The Malcontent on: Hairdresser’s

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Robert Plant had the right idea. He could barely move for getting laid. And the source of his innate sex appeal, beyond his genital-crushing jeans, so tight that you could practically see what his children were to look like, was undoubtedly his incredible hair. Voluminous. Lengthy. Slightly ginger. It was a beacon of his sexual prowess. It was a sign to us all that he had never had had that regular experience of the nadir of human existence – a trip to the hairdresser’s.

You know why some US Marines have that-thousand yard stare? It’s from the constant hairdresser’s appointments needed to maintain such a close cut. It’s the incessant fear that any slight movement under the strange, Dementor-esque gown they give you will be misconstrued as an attempt at public masturbation. It’s the constant mental torture, the indignant tuts when you don’t understand where they want you to move your head. What do they think we are, bloody telepathic?

But most of all, it’s the inane conversation.

For hairdressers, the changeable British weather is a godsend. Every morning it yields, like a piece of conversational driftwood, a new (old) topic for discussion. I can only imagine that they bound out of their houses in the morning, observe the slightly darker hue of grey clouds and collapse in a twitching mass of overawed incredulity. “Oh. My. God. RAIN. It looks like RAIN! Wait until Doreen hears about this during her perm at three!”

We then reach the excruciating impasse of every dissatisfying trip: the discussion on “what I’d like done”. Whatever I ask for, they will cut my hair into exactly the same style. Always. I will go into the salon asking to look like Mario Balotelli (not necessarily black, but I’d at least like a Mohawk), but I know that all I shall ever get is me. Four weeks earlier.

What pisses me off most is that I know my personal vendetta is ultimately a thinly-veiled jealousy. Because, and it pains me to admit this, last month, my hairdresser, running his hands in a (though not unwelcome) somewhat sexual manner through my hair, dropped the life-changing bombshell that my hair is thinning. With a future of high-waisted trousers, golf, and Old Spice facing me, this is what I have been reduced to.

Growing my hair was my last chance. I can’t do charming, nor funny. What my hairdresser was really saying when my hair was thinning was: “Son”, as he puts a reassuring hand on my trembling shoulder, “You’ll never look like Robert Plant. I’m sorry. You’ll never get laid.”

-Matt Reynolds

-PHOTO/US Navy