That actually feels so nice! by Nasir Asfordby
"Noooo," Claire cried. "Can't you keep it a little longer?"
"I really like it short," I responded sadly. It was a hot summer- time for my long, thick locks to get acquainted with the barbershop floor. The only problem was that my girlfriend, Claire, hated me getting ultra-short haircuts. I had hoped that the switch from an induction cut to a buzz cut would help, but she still wanted it a little longer.
"Alright," Claire sighed as we reached the door of the barbershop."You do you."
I pushed the door open and Claire followed me in. There was one barber, and the barber's chair was free. The barber signalled for me to sit down straight away. I complied, the nerves beginning to assemble inside me. As the barber caped me up, Claire instinctively sat down on the waiting chair behind me.
"What can I do for you?" the barber asked.
"#1 all over," I said, glancing nervously at Claire.
"That's very short?" the barber said, implicitly asking for confirmation that I understood.
"I know. I like it short for the summer," I replied as assertively as I could.
"Ok," the barber conceded as he head to the counter. He picked up the clippers with one hand and with the other he found the #1 clipper guard. With no warning except for the click of the attachment to the clippers, the barber mowed the clippers through the middle of my forehead. Two inches of beautiful, dark hair fell in front of my face. The wall of thick hair which stood erected on my head was penetrated, leaving a patch of stubble that no longer even covered my skin. Within a few seconds, the barber was repeating the pass and another rainfall of thick hair landed on the cape. One stroke after the next, that patch of stubble grew until it covered the top of my head. The clippers stopped, and I stared at myself in the mirror. I loved it.
"Faded on the side," the barber asked as he moved to the counter, revealing the extent of the damage to Claire who gasped.
"No," I chuckled, "just a #1."
The barber moved to my side and flicked the clippers on again, this time running them up my left sideburns to the parietal ridge. The hair kept falling, and I watched Claire stare in shock. I began to feel nervous as the barber moved the clippers across the side of my head toward the crown, depositing more and more hair on the cape or floor.
"Head down," the barber commanded. Before I could react, I felt the barber's hand on the top of my head pushing my head down and the clippers up my nape. I felt the blood rush down inside me as the clippers vibrated on my neck on their way to the crown. Although I counldn't see the hair falling down, I could feel the breeze beginning to caress my almost bare neck.
"What if Claire really hates it? What if she breaks up with me?" I nervously asked myself as the barber moved to shave the sides. "I know she said she hated the thought of me getting a buzzcut, but-" I looked at myself in the mirror. I was caped up in the barbershop, covered in hair and my buzz almost finished. It was too late to second guess my decision, so I bottled the nerves and enjoyed the barber running the clippers over my head again to ensure the buzz cut was even. The barber switched off the clippers.
"It's okay?" he asked, showing me the back with a mirror.
I nodded. I loved the hair cut, but I was looking at Claire who almost jumped out of her seat when she heard the barber turn on the trimmer. Spinning the barber's chair to the side, he placed his hand on my buzzed head once more and pushed it to the right to square off my left sideburn. Without letting go of my head, he folded my ear down and traced the countour until he reached the neckline. Here he thrust my head into my chest again. Quickly pressing the blade on my neck to create the line, the barber then pushed the trimmer into my nape hard and dragged it downwards. He repeated this across my nape leaving me with a nice clean neckline. He then cleaned up the right side recreating the precision he demonstrated moments earlier on the left.
The barber put the trimmer back on the counter. Picking up a brush, he undid the cape and roughly dusted the loose scraps of hair off my head before showing me the back again. I smiled and, for the first time since we walked into the barbershop, I saw Claire smirk.
"I really like it," I told the barber. He put down the mirror.
"It's good for the summer," he replied, pulling the cape off me. I stood up and turned to Claire who was still smirking at my buzz cut. It felt amazing.
"Do you hate it?" I asked as she slid her fingers up my nape.
"That actually feels so nice!"