- The first guy my mom took us to was Vince on Spring Road. I remember he had a sort of bullfighting theme going on in his shop. I had to sit on a booster so I was up high enough. He usually had a Cubs game on. I seem to remember him being a bit of a bigot. He was the master of the straight bowl cut, like the one in my avatar. You got one sucker and one Bazooka when you were done.
- While at University of Illinois, there was only one barber shop I could find - Terry's. For my fellow U of I alums, it was right next to R & R's Sports Bar. Terry had Playboys to look at while you waited. He was also the first one to shave my neck with a straight razor and hot shaving cream.
- During summers, I had abandoned Vince and went to Charlie. He was old as dirt, but he cut my hair really short, which I liked. Plus, he was super-nice.
- While studying abroad my junior year, I let my hair grow out. Charlie had given me a near buzz-cut before I left, so by April I was sufficiently shaggy. We were traveling in Italy (Florence) when I got up the guts to get a haircut. I found some little shop on some side street and asked if they spoke any English. They did enough for me to explain what I wanted. They were amazing. They didn't use electric clippers, but the speed with which they used their scissors was almost equal. One of the best haircuts I ever got.
- Between college and moving to Michigan, I went to York Barbers (Charlie had died by this time). It was an talkative Italian guy and a quiet Greek guy. The Greek guy was the better of the two, but it was all luck as far as who you ended up with. Like, if the Italian guy was free, I would never have had the nerve to tell him, "It's OK, I'll wait for the other guy." Kind of like that one Seinfeld episode.
- After I moved here I went to Louie. He was another old-school guy. He'd do the straight razor neck shave and he'd always use some sort of old man hair tonic when he was done. One day I went over to get a haircut and he was gone. I think he died.
- Occasionally, if I knew I was going to be in Chicago, I'd wait and get my hair cut by Tony Schwartz. His shop was right by Paulina, Lincoln, and Roscoe. He was an old guy who had cut hair in Germany for lots of politicians and entertainers. He had even cut Irving Berlin's hair. I actually got my one and only full straight razor shave from him. It is an intense experience with the hot towels and face massage and everything. It feels like he's gonna cut your face off. Every guy should get one once in their lives.
A Post About Barbers...
As you've probably noticed, my posts lately have sucked donkey dick. I just haven't felt creative or inspired. I got a haircut yesterday, which prompted me to remember all the people who have cut my hair over the years. Except for a brief stint in high school when I went to a unisex salon-type place, I have gotten my hair cut by barbers. I'm not guaranteeing anything funny or even mildly amusing, but who knows?