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Lee's Vintage Car, Vintage Haircut by Manny
Lee's eyes locked on the glossy photo of his dream car -- a convertible 1957 Thunderbird. With the inheritance he'd just received with the passing of his spinster aunt, Lee had the funds available in cash to buy the car debt free! He considered himself quite fortunate. Ever since he could remember, Lee felt like things continually worked out for him....buying the coveted T-bird would just be the latest indication of good karma or divine favor.
Lee hurried to get ready to visit the lot where the car was for sale. As he paused in front of the mirror to check his hair, he couldn't help but smile again. Another indication of his good fortune -- thick, shimmering, blond hair in soft waves that cascaded down gracefully, framing his handsome face. He was a hunk -- and his locks were his crowning glory. Lee ran the brush through his hair several times and admired the sheen. Every lock was in place as he headed off for a face-to-face encounter with the shiny chrome grill of his some-to-be classic dream car.
As he approached the lot, spotting the T-bird was easy. It was prominently displayed front and center; it looked even better in real life than on the internet. As Lee fingered the crimson, leather upholstery he imagined himself tooling down a country road with the wind whipping through his sexy long hair....looking like a real stud in his dream car.
Suddenly a voice behind him shattered his daydream. "She's a beauty, no doubt about it," the salesman said with a low whistle in his voice.
Lee turned around, ready to agree, but was thrown into a state of distraction by what he saw. The salesman was extremely handsome for a more mature man, and he sported the most immaculate, deep-pile flattop Lee had ever set eyes on. The sides were perfectly clipped and the top was a flat as a board. The salesman's deep blue eyes twinkled with the delight. Lee forced out a reply, "Totally awesome. And I totally want one...." As he spoke, Lee could not keep his eyes off the salesman's classic flattop.
Perhaps perceiving the prospective client's focus, the salesman ran his hand up the back of his shorn head, "This has got your name written all over it. There's just something about classic cars, isn't there?" he asked rhetorically, pressing his client's Achilles heel. "I've got a vintage car myself that's as perfect as my vintage flattop!"
Lee was left speechless. The salesman had noticed him staring at his flattop!
"Let me give you a bit of a tour," the salesman said, slipping into the driver's seat. Lee was left staring down at the perfect flattop. The deep pile was so dense that he could not see any scalp -- just a mass of clipped strands that mimicked a well-waxed table top. Lee's hands felt sweaty as he imagined the salesman in a classic barbershop getting his top neatened up. As the salesman demonstrated the various controls and gadgets, he looked up periodically and smiled. Lee's knees felt wobbly. He resisted every urge imaginable to reach out and run his hand across the top of the salesman's head. 'What would he think?!' Lee sternly warned himself. 'You're here to buy your dream car -- look at it, not the flattop!'
Lee had toyed around with getting a vintage haircut to match the vintage car, which he was determined to purchase at some point in his life. Just like the 57 T-bird convertible was his dream car, the flattop was his dream haircut.
"Hop in and let me take you for a spin," the salesman said.
Lee complied happily, although he had hoped to drive himself....but that hadn't been offered. As soon as they hit the road, Lee's hair went berzerk, flailing about uncontrollably in every direction. It was far from his imaginary "wind whipping through the hair" and a tussled, but sexy look. No, his blond waves were getting all tangled and matted! Lee worked to keep his hair from looking too ridiculous.
Out of the corner of his eye, the salesman watched Lee's losing battle. "If you buy this car, I'd suggest you consider a short, manageable haircut. Coming up on the right there is the barbershop I use. The two barbers are experts at all the vintage haircuts, like this flattop I sport. How do you like it?"
"It's a classic," Lee admitted readily. "And not a hair of your's is out of place, despite the wind."
Then, unexpectedly, the salesman pulled to a stop right in front of the barbershop! Lee's heart raced. What was he thinking? That his treasured locks would be put so quickly on the chopping block? Without a sale even being discussed, much less finalized?
After stopping the car, the salesman said, "My name's Darrell, by the way."
"And I'm Lee," he replied, shaking hands.
"I thought you might like...." Darrell paused.
Lee's heart raced.
"....driving the car a bit yourself," Darrell continued.
The two got out of the car to switch places. "Love to!" Lee exclaimed as he used the occasion to check out the barbershop. In the reflection of the plate glass window he could see how ridiculous his long hair look.
The salesman asked, "Do you mind if I step in the shop for a minute? I think I forgot my umbrella last week when I got my haircut."
"Sure, go ahead," said Lee.
"Come on in with me. Perhaps we should take care of that long hair of yours before you drive the car," Darrell suggested with a laugh.
Lee followed him in, almost numb. He was being led into a traditional barbershop by a mature man -- possibly just old enough to be his own father -- with a flattop!
"Hi, Joe. Hey, George," Darrell said, greeting the two barbers. "I've brought my friend Lee in for a flattop. Which of you two want to do the honors?"
Lee's face turned a light red. He was being forced into a haircut without even being consulted! His heart raced. Maybe it was the thing to do!
"Just kidding! I'm looking for my umbrella," Darrell quickly added.
"Is that it over there on the side counter?" asked one of the barbers.
Meanwhile, Joe pointed to Lee. "Hope up into the chair here. When it comes to flattops, I'm the pro in this shop."
Lee's mouth felt dry. He wanted to, but felt afraid.
"Hey, I'm on the clock. Lee wants to test drive the car, not get a flattop. Isn't that right?" Darrell asked.
"Yes...." he replied reluctantly. The more he thought about it, the more Lee was convinced that he wanted his glorious blond locks clipped down close. And he wanted Joe or George to unleash the clippers on him!
Darrell tossed Lee the keys to the T-bird as they stepped out onto the sidewalk. "Great barbers, those two. You can't get a bad haircut in that shop....although one of them might shear you down closer that you wanted."
"Which one do you normally use?" asked Lee as he turned on the ignition. "You got a fantastic haircut last week!"
"So you like my deep-pile top with with closely clipped sides?" the salesman laughed. "And you have perfect hair for a flattop too -- dense, and slightly coarse. It'll probably stand erect without any aid at all!"
Suddenly, Lee sensed Darrell fondling his long locks. He enjoyed the sensation of the man's fingers lightly gripping his hair and pulling his silken strands through his hand. "I'm quite attached to my long hair...." Lee murmured.
"It is very pretty hair," Darrell replied.
"But you think I should cut it?" asked Lee, semi-rhetorically.
"Most definitely!" Then, with his fingers simulating a set of electric hair clippers, Darrell began running them up the back of Lee's head. "We need to get you to the barbershop, just as soon as we've finalized the sale of this car!"
"Sold! On both ideas -- T-bird and flattop!" Lee blurted out. "Which of the two barbers cuts shorter than expected?"
"Ask for Joe - tell them that it was my recommendation," replied Lee. "George has only cut my hair once -- and boy, did I ever field like a skinned bird when I walked out of there. Joe was on vacation and so I didn't think twice about having George trim me up. I should've had an inkling I was in for severe shearing when he fastened the cape so tightly about my neck that I nearly choked. The very first thing he did was swipe the clippers down the top of my head and gouged out a huge landing strip. I was in a total panic. Things progressed very quickly and I ended up with my first and only high 'n tight! Stick with Joe if you want a nice, deep pile flattop like mine!"
Once they were back at the dealership, Lee slipped into the bathroom and quickly brushed his lovely blond locks. Could he go through with it? Having them clipped off flat and tidy? His abundant mane had been his pride and joy for as long as he could remember. Lee thought about Darrell and his unexpected high 'n tight. Then a mischievous thought came into his head.
Lee returned to Darrell's office where he was finalizing the paper work at his desk. As the man looked down and concentrated on adding up the numbers, Lee gently began stroking the plush top. It was his turn to fondle Darrell's hair!
Without looking up, Darrell said, "Hmmmmm. I like that. Feels great....."
"You know, I was thinking. Perhaps you ought to give George a second chance. I imagine you looked quite rugged and manly with your H 'n T -- possibly more appropriate for a man your age than this pretty boy flattop."
Darrell looked up, with concern written all over his face. "Now don't be getting any ideas, Lee! Here, you need to sign right here to complete the purchase...."
"You wouldn't want to lose your commission on this sale, now, would you?" Lee asked, mocking the nervous Darrell.
"And you wouldn't want to let your dream T-Bird escape through your fingers. That'll be snapped up in a day or two, for sure, at that price I've got on it," snapped Darrell.
"We'll go back to the barbershop together. George will take this down to the skin. And, Joe will send 95% of my locks to the cape!" exclaimed Lee. "Well get our makeovers side by side with George and Joe doing the honors!"
Suddenly, Darrell's attitude changed from irritated to amused. "Fine, we'll go together! A change might do as both good. But, the shop is about to close. Let me call over there and ask if they can stay on a bit. Here are the keys. Go pull the T-bird around. I'm sure they will, but I don't want them to leave....."
As they pulled up in to the shop, Lee's heart beat quickly. "Now which of the two barbers is George?" he asked.
"The one that tried to get you in his chair earlier today -- closer to the window," Darrell replied, concealing a slight smirk.
Darrell led the way into the shop. "So glad you could oblige us, fellows, and stay on a few extra minutes. It's a big day for Lee here, who's ready for his first flattop!" With that, Darrell slipped into the chair nearer the back. "I know I was just here this week, but I thought I'd keep Lee here company and give you the chance to modify my look a bit. I was thinking of beveling the top."
"Over here, Goldy Locks," laughed the other barber.
Lee's knees wobbled as he approached the barber's chair. It felt odd facing away from the mirror. Suddenly the cape felt super tight around his neck! Lee quickly cleared his throat to signal that perhaps the barber should loosen it a bit. But the barber did not pick up on his clue. Instead, he simply rammed Lee's head forward into a prostrate position and brought the wailing clippers up through the blond waves at his nape. Very quickly the barber drove the clippers straight up the back of Lee's head. He was getting scalped!! Lee felt faint, as if he were enduring the most penurious torture. He felt completely at the barber's mercy, unable to protest or utter anything at all. The barber worked through the long locks like a maniac, efficiently clipping them off at the scalp. Mounds of blond hair piled up in the cape, beneath Lee's disbelieving gaze.
Meanwhile, in the other chair, Lee could hear Darrell and the barber chattering amiably and laughing. "Oh, just a very slight beveling. I don't want anything that smacks too much of a radical change."
"You mean a thorough shearing, like old George is giving your little friend there?!" the barber laughed.
George?! Lee realized he'd been duped by Darrell. He'd ended up in George's chair....meaning, he was heading towards a high 'n tight extreme military look!
"That's right, George. I thought you could give Lee a horseshoe. He wants very minimal hair care now that he's got a convertible T-Bird!" laughed Darrell.
"Will be my pleasure. One shoe coming right up," George replied. With that, the clippers went up through the cowlick and down the center of Lee's head until almost the very edge. Mounds of blond hair were pushed off the precipice in front of Lee's frightened eyes.
He sat there shell shocked until the haircut ended and George spun him around to see the new him. "There, you're looking like a real man now!"
Lee's stomach churned like an overloaded washing machine. His mouth hung open in disbelief.
His reaction caused the other three men to laugh out loud. "Not a hair will be out of place as you drive away in your new convertible because you'll be leaving it all behind in the barber shop!" chortled Darrell.
Lee looked down at his lap and surveyed the mounds of hair that had piled up.
"I really like this beveled look," Lee heard Darrell say as his barber took a duster to his face and head.
The light whisking tickled him and Lee smiled involuntarily.
"There! Already taking to your new look!" George exclaimed.
"The two haircuts will be on me," Darrell said as the two emerged from their chair. "Thanks again for staying open late, guys! You did the community, and especially Lee here, a real favor!"
As the two men emerged from the shop, Darrell spontaneously gave Lee a hug, "You're a good sport, kid! So, what do you like better -- your new car or your new haircut?"
Lee's eye drifted to the lovely 1958 convertible Thunderbird as he carefully felt his shorn head. Then his eye turned to the handsome, mature salesman whose flattop looked even more fantastic than ever. "To be honest, what I like most is our friendship, Darrell." He slipped his hand into Darrell's and whispered, "Come, let me take you for a nice long drive to one of my favorite spots....."