My son has thick, unruly hair. If he were a girl, I'm sure this would result in long, flowing, fairytale locks. For a boy, it means a haircut every 4 weeks. Yes, I could go the other route and let him grow it to his butt. But really? Child androgyny is not Cool on any level. (Do you hear me, Kate Hudson? Let's hope someone buys you a giftcard to Supercuts for this next baby.)
I started nipping my kid's hair with the safety scissors when he was about 8 months old. I was not one of the moms who waited until the first birthday for a haircut, then cried and saved the tufts of hair in a ziploc baggie. (Because honestly? When you come across that bag o'hair in a memory box 10 years down the road, your first thought is going to be: "RAT!" And beating a bag of your child's hair with a broom is not a proud parenting moment.)
Once I could no longer cut his hair myself (read: used my husband's dull "body hair" clippers on the kid, and left him with a polka-dotted head. Sidenote: Body Hair Clippers? Seriously?), I enlisted the professionals. Three years went by without incident, and I beamed with pride at my well-behaved son while other kids had meltdowns at the barber shop.
Fast-forward to present day. He has become THAT kid. I have to take him to a different salon every month, lest we get blacklisted. (Or arrested. It can't look good to the other salon patrons as I wrestle my kid's head into submission just to have his neckline trimmed.) Last month I told him, "If you are a good listener during this haircut, I will buy you whatever you want for lunch." And my lovely child said: "Well, I guess I'll just be hungry today!"
Yesterday at the local hair-dive, we ended up with a stylist from Poland. And here is a sample of the dialogue exchanged between my son and the Polish hair lady:
My son, upon hearing her accent: "What are you, Italian or something?" (I would like to say that I held in my laughter. But I would be lying.)
Woman, after much thrashing by my child: "These trimmers do not hurt you. Let me show on your hand."
Son: "STOP TRYING TO SLICE MY HAND OPEN!!!! AAAAGGHHHH!"
Woman (three seconds into using trimmers): "His ear is cut. He will not stop the moving. I cannot continue like this."
Okay, I know what you're thinking: I was too quick to judge Kate. She is obviously the smart one here. But a big tip turns even the most embarrassing situation into a tolerable one. (And FYI? It would seem my pride costs exactly $20.) So the lady put in some gel, offered my son a sucker, and said a sweet goodbye. His response? "Goodbye! And thanks for the terrible haircut!" Cue the blacklist.