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It's All for a Good Cause by Shant

It was just a typical day at the barbershop. Joe had a steady flow of customers all throughout the day, but never had guys waiting in line to get their hair cut.

Around 4:00, the door to the shop opened, and in walked a good looking young guy that Joe was positive had never been in his shop before. A barber never forgets when a guy with a really nice head of hair comes into the shop for the very first time for a haircut.

"Can I help you?" Joe asked.

"Are you Joe, the barber that cuts Gabe Thompson’s hair?" he asked.

"I sure am. I’ve been cutting Gabe’s hair for over ten years now," Joe replied. "Why do you ask?"

"My name is Brandon, and I work for Mr. Thompson. At our monthly staff meeting last Friday, he announced that he wanted to raise some money for one of the charities he contributes too."

"Apparently, they are in need of some quick cash, and he told us that he had thought about what would be an easy way to make the money needed, and wanted to do something that could be fun, and not take a lot of time or effort."

Mr. Thompson was the president of a very successful marketing/advertising firm that had over 100 employees. He was a great guy to work for, and I had never heard anyone say a bad word about him.

It was a very relaxed atmosphere at the firm. The only thing Mr. Thompson expected was that all his employees looked like professionals. It was mandatory that everyone wore a coat and tie. Appearance was important, and he insisted that everyone always looked sharp.

Mustaches, big sideburns, and beards were not allowed. Long hair was definitely not allowed, and no one ever even had a shaggy looking head of hair. Everyone always kept their hair looking well groomed. The firm definitely presented a very polished and impressive image.

Mr. Thompson was about 40, and was a good looking man. He sported the most amazing flattop which was the topic of many conversations amongst his employees.

He wore a slightly longer version of a flattop. There was no skin showing, but it was cut so perfectly square, and the top which was so thick and about an inch long, stood up as flat as a board. During my interview with his firm, it was hard to keep myself from not just staring at his hair. I thought his hair really looked awesome.

"Mr. Thompson told us he thought maybe we could have a little fun with this fundraiser and build team spirit at the same time. He said that he had a two week deadline to raise the money he hoped to donate."

"He said to us, that for every guy that goes to his barber and gets a flattop, he would donate $500. If twenty guys participated that would raise $10,000, and he would double that amount, if the goal was reached. That would result in a $20,000 contribution on behalf of the company."

"There are over sixty guys working at the firm. After the meeting, all anyone talked about was would enough guys be willing to cut their hair? It was definitely for a good cause, and a guy knew that if he participated, he would earn some bonus points with Mr. Thompson, which would never hurt."

"We did a rough count, and it looked like there were probably more than enough guys willing to cut their hair to achieve the goal of twenty flattops."

"So far," Brandon said. "No one has come into work with a flattop. I figured someone has to be the first to do it, and if I did, then maybe more guys would start getting their hair cut."

"Mr. Thompson has such an awesome looking flattop. It is always perfectly square and the top stands straight up. I figure he must get it cut pretty often to always keep it looking so sharp."

"Yeah, Gabe comes in about every two weeks to keep it looking the way it does. He really likes how a flattop looks on him. He’s been wearing one now for over five years," Joe said.

"I’ve never had a flattop before," Brandon replied. "I’ve always wondered if I could wear one, and whether or not a flattop would look good on me. It seems like the perfect time to find out. Do you think I have the right kind of hair for a flattop?"

"Have a seat here and let me run a brush through your hair and I’ll have a better idea if your hair is right for a flattop. It looks to me, however, like you wouldn’t have any problem at all," Joe said.

Brandon sat down, and Joe took his brush, and brushed his hair all up and back. His hair was a great sandy blonde color. It was probably about 3 1/2" on top and 1 1/2" on the sides. He brushed the sides back and blended them into the top. His hair was really thick and had great texture and stood up really well.

Joe thought to himself that Brandon was a really good looking young man and he hoped that he was going to be leaving Joe’s chair with his very first flattop. He would look great with a flattop, and Joe was really excited about giving him one. He really hoped he was going to get to cut it.

"Do you think my flattop would look like Mr. Thompson’s?" Brandon asked.

"Definitely. You have almost the exact same hair that Gabe has. I think you’ll be able to wear a flattop that looks exactly like his does. He will definitely be impressed with your new look."

"Do you take appointments? I want to videotape each haircut, and then make a video out of the entire group, and give it to Mr. Thompson."

"I usually don’t take appointments, but Gabe is one of my favorite customers, and I’ll be glad to do that, if it will help him reach his goal."

"Okay. How about if you schedule me for your last appointment tomorrow? I’ll have a friend come with me so he can videotape the haircut."

"I’ll be looking forward to it. I like cutting flattops more than any other haircut and this will be a lot of fun to do. I’ll see you tomorrow at 4:30."

Barbers usually either love or hate to cut flattops. A flattop was definitely Joe’s favorite haircut to do, especially if the guy had the right hair to wear a really sharp looking one. Cutting a guy with a great head of hair into a flattop for the first time was one of the things Joe enjoyed doing more than anything.

The thought that Joe might get to give twenty virgin flattops during the next two weeks was unbelievable. On average, that would be cutting at least two flattops a day. He couldn’t be any more excited at the possibility of getting to do that. It was a barber’s ultimate fantasy!

Having cut Gabe’s hair for over ten years, resulted in them having a lot of conversations about great hair. Gabe really loved his hair, and it really was awesome looking. He was actually one of Joe’s favorite clients because he had such great hair.

Joe also knew how stoked Gabe would be if he could get so many guys to get a flattop. Gabe had talked about how much he enjoyed seeing a guy getting his long hair cut short. He was going to love every minute of it, and Joe figured that Gabe had set this whole "donation" thing up, just so he could get to see so many of his employess lose so much of their great hair.

Joe thought back and remembered the first time Gabe came into his shop. He wasn’t wearing a flattop then, but had his hair about four inches on top and two on the sides. He brushed it all back and it looked really polished. Not a hair was out of place, and it was so thick, and had such a great shine to it.

When he sat down in the chair, Joe couldn’t wait to find out how he wanted it cut. Gabe just asked for a trim, and even though Joe was disappointed, he cut Gabe’s hair exactly the way he requested. It was awesome just getting to brush his beautiful hair.

Joe wanted this guy to like his haircut so he would return, and maybe down the road, he would get to talk him into getting a flattop. From the moment he saw Gabe, his first thought was how fantastic it would be to cut this guy’s awesome hair into a flattop.

About a year had gone by, and Joe and Gabe had become good friends. Gabe was not at all self-conscious talking with Joe about how much he loved his hair. He was not vain about how great his hair was, and he knew how lucky he was to have it.

Over time, Joe encouraged Gabe to try several different looking haircuts. At one point, Gabe’s hair was about five inches long on top. It was really beautiful. As much as Joe enjoyed giving a guy a flattop, he also really enjoyed getting to comb such long, thick hair and just taking it down a little in length and get to run his hands through it over and over again.

A few more months went by, and Joe decided it was time to do his best to encourage Gabe to get a flattop. Every time Gabe sat in his chair, Joe would somehow bring up the subject of flattops. He started by telling Gabe about some customer he had just given a flattop, and how great it had looked.

Another time, he told Gabe how a flattop was his all time favorite haircut to do, and how sharp it looked if the guy had the right hair to wear one. Ever so slowly, he started planting the idea in Gabe’s head that he should get a flattop.

One day when Gabe was getting his hair trimmed, Joe said, "You know, Gabe, you have such awesome hair, and you’ve been wearing it the same way for so long now, why don’t you let me give you a flattop? You have the perfect hair for one, and I think it would look sensational. Come on, and try something new. I would love to give you a really sharp looking flattop. I’m certain that you would love it!"

"Oh, I don’t know," Gabe said. "You know how much I love my hair. I’ll have to think about that, but maybe someday I’ll let you do it. What kind of flattop are you thinking I should get?"

"When a guy gets a flattop for the first time, I always suggest that I give him a longer, square, boxy looking flattop. No skin would show. Your hair is so thick it would look great. I’d leave the top a little over an inch long, and if you didn’t like how a flattop looked on you, it would only take a month before you would be brushing the top all back. Four weeks is nothing. I already cut your hair every four weeks anyway."

Gabe didn’t bite the first time Joe brought up the idea of giving him a flattop. Joe knew he just had to be patient and he would eventually reel Gabe in. He knew that Gabe totally trusted him cutting his hair.

About a month later, Gabe came in for his regular haircut, and surprised Joe by saying, "You know, I’ve been thinking all month about you telling me how great I would look with a flattop, and I want you to go ahead and give me one. I think it would be interesting to try something new, and I have worn my hair this way for quite awhile. Let’s do it right now! Go ahead and do it, before I change my mind!"

"You’ll get no resistance from me," Joe said. "You have such a great head of hair that it is going to look fantastic! Sit yourself down and let me cape you up. This is going to be really awesome."

"You know how great I think your hair is. You definitely have one of the best head’s of hair that I cut. Do you mind if I take a picture of you the way your hair looks now, and then we can take an after picture too?"

"Sure," Gabe said. "Once I got the idea into my head about getting a flattop, I couldn’t wait for it to be time for me to get my hair cut. I can’t wait to see how it’s going to look. I’m really excited about trying something so different with my hair, and like you said, it’ll only take about four weeks to be long enough to start brushing back again, if that’s what I decide to do."

Gabe sat down and Joe brushed his hair all back and into place. "I’m going to slightly wet your hair and then blowdry it all straight up and back and see how full I can get it to look."

Joe was so excited that he was finally going to give Gabe a flattop. Gabe had never worn one, which Joe thought was surprising, considering how thick and how great his hair stood up. Gabe’s hair was about four inches long on top at this time, and when Joe finished blowdrying it, it stood up almost that high.

As much as Joe was going to love cutting Gabe’s hair into a flattop, he also knew that he was going to miss getting his hands in it every month. He knew that Gabe loved it when he played with his hair and combed it all different ways.

Joe put the #2 guard on his clippers and ran them up the sides and back of Gabe’s head. So much awesome hair was coming off! Joe could tell that Gabe was really enjoying watching himself getting such a different looking haircut. God, he had such beautiful hair!

After Joe finished tapering the sides and back, he then took his wide tooth comb and lifted up Gabe’s forelock and with the clippers buzzed off between two and three inches. Seeing such huge amounts of thick, shiney hair falling into Gabe’s lap was such a rush!

He took plenty of time making sure that Gabe’s hair stood up perfectly straight and was as flat as a board on the sides and top. He was so glad he was going to take pictures of this because he thought it was probably one of the best flattops he had ever done.

When Joe finished the haircut, he asked Gabe what he thought of his new look? Gabe was so happy with how it had turned out. "I love it, and it really is great seeing how different I look. I need to try different looking haircuts more often, instead of always having it look the same. I’m sure you have plenty of ideas of different haircuts you would like to give me."

Four years had passed since that haircut, and Gabe had been wearing a flattop ever since. Joe always looked forward to him coming in so his flattop would always stay looking so perfect.

When Brandon left the barbershop, it was time to close for the day. Joe couldn’t believe the conversation he had just had with Brandon. He sat down in his barber chair and his imagination ran wild, thinking about the possibility of getting to cut so many flattops.

Joe finished cleaning up the shop and headed home. All evening long he found himself thinking about how much he was looking forward to giving Brandon a flattop. He really hoped the guy showed up, and he felt pretty confident that he would.

The next morning, Joe opened his shop and couldn’t wait for the day to end. At exactly 4:30, Brandon walked in, along with a friend, who was holding a video camera. This was really going to happen. Joe was stoked!

Brandon had brought along the company’s advertising brochure which showed headshots of all the employees. He had put a check mark beside each guy he thought would get a flattop so that Joe would be on the lookout for them when they came into his shop.

When Joe first looked at it, he couldn’t take his eyes off it. Due to Gabe’s grooming policy, so many of these young guys had really awesome looking haircuts. It was going to be unreal cutting so much beautiful hair off, and giving them his all time favorite haircut.

"Are you ready for your very first flattop?" Joe asked Brandon. "How about if you first comb your hair perfectly into place and we can then take a headshot? Then I’ll cape you up, and your buddy, here, can tape the haircut. I know your hair is going to look great. You have absolutely nothing to worry about."

Brandon combed all his pretty hair so that it was perfectly in place and Joe took pictures from every angle. "This is going to be so awesome," Joe thought to himself.

Joe then caped Brandon up. "I’m going to slightly wet your hair so that I can take my blowdryer and see how high I can get it to stand up. The thicker the hair, and the more it stands up, the better your flattop will look."

Joe vigorously brushed Brandon’s hair all up and back. "Seeing that you are the first employee to participate, you are going to get the exact same haircut as Gabe."

Most barbers probably enjoy taking the clippers and buzzing off long locks of hair all at once. Joe actually liked using the scissors first and getting to comb a guy’s great hair, and getting to feel how great the guy’s hair was, and then cutting off more than half of it, before using the clippers.

He loved getting to run his hands over and over again through great hair and take it down in stages, which made the haircut take even longer. He then proceeded to take the entire top down that way. Once he had finished the first cut with the scissors, he then went back over the top again, leaving it less than two inches long.

Brandon’s hair stood up just like Gabe’s did. Joe was really stoked to give him the exact same haircut. He took his clippers and put the #2 guard on them and then started at Brandon’s left sideburn and ran the clippers up to about three fingers above his ear. He then still had way over an inch on the sides to square up.

Joe ran the clippers up the back and sides, being careful to get as much of the hair to fall into Brandon’s lap as he could. He wanted to see all this guy’s great hair piled high in his lap.

Joe then brushed Brandon’s hair on top and took the guard off the clippers and reached for his wide tooth comb. He started on the sides and ran the comb from where the taper had ended and held the comb straight up against the side, and any hair that was visible over the comb, was then buzzed off.

Joe could tell that Brandon was really enjoying watching the haircut. "All we have to do is flatten down the top and you will have your first ever flattop. It’s really looking great and just wait till you see it when it is finished."

"Gabe is going to take one look at you and will instantly know that I gave you the exact same haircut as his. He’ll love it!"

Joe then flattened out the top. It was so square and sharp looking. He removed the cape from Brandon, being careful that all the hair stayed in the cape. He then took several headshots of Brandon with his new look. Brandon loved it!

"Did you tell anyone that you were going to get a flattop after work today?" Joe asked.

"No, I didn’t tell anyone because I want to make the biggest impression I can when I walk in tomorrow morning. I think it will definitely cause a lot of talk when I walk in sporting a flattop just like Mr. Thompson’s. I can’t wait for him to see it."

After Brandon left, Joe closed the shop for the day. The first thing he did was gather all Brandon’s pretty hair from the cape and placed it in a ziplock bag along with his name and the date of the haircut. This could end up being a fantastic collection.

Joe sat down in his chair and again started looking over the pictures in the brochure. He decided to take down the names of the guy’s whose hair he would really like to cut.

Most of these guys were between 25 and 35 and so many of them had really beautiful hair. Due to Gabe’s insisting on his employees always looking their best, when they were all gathered together as a group, it was really striking seeing how so many of them were so handsome.

There were so many guy’s hair that he would enjoy getting to cut, but there were four guys in particular that he really hoped came into his shop. They all had check marks by their names, so hopefully they would be coming in. They all had very different looking hair, and they all had really great looking hair.

Due to all the different types of hair these guys had, there would be a lot of different looking flattops. They would not all end up looking exactly the same as Gabe’s flattop did. It was going to be such a rush getting to cut so many different looking versions of a flattop.

The next day, Brandon went to work and his flattop was definitely the major topic of conversation. Just about every guy told him how great they thought he looked.

Brandon told the guys that Mr. Thompson’s barber would leave his schedule free beginning at 4:00 each day. If a guy knew he was coming in that day, he should call and make an appointment during that time so that Brandon could come to tape the haircuts.

It seemed like things were actually going to begin happening. An added bonus was Mr. Thompson came over to Brandon’s desk, and said, "That’s a great looking flattop you got from Joe. It looks exactly like mine, and I hope you like it as much as I like mine. I really appreciate you getting the ball rolling, and hopefully now we’ll start seeing who participates."

Brandon told Mr. Thompson about the video he was planning to shoot. "I think the more we can make this into a group project, the more guys will want to be part of it, and will participate."

Mr. Thompson said, "I think that would be a great idea. I think once we get underway, it will actually be a morale booster for the entire group."

"Since I’m the one donating the money for each haircut, I’d like to come down with you and watch you videotape them. I love my flattop so much that I know I will really enjoy seeing who is willing to cut their hair for a good cause."

"There are four or five guys that I would really like to see get their hair cut into a flattop, but let’s just keep that between us," he said, with a smile. "It will be wild seeing so many flattops, one after the other. Who knows? We might even be able to turn this into a great publicity ad for the firm."

"I think that would be a fantastic idea and would probably encourage even more guys to get their hair cut," Brandon said. "I think you might get even more than twenty guys to participate, because the more guys that cut their hair, will encourage even more guys to go along and cut their hair in order to be part of the group."

"Would you mind if I offered you another suggestion as to how I think we could make this event even more successful?" Brandon asked.

"Sure, Brandon," Mr. Thompson said. "What other ideas do you have? I really appreciate you taking the lead on this and helping me out."

"I don’t know if you would be agreeable to this, Mr. Thompson, but I think as president of the company, you should definitely be one of the guys to get a flattop, too. This would make everyone feel that you are really a part of the group."

"Obviously, you already have a flattop, and it is always so awesome looking. I think that if more than twenty guys get a flattop, as an added incentive, you should announce that you will cut your flattop down shorter."

"Your flattop is so fantastic looking. I’ve heard a lot of guys comment on how great it looks. I think there are a lot of guys that would be willing to cut their hair, just to see you do that."

"It would really be awesome seeing so many guys sporting different looking flattops. We will have to take a group photo of the group after everyone has cut their hair. I doubt if there has ever been a picture showing over twenty guys all sporting flattops."

"Sure, I’d do that if you think it will help get more guys into Joe’s barber chair. Just taking half an inch off the top of my hair will only take a month to grow back to the length it is now. I’ve never had Joe cut me a shorter flattop, but I’m sure he would love to do it."

The next day, Mr. Thompson announced his added incentive if guys would get a flattop. You could hear all the chatter going on. It was obvious a lot of guys really wanted to see Mr. Thompson get his hair cut even shorter.

No one could believe that he would actually cut his awesome flattop shorter than it was now. It was definitely an incentive for even more guys to decide to go through with it, and get a flattop, too.

For the next two weeks, Joe was in barber shop heaven. Every day, he would have two or three more guys come in to get their haircut. He had never cut so many flattops in such a short period of time in his entire life.

The majority of the guys that came in already had such sharp looking haircuts that they really didn’t even need to get a haircut. Those were the flattops that he enjoyed doing most. Everyone had just jumped on the bandwagon, wanting to be a part of the group.

All four guys that Joe had hoped to cut came in, and he had a fantastic time cutting their hair. Joe really enjoyed having a guy that already had a really sharp looking haircut get a flattop more than anything. These guys all looked so polished and it was awesome running a comb through their great manes and then take his scissors and then start by cutting off all their beautiful locks and then using the clippers on them.

After each haircut, Joe would put each guy’s hair in a ziplock bag, along with their name and the date of the haircut. They had easily passed the twenty flattops Gabe had set up as their goal. Gabe watched every single guy get his haircut and Joe knew that he couldn’t be any more stoked!

It was the final day for a guy to cut his hair for the charity. Mr. Thompson and Brandon had scheduled the very last appointment for Mr. Thompson and Brandon was going to film it. He couldn’t wait to see more of Mr. Thompson’s hair coming off. He thought that it really was going to look fantatic!

Joe actually closed up the shop when Gabe and Brandon showed up. He wasn’t going to be cutting all that much of Gabe’s hair off, but he was really looking forward to it.

After he caped Gabe up, he did just like he did with all the other guys. Gabe combed his hair into the best flattop anyone could have. "Are you ready for this?" Joe asked. "It really is amazing how different a person can look with their hair only half an inch shorter. I"m going to love taking down the sides and back a little more."

"Let’s do this! I’m actually pretty charged up thinking about my hair looking different after it has been the same for so long," Gabe said.

Joe had always used a #2 guard on the sides and back of Gabe’s head. He switched to a #1 guard, which really wouldn’t take all that much more hair off, but it really did look a lot different. The pretty boy flattop look was taken down to a more masculine looking haircut.

He then brushed all of Gabe’s hair on top straight back and proceeded to cut off a little more than half an inch. Gabe looked like he was an officer in the military. He really looked great.

"There you are," Joe said. "What do you think?"

"I think it looks fantastic," Gabe said. "I think I’m going to end up keeping it like this for awhile. Change is good!"

Brandon was putting away his camera, and Mr. Thompson said to him, "I really want to thank you again Brandon, for helping make this event be so successful. I doubt so many guys would have participated if you had not taken charge and turned it into such an event."

"So, what do you think of my new haircut? Do you think I made a mistake cutting it shorter? Tell me honestly, do you think it’s a little too severe looking and should I immediately start growing it back out?"

"It’s only a half inch shorter, and I can have it look like it did when I just sat down in about four weeks, but I really am amazed by how different it looks. Tell me what you really think."

"I really think it looks awesome. You’re right. I’m surprised that as little as half an inch of hair can really make a flattop look so different."

"I’ve always thought you had such a great haircut. This shorter flattop actually makes you look even more handsome, and even more masculine, which I would never have thought could be possible. I hope it doesn’t embarrass you that I just said that."

"Your flattop really does look great, too," Gabe said. "It looks almost exactly like mine when my hair is a little longer. Are you going to keep your flattop or are you going to start letting your hair grow out?"

"I really like how it looks. Seeing it’s the first flattop I’ve ever had, I know I’m going to keep it for awhile," Brandon said.

"If you want to keep your flattop always looking sharp, you have to get it cut a lot more often than just a normal haircut," Gabe said. "If you decide to keep it, as a way of thanking you for all you done on this project, why don’t you come with me when I get my flattop cut, and have Joe cut your’s too? The haircut will always be my treat."

"Actually, I’ll enjoy watching you get your hair cut," he said, as he ran his hand over the top of Brandon’s head. Brandon was surprised by Mr. Thompson feeling his flattop, but was thrilled that he was doing it.

"Seeing that this is the end of the charity drive, how about you sit back down in the chair and let me videotape Joe giving you the exact haircut that I now have? Would you be willing to do that? It would be great if you had the same flattop that I did. I’d really enjoy it if you were willing to do that."

Brandon was so caught up in the moment that he never even hesitated. "Sure, Why not?" he said. "I already know how it will look, and I think your new haircut really looks great. If you want me to go ahead and cut my flattop shorter, I’ll do it!"

Joe had a huge smile on his face. He knew that Gabe had planned this all along. Brandon sat back down and Joe caped him up. Gabe got the video camera set up and was so psyched knowing he was going to see Brandon get taken down even shorter.

"Okay, here we go!" Joe said. He replaced the #2 guard with the #1 and wasted no time in running the clippers up the sides and the back of Brandon’s head. Not all that much hair was really coming off, but it resulted in the flattop looking even more square on the sides and back.

Joe then took his wide tooth comb again and started at the front of Brandon’s hair and cut off half an inch. That left his hair just a little over half an inch long on top. With his hair being so thick, it stood up perfectly, and it could not have been any more square looking. He really looked sharp!

After the haircut, Gabe said, "Your hair really is almost exactly like mine. I love the way it feels. I hope you keep it like this for awhile. Maybe when you start growing your hair out again, I will too. It’s been over five years since my hair has been much more than an inch long. I think it would be fun if we both came in together and each time had Joe give us the exact same haircut."

"Oh, and Brandon, when we’re not in the office, you can drop the "Mr. Thompson" and just call me Gabe. You have really impressed me taking the initiate to make this fundraiser successful. I hope that you continue to work at the firm and that we can become good friends. I think you have a lot of potential."

Brandon was so psyched by what Gabe had just said to him. He knew it would be great getting to know him outside of work.

Having watched him enjoy seeing all the flattops that his employees had received, Brandon knew how much his boss was in love with great hair. He hoped the day would come when they did start growing out their hair again, and that Gabe would comb his hair for him. Brandon also knew that he would definitely get a kick out of combing Gabe’s hair too.

Who knew how things could turn out? This could really be a lot of fun!

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