I was tired of coloring my hair. I had been doing it myself at home but after a few years, I couldn’t control the color. I started going to the beauty parlor. There was an appointment every 3 weeks or else I looked like a skunk. I hated going but I hated that white stripe even more. I especially hated when the wind blew and the white roots were exposed everywhere…I felt like a fraud. I hated the time commitment, the expense and the smell.

I decided to see what I looked like without the color. Maybe I would look great? If not I knew I could always start dying it again. I was excited by the possibilities. I made a plan. I vowed to wear makeup everyday and drop 10 pounds. It seemed more probable that I could carry off the gray with a chic look. I cut my hair very short and colored it one more time for old times sake.

As the gray grew out I kept a very short cut. The look was a little spotty for a while but painless. Two months later I was gray….or really salt and pepper. I liked it….with a caveat. I liked it best short, very short. With long hair I felt it was too much gray. Keeping it short was fine but again I found myself back at the beauty parlor every three weeks. No more nasty smell but it was time consuming and expensive. Plus I wasn’t convinced that an expensive hair cut at my age was really making me look so much better.

I decided to try my husband’s barber shop. At Jack’s, no appointment is necessary. Haircuts are $14,  it’s open seven days a week 9-7, and there’s no hair washing which means you’re in and out in an hour. It was casual, relaxed and convenient. I tried out three or four barbers until I found Eli. He is skilled, detail oriented and he listened to me. I felt we communicated well. He was also open to cutting a woman’s hair. The first few cuts were experiments but now I think I look pretty good….even without makeup and with those last 10 pounds


While I conquered the hair cut I didn’t feel completely comfortable at the barber shop.  I didn’t know the etiquette.  It was clearly a man’s world, with gestures, grunts and nods I wasn’t familiar with.  On my last visit, Eli was already cutting someone’s hair.  He nodded when I came into the shop.  I sat to wait.  I chatted with a few regulars and then read a magazine. After a few minutes a man walked in.  While there was a chair opened he gestured and let it be known that he was going to wait for Eli.  That made me nervous. Would he be able to get ahead of me? He seemed so sure of himself. No sign from Eli.  I waited.  Eli finished cutting the customer’s hair.  He cleaned up his station, turned the chair around, looked up, gestured to me and said, “Holly please.”  I was giddy, so happy and relieved and I felt very in.  The waiting man was surprised but what could he do.  I was a regular at Jack’s Barber Shop even without makeup and those last 10 pounds!!!

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