian and Joe arrived.
"Right this is the plan boys inside this bag is pieces of paper with our names on and I will say that the first name pulled out goes first etc." Scott told the others. "But stuck to one side is Tom’s name so Jake when I hand you the bag you pull out Tom’s name."
"Yeah get him in the seat first." Jake replied grinning. "Here he comes now with the rest of the crew.
"Ok guys as I told these guys our names are in the bag so first out is first to get his haircut." Scott told them.
"Yeah sounds a good idea." Brian replied. "Let’s get the names drawn out.
"Ok Jake you can pull the first name out." Scott told Jake.
Scott opened the paper bag and Jake put his hand in and felt the piece of paper stuck to the side and pulled it out.
"Hey Tommy you are the lucky guy who loses his hair first." Jake said as he showed Tom the piece of paper.
"Great I was going to volunteer anyway." Tom replied. "So I could not chicken and do a runner."
"Ok next is Brian." Jake said as he pulled the next name out of the bag.
Jake pulled the rest of the names out and Wayne was to go sixth and his cousin the last in the chair.
"Right let’s get to old man Evan’s place as he will just be opening." Julian told the rest of the crew.
Wayne and the rest of the walked the short distance from the square up onto East Hill where the barber shop was and opened the door and walked in.
"Hey where is the old man?" Scott inquired as he saw a young guy with a skinhead securing a cape round a young boy.
"Grandad is ill boys so will be a bit of a wait sorry to say." The young skinhead replied. "What can I do for the boy sir?"
"Can I dad?" The young boy asked his dad as he looked round. "Please let me have it like Robbie."
"The young man cannot put your hair back on Neil." His dad said. "His friend had a number one yesterday and he wants the same." The man told the skinhead.
The skinhead picked up the clippers and placed the number one guard on them before combing Neil’s hair.
"Number one is it then sir?" The skinhead inquired.
"Please dad I want it so me and Robbie are the same." Neil pleaded with his dad.
"Ok then he can have a number one." Neil’s dad told the barber.
"Thanks dad." Neil said to his dad with a big grin on his face.
The crew and his father watched as the barber tilted Neil’s head forward and started to run the clippers through Neil’s longish blond hair depositing the first of the hair on the cape. The barber continued with the clippers on the back of Neil’s head depositing more chunks of blond hair on the cape before starting on the sides.
"Oh my son does have ears then." Neil’s dad laughed as the barber exposed Neil’s left ear before removing the hair from the right side of Neil’s head.
The barber then turned to the top and removed Neil’s blond hair leaving Neil looking virtually bald with his blond hair. The barber removed the guard and tidied up the back of the neck and arching round the ears before switching the clippers off and placing them on the bench.
"One skinhead for you sir." The barber said to Neil’s dad as he removed the cape and dusted Neil down.
"Thanks mister." Neil said as he got out of the chair and rubbed his head. "I love my skinhead haircut."
"Looks good on you son." Neil’s dad said as he rubbed his sons head before paying for the haircut.
"Ok guys which one of you wants to be skinned first?" The barber inquired as he looked at the crew.
Without saying a word Tom walked forward and sat in the chair.
"How did you know we want to be skinheads?" Tom asked the barber as he was caped up.
"Group like you and it is the current trend." The barber told Tom. "So what number you after or you want the old man’s five zero skinhead?"
"The shortest you can take it so like yours please mate." Scott told the barber.
"I am Craig by the way." The barber told the crew. "The old man done this on me yesterday."
"Nice to meet you Craig." Scott replied.
Craig picked up a different pair of clippers and checked the blade on the Oster’s were the five zero blade before switching them on.
The crew noticed instead of the humming from the clippers used to give Neil his number one these made a whirring sound .Pushing Tom’s head forward Tom felt the cold steel blades work their way through his brown hair leaving a trace of stubble in its wake.
"Wow that’s a lot of hair in the cape." Tom said as he saw the first of his hair fall into the cape.
Craig grinned as he carried on shaving Tom’s head depositing more and more hair into the cape before going over the top of Tom’s head reducing it to stubble.
"One down nine to go." Craig said as he placed the clippers down and removed the cape from round Tom. "Who is next?" Craig inquired as Tom stood up and walked over to the rest of the crew.
"Skinhead!" The crew shouted as they rubbed Tom’s head.
"Cheers guys I am glad I decided to get it done." Tom grinned as Brian walked over to the chair and sat down.
The crew watched as Brian’s hair was quickly reduced to stubble like Tom’s and Jake took Brian’s place in the chair. All too soon it was Wayne’s turn in the chair.
"S**t I want to back out but if I do it will look bad as I was the one who instigated the new look." Wayne thought to himself as he sat in the chair and saw Craig cape him up.
Wayne felt the butterflies churning in his stomach as Craig combed through his collar length black hair the heard the whirring sound of the Oster’s as Craig gently pushed his head forward and lifted the hair with the comb placing the clippers at the hairline. Wayne was desperate to shout out no sorry I cannot do this as Craig pushed the clippers through his long black hair and sighed as he watched the first mound of his black hair hit the cape.
"Maybe I could ask for a number one on top." Wayne thought to himself as more hair fell into the cape.
Craig finished the back and instead of moving to the sides Craig ran the clippers down the centre of Wayne’s head leaving a path of black stubble.
"Oh well guess I am a skinhead now whether I like it or not." Wayne sighed.
Craig finished off Wayne’s haircut and placed the clippers down and removed the cape. Wayne rubbed his head as he stood up and joined the rest before noticing that Jamie had disappeared.
"Where is Jamie?" Wayne inquired.
"He chickened the loser." Julian replied as he took his place in the chair.
"Hey guys want a new member of the riverside skinheads?" Kevin inquired as he walked into the barber’s.
"Err yeah sure Kevin if that is what you want you can take Jamie’s place as he just quit on us." Scott replied.
"Mind if I get my haircut now then as I have to meet mum in fifteen minutes in town." Kevin inquired.
"Sure mate I can wait." Julian said getting out of the chair.
"Cheers mate." Kevin said as he sat down and Craig caped him up.
"How did you know we were being called riverside skinhead crew Kevin?" Brian inquired.
"Jamie told me last night." Kevin replied as Craig started to shave off his hair.
"Could have come over with him mate." Brian told Kevin.
"Yeah but I only made my mind up a little while ago." Kevin replied.
Craig removed the cape from Kevin as he finished and Kevin stood up grinning and paid Craig.
"You guys about later?" Kevin inquired.
"The square at six skinhead." Scott told Kevin.
"One quits and we get a newbie just like that." Julian laughed as he retook the seat and got caped up. "All off barber."
Craig laughed as he shaved Julian and finally Scott to complete the riverside skinhead crew.
"Right nine of you should be eighteen quid so give me one fifty each call it a group saving." Craig told the crew.
The crew paid Craig and put their jackets on before starting to walk out of the shop.
"Come back for a trim up in two weeks I will charge you a quid each skinheads." Craig told them.
"Deal mate and you are welcome to join us Craig if you want to." Scott replied.
"Right time to go home and face the music riverside skinheads." Julian said as they felt the warm summer sun on their freshly shaved heads. "See you at six in the square."
The skinheads made their way back to their homes to hear what their parents thought of the haircuts.
"My mum will be at grans now so we can face the music together mate." Julian told Wayne as they walked up the path and through the kitchen door where Julian’s mum was sitting with their gran.
"Oh my god when you said you were getting a haircut I did not know you were thinking of shaving it all off!" Irene screamed out.
"Yeah Wayne suggested the crew done it and we all agreed." Julian replied.
"Guess we will not be needing a haircut for a while gran." Wayne laughed.
"You certainly will not." Carol replied.
"Let’s go to my room for a bit mate." Wayne suggested to Julian.
"Yeah ok catch you soon mum." Julian replied as he walked out with Wayne.
Wayne walked into his room with Julian and looked in the mirror closely at his haircut.
"You nearly chickened didn’t you mate." Julian said to Wayne.
"Yeah I did but I am glad I didn’t as I love it and am going to take him up on his offer of getting it redone how about you?" Wayne replied as he rubbed his head.
"I nearly ducked out as well to be honest but after you got yours done I knew I had to go through with it and I am with you for keeping it." Julian grinned. "The skinhead united cousins."
"Let’s get your brother to get his done and we will truly be an skinhead united." Wayne told Julian.
"He will want it done as soon as he sees mine." Julian replied.
"Be interesting hearing what the other parents think about having a skinhead son." Wayne said as he laid on his bed.
"Mum said you got to take me for a haircut now Julian." Patrick said as he walked into the bedroom. "The same as yours."
"Told you mate Patrick would be getting the same haircut so you coming along to watch?" Julian asked Wayne.
"May as well nothing better to do." Wayne said as he got off his bed and walked down the stairs into the kitchen.
"How much was the haircut?" Irene asked Julian.
"Two quid mum." Julian replied.
Irene handed over two pound notes to Julian and they walked back to the barbers and went in.
"You guys back with another want to be skinhead?" Craig inquired as they walked in.
"Yeah my brother wants his shaved off like ours." Julian replied as they sat down and watched as another young boy got a number one skinhead haircut.
"Ok young man hop into the chair." Craig said to Patrick as he took the money off the boy’s father.
"So how old are you young man?" Craig inquired as he caped Patrick up.
"Twelve sir." Patrick replied as Craig combed through Patrick’s hair and picked up the Oster clippers. "No going back after I start you do know that young man." Craig told Patrick.
"Yeah I know but I want to look like my brother." Patrick replied.
Craig flicked the switch and placed the clippers at the centre of Patrick’s forehead and pushed the clippers through removing Patrick’s brown curls.
"Cool I am going to be a skinhead like my big brother." Patrick said as he watched Craig shave off more of his brown curls.
After five minutes Craig placed the clippers down and removed the cape and Patrick jumped down from the chair rubbing his head.
"Free of charge mate as he is your brother." Craig told Julian as he went to pay.
"Cheers mate see you soon." Julian replied as they walked out of the shop.
"The united skinhead cousins." Wayne laughed as they made their way home.