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Evans big change by P.J.
Evans big change
I walked over to the counter to pay for the Saturday late edition newspaper. The tall man in front of me at the counter stepped away, glanced back at me and said, excuse me just a sec, please. I nodded and he quickly darted back to the coolers and grabbed a bottle of water. He was back in a flash, getting his wallet out. He turned and said, thank you sir. As he said it, his brows went up in recognition. Hi, Pete , it's me, Evan.
Holy cow, I hadn't seen Evan for 4 or 5 years. He was among some of my first customers when I opened Pete's cuts 5 years ago. His dad used to bring him in about twice a year for a semiannual butch cut, he must have been 16 or 17 years old and about a foot shorter, the last time he was in. I didn't recognize him at first. Firstly, he was now a strapping young man, well over 6 feet tall, towering over me. Secondly, he had a shoulder length mane of damp wavy platinum blond hair, swept back off his face, cut in a sort of long shoulder length bob. Thick flaxen waves with lots of body. An outward sign of his Icelandic heritage. He , his dad and brothers all had the same hair. I'd never seen what it would look like long till now though. Holy Cow.
Evan, I didn't recognize you for a minute there son, I replied. You've gotten so tall and lanky. It's been awhile too, I said. Well, yes, it has sir, he said, smiling. He ran his hand through his plush locks nervously. My hairs a bit longer now too sir, he said, blushing a bit. Nonsense son, I said, it looks great on you. What have you been up to the last couple of years, I asked, as I paid for my newspaper and followed him out of the shop. Well I've just graduated from college sir, and landed a job with the power company as a project manager traveling around to the various nuke plants in the north east during their shutdowns. Wow, that's impressive Evan, good for you, I replied.
Uh, Pete, you aren't open Sundays by any chance, Evan inquired, running his hand through his mane again nervously. No, Evan, sorry I'm not, and I still am closed on Mondays too, as most barbers are. Why do you ask son? ( Secretly I wanted to get my clippers in that plush mane .) OH, it's O.K. Pete, I was hoping to get something done with this mop while I have a break between shutdowns. I leave Sunday night for Baltimore for the next one. Guess it'll just have to wait till I get back again in a couple of months. While we're working shutdowns, it's 12-14 hour days, 7 days a week, so as you can tell I haven't had time to get this mop trimmed up at all lately.
Evan, I don't usually do this, but since you and your family were among my first customers when I opened the shop, and your dad still is a good customer, I'll open it up the shop and meet you there in 15 minutes, if you have the time? Oh, Pete, I can't make you do that, he replied shyly. You work hard enough as it is, you deserve your time off. Nonsense Evan, do you have time, I inquired again. Uh, well, yes, I do sir, he said. Good, my shop, 15 minutes then son, I replied, I'm not taking no for an answer. Well, O.K. sir, thanks, I'll be there. (I wasn't going to pass up a chance to get my hands into that mop if I could help it.)
I was ready and waiting when he knocked on the shop door. I'd left the shades down so folks wouldn't see in and think I was open late. I let Evan in, and closed and locked the door. I don't mean to make you uncomfortable Evan, I said, but I don't want to have folks get the idea I'm open late tonight. Oh, no problem Pete, he replied. He sauntered over and flopped down in the big red leather and chrome chair.
I'd only recently gotten out of the shower when you saw me at the convenience store Pete, so my hair is freshly washed. It might even be a bit damp still. It takes forever to dry, and I don't like to blow dry it. Ah, very good I replied. I got a fresh cape and sterry strip out, quickly taping up and capping my victim, er, Uh, I mean Evan.
Well Evan, I have to say, longer hair suits you just fine son. You've grown into a strapping young man. Even with all this length you'll never be mistaken for a girl with your build. What would you like me to do, trim it up a bit for you , I inquired. I'd gotten a comb and begun running it through the amazing bulk, combing it down straight all around his head. I let the long locks slip through the space between my fingers, they felt so soft and silky, positively divine. I knew this was going to be a rare opportunity, no matter what the outcome.
Well, actually Pete, since I'm on the road all the time with this job, and we have to shower every night before we leave the plant we're working in because of regulations around radiation from the plant, I was thinking of something shorter and easier to take care of. My heart fluttered. Play it cool Pete, I said to myself. Oh, really Evan, what were you thinking then, I asked. A more tailored look, maybe an executive contour, I said, pulling the huge bang shank back on his head, off his face. Well, no sir, Evan replied, I was actually thinking about a butch. Evan! Really, I replied, trying to hide my excitement. That would be a very big change for you son, I said, shaking a handful of his magnificent wavy locks.
Well, I know sir, but it would be easy care, and it's not like I've never gotten one before sir, he replied, smirking a bit. Well, true that son, I said. Your dad used to see to that a couple of times a year if I recall correctly. Yes, sir, I remember them well. I was always in such a state of distress coming in for those back then. Couldn't stand to see my lovely locks shaved off. I can't believe I'm back here, actually asking for one of those cuts by myself now sir, he said quietly. Frankly, neither can I, I said, laughing.
I always swore that when I finished high school, I'd let my hair grow long, and never get it cut that short again Pete. This mane has attracted more conversation and compliments from the ladies and plenty of guys too. I try and keep it trimmed and neat , but always at least shoulder length. Now I find that now a days its damp most of the time, and I really don't have time to socialize, even with the guys, so I guess I'm resigned to cutting it short, at least for now. This won't be my forever job, only for a year or two to help pay off the school loans. I can't pass up the money, we get paid time and a half for overtime too. It's giving me time to sort out a few things in my life too.
Well, if you really want a butch Evan, I said, running my hand through the thick locks. Yep, I'm just not sure how short to have you cut it sir, a #2 maybe. Oooh, that's quite short son, I quipped. My heart skipped a beat or two again. I was going to enjoy this, and to think, he was a willing participant, I didn't even have to coerce him. Sometimes Karma smiles on you!
How about I start with a #4 Evan, we can always go shorter. I used to do a #3 on top and #2 on the sides for you way back when if I remember correctly. And if memory serves me, you never wanted it tapered right, just blocked. Yes sir, he said giving me a wan smile. I was always prone to ingrown hairs when I had it tapered.
So, O.K. Start with the #4 then, he said. I could see him grab the arms of the chair under the cape. His attitude was all false bravado I realized. This kid didn't want to get his hair shaved off any more now than he did when he used to come in with his dad. The only difference was this was his choosing.
I brushed out the thick platinum blonde waves once more. The fell just nicely onto his shoulders. I sectioned off the top out of habit, in case he changed his mind, I had a chance to do something with the top besides buzz it. Turning my back to him, I reached for the fast feed Osters hanging on their hook. I searched the drawer for the #4 blade, and clipped it on. Turning around I caught a resigned look on Evans face as I saw his reflection in the big mirror. He sighed audibly at the sight of the big clippers. Alrighty son, do you want to watch this time? I asked politely. I always used to turn you toward your dad when you were younger. I figured you didn't need to watch the carnage first hand back then.
He laughed, you can leave me like this sir, Evan replied quietly, I think I can stand to watch this time. O.K. man, ready, I asked , clamping my left hand firmly on his head, feeling the divine thick bulk, I 'd soon be peeling off, and the tension in the muscles on the back of his skull. I nudged his head sown, remember this part, I said, chin to chest? Yes sir, he replied, dropping his head compliantly, and pressing his back firmly into the chair.
I nuzzled the clipper blades in under the thick heavy bulk hanging down onto the cape in the back. It was almost a shame to clipper shave this stunning mane, ....almost.
Wow, I couldn't believe I was about to clipper shave off all these striking platinum blonde waves. The clipper noise changed pitch as they bit into the thick heavy mass of hair at his nape. I slowly moved them up the middle of the back of Evans head. The avalanche had begun. Shimmering thick waves of long wavy locks began to slide off the back of his head, down, down, into his lap. I eased back on the clippers as they reached his crown, and the horse shoe parting. No turning back now son, I quipped, smiling. I ran my hand up the soft thick carpet of short bristles the clippers left in their wake. Evan couldn't see me anyway, his thick wavy bangs hid his face completely for the moment. I'd clipped them so the hung down across his face for the moment. Not for long though, I thought.
NO, I guess not Pete, he replied. Can't see anything yet anyways, only feel my head getting lighter and cooler. I paused, hmm, no sense in leaving the bangs till last in this case I thought. I moved around in front of him, grabbed hold of the thick wavy shank of bangs hanging down almost to his collar bone. I brought the chattering teeth of the clippers up to above his eyebrows, and sliced through the huge handful of hair. There, now you can at least see and enjoy the show, I quipped, letting the thick hank of locks slowly slide through my fingers into his lap. Ungh, wow, Pete, er, thanks, I think, Even quietly said. I figured I was going to cut 'em off anyway, might as well do it now so you can watch, eh.
I tipped his head back down, and continued the slow steady divestiture of the shoulder length tresses on the back of his head, shimmering mounds flowing into Evans lap. I lifted his head a bit, and tipped is sideways so I could begin the left side. God, Pete, that's a lot of hair man, Evan said, sighing again.
Yes, it is son, and we're less than half way done, too. I started carving all the thick bulk off around his ear, more handfuls falling slow and steady into the pile. I noticed he had no sideburn, and commented on it to him. Oh, he smiled back, we can't have facial hair, company policy. In case we have to mask up to go into containment. Ah, I nodded , I see. I'd finished the left side and moved to the right to repeat the process. More mounds of hair falling into his lap. He had a strange look on his face as I finished up the right side. Wow Pete, I've never really paid attention when you'd done that to me in years past. It's doesn't make me feel sick to my stomach like it used to though, using the clippers I mean. Kind of feels like an all over head massage. If you're into that sort of thing. Now Evan, I said, unclipping and ruffling the top locks. Do you still want me to continue, and shave all this off the same length, I asked. I left enough length when I chopped it , that I can give you a great looking undercut, or a crew cut, if you want. He studied himself in the big mirror. No, Pete, in for a penny , in for a pound, shave it all off please. Might as well go all the way. It'll grow back. I was a bit surprised, but quickly nodded ascent, plowing the clippers into the thick pile of locks waiting to be sheared. He sighed again as I stripped off the last of the treasured locks, leaving an evenly clipped soft short pelt. He looked great, even though I wasn't finished yet. Wow, Pete, big change, I look a bit of a freak now don't I, Evan said, examining himself in the mirror again.
Nonsense son, I said, rubbing this freshly clipped pelt, it felt heavenly, soft and stubbly all at the same time. Mmmnn, he moaned, I remember that feeling well, wow he said. Never thought I'd have to feel it again either. Somehow it doesn't feel as bad now though.
I changed guards on the clippers, to a #3, and clipped down the sides, blending into the #4 top, and then changed to a #2 to do a bit of a taper at the bottom. Evan had been quiet while this went on, till I started with the #2 guard, Remember Pete, I don't want it tapered, just blocked. Yes, I remember, this is only a #2, just to ease the transition a bit, then I'll block it all with the Tee edgers.
I wouldn't want to take this much shorter Evan, I said, with your hair color and skin tone, you'd look bald. I guess your right Pete, he said, nodding, that would complete the freak look now wouldn't it. I paused, looking at his reflection. Evan, you are one of the most attractive guys whose hair I've had the pleasure of cutting. You still are, I can assure you. It's just a drastic change all at once, and I bet it's taking you back to less pleasant memories. I hope this experience changes that.
Oh, it has Pete, really it has. I'll admit it hasn't quite been fun and games, but it's been great catching up with you , and it really didn't even hurt, he said laughing.
I got the edgers out, and started on the left side in front of his ear. I left a bit of a drop, instead of blocking it even with the top of his ear, then carved the clean outline of the ear, dropping down to his nape. Since he had such a pronounced "w" shape at the nape, I went for the highest part of the arches, raising his hairline a bit, scraping everything below clean off. Then did the right side. There Evan, I said, I can raise the back up higher if you want, but it's already high, and you have a well defined neck as it is. That'll do fine Pete, he said, turning his head about to see, I got the hand mirror out and showed him the back. Wow, I'd forgotten how severe this is with the blocked look. Haven't seen the back of my neck in years either, he said jokingly. I laughed, blocking isn't that popular these days, but I still get asked for it occasionally, I said. I brushed him down, and asked if he wanted the straight razor treatment. He smiled and said, no, that always gave him problems too, but thanks for asking.
I smiled, uncapped him, and watched as the huge pile of hair slid slowing to the floor . Good grief Evan said, that's ALOT of hair, man. He stood and examined himself in the mirror closely. I don't know Pete, this will take some getting used to. No ladies or guys running their hands through it now eh. It sure will dry faster though, he said, laughing again. Evan, you were a very handsome guy when you walked in here, and you're still a very handsome guy, leaving. If it's any consolation, you know I'm gay right. Well, yeah, you'd told us that years ago Pete. Well, if you were gay, I'd tell you, you are one hot looking dude, man. I'd be happy to have you attention any day, long hair or short. He got a strange expression on his face as he continued to study his reflection in the mirror. Really Pete, thanks, man, maybe this'll grow on me. And even though you have a few years on me, you're not half bad looking yourself Pete, he replied, winking at me and smirking. What do I owe you for the cut sir, he said, starting to walk up front. Evan, for the pleasure of cutting that mane, you don't owe me a dime son. Next shutdown break, stop back and I'll freshen it up if you want, you can pay me for that one then. Pete, I can't thank you enough for the special treatment, and the compliments man. I'll be back don't worry, he said winking again, unlocking the door and walking out into the night. Leaving me with little doubt that we'd see each other again.