Surprise for Kari
Author: JimB (C)opyright 11/27/2013
“Hi, Sharon”, Kari said as she walked into Sharon’s Barber Shop, as she had been doing for the forty three years of her life.
The shop was opened by Sharon’s late father who had passed it on to her when she turn twenty-five.
He, Allen, had been a barber since he was seventeen and stopped when he was sure Sharon was interested in owning her own shop. He retired two years after signing the shop over to her.
Kari had been a customer of Sharon’s since she started cutting hair at seventeen.
Before that Sharon’s father was the family barber.
She grew up getting her hair cut in the barber shop, only going to a hair salon when she wanted something fancy done to her hair.
Her mom and dad had been going to Allen before they met, intact Kari remembers being told by her parents that is where they met.
“Morn’, Kari,” Sharon replied as she looked up from caping the five year old boy who had just been placed on the booster sit by his mother.
“Just a few ahead of you”.
Kari smiled and picked up a magazine and begin browsing thought it when her attention was brought back to Sharon’s chair.
The boy’s mother was telling Sharon how she wanted his hair cut, using her left hand and words.
It seems she did not know the difference between boy’s hair cut but knew how short she wanted his cut.
Kari watched as Sharon just smiled and listened, then begin combing the boy’s hair.
With her instructions clear the mother walked away from the barber chair and took a sit, a few chairs to Kari’s left, next to a young girl who looked to be around nine years old.
Kari watched from the side of her eyes, her ears straining to hear what she could, as the mother spoke with the girl, her daughter.
The girl did not look like she was happy with what her mother was telling her. Her face became a little pale then she lowered her head.
Her mother just put her left arm around her, saying, “It’s summer.
“It will grow out by school time”.
Kari tried to look at the magazine but her attention wondered back to Sharon as she was cutting the boy’s hair short, very short, using a comb and scissors. She combed a section and cut it to within an inch of the boy’s head. As the cut strains floated passed down his face he would give a little giggle then smile.
As she worked her way back over his head, the boy pulled his hand from under the cape and wiped his face of strains of hair that had clung to his face.
Kari would glance to his mother to see her reactions. There was none.
Sharon combed and cut, combed and cut, until she had cut his hair to one even lenght all over his head. She put the comb and scissors down and reached under the counter for the big black clippers.
Kari took a deep breath, dropping the magazine on the floor, an excuse she had done before.
She would bend over, with her body coming out the chair, pick up the magazine and sit in the next chair.
Hardly anyone knew she was doing it, it was so simple.
“CLICK” …..’hummmmmmmm …..”, Kari’s heart begin to quicken. She knew what they were going to do, she knew how they felt.
As she sat her mind went back, as her eyes were fixed on Sharon’s chair.
She was fourteen when she first felt the big black clippers’ teeth. It was a surprise she had wanted since she was five, the year she first saw a boy get a “Flat-Top”.
It was Roger, a boy who lived just three houses from them and was seven years old.
That day came back to her.
They, she and her parents, had just entered Mr. Allen’s shop as Roger, who had ridden his bicycle there, was climbing into the chair as Mr. Allen was reading the note he had been handed by him.
The note simply said “FLAT-TOP. Mr. Allen just smiled, laughed, and rubbed his left hand over the boy’s head.
Mr. Allen looked toward dad, laughingly said, showing, dad the note, “Got a call just ten minutes ago”.
Dad and mom begin to laugh, too.
Kari remembered watching as Mr. Allen reached for the big black clippers, turning them on and begin pushing it over Roger’s head. The whole time he was doing this Roger was smiling, giggling, his legs moving up and down under the cape, as his hair fell fate to the clippers.
Within minutes he was sliding out the chair with his Flat-Top.
Mom called him over to brush his shirt off, of hair that had hung to it, and told him “how nice he looked with his new hair cut”.
Kari remembers how she stood up and walked to his side, then brushing her little hand over his hair cut. How nice and soft it felt.
How it gave her a little tingle she did not understand. How her body shivered.
When her turn came and she was seated in the chair, Kari remembers her request, “I want my hair cut like Roger”.
Everyone broke out laughing as Mr. Allen caped her.
Her face was serious, her voice was serious, but it was just a “joke” to everyone.
She remembers walking out the shop with ‘hate’, as she could understand it at the time, for not being able to get a “Flat-Top” like Roger.
“It not fare”, she remembers her comment to her parents as they walked out the shop, with her hair only being trimmed.
“Louise”, Kari heard Sharon call, to the boy’s mother.
She looked up from the magazine she was reading to Sharon’s question, “Is this now you want it”!
Louise got up and walked to the chair.
She looked her son over from side to side, them moved her head over his head, top, sides, and back, “Can you go a little shorter”?
“That would be a High-N-Tight, if I go shorter”, Sharon commented.
Louise smiled and shook her head “yes” and walked back to her waiting chair.
Sharon picked up the big black clippers and removed the attachment.
“CLICK” ….. it came back to life as Kari’s heart almost stopped.
The boy was all smiled as Sharon tilted his head to the left and begin buzzing his hair shorter.
Since, that day each summer, until two years ago, she had tried to get her parent to let her get her hair cut into a Flat-Top.
But, each year it was the same answer, “NO”.
Finally, two years ago she just stopped asking and settled for a chin level Bob.
She closed her eyes as her mind went back to the night her life started a change.
Just two hours earlier she, and her parents, had told family and friend ‘bye” and thanked them for coming to her fourteen birthday party.
After cleaning up they watched television then retired.
Kari was smiles as she sat on her bed looking, again, over the things her parents had given her.
Four inch high heel, FOUR INCHES she could not believe her mom had given her them. The skirt and match blouse from her dad and jewelry from both of them.
Her grandparents had given her some clothing too. But, not the kind her parents had given her.
There was a soft knock at her bedroom door, as her mom peeked in, “Busy”!
She looked up smiling and motioned them in.
The talk started off slowly with how she like the birthday party, then to the gifts she received.
Then, her mom said it.
“Tomorrow afternoon we are taking you to the theater to see “The Party”, she told her as her dad sat behind her mom. “But, first we’ll go out for dinner at TOS’ Cafe”.
Kari was surprised with this, as “The Party” was a adult theme play.
But, it was they who were taking her, it was their idea not hers.
So, they would have to take any blame.
As for TOS Cafe.
It was one of the best restaurants in town, catering to high class customers and food. It was a place a young man would take his girlfriend on their third date.
“Almost forgot”, her dad said as they walked out the bedroom. “Looking at you and your mom, me too, we’ll go to Sharon’s first and get a trim.
“Don’t want my two favorite ladies looking un-neat”.
It was around four in the afternoon when the entered the shop.
Sharon, and the two other barbers, were busy with customers in each chair.
There were a few customers waiting.
Kari remembers walking up to Sharon, who was cutting Mrs. Madison’s ear length Bob, and giving her a kiss on the cheek.
“Thanks for the blouse”, she told her.
Her parents had taken a seat. Kari sat next to her dad.
“You’re next,” Sharon told them as she being buzzing Mrs. Madison’s neck.
Finished with Mrs. Madison’s hair cut Sharon was wiping the chair when Kari was given a nudge by her dad, “You go first”.
She put the magazine down in the chair and stood up.
As she begin to walk towards the chair, Sharon commented, “Wow ….. “What’s this …..
“High heels ….. and, look how nice you are dressed!”
Kari stopped and did a little turn around to show off everything.
“Yes, and they are four inches high heels,” she explained as she stepped toward the chair.
Sharon was now shaking the cape out as Kari stepped on the metal of the chair then sat back crossing her legs.
It was then she noticed how short the skirt was, as it rose up five inches above her knees. She got red face as she looked at her parents.
Her mom smiled, “Do you like the skirt!”
Kari looked down at it again resting almost to the middle of her thigh.
“Yes,” she replied and sat back in the chair.
Sharon caped her, then begin brushing her hair out from a center part , which wasn’t anything unusual. Sharon always brushed, or combed, her hair from a center part because it made it easy to work her hair.
Another thing for the last two years she had been keeping her hair at chin level.
“CLICK” ….. Hummmmm …..” filled the shop.
Kari looked in the mirror she was facing, looking in the direction of the other barbers.
But, they were using comb and scissors on their customers.
It was then her heart jumped a beat, as she realized the sound was behind her.
Her eyes came to Sharon’s eyes in the mirror.
“One FLAT-TOP coming up,” she said as she placed her left hand on top of Kari’s head and gently pushed it down so she was looking in her caped covered lap.
Just before her eyes rested on the cape she caught site of her parents.
They were sitting there looking at her, each with a big smile, he dad winked at her.
They said not a word as Sharon pushed the clippers up the back of her nape and neck, sending hair drifting passed her shoulders then sliding and clinging to the cape.
Her heart was pounding, her breathing was deep.
Her body was doing things it had never done before.
Her lap was filling up with hair.
By the time Sharon begin pushing the clippers from behind her right ear she was able to get her breathing back to normal. She was now looking at herself in the mirror as the clippers came forward over the top of her head pushing a pile of her black hair forward, only to fall passed her eyes into her caped lap.
She noticed her parents were still reading their magazine.
“But, her mom was sneaking a glance at her.
Kari smiled at her.
She returned the smile as she lipped, “Enjoy”.
“Enjoy” she was doing.
Her smile grew bigger as Sharon moved the clippers over the left side of her head, sending the final long hairs to the floor. Sharon turned the clippers off, much to Kari’s dislike, and brushed her face and around her head with the hair duster.
Kari looked at herself, as she saying to herself, ‘FLAT-TOP”.
This is not a Flat-Top. It’s just a ‘half inch buzz cut’.
Then, the clippers came back to life.
Her eyes looked in the mirror just as Sharon was bring a large comb over the top of her head. She placed it even with the top of her now short hair and begin moving the clippers over the comb.
Slowly she moved the comb back then moved the clippers over it, slowly the top of her hair was becoming FLAT, as in Flat-Top.
When the top was even Sharon went to work on the right side pushing the comb upward a little, then buzzing the clippers over it.
Slowly she tapered the right side, then the back, finally the left side. Using the comb and scissors she blended the sides and back with the top.
Then, Kari’s heart almost came to a complete stop.
Sharon had undid the cape and let it slid down covering her lap and the arms of the chair.
As she was dusting around Kari’s collar Kari felt something being tucked into the collar of her blouse.
Her eyes looked at herself in the mirror to see it was a large white towel, the kind barber’s used when they were going to trim shave a customer’s hair cut.
She felt a strange feeling in her body as Sharon begin spreading a little lather along her hair line.
Her heart stopped, to her feelings, when Sharon begin stropping the open straight razor over the leather strap hanging from the right arm of the barber chair.
She almost fainted when Sharon took the first short stroke with the straight razor.
She was so surprised she did not realized her hair cut was over until she felt the “bump” of the chair when it came to a rest.
Sharon had already pulled the cape from across her.
She looked in the mirror at her self.
She had a FLAT-TOP.
A real FLAT-TOP.
Kari looked at her parents, they were all smiles.
As she stepped from the chair her mom was walking towards it.
Sharon had shaken the cape out and was wiping the chair of any hair, ready for it’s next customer, as they passed each other.
Kari waked to the waiting chair next to her dad, looking, while she sat, at Sharon’s chair.
She was capping her mom, when she heard her mom say, “Think I’ll try a Flat-Top, too!”
Kari eyes opened wide when she heard that, but more surprised was her dad. He looked up and almost fell out the chair. “WHAT”, he surprisingly inquired.
“FLAT-TOP”, mom replied.
Sharon turned the chair so mom was facing the mirror behind the chair, which gave you a closer look.
She turned her head from side to side, then brushed her fingers over her new short hair cut.
Mom and Sharon looked at each other in the mirror, mom brushed her hands over the sides of her head then looked at Sharon.
Sharon stepped behind the chair and looked at mom in the mirror.
Then, she whispered something low to mom.
Kari could not clearly hear what Sharon told her mom but it sound like she said “HIGH ….. something”.
Mom smiled and shook her head, YES.
Sharon walked turning the chair back forward, as she did this her right hand took hold of the clippers.
When the chair came to a rest Sharon was on the right side of it.
“CLICK hummmmm …..”, the clippers came to life.
Sharon placed her left hand on top of mom’s head tilting it to the left.
She raised the clippers to the front of mom’s right ear, it was then she realized the clippers did not have an attachment on it.
Slowly Sharon pushed the clippers up the side of her mom’s head clipping what short hair there was there even shorter.
So, short was the clipping it looked as mom’s was being shaved.
It was then she saw her dad take a deep breath almost sliding out the chair.
He knew what kind of hair cut mom was going to get, slowly he settled back into the chair and smiled at her.
She returned the smile as Sharon continued buzzing up the side of her head, from the right side, around the back, to the left side.
Then, Sharon took the comb and combed it back a little then moving the clippers over it, cutting the top shorter but still ‘flat’.
She continued combing and buzzing until the hair on top her mom’s head was extremely short and FLAT.
Mom was smiling all the while.
Dad sat still unbelieving what he had just watched.
But, you could tell he was not disappointed either.
When Sharon was finished she removed the cape, tucked the larger white towel into mom’s blouse and begin spreading lather along her hair line.
Then, to dad’s surprise Sharon began spreading the lather up and back over the right side of her head.
Slowly she spread the lather cover the back of mom’s head and the left side.
When Sharon began stropping her open straight razor dad on sitting on the edge of the chair.
Slowly mom uncrossed her legs and recrossing them just as Sharon began shaving the right side of her head. Slowly shaving the back and left side.
Whipping the excess lather off Sharon next dusted mom off and lowered the chair.
She got out the chair and was greeted by dad with a hug and kisses.
Kari was still somewhat surprised at her mom’s hair cut.
But, dad loved it and that is what mattered most.
Needless to say there were eyes staring at her and her mom that night.
Some people almost fell over their feet when they walked passed their table at TOS Cafe.
As for the theater!
Well let’s just say the looks were just as pleasing as the hair cut but not as bad as they received at TOS Cafe.
Author: JimB (C)opyright 11/27/2013