I don’t go hatless near playgrounds anymore because I don’t want to upset the children.
There’s this recurring nightmare where I do exactly that and a terrified boy spots me. He instinctively reaches up to touch the hair on the top of his head to reassure himself that it is still there. He’s relieved to find that it is, but his eyes continue to drill me, because in my style he sees the death of all his dreams.
Any modern boy would be perfectly justified in doing this because parents in Georgia are using my haircut to shame their sons.
There are at least five elements at play in this “trend”, if it can be called that.
- Children misbehave
- Acceptable methods of discipline are in short supply
- Many men, as they age, lose hair
- Men try to hang on to as much hair as possible
- No child wants to look like one of these men
The inevitable result is the haircut punishment – trimming a ten year old’s mane to make him look like Mr. Burns from The Simpsons, or me.
As someone who came by this hairstyle naturally, I’m alarmed that my “look” is considered so toxic and undesirable that free spirited children will curb their own of self-expression to avoid it. What does that say about me? That I have, in my later years, turned into a monster, of course. My fate is something to be avoided at all costs. For people in any age group, worry about “what will they think of me” is a powerful lever to change behavior. But at this point in my life I thought I could be a positive role model. Instead, I’m being used as a a bludgeon.
Behave, or it’s this!
A word of advice to the kids: If you think following the rules will guarantee you a full head of hair forever, you should reconsider. I behaved and wound up like this anyway, so you’re not completely out of the woods.
And to all the barbers out there – I know at one time barbers were also surgeons and there was a lot of blood involved. As you might imagine, that association made people hesitant to sit for a simple haircut. Now that those days are gone, do you really want to equate the barber shop with punishment? Sure, it may bering in some business today, but when those children grow up, they will have a built-in haircut/humiliation association.
Do you really want that?
Share your worst haircut experience.