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Joe Curtis: The Skinhead Barber by Snipped Sam
It had been about three months since I had started going regularly to Joe Curtis, which meant about four weeks between haircuts. Each time I had it cut it was the same style as the photo in the window which had originally brought me in. Although Joe would always mention the skinhead cut, usually something like:
"so not a skinhead today then" or "you sure you don’t want a skinhead instead?".
Although still brusque he was a bit friendlier now, and early one Saturday morning came in the shop where I worked, and although Mr Harris served him, Joe spoke to me on the way out, even giving me a smile.
I was due a visit to Joe a few days later, when I got there, it was just a short wait, I noticed that Joe had had his haircut since I last saw him, with the square neck finish on the back of his head being really severe, I actually thought it really suited him. I remember my first ever visit to him a few years ago when he cut the hair on the back of my in the same square style, he called it a Boston.
"How are you today?" he asks as I sit in the chair
"Really good thanks"
He seems in a good mood today as he fastens the cape into place.
"Had a little chat with your boss the other day"
"Yes, he likes you, says you are a good lad, and a good worker"
"That’s nice of him, I didn’t think he came here"
"No, he doesn’t but I had to go back in the shop, get some wood stain, so that’s when we talked about you"
"We had quite a chat, he even congratulated me on the way I cut your hair, he said it was a big improvement"
Joe certainly seemed very confident and full of himself, even more so than usual,
"Yes, I think he was impressed the first time I had it cut"
"I told him that we had talked about you having a skinhead and I said that you thought he wouldn’t like it if you had a skinhead cut"
At this point my heart was racing, I should be mad that Joe has spoken to Mr Harris about giving me a skinhead, but I am not surprised. Truth is I am really excited about this, I know that Joe is known as the man to go to for skinhead haircuts, and he had given a couple of my older brother’s friends skinheads a few years ago. Ever since my visit three months ago Joe has wanted to give me a skinhead, it’s been like a sort of challenge.
"Did you" was my reply, not knowing what else to say
"He said he was surprised you hadn’t asked him, and he thought it wasn’t that bigger deal, so as it happens, he’s given green light"
Was my reply, excited by the idea but very apprehensive of the results, but Joe was now placing a fresh blade onto his clippers, and he was had a self-satisfied look on his face.
"He said if that’s what the lad wants"
"But I have never said that I wanted a skinhead"
"You’ve never said you didn’t either, have you?"
"Well no I haven’t …. but I’m not sure"
"If you don’t like it, it’s not the end of the world, and you know it will grow back"
"So, it looks like this is it"
Joe wasted no time, he stepped forward and tilted my head back, after switching them on he placed his clippers at the front of my head, he smoothly ploughed through my hair. From day one it seemed his goal was to strip my hair down to a stubble, he had now succeeded. If I was completely honest, since he first mentioned the skinhead cut, I had been wanting it. He positioned my head and himself so that I could not see in the mirror, and when it was time to do the back of my head, he pushed my head right down. As the clippers were run up the back of my head to finish my skinhead cut, I wondered just how many skinhead cuts Joe had done. More to the point how many had come in for skinheads and how many had just come in for a haircut but got a skinhead. He kept my head down while he shaved my neck with a razor, he then lifted up my head and did round my ears. One scalped seventeen-year-old lad looked back at me in the mirror, one rufty tufty barber stood behind him grinning.
"O.K I have finished, so you can touch your head if you want to"
My hand explored my head which felt like sandpaper all over,
"It really suits you"
"Thanks, I think I really like but not sure about another one"
That evening, out came the haircut book.
Joe Curtis: The skinhead barber got his way, very smoothly done, part of me wants to go back very soon for another one, but I also want a Boston haircut just like Joe has. 9/10.