I’ve been taking the whole Covid thing pretty seriously. That seems like the right thing to do when it has a label like ‘deadly global pandemic’.
I’ve avoided going anywhere more than necessary. I’ve seen precisely one friend since March 2020 (outside, of course). And I’m pretty sure the person I’ve spoken to most outside of my immediate family is the postwoman.
That meant I went 16 months between haircuts, and the result was… not good.
It started pretty bad.
Then it got worse.
Then a little better, in a 00s Puddle of Mudd kind of way.
Then much much much much much much worse again.
I tried to have some fun with it, as this Very Important Work Video shows (guess the song, and the band I’m hoping I don’t get sued by).
But, mostly? I wanted it gone.
See, I want you – no, I need you – to understand, it was never my intention to get that hair.
I have no pride in it. I never made a choice. This is not who I wanted to be. It’s just that a long, flowing mane felt a small price to pay to avoid spending 45 minutes trapped with a stranger touching me.
But, while these unprecedented times necessitated an unprecedented hairdo, mine had definitely crossed the line into a hairdon’t.
So my options were clear – wait for stress-accelerated male-pattern baldness to fix the issue, or get a haircut.
A Covid Haircut
Now, the haircut was good. I felt like a new man after I got it (which is good, because my wife was feeling like a new man before I got it).
But the visit to the barbers itself was… not a fun experience.
I mean, I never enjoy a haircut – smalltalk? Predominantly about football, beer, or watching the football with a beer? No thank you.
But this time was particularly harrowing. You know, because of The Disease.
(In fact, for the most accurate idea of how it went, imagine this being read to camera in a crying Blair-Witch style).
My barbers was appointment only – you had to book online, and when you did there was a big ol’ page of Covid restrictions in place you had to accept.
All good ideas, and all enough to keep me reassured.
But it was, of course, mostly bollocks.
Now, I get that there would be health and safety implications from trying to cut hair from 6ft away, so I’d need to be outside my comfort zone. But the one thing, THE ONE THING, I thought we’d be able to get right by now is the masks.
Face masks – perplexing people since 2020
Give him his due, the guy cutting my hair was wearing a mask. The problem was, it kept falling down leaving his nose uncovered.
YOU’RE NOT WEARING YOUR MASK CORRECTLY IF I CAN COUNT YOUR NOSE HAIRS, GARETH!
As for the other people in there, of four barbers, only two had customers. So the two without anyone were rocking the mask-free lifestyle, just wandering around the place, breathing on everything.
The other barber though? Him and the guy he was working on had their masks all up over their noses and everything. They were my heroes.
… that was, until the beard-trimming, where the mask lay forgotten on the floor for a good 20 minutes.
When I normally get home from the barbers, I tend to jump in the shower. But I don’t usually scrub myself raw while crying and wondering if gargling battery acid might somehow help.
So here we are. I have a new haircut, and look like a respectable member of the human race again. And all it cost me was £17, a week of stressfully checking my temperature and a weekend Covid test.
Worth it? You be the judge.
(But the overwhelming response has been yes. Yes it is definitely worth it. With added “why the hell did you wait so long?”).