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Was It Worth It? by Deke Cutter (recovered)

Was it worth it?

By Deke Cutter

Tad was basically a good kid. He was good looking and had a great thick head of blonde hair. It covered his ears and collar. He had long bangs that fell into his eyes when he didn`t flick them back or gel them over. His folks let him make his own decisions about his hair. In fact, his hair was pretty much like his dad`s had been when he was that age. But Tad was a typical teen in some ways. At 17, he did his share of dumb things, but he generally didn`t cross the line. His dad and mother gave him a good deal of lattitude. Dad used that old saying his father had used, "give the boy enough rope to hang himself." One thing that worried Tad`s parents was his apparent lack of appreciation of consequences or follow-through on actions he took. Lately, this had happened more often, much to Tad`s parent`s dismay.

Two unrelated events brought the situation to "a head." Tad`s report card came home and Tad went along with the guys, once too often. The report card was bad news. The boys decision turned out to be bad news too. Joey, Nick and Roger, Tad`s best buddies (and a big bunch of knuckleheads, according to Tad`s dad), came up with a great idea. "Look, Tad, its the end of Junior year, lets have some fun."

"What are you talking about? I`m not wearing those stupid tee-shirts, my folks will kill me if I get suspended."

"No man, we`ll all just get buzz cuts and we`ll post them on the web. Your folks won`t mind that, right?

"Well, they won`t mind it, but I do. I love my hair and Angela hates buzzcuts I don`t want her to break up with me, just as the summer starts."

"You big wuss," Joey said." She`s been your old lady for two minutes and we`ve been your boys since we were in pre-school."

"Come on man," Nick added, "its only hair. Angie`s going away for the summer." our hair will be grown out by the time school starts."

Roger added, "yeah, by the time of the Homecoming Dance, you`ll be looking almost normal."

"Yeah, you guys are right, lets do it.!"

So, off to the barber the boys went. For the other three guys, the buzzes were no big deal. Their hair wasn`t too long and they were done and out of the chairs very fast. Tad, however, had not been buzzed before. His buddies were very excited to get him "cut down to size." Secretly, they were all a bit jealous of Tad, his luck with the girls, especially about Angela, the hottest girl in their class. Tad`s legs were like rubber as he got into the chair. The barber combed his thick bangs down and hacked them off. Tad was shocked at how big his forehead looked. The sides were hacked off next. Then came the clippers. By the time the barber had finished the left side, Tad was realizing just what aa mistake he had made. He looked about 12 and the lack of sideburns didn`t help. The guys started razzing him. The barber would have none of it. "You boys are lucky that you went first. Some friends you are. I would have shaved each of you bald, if I would have known you would be treating your friend this way!" This quieted the others down, until they got outside.

Out in the street, they were all over poor Tad. "Your looking a tad younger, buddy." Little Tad, doesn`t look old enough to go out with a hottie like Angie now," said Joey, as he snapped a picture of Tad with his phone and sent it off to Angie.

Tad got home and his mother took one look at him and said "Oh Tad, you look like a little boy. If you think that will make me and your dad go easier on you over your grades, you are very wrong."

"Aw mom, I just dropped a couple grades from bs to cs. Its not the end of the world. My average is still OK. "

"Wait until your father gets home."

"Tad, come down here" his father said. Tad came down. "Son, what have I told you about how important your grades are. Don`t you want to go to a good college?"

"Dad, I`m sorry. I`ll try harder. With this dorky new haircut, I let my socalled friends talk me into, I`ll be happy to spend plenty of time catching up this summer."

"Oh don`t worry my boy," his father said, "I`ve been on the phone with the tutors and with my office. You`ll be filling in for Jenny, our file clerk every afternoon, while she is off on maternity leave." And by the way, get used to short hair. Its going to be a part of your life for the foreseeable future...at least until the end of the first marking period in the fall."

"But dad.."

"Don`t but dad me, you need to understand the cosequences of your actions."

Three weeks later, on their way home from Tad`s second week at his father`s office, they were at the barber`s." Give him a number two on the sides and a three on top. Oh and leave him a little bumper to wax up in the front." He`ll be a regular here. You can expect him in monthly.

Tad left the shop with his crew cut waxed up and sadly got on with his summer. As he predicted, Angela was not happy with. By the time school had started, Joey`s hair was grown out and looking better than ever. And it was Joey who squired Angela to the homecoming dance.

Tad remained a regular at the barber shop and found himself taking his studies much more seriously. His grades improved and his bruised ego gradually got better. He hated the scalped look, but came to understand why he had to keep it. His dad was true to his word and let him grow his hair back especially when he not only pulled his grades up but, made the dean`s list. His new girlfriend, Amy, the class valedictorian, didn`t care about his hair. But he grew it back to its former glory.

Fast forward to the beginning of Tad`s sophomore year of college at Ivy League U. Tad was faced with the toughest academic quarter he had every seen. Instead of moving into the frat house, he chose the quiet dorm and his first stop after moving in was a barber shop to get the old crew cut back. "It will keep me focused, he thought."

The End

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