Nalini loves BBS clipper boy cut

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It was early April 2005. My daughter Padmini (called Paddi by us – ‘a’ pronounced as ‘u’ in ‘but’, ‘d’s pronounced as ‘th’ in ‘the’) had just completed her SSLC exams. Her elder brother, Rajesh’s II PU exams were also over. He still had CET exams in the first week of May to contend with.

In our house, my widowed mother-in-law 67, engineer husband Mohan 43, myself Nalini 40 homemaker, son Rajesh 18 and Padmini 16 were there at that time. My father-in-law passed away when Paddi was in 6th standard.

Paddi’s desire for bob cut

Paddi shyly asked me one afternoon “Amma, can I have bob cut in PUC for some time?” I am quite indulgent to most of her desires unlike her dad who is pretty strict. But now I became serious and shouted angrily “Paddi, you know that we do not cut females’ hair in our house. And why at all you need a bob cut? I don’t like it and you know that your granny and dad will blow their tops if they hear what you want. Your long hair is good and keep it that way. Okay?” Paddi got disappointed and started weeping silently.

My m-i-l who had overheard me shouting at Paddi came and consoled her. She asked me why I was shouting at the girl. I told her about Paddi’s bob cut desire in an angry voice. Granny smiled and said “Look Nalini, times have changed and today’s youngsters have their small desires. Why do you shout for such small things? You should have talked to Mohan once about Paddi’s desire before shouting at her.” She turned to Paddi and said lovingly “Paddi, you know that in our tradition females do not cut hair. So do not have such hopes. Try to maintain your long hair well, okay?” What else could Paddi do apart from nodding her head ‘okay’? She was greatly disappointed. At around 4 pm m-i-l said to a sulking Padmini “Paddi, you are upset. Go to your friend Vanaja, play with her and come back before dinner.” Paddi went away to her friend Vanaja’s house. I was perplexed why she sent Paddi away for the evening.

At 6 pm, Mohan retuned from his office. After his evening chores, m-i-l called me and Mohan and started discussing about Paddi’s request. I told him about Paddi’s desire for a bob cut with some anger in my voice. Mohan was also slightly disturbed at his daughter’s desire.

Proposal for Paddi’s gundu

M-i-l: What do you think, Mohan?
I: What is there to think, Amma? We will say a firm no.
Mohan: Wait a minute, Nalini. Amma, today’s young girls have these desires. I don’t want her to do it, no doubt. But, what shall we do if she cuts it on her own a year from now? Kids are kids till they cross SSLC. Once they enter college, they think they are the kings and queens and can do anything.
I nodded in agreement with concern. M-i-l smiled.
M-i-l: Yes, that is the problem. Today, our traditions won’t be maintained by these youngsters, what with peer pressure and all that. Actually this hair thing is a minor one. There are more serious issues on which you have to guide and control her. You may get her co-operation for the other serious things if you concede on this.
Mohan: Yes, Amma. You are right. After all, the girl is okay in all respects. I do not think a haircut will make her astray. But one thing should not lead to another.
M-i-l: I have a different idea. I do not mind agreeing to her getting a bob cut or whatever. But being religious I am uncomfortable with cutting her long hair just like that. And we have never cut her hair so far. So why not all of us go to Tirupati after Rajesh’s CET and get Paddi’s head shaved clean? Hair will grow back. Later Paddi can have a bob cut or boy cut or whatever she wants.
I and Mohan were aghast at m-i-l’s suggestion. For a few seconds both were gaping at m-i-l with open mouth and wide eyes.
I (almost shouting): Amma, what are you speaking? Shaving Paddi’s head bald? How can we do it when we don’t even trim females’ hair?
Mohan (also shouting): Amma, why shave her head? We can do a bob cut directly.
M-i-l (with a smile and gesturing us to calm down): Calm down, both of you. It is only hair and many young girls get a gundu and feel happy about it. Later they also get good and fresh hair, quite often longer and denser. Many say it is spiritually very good to do it. I am of the view that it is good to tonsure once in a while, though I have never done it so far. It is okay if we never cut our hair. But once we are ready to cut it short for mundane purposes like bob cut and all that, we should also be ready to shave it all off happily at a religious place. So let us get Paddi’s head shaved bald. She will get enough hair for a bob cut in 7 or 8 months.

Remembering Kalpana’s gundu

I thought over what m-i-l was saying. I remembered how beautiful my childhood friend Kalpana looked when she tonsured her head as a vow for getting a female child after two male kids. That was about ten years ago. At that time I had a sudden desire to tonsure my own head on some pretext but had dismissed it away. Now that m-i-l is talking like this, she may permit me also to tonsure. Another chance may not come. So why not propose it now? And I remembered Spandana, my boss in the Bank when I was working. That was before I quit the job after Rajesh was born. Spandana was about ten years my senior and always had a nice boy cut with clippered back and sides and it looked very good on her. I had been attracted to that style also and imagined myself with that style a couple of times but never had the guts to bring it up in front of my in-laws or Mohan. So now that m-i-l is allowing Paddi to have short hair, why not myself have a boy cut like Spandana for some time?

Decision to tonsure Paddi

I (calm now): One way you are right, amma. On some people, even a gundu head looks so beautiful. My school friend Kalpana looked so beautiful when she tonsured her head as vow after her daughter was born. But will Paddi agree to tonsure her head?
M-i-l: You must convince her that it is good for her and the family.
I: What do you feel? (turning to Mohan)
Mohan (by now calm): Nalini, I think what Amma is saying is correct. We can make Paddi a baldi. But I am not happy with her request for a bob cut. These young girls with bob cuts constantly flip their head to keep the hair away from their eyes and it becomes a bad habit. It is better that she has a boy cut.
I: You are right. Your colleague Nagamani (Mohan’s colleague with an ear level bob)! She is such a nice girl but it is irritating to see her flip her head every other minute. Yeah! A boy cut would be so much better. My senior in Bank, Spandana looked so cute and elegant in her boy cut!
Mohan: Yes. And of course, no unnecessary spending. So a monthly boy cut in a barbershop and not some beauty parlour.
I (with a smile): I am okay with it. But we should make Paddi agree first for a gundu and then for a boy cut.
Mohan: Do not worry. I will speak to her.
M-i-l gave a wide and happy smile and the meeting ended. It was approaching 7 pm.

Paddi came with her usual bubbly self. The afternoon’s tiff with me seemed to have blown over. After some chit chat, Mohan talked to her.

Paddi horrified

Mohan: Paddi, I heard that you want to have a bob cut?
Paddi: Yes, I told Amma so in the morning.
Mohan: But you know that we do not cut females’ hair in our house.
P: Yeah. But appa, why don’t you make an exception in my case? After all, it is hair and it will grow back. I promise that I will start growing it after II PUC.
M: Okay, dear. But can you have a different plan?
P: What do you mean?
M: Look, we do not cut females’ hair in the first place and we have never cut or trimmed your hair. I feel it is sacrilege to cut your virgin hair without first cutting it in a religious place. So if you insist on having short hair in PUC, I will happily agree on the condition that first you must shave off the entire thing in Tirumala and then grow it to whatever you want.
P (her mouth open with shock and looking into her father’s eyes intently, shouted): Ww….wh….aaat? Shave my head? Are you mad, appa?

She immediately held her tongue, lowered her head in remorse and muttered ‘sorry, appa’. She was already tearful. She had never spoken like that to her father or me.

M (sternly): Paddi, I did not expect this from a good girl like you. I know it is difficult to accept what I told. But you could have said it in more polite words. (with mellowed voice) Okay, come on now.

He took her head on his lap, caressed her head lovingly with his left hand and wiped her tears with his right hand. He looked into her with a smile and she smiled back.

Mohan (with very soft and convincing voice): Look Paddi. It is a great idea that you gave of keeping your hair short for PUC. But it should be short enough to make it comfortable. And bob cut is not comfortable though it looks good. Rather a short boy cut would be both comfortable and look good. But there also, we being religious, the first haircut should be full and in a religious place. If we had cut your hair in your childhood, it would have been a different matter. But we did not do it since it is not in our tradition. But now that you want short hair, I prefer that first you get your head shaved clean, grow it back for a few months and have a nice boy cut in a barbershop. I am sure you will look good as a baldi and with a boy cut. So agree happily and enjoy!

The way Mohan said it all was quite convincing. Yet Paddi had doubts. “What will my friends and classmates say?” she said. M-i-l intervened saying “They will definitely make fun of you for a few days but I am sure that that much you can bear, dear. You also will have opportunities to pull others’ legs”. I, with a soothing voice, also pitched in saying “Paddi, agree for this happily. You will really look grand with a gundu head.”

Paddi’s capitulation

Paddi calmed down that day. Next morning she was as normal as if nothing had happened yesterday. After Mohan left for his office, she embraced me, apologised again for her previous day’s indiscrete words and told me that she thought over the whole thing after what appa said. Now she was ready to happily get a Tirumala gundu and later a barbershop boy cut. “But will you also do a gundu and a boy cut like me? It would be so nice, amma” and started giggling covering her mouth with her hand. “Please agree, amma” she added with a mischievous smile. It was a god sent opportunity of getting a gundu head for me, without I asking for it in the first place.

Yet, I was in a quandary. Kalpana’s beautiful bald head and Spandana’s cute clippered boy cut beckoned me. But long years required for regrowth to bum length discouraged me. I looked at m-i-l questioningly.

M-i-l said “Nalini, if you want to do it and Mohan agrees I do not mind”.

In the evening Mohan was happy to hear that Paddi had agreed for gundu and then a boy cut. Then I shyly asked him whether I also could do it – a gundu and then a boy cut. Mohan was shocked and surprised. After composing himself, he said he would be very happy if I did it with joy. I shyly agreed that I would do it happily. “If so, why I should be left behind? I will also get my head shaved” added m-i-l with a bright smile. That night I could not hold my joy of realising my ten year old dream, that too in the right royal way of a family gundu! And did Mohan respond in good kind! I did not give rest to his 6” long dick till 1 am.

Snowballing into family tonsure

And that settled it. The issue snowballed into all the five – m-i-l, Mohan, I, Rajesh and Paddi – getting tonsured in Tirumala soon after Rajesh’s CET exams. The D day came. The five were in Tirumala on the second Saturday of May – it was very hot and heavy rush was there no doubt. The five were in Kalyanakatta with smiling, anticipating faces and distributed between three barbers. One by one the five were shorn bald. It was the first tonsure for us, the three females. And all the three of us felt highly elated with the experience of razor scraping away all the hair on our heads making them smooth and bald. I was ecstatic to say the least as my bum long wet tresses hit the floor leaving a smooth pate. Later when I looked in the mirror I was surprised at my own beauty with a bald head. Even Paddi, who looked very beautiful with her cute bald head, liked her tonsure very much. She said during return journey that she would like to get a gundu again next two summers. And Mohan gave a happy thumbs up. I said that I also would do it again next two summers with Paddi. Mohan agreed for that also. M-i-l was also happy with her bald head. She declared that she would keep her head with very short uncombable hair only.

All the neighbours were surprised to see us the five baldies. I and Paddi happily moved around bald without covering our heads or caring for others’ comments. Paddi joined PU college. She insisted that she would go with a fresh bald head on the first day of classes in early June. So Mohan took her to barbershop the previous day, a Sunday and got her half inch growth buzzed off with clippers to almost bald. Classmates were mostly new and almost all teased her but she did not mind. ‘Bodi Paddi (meaning bald Paddi) was the epithet her friends and even some teachers used and she did not mind it at all. The epithet stuck and even today her classmate friends call her ‘Bodi Paddi’.

By early July all except Paddi and m-i-l had about one to one and half inch hair. The gents got their usual clipper cuts. But m-i-l had about one inch hair and she wanted it to be reduced to around quarter inch all over. I thought ‘Why should she go all the way to a barbershop for this? Why not buy a haircutting machine and do it ourselves?’ So with approvals from m-i-l and Mohan, I bought a set of electric clippers with attachments of various lengths. With a number 2 attachment, I myself clippered my m-i-l’s head to about quarter inch all over. M-i-l felt very happy about it. I felt extremely happy to buzz a female’s head. I decided to buzz my m-i-l’s head like this once a month.

Came August. By then Rajesh got an engineering seat in the government college. He wanted to get a thanksgiving gundu after the classes started in August. So he went to Tirupati with three of his friends and all the four returned bald.

First clipper boy cut in barbershop

I and Paddi both had about two to two and half inches of hair by second week of September. On the second Sunday, the two of us went to the barbershop and joined the waiting male customers who all either raised their eyebrows or giggled. When our chance came, I was the first to go and I asked for a nice and short boy cut. Most of the onlooker customers giggled but I just smiled back. The barber combed my hair with a left parting. Then he bent my head forward and ran the clippers with a no. 1 attachment on my nape high up. Oh! The feeling was so good that I could not help smiling broadly. He repeated this on the left and right sides to about an inch above the ear. The remaining hair was cut with scissors to a nice gradation to combable hair on top. In the mirror I looked very beautiful with this boy cut with clippered back and sides. When I caressed my clippered nape with my fingers I felt so good that I immediately resolved to keep this style for a long time.

Next Paddi sat in the chair. I told the barber to give her a similar cut but the clippered area should be a little higher and closer to skin. The barber complied and made the back and sides almost bald to skin with a 00 attachment. The clippered area on sides was upto about one and half inches above the ears. The top was cut to a short but combable style. Paddi’s haircut also looked very beautiful. On the way back, Paddi caressed her bald back and sides repeatedly enjoying the feeling. Even I caressed her bald back and sides and enjoyed the feeling. In college, again her friends teased her but she gave two hoots about it because she liked it very much. She declared to me and Mohan that she would keep this bald back and sides (BBS) boy cut and does not need bob cut. Mohan and I were very happy. I was also very happy with my nice clipper boy cut and I also said that I would keep this cut till we completed our third gundu about two years hence.

Annual family tonsure

All the five of us got our heads tonsured in Tirupati again in summers of 2006 and 2007. In between tonsures I had kept my head a clipper boy cut with back and sides cut with a No. 1. Paddi got the clipper boy cut with back and sides with a No. 00. In 2007 August, I got Paddi’s style for a change – 00 attachment on back and sides to about one and half inch above the ears. I felt extremely good with that also. So I decided to keep that style. And do I love BBS clipper boy cut!

Annual Tirumala summer trip became the norm. The gents and m-i-l got full tonsure every summer. I started getting my head tonsured in alternate summers with clipper boy cut in between. For a change, after convincing her, I clippered my m-i-l’s head bald with 00 attachment a week after 2006 Tirumala tonsure removing the three mm growth. She liked it very much. So I did it every week for the next two months. Only later she returned to monthly quarter inch buzz cut. Now this is the norm – every summer she gets Tirumala gundu, her head is buzzed with 00 once a week for about eight or ten weeks and later quarter inch buzz cut once a month till next Tirumala gundu. And it is so enjoyable to buzz someone’s head with 00 attachment making it almost smooth!

Paddi’s bob cut

Paddi wanted to continue her BBS boy cut but we told her to grow it long. She got admission for LL.B. in 2007 and started growing her hair. By March 2008 she had hair long enough for a bob cut. We elders changed our mind and advised her to have a bob cut for some time. She agreed on the condition of getting one more gundu in 2009. So she had an ear level bob cut with nape clippered till May 2009 when she again got her head shaved. She looked very beautiful with the bob cut also. She got the bob cut also done in the barber shop. She grew her hair long after the 2009 gundu and by the time she completed LL.B. in 2012, she had beautiful hair till her shoulder blades which grew to mid back by the time of her marriage in 2013.

It is 13 years since that first Tirumala family gundu. Paddi is now 29, married a Mumbai based lawyer Shankar in April 2013 who happily agreed for her to get a Tirupati tonsure a month after marriage and later keep a BBS boy cut. They have two kids – one male and one female and practice law together. She keeps her head a BBS clippered boy cut similar to me. Though she had mid back hair at her marriage she got a Tirupati gundu a month after marriage and returned to her boy cut and biennial Tirumala gundu. Shankar and his mod parents are very happy with her religious biennial gundu and BBS clipper boy cut head.

Latha is a SBS boy cut girl

Rajesh completed M.Tech. in IIT Kharagpur and joined an MNC based in Pune. He married Latha, B.Sc. B.Ed. a school teacher in April 2015. Latha entered our house with bum long hair, but got enamoured of my beautiful bald head which she saw in May 2015 and my clipper boy cut. So she willingly got her head Tirupati tonsured in May 2017 along with the rest of the family and started keeping it a clipper boy cut like me. Only that I get a no. 00 on back and sides (BBS) while she gets a no. 1 on back and sides (Short back and sides – SBS). But the clippering is quite high for both – one and half inch above the ears and a matching height at the nape. They have a female kid born in 2016 and she is carrying the second child.

Of course, they reside in Pune while we three – my m-i-l, Mohan and myself – are stuck in Bangalore. Whenever they visit us, Latha happily buzzes my m-i-l’s head bald with 00 attachment and my m-i-l also happily gets it done by her. After we all returned bald from Tirupati in May 2017, she buzzed my head also bald once a week till she returned to Pune in first week of June. Of course, I also buzzed her head bald once a week till she left for Pune. She had her first SBS boy cut in Pune in September 2017. Her colleagues giggled for some time when they saw her a baldi in June 2017 but later are adjusted to her very short boy cut hair.

Three generation of ladies in our household are all micro-short haired and we are all very happy and proud about it.

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