September 1, 1979
That day birthed fourth a visionary that had a secret burning inside him.
Bob A. Snippet was given to him at his birth, a perfect name.
He did not open his eyes at first but the doctors assured his mother he would eventually.
She believed them and for the first weeks of his life, he ate at the breast blindly.
In that time, his mother grew ever so irritated at the constant work of her tresses that one day, she visited the local beauty parlor and had it chopped off and banged.
A French bob satisfied her and when she got home, she instinctively breastfed her child.
At that moment, Bob’s eyes lit up and they ate up the image of her bobbed locks.
Over the years, Bob soon became Bobby to the street kids that bullied and befriended him.
His mother kept her tresses in their short state but wanted to try new styles so she grew it out.
Bobby did not like this, he began pleading and begging her to cut it but she wouldn’t budge.
”I don’t like change!”Bobby yelled which got him a peculiar punishment, he was to cut the grass with a pair of scissors.
He was angry at first but as he chopped along, he was soon addicted to the action of snipping, his talent was awakening.
He should’ve thanked his mom and in a way, his own twisted way, he would.
For that night, he snuck into his parents’ room; his daddy was away on business so no one could stop him.
While his mama slept, he cut her shoulder-length locks back to their bobbed form; he snuck away with the snips of black tresses and hid them.
But the calling was still sounding, Bobby went back to her room and when she was on her back he used the scissors to bang her hair.
When all was set, the boy went to bed and slept soundly.
In the morning, he was woken by his mother’s holler.
”You cut my hair!”
”You can’t prove that”
Bobby looked down to see his palm still had a lock of hair.
”What are you going to do to me?”he frightfully asked.
His mother’s fury soon cooled and she sighed,”I don’t know, I mean”
Bobby’s eyes lit up,”Do you like it?”
”I don’t know”, she replied, playing with a strand,”You did a mighty fine job but you still did without my consent”
Bobby learned his lesson when his daddy saw what he did to his wife but his talent lingered inside him.
A new girl moved to town, her name was Cynthia and she had long, blonde hair that was so thick that puffed up when put in tails.
Bobby struck up a friendship with this girl and they played in his backyard every time they could.
They mostly played games of life, like astronaut and house, til one day; Cynthia came over with a new game.
”It’s called Beautician”,she proclaimed as Bobby tried to sound out the word.
She laid out the rules: there is one customer that would have their hair “cut” by the other participant.
Passion grew within him, he elected to be the hairdresser but asked if he could cut her hair for real.
She was hesitant to do it but he assured her he did it before on his mother.
”You better ask your mom to see if it’s okay”,said Cynthia.
”Of course”,Bobby said, running inside; his parents were out and Bobby had the ability to call his mom but he didn’t.
”She said it’s okay”,chimed Bobby, coming out with a chair of their size, a towel, a clothespin, and the scissors.
He sat Cynthia in the chair and used the pin to secure the towel over her shoulders.
Bobby lowered the bands that kept her tails together and grabbed the scissors.
”Here we go”,he smiled as he cut through the first tail.
When it came off, he gave it to he and she almost screamed at how short he went.
Both tails fell to the ground and Bobby bobbed Cynthia’s hair, it was a puffy bob but he was satisfied.
”I-I”,Cynthia stuttered as the towel came off, she ran home before she finished the sentence and Bobby buried the tails before ether of his parents could see what he had done.
He didn’t see Cynthia after that, her family moved without a word.
But he, remained on that street; grade school was a cakewalk for him, his talent remained dormant.
Until picture day.
On that day, while he was combing his blonde hair, he could sense something through the mirror of the school’s bathroom, on the other side was the girls’ bathroom.
He couldn’t go in there but the sense grew within him so when no one was looking, he entered.
Bobby heard, crying, from stall three; so he ventured there,knocked, and asked,”Are you okay?”
”What’s the matter?”
”Shh”,he said,”I’m not supposed to be in here but I want to help”
The stall was unlocked and Bobby entered to see a girl, fully clothed, on the toilet.
”Now”,Bobby sighed,”What is the matter?”
”I’m ugly”,cried the girl.
”My mom didn’t have time to style my hair before she went to work”
”Now”, she sobbed,”I’m going to stay in here til the day ends”
The talent’s intrigues were pricked, Bobby could make her beautiful.
”I might be able to help”,Bobby said.
First, he wiped away her tears and went to go get a few things; some sharp scissors, pin, and giant piece of cloth from the craft room.
He picking up the girl and took her to the Janitor’s office, he was working so he wasn’t in there.
Bobby sat the girl in the Janitor’s swivel chair and covered her with the cloth.
He secured the cape with the pin and with his own comb, he gathered her brunette tresses up and put them in a ponytail.
The girl removed her glasses and breathed in deeply as he chopped away at her tail.
It gave way and was thrown away, with comb and scissors, Bobby trimmed up the bob he made and brushed it to perfection.
She tried to reapply her glasses but Bobby told her otherwise.
By then, a highschooler named Amy Isles came down that way and went into the office.
To be honest, she was horrified at what Bobby did but with a bribe of 8.95, she was at his orders.
Amy brought her makeup kit and applied a light blush to the girl.
A little lipstick here, and the bobbed girl was beatified and let go to have her picture taken.
”What did you need in there?”asked Bobby.
”Needed a smoke”,Amy replied.
Bobby did not get in trouble for he didn’t give his customer his name so another scotfree year was his.
In highschool, Bobby and a foreign exchange student began a romance.
She was Phoebe from Greece and the two went on dozens of secret dates.
When prom season came, Bobby naturally asked her to go with him.
When he went to her house to pick her up, he was told she didn’t want to go.
He asked if he could see her before he left which was granted.
He went up to her room and knocked on the door.
“It’s me”,he replied,”I wanted to say goodbye before I went to the party”
”You’re still going?”
”Yeah”,he admitted,”I was hoping with you”
” I sorry”,Phoebe said,”But I- Argh! I can’t find anything to wear”
”Can I be of assistance?”
The door was unlocked and in Phoebe’s room, he found something that reawakened his talent.
Phoebe’s hair was cut and on the floor were the self-inflicted bits.
”I didn’t know how to style my hair”,rationalized Phoebe,”I got frustrated and snip”
She began to laugh and he two, somewhat laughed.
”Well”,he said,”We won’t be able to party but I have something in mind”
”Alright”,said Phoebe as Bobby seated her at her station that faced her towards a mirror.
That night, another girl was bobbed and, this time, banged; Bobby made the loss up to her by sewing a new dress for her.
It was not hard, with mother on board, all came together to make a fairy-like dress.
During the summer, before she left, he arranged her to be in the dress and meet him at an elm.
With a candle path to him, he strung a guitar to her and she laughed as she danced to the rhythm.
Her hair had grown but it was still a bob so the passion never boil over.
He just played and danced with his girl for one last time.
Freshman year came and went; Bobby got a summer job in its last months, sweeping up hair at Betsy’s Beauty Parlor.
Betsy was a denim girl with blonde curls teased and piled atop her head, secured by an orange bandanna.
Bobby could finally watch girls have their hair done and not look out of place.
One afternoon, Betsy asked him,”Have you cut hair before?”
”Come on”,she laughed,”I’ll give a shot”
” I got a customer coming in”,Betsy informed,”And she told me I could do anything I want to her hair so..”
Bobby got the memo, he put on the apron and readied his tools.
In the meantime, Betsy taught him the basics on haircutting and pepped him up for his outing.
The bell tinkled, a girl, not too older than Bobby came through the doors and smiled at the two,”Hi, I’m here for an appointment”
”Ah yes”,Betsy smiled at her novice,”Bobby here will take you”
”Oh, okay”,she said, walking up to Bobby,”Where should I sit?”
The boy coughed,”Uh, this way”
He led her to a chair and she sat in it with her bag on her lap.
”Come here often?”small-talked the boy as he tossed a cape over his client.
”No”,she admitted,”My folks recently moved here from Greegi, Minnesota”
”You’re going to the highschool in town right?”he queried, snapping the cape’s buttons.
”Yeah”,she smiled,”You go there?”
”Oh, wow”,she replied,”Guess you could show me the ropes”
She chuckled as the chair was pumped up.
”So what would you like done?”
”Well”,she hummed,”My mom is paying for a back-to-school haircut, she didn’t care what I got as long as it was neat and tidy, something short and manageable”
Bobby held up her braid,”So this, you want it cut off”
”Any style in particular”
”Nope”,she consented,”Anything you like”
In that moment, like a match, Bobby’s talent rushed through his soul, it was ready.
With her seal of approval, Bobby grabbed the scissors and took the braid, cutting it.
The girl was taken aback at this sudden adrenaline rush but Bobby didn’t notice.
He cut, snipped, and styled her hair to another perfect bob and he was proud that he could finally do this openly.
”Wow”, she could only say,”I didn’t expect this but it’s a nice surprise, thanks”
Bobby thanked her as well and rang her up, but then he stopped her,”I’ll pay for it”
”Yeah”,he replied, slipping a ten in the register and then leaning on it,”I just hope we can do this again sometime”
The bobbed girl left shop with a final smile and Bobby turned to his manager.
”You’ve done this before”,she accused.
Bobby was promoted to take wild-card clients and he struck up a relationship with his client, Callie.
She was a regular at the shop and after sophomore year, Callie got a job there as a hair sweeper.
When summer hit its peak, Callie came up to Bobby,”Hey, you free tonight?”
”Yeah, what’s up?”
”Nothing”,she replied,”Could you ask if we could stay after closing?”
When she said we, she pointed to herself then to Bobby, she wanted Bobby to do her hair.
Betsy thought and reluctantly agreed, turning the “Open” sign off as she left.
The two relaxed on the couch for a minute, he turned to her and ask,”Same style?”
She lifted the hair on the back of her head,”Not quite”
Callie walked to the chair and beckoned the boy to her.
He prepped his girl and started forming a bob, like usual, but when he tried to take off the cape, she grabbed his arm.
”I want an undercut”,she said.
He thought a moment, he never used clippers.
But he honored her request, sectioning off her nape and slightly tilting her head down.
Before he took up the device, he needed a little insurance.
”Okay”,he said,”But you have to let me give you bangs”
With that, Bobby picked up the device and feeling it’s vibration, something in him came alive.
He buzzed her nape and wanted to go further but he resisted such a temptation.
Bobby brushed off her nape and she felt it with her hand, up and down.
”Feels nice”,she said,”Thanks”
Bobby switched off the clippers got to work fringing her.
But his tremoring hand could not get the bangs straight, forcing him to use the clippers.
With them, he got them level; his urge came back, telling him to cut more til it was all gone.
But still, he kept to his standards and finished the fringe.
They cleaned up and left together, holding hands.
The two were not a couple, however, just business partners.
Callie moved away when the summer ended but Bobby moved on, he had a job and nothing more needed.
He styled hair for dates, weddings, and family pictures.
After Junior year, Bobby was asked by Betsy to go on road trip with her since he wouldn’t be able to come to work while she was gone.
” I can hold the fort”,Bobby insisted so Betsy again reluctantly relented.
The days of her absence were slow and steady, one day, he barely had any customers.
Until two days before Betsy was due to be back.
Early shift hours were slow, when seven rolled around, an asian mother-daughter duo entered.
The mother looked around,”You the only one here?”
The girl was about his age but very attached to her mother, she was kinda childish in her manner and wardrobe; very outthere color palette.
But she was very much a teenager.
”I’ll head over to another salon, you take my daughter”
She waved us off before Bobby could say a word, the girl was mine.
”So, haircut?” Bobby asked and she nodded.
Bobby let her into his chair and she was kinda bouncy in it.
”So, what style?”,was all Bobby could manage to say.
She didn’t speak, he thought she couldn’t speak.
He gave her a booklet to look over and choose a style.
After many minutes of thought, the girl hadn’t chose a thing.
Frustrated, he took back the booklet and stood over her,”How about I choose your hairstyle?”
She nodded so he prepped her and pumped the chair.
He gave her a bob and called it good, she loved her new style but he just wanted her out of his hair.
When the cape came off, her mother burst through the door, soaking wet up top.
”Freaking water broke”,she huffed, she became less angry when she saw her daughter,”Good, you cut it short, manageable”
” Yeah, is she-“
”She’s autistic and mute”,the mother huffed, almost crying,”Could you?”
”Yes, of course”,Bobby said, letting the girl off the chair.
”Thank you”, said the mother, walking over and taking the throne,”You wouldn’t believe the nerve of some people”
” I hear ya”,Bobby replied, caping the woman,”Now, what are we doing today”
”I don’t know”,she sighed,”It’s been rough, the past couple weeks”
”How so?”asked Bobby, drying the wet hair.
“You see”,said the woman,”We’re new here”
”Everybody is”,I said
”Well, it’s just… my daughter is going into her senior year of highschool in town”
Bobby did not relay the face he was in his senior year and in the town’s highschool.
“And I think my husband is cheating on me with a girl not too far from our house”
”That’s rough”,Bobby said.
” I know”, she sighed,”You know what, I’m done, cut it all off”
”To the skin, boy”, she ordered.
Bobby thought about refusing but with the words”I’ll pay whatever you like”, he was forced to.
He cut her a bob and with a beating heart and adrenaline pumping in his bloodstream, he buzzed then completely shaved her head.
”Excellenté”, she said, rubbing her bald scalp.