*/Begin Rant/*

The world is being overtaken. Slowly, but surely, a horde of mousse-wielding stylists is displacing one of America's greatest demographics. The Barber.

The Barber is the man who will cut your hair for six bucks in under twenty minutes. He's the man whose only tools are a trimmer, a pair of scissors, and a comb. His shelves hold no shampoo, no mousse, no sea kelp fucking protein rinse. Maybe some gel. Maybe.

These fucking salons, dotting the landscape like pustules on a donkey's ass, have become so prevalent that sometimes you have to drive miles out of your way just to find a barber pole. In Poughkeepsie, at dear old Marist College, I have found one. It is attached to a little hole-in-the-wall barbershop on Route 9. Run by three old Italian men, it has no name. Among my housemates, going to get a trim is referred to as "visiting the three wise men."

You walk in and take a seat. There's always Sinatra on the radio. The magazines are a month old, with titles like "Popular Mechanics", "Sports Illustrated", and "Time."

When your turn comes up, there is no "So, how about a little color?" or "Oh my God, you would look FABULOUS with a weave." It's just "So, what're we doing here?" The snip of scissors and the buzz of a trimmer are punctuated by "Man, those fuckin Mets, huh?" and "Jesus Christ, kids these days, ya know?" The finished product is displayed with two mirrors and a "This good enough? Wouldn't want you to be too pretty, now." The charge is eight bucks, I hand them a ten, refuse change, and leave happy.

Why is this sublimely masculine tradition dying out? Why have we as a society sold our souls to stylists?

Fucked if I know.

*/End Rant/*

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