I grew up with only one fear: the fear of getting a haircut. For many years I was a shy child that didn't like to talk to people, including my barber. I just let her do what she did last time, too timid to chime in about what I didn't like. I'm talking about the bowl cut! All the way into middle school I hid under my over-ear headphones as I got called mushroom head, bowlie, weird haircut kid, and many other names I'm sure you can guess. Even to this day my quiet and awkward tendencies get the best of me when I sit down in the hydraulic chair.
Technology has helped me with this internal conflict. Now I can show my barber photos from my phone depicting haircuts that I want. I have a folder of old pictures of myself with cuts that I liked. Or photos of David Duchovny on season 3 of X-Files. Or images of male models with fades, from that time my friend Rebecca told me to get a fade.
This breaks the ice a bit, and I end up having conversations with my barber, sometimes about stuff she remembers from last time we met.
Obviously I got a haircut yesterday, thanks for noticing
But sometimes I don't really want to talk. Or I just get awkward and don't know what to say. Sometimes I want to just sit and think about what I have to do tonight or how sick "Ride Like the Wind" by Christopher Cross would sound if it was being played on a decent set of speakers.
But unfortunately I have to listen to adult contemporary music playing over the in-ceiling speakers, with a remix featuring the guy next to me talking about how he's going to Vermont at the end of the month.
Obviously I got a haircut yesterday, thanks for noticing. And as you can imagine, it got a little awkward. I didn't know what to say, and I still had a lot of hair to get rid of. I wished I could submerse myself into the music and phase everyone out like I do when riding the train.
Then I began thinking and realized there is a solution for this. Wireless earbuds are here! I can pop those bad boys in my ears and listen to whatever I want while my ears are getting lowered. Maybe a podcast! Maybe that mixtape you sent me that I've been meaning to listen to. No headbands in the way, no wires hanging down my face. I can even just mute the world for a bit. I mean, Bluetooth earbuds aren't the best sound quality and require attention to battery life, but we're talking about a half hour appointment every other month.
Of course this is probably a rude thing to do
Of course this is probably a rude thing to do, and I'm sure my barber just wants to know if I'm still seeing that girl from Florida and if we are figuring things out. This technology is still new and I suppose it would be just as rude as looking down at my phone when I'm talking to that girl from Florida. Maybe once this technology kicks off, society will make a special exception for me to be in a tiny sound bubble while I get a trim off the top.
All that said, there is one problem with wearing wireless earbuds during a haircut: I might forget to tell my barber how I want my hair and she'll just do what she did last time.