Getting a haircut

I have simple hair. It’s really not a big production, clippers on the back and sides, scissors on the top. Most places take about 10 minutes.

I met Charlie the barber about 4 years ago, drew him in the SuperCuts lotto — next up. Charlie takes pride in his workmanship, took about 25 minutes at SuperCuts. Soon after I started to see him regularly, he changed shops (turns out SuperCuts canned him for taking too long). After SC he cut hair at Recardo’s. Recardo’s was cool and old school, leather barber chairs and girlie mags in the waiting area. They would give you a shave with a straight razor and a hot towel. Like a man spa.

Recardo moved to Vegas, and now Charlie cuts hair out of his home. It’s a little place in Glendale where his mother had lived, still has lots of her stuff. I sit in his kitchen and he goes to work for a good hour and 15 minutes scissors, clippers, more scissors, he seriously cares more about my hair than I do. At the end he holds up the mirror and another one so I can see the back. I can’t see jack without my glasses, but it would hurt his feelings if I didn’t look.

A little warning here, the story gets a little gross after the jump…

So now that he works out of his house, Charlie only cuts hair on the weekends. During the week he has a different job. Charlie works for a company that does bio-hazardous cleanup, aka scrapping guts of stuff. Somebody blows their brains out, these guys come collect the brains, or an old lady dies alone in her house and nobody notices for three weeks until the neighbors start to complain about the smell, yep it’s my barber to the rescue.

This time he’s telling me about a “pack rat” woman who had 3′ – 4′ of garbage all through her house. She would pee in empty glass jars and leave them around. Charlie tells me how he is walking through her house and suddenly crash, the “ground” below him drops out. It turns out the she had a glass coffee table so covered in garbage that he didn’t know he was walking on it. Thankfully in this case somebody found her before she died, and she is now getting the help she needs to cope with her serious mental illness.

The problem is that I’m totally repulsed and don’t really want the guy touching my hair while he talks about shoveling liquid fat out of a couch, and yet it’s like an accident that I can’t look away from. Plus it’s the best haircut I ever had.

Some names have been changed.

14 Replies to “Getting a haircut”

  1. I feel lucky to be the type of guy that doesn’t care too much about his hair style. I can and often to go to a different barbershop each time I need a haircut. My order is the same every time, “#2 on the sides, short on top.”

    I’ve never paid more than $10 total for a haircut. The only thing that I ever question myself about afterwards is the tip. I never know what an appropriate tip for a basic haircut should be. I grew up getting haircuts the same time as my dad and always let him worry about the tip. I think he normally tips about $2 to each barber (his and mine). What do you think is fair? Do other people tip barbers?

  2. You have a great barber and you’d leave because you’re repulsed by a story? Grow up, tip the man, and be grateful.
    Baz–you probably look like you pay $10 for a haircut. Tip 20%.

  3. Rachel, don’t you have anything better to do than make insulting comments all day long? If you find all of the posters from bLA so immature and ill-informed, why are you spending so much time here?

  4. I actually wasn’t that insulted by Rachel’s comment, and it’s kind of the same conclusion that I came too. Suck it up Jim. :)

  5. Rachel Cohn. That sounds like the name of some neglected, middle aged, housewife. I love reading her comments because they remind me just how snobish L.A. women can be…

  6. Hey Mayfield, not all LA women are snobby… *sob* In the meantime… uh, whatcha gonna do about the hair d00d?

  7. Jim, I think the thing that bothers me the most about this story is that someone who does that kind of cleanup still needs to cut hair on the side for extra money. I feel like someone who deals with that kind of grossness should be paid the big bucks.

  8. I’m not insulted by rachel’s comment either. My hair style is more dependent on my own styling than a haircut. I personally don’t need to pay more than 10 bucks for a haircut. Thanks for the tip on the tip!

  9. I am Rachell with two ll’s
    and I recommend rudys barbershop,
    ask for marissa, she rules my
    unruly locks. A haircut is 21$.
    Happy new year.

  10. MY hair? I don’t cut my hair but once a year or so, when I take scissors and then a strait razor to it. Everyone other guy can keep their “long on the top, short on the sides, add a little product” doos. I grow my shit like a caveman.

  11. Anyone know of any places in LA that do dry haircuts for people with long hair? I read about a place in NY called The Long Hair Group, and was wondering if we have anything similar to that here.

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