Sunday, August 05, 2007

the demon barber of fleet street

Cal got his first haircut about seven weeks ago, and we got some good mileage out of that, but now he's starting to look a little bit like Ron Burgundy again, which is an especially unfortunate look in August, what with the sweating and matting. So Joe (who, with the easier work schedule, has recently been able to assume some of the kid-wrangling responsibilities that were heretofore solely my domain) made an appointment for him this past Thursday at the kid's haircutting place. This did...not...go over well. While he tolerated the whole haircutting ritual reasonably well last time, Call apparently decided in the intervening weeks that getting his hair trimmed was one of the most SCARRING EXPERIENCES OF HIS LIFE and as a result started freaking out when repeat attempts were made. Neither "Thomas the Tank Engine" nor the prospect of sitting in a chair shaped like a motorboat could placate him, and eventually, the mission was aborted.

"We could just hold him down," the kiddie hairdresser blithely told Joe, "we do it all the time." And in fact, that is just what they were doing to a one-and-a-half year-old struggling in the chair next to Cal, who was, per his parent's instructions, getting his scant hair shaved into a mohawk. (See also: using your kid as a billboard to advertise your own coolness. But who am I to judge, I got Cal a jean jacket and red Converse sneakers. The 80's! They're back! But I digress.) Joe, however, figured as I would that the best way to get Cal to submit to a haircut at some point in time is just to let him chill out and try again another day, as opposed to bodily pinning him to the chair and coming at him with shears. So they called it quits, though not, it should be mentioned, without charging us 50% of the price of the haircut for the two locks of hair they did manage to snip.

Joe actually needed to get his hair cut himself this weekend, so I thought that it might be a nice strategy to bring Cal along, so he could witness the experience, and reassure himself that, despite getting his hair trimmed, his father did indeed survive.

I'm not quite sure if we got the reaction that we were looking for. In my wildest fantasy, I was hoping that afterwards, Cal would clamor for a haircut himself, perhaps climbing into the salon chair and dictating the length of his own sideburns--though I would have settled for amusement or interest in any form. However, I think the expression on his face speaks for itself.

Sheer, slack-jawed horror.