Polly the barber

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The Family Barbershop, owned and operated by Polly and Melissa, is an old fashioned shop located on the north side of town. From time to time I stop in when I’m in the area and get a haircut and I’m always perplexed at the kind of cut I get. At times, Polly, the master barber seems to not listen to anything that you suggest regarding your hair. When you leave her chair, you’ll have a super short, clean cut, I don’t think she has but one blade, a triple 000! Over the ears, completely shorn and she is very forceful in the way she handles her customers. She seems to really take pride in the fact that no one leaves her chair with much hair on their head.. Selecting a number when you walk in will dictate your turn in line, and which barber will cut your hair. One day my wife and I walked into the barbershop, me for a trim, and my wife had mentioned she needed her pixie cleaned up. Her normal stylist was on maternity leave and her hair was somewhat messy, especially on the nape area. I entered the shop and was immediately greeted by Melissa and guided toward her chair. Melissa seemed to really listen to your instructions an took time to give you the perfect cut.

My wife stopped at the entrance and was on her mobile phone, and we were the only ones in the shop as my wife walked in and sat down. We all spoke for a minute and I told Melissa that she wanted to get her hair cut as well. Melissa asked Jill to grab a number, just to keep track of the number of cuts for the shop owners records. “You’ll be next honey, Polly had to step out for a few minutes to run some errands. Jill told her we were in no hurry and Melissa began with my haircut.  After a few minutes, a door opened in the back-room area and Polly walked in with box of supplies. “Do you know they charge over a $100 to service my 76 clippers, that’s highway robbery” Polly exclaimed. After a few seconds Polly walked to the back room and a few more gentlemen entered the shop, collected a ticket and took a seat. “Who’s next” Polly said as she came in from the back room. The first gentleman stood up and walked towards Polly and gave her his ticket “That’s #38, does anyone have #37” she asked. Jill raised her hand and said she did with a smile. “No please, go ahead, I’ll wait, it’s no big deal” “No worries, the gentleman said, as he walked back to his seat and motioned for Jill to take his spot. “You were here first ma’am, so go right ahead.” My wife said OK, and walked over and sat in Polly’s chair. ‘How short are we going dear” Polly said as she tissued and placed the black cape around Jills neck. She told Polly she wanted the same style, just shorter, as her stylist would be away on leave for a few more weeks. “Something shorter” Polly said with a grin. “Absolutely, I can certainly take care of that.” The fact I love short hair and always encourage Jill to go shorter with her cut, was the icing on the cake for me that morning! Then, with no other words spoken, Polly fired up her newly conditioned clippers and pumped Jill’s chair, spinning her around facing the front of the shop. “Chin down dear” Polly said as she rather forcefully pushed Jill’s head down.  Polly started up the nape area and hair began failing in Jill’s lap. I began to wonder what size blade she was using, but based on my past dealings in her chair, I was sure is was short! My initial thought was spot on, as she spun Jill around a quarter turn. Triple 000 for sure, as her nape area was completely scalped and literally down to the skin. Next, she turned to the left side, bent her ear down, and raced the clippers over her ear, leaving a high “whitewall” look on both sides. After 10 minutes or so, Jill was left with a high, kind of bald fade, with her bangs cut short, right across the brow line.

My wife looked down in her lap, all her hair was still piled on the cape. “I hope this will last you until your normal stylist returns from her leave” Polly said, as she again forcefully pressed down on Jill’s head and pulled out her balding clippers. Let’s make sure we didn’t miss anything” she replied, I’ll finish up the neckline with a straight razor in a few seconds. In less than 20 minutes, she looked like a new marine recruit one day after arriving at Paris Island!

Needless to say, when we walked out of the shop, she was pissed beyond no means. Not a word was said on the way home, as she kept feeling the back of her nap wondering what had just happened and then using every word of profanity known to mankind… Over the next six months to a year, oddly enough the new style grew on her somewhat. It was obviously a longer version, and she did let it grow and from time to time, however, she did return to the barbershop with me, just a different one on the other side of town. There, we both would get haircuts and she seemed very content with her new style and had it for about a year.

One evening we are passed back by Polly’s shop on the northside, and I told her I needed to go get a trim, and that she should give the shop another shot. “Like hell I will – you’ve got to be kidding me, I’m not going anywhere near that lady that scalped me.” Melissa, was the only barber on staff that day and after an hour in the shop we both came out with haircuts that we really loved. My wife had her semi short cut, and my high and tight was perfect as usual. “That’s not that bad, we’ll be back again, and hopefully, I won’t see Polly! A couple of weeks later, we were heading out of town on a cruise and decided to stop in for a trim and walked into the shop. It was on the way to the airport and we were pressed for time. I walked into the shop and we both collected a number and took a seat. I noticed Polly on the phone in the back room of the shop, so I assumed she was working on that day. Melissa asked who wanted to go first, and Jill, who was playing on her Facebook account, motioned for me to go ahead. “Doesn’t matter sweetie, go ahead, I need to reply to an email anyway. I sat in the chair and all seemed well. After a few minutes, the nightmare began all over for Jill. Polly walked in from the back room and started blowing off and sweeping the mounds of hair around her chair. “Your next Honey” as she motioned for Jill to have a seat. Jill seemed frozen and somewhat speechless. Jill certainly was not one to speak up and cause any issue, especially if it involved anything that made her remotely uncomfortable.As he sat in the chair, Polly pulled the tissue and cape, wrapped her neck and settled her in.


Just then, Polly’s cell rang and she reached for her new wireless Bluetooth necklace around her neck. “Trying to get used to the new hands-free law” she said as she pushed the device and answered the phone. Polly was speaking presumably with her husband by phone, as she spun Jill around to face the front. I wasn’t fixed on her conversation, as much as I was watching Jill nervously sit in her chair. As the conversation went to something about meatloaf for dinner, Polly pumped up Jill’s chair and in her normal M.O., and firmly pushed Jill’s head down. The big clippers appeared, and, in a few seconds, a repeat of a few years earlier would soon happen. Piles of hair fell to the floor and it seemed she was extra firm and rough with Jill, as she viciously grabbed her head and ran the huge clippers all around her nape and ears. ” I’ll see you tonight” she said, and she ended her conversation. He makes me so mad sometimes, he’s so picky about dinner” she said of her husband. “And just how are we doing young lady, I really apologize for taking the call, but my husband can be a real pain in the ass at times” she exclaimed. “Just like last time, I’m guessing” as she continued to literally scalp Jill – much shorter than even during her previous visit. “I hope your stylist isn’t on leave again” she said. “No, we just came in on the way to the airport, we’re flying out to Mexico this evening for vacation” Jill said. “Perfect, “I’ll take you a a blade shorter, I know you’ll appreciate being much cooler on vacation” Jill smiled and closed her eyes as Polly again fired up the huge Oster clippers and proceeded to take Jill down to a clean, high-n-tight fade, bald on the nape and sides.

We left the shop and Jill was literally in tears. “Do you really like me looking like this” she said as she felt her nape and looked in the mirror. “I think you look stunning, sweetie, not many women have the balls to go that short and end up looking that good. Maybe one day you’ll shave it all off” I said in joking manner. A slight frown came over her face as she continued to rub her nape area. We parked, entered the terminal and arrived at our gate only to see the flight delayed some 2 hours for weather. We sat down, and I walked over to find the nearest restroom and snack shop. I was gone for about 10 minutes and received a text from Jill saying that she had walked directly across from where we were sitting and that she would be in the shop in front of our seats. I returned and walked over and stepped into a gift shop looking for Jill. With no luck there, I came out and walked past the airport barbershop, and saw Jill in the barber’s chair in the window. The barber was an older gentleman, with tattoos on his arms and a crew cut. She noticed me in the window and with a faint whisper, said she loved me, as the barber removed the remaining hair all the way to smooth bald. I waited for her as she paid and walked out, and we waited to board. As we sat in the lobby, Jill asked for our amazon account information. After a few minutes and a quick trip to a new departing gate, I received an order confirmation from amazon with a text from Jill. The amazon order was a $700 order of barber supplies, including a new set of Oster clippers, guards, capes and assorted tools. The following text says it all! “Love you sweetie, If Polly is not available, you’ll need these to keep me nice and clean a few times a week!

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