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Eugenio's Mistake Part Two by Jonathan
"Hey, who's that bald kid?" a girl asked.
"I think it's Eugenio!" Jose says.
"No way he shaved his head!" the girl exclaims.
I'm standing out in front of the 7-Eleven waiting to go inside to buy my snacks. Three days earlier I shaved off my long, flowing dark brown hair. I couldn't face going to school on Monday and I wasn't ready for my peers to see me bald! I cried after the barber had shaved by head down to the nub all around. My beautiful, glorious long mane lay on the barbershop floor. It was all over so fast. This was a huge mistake. Some bald man in the barbershop talked me into it. I was so stupid!
I hadn't had my head shaved ever. In third grade I'd gotten a buzzcut. Kids teased me about my ears that stick out too much. They called me elephante (elephant). Now Those ears were completely exposed again, but even more so. My head looks like a small round ball with ears sticking out on both sides. I look in the mirror and gone is that beautiful boy I'd been.
"Hey, Eugenio is that you?" asked the kids.
"Yeah, I shaved my head," I said.
"Oh Eugenio why did you do that? You had such nice hair," Cindy says.
"Are you going out for football or something?" asks Jose.
"No," I say.
"Why'd you shave it then man?" asks Jose.
"I don't know, just did," I say.
I'm a junior at Garfield High School in East Los Angeles. I am very popular. It soon would find this was largely do to my good looks. Now with all my hair gone I've lost my charm and strength. It took three years to get it that length. It'll never grow back by the time high school is even over.
I walk slowly and shyly into to the high school campus that morning. It doesn't take long for kids to react. This is what I dreaded would happen when they saw me bald headed.
"Whoa, look is that Eugenio?" some girls whisperer.
"I can't believe he did that!" he doesn't look good bald.
"Dude, where's your hair?" asks my friend David.
"Eugenio, you brought your own cue to school," he says.
I stay away from my regular crowd this Tuesday morning. I don't want to get noticed. Usually I'm the center of attention. I would have worn a hat, except they aren't allowed at my school. I just want to make it to first period. As I walk through the corridors I get stares from kids. Some I don't think even recognize me. I wished I'd stayed home. I want to cry or cover my shorn head with a beanie!
I don't even like to look at myself in the mirror anymore. I used to stare and admire myself in mirrors all the time. I nervously enter first period history class to a room full of kids.
"Look at that shaved head!" someone yells.
"Eugenio is bald, look!" another kid says.
"Dude, why'd you shave your head?" someone asked.
"Now class that's enough, quiet down," the teacher says.
I hear a couple of kids still laughing and snickering at me. My heart is beating fast and I'm really supper tense. All first period I can feel the stares from the kids examining by bald head and ears. I feel them on the back of my head. I sit towards the front of the class which makes it even worse.
When first period is over I reluctantly go to second period English. I tried to get there fast so I don't have to walk into a room full of eyes glaring and starring at my hairless head. I enter and right away see ten kids already in there.
"Who is that?" a girl says.
"It's Eugenio!" yells a boy.
"Eugenio did you get in a fight with a lawnmower?" asks a guy.
"Ha, ha, ha," I say.
"Well this time that lawnmower kicked your ass!" he laughed.
I sat there quiet and wanted to crawl under a rock. I realized my whole day would go something like this! I thought maybe tomorrow would be easier one the kids had all seen it.
It was now third period and I anxiously sat down. I could feel the stares I was getting all morning.
"Eugenio, what's with those ears? I bet you could fly now if you tried," a kid said.
"Real funny!" I replied.
"Dude, why did you shave it," asks a girl.
"I don't know, it was a mistake," I said.
The rest of the day went like the morning. At lunch when I usually felt so wanted and popular most of my friends just teased me about my bald head. I'd had it with the bald jokes. I'd been called elephante a few times just like back in third grade. By the end of the day I knew who my real friends where!
As the days passed I felt the tensions ease. I was not as self conscious or sensitive about my bald head. Everyone had seen it and that original shock factor had now worn off. I could however tell girls weren't flocked around me anymore. I stuck with a smaller group of friends now. My popularity had left when my hair wound up on that barbershop floor that evening last week. I was now humbled and meeker. My strength had been in my long proud mane of hair. Now only stubble and two ears sticking out a bit too much were left on my head.
Months pasted quickly. It was April and spring break was here! My long hair was a faded memory now. Somehow I didn't want it ever to grow back. I knew it would just take years to grow it back. I'd adjusted to my new self now. I had an awkward two inch spiked mess of very dark, dark brown hair now. The question was what to do with it?
I decided to shave it all off once again. I'd gotten used to having such an easy hair routine. A small glob of shampoo and dry it with a towel. I somehow just gave into the fact I had these ears of mine and didn't care if I got shaved bald once again!
That Friday evening I decided to go back to that little barbershop on the busy boulevard in East LA where all my trouble two months ago began. Now I'd conquered it and was braver and stronger inside.
"Do you want a haircut?" asks the barber.
"Yes," I say.
The barber and the bald guy are sitting and chatting just like last time as I entered the shop.
"Haven't we seen you kid?" asks the bald guy.
"Yeah, I got my head shaved here a couple months ago," I say.
"Oh yeah it was my idea remember?" asks the bald guy.
"I remember sir," I answer.
"So, did you like it. All that girly long hair off your head? What was your name again kid?"
"Eugenio," I say.
I get up into that same barber chair and am caped. The barber silently reaches over and grabs the tissue from a box I'm clipped and this time I don't feel so trapped. Its almost a freeing feeling.
"So what will we be doing this time?" asks the barber.
"Just shave it all off like last time," I say.
"Oh, you like it now!" he exclaims.
"Oh, I told you you'd like it bald," says the bald guy.
Whhiiirrr go the big clippers. I feel the cold metal blade take off my right sideburn first. Then the clippers glide around my right ear. Little pieces of hair fall onto the red and white barber's cape. The anxiety I felt last time is gone. The barber pushes and holds me head down. I'm looking into my lap and starring at the cape. I feel the clipper's blades completely removing the hair from the back of my head. It tingles and tickles a little.
Soon he is gliding the clippers across the top of my head. I then feel his fingers and hand push down on top of my now bald scalp. He tilts my head to the right and starts in shaving the hair from the left side of my head. His fingers tickle my scalp as he twists my head around. Off go the clippers.
Then he gets some other clippers and buzzes them quickly across my head. He folds down my right ear and trims around it. Then he does the left ears. I feel the small clippers tingle on my neck. Off they go. I am blown with air from a hose. Then powdered with a wooden bush. It smells great!
"Look at that kid now! All the girls will be after him!" the barber's bald friend says.
I pay, smile and leave.