I’ve always wanted those hairdresser’s scissors. For years, I stared at them in Boots, admiring their specific hairdresser-y shape and that hook thing they have on the top, but I never bought them because I had no need for them, even though I sort of did because for a while there, I had a fringe. I never dared trim it, though, much to my hairdresser’s admiration.
Then there was Boone and the need to cut his hair. We knew that we would never have the luck of that first haircut. It just wasn’t possible that Johnny Sexton would be there to warm the seat for us, or that the coolest hairdresser in the world would be available, or that Boone would sit that still ever again. So, I thought I’d give Kiddie Kuts a try. I did, a few times, and paid €15 for five minutes of torture each time. The second the scissors touched his hair, Boone would wail and then there was the chaos of tears and snot and spit and falling snippets of hair getting stuck to all of it. Grant it, they were fast, these kiddie kutters, and things did turn around once he got his lollipop but it was painful.
Months go by, Boone needs a haircut again and then I remember—the scissors! I tell Joseph I’m going to get them. This makes Joseph very nervous. ‘But, do you know how to cut hair?’ he asks, nervously. ‘No,’ I say, ‘but I’m getting those scissors.’
I half-watch a couple of Youtube tutorials about cutting kids’ hair, try to understand the instructions in this post but they confuse me because they use words like ‘perpendicular.’ I sit Boone in front of the computer with a towel around his shoulders and, miraculously, he goes along with this unqualified Ma hairdresser set up. No tears, just a bit of sweat on my part. When I finish 40 minutes later, he thanks me. Poor kid, he wasn’t to know that he looked a bit like Eamon de Valera circa 1922.
I’ve gained a few more skills since then but still, I don’t really know what I’m doing. I try to ape the actions of all the hairdressers I’ve seen throughout the years, but since I usually close my eyes whenever I sit in a hairdreser’s chair, only to open them again when the hairdryer’s been put back in place, I’m not sure that I’ve picked up all that much. It’s probably why I’ll never figure out how they manage to hold the hair and the scissors and the comb all at the same time. Seriously, how do they do it?
Despite not knowing what I’m doing it, I enjoy it. Actually, I think I enjoy it all the more because I don’t know what I’m doing. It feels a little rebellious, like I should really be leaving this to the professionals. A bit like parenting, now that I think of it.
Why do I get the feeling that my hairdressing days are numbered?