Monday, May 10, 2010
Get a haircut, save a fish
A flurry of offbeat news stories has me once again yearning to pursue my dream job.
I look good in a smock. I love to yap. I want to help save the planet.
Yes, I still dream of becoming a barber.
I’m perfectly charmed by the news that Matter of Trust is harvesting mountains of hair to sop up all the oil spilled in the Gulf of Mexico (and is it out of stubborn Anglo arrogance that no one ever calls it the Mexican Gulf?).
Here’s the note from their website:
"Anyone and Everyone: salons, groomers, individuals can sign up to donate hair and fur clippings and nylons for our Oil Spill Booms. Our Excess Access program sign up is FREE, fast and helps us to coordinate the masses of donations.
CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP TO DONATE HAIR / FUR / NYLONS and get a delivery address emailed. Warehouses are small, so we're not posting on the web, we're orchestrating how much goes where all along the Coast. We all get it. We shampoo because hair collects oil!
Thousands of pounds of hair and nylons are coming in by UPS and FED EX from every State in the US and from Canada, Brazil, France, UK... Booms are being made all along the Gulf Coast near beaches and marshes. What a community feeling!"
All I can say is, “Bravo! Hip! Hip! Hair-ay!”
This would be the focus of all the banter at my Main Street Barber Shoppe, (open Tuesdays through Friday, 10 a.m. -- 6 p.m., Saturdays 9 to noon). I’d share with all my customers the news that some fresh thinkers have found a way to combat a nasty pollutant with something so green, or in my case something so frosted brown.
I’ve always thought barbering would be the perfect job because it shares many of the qualities I enjoy in my primary occupation, that of avid bar patron.
I love to sit stationary and discuss the topics of the day, joke, listen to music and get a mild buzz on while more ambitious sorts are out nurturing heart disease through their stressful, driven lifestyles.
So if someone could teach me how to cut hair while seated and sipping beer, barbering would be ideal.
But that’s a dream for another day. Right now, my immediate goal is not to be a barber, but to become a person who looks like he really, really needs one. I want to donate something that even PayPal won’t take.
See, when disasters like the one in the gulf strike, I feel impotent in ways a middle-aged man still feels manly enough to discuss without blushing.
I wish I could do something to help. I want to clean up oil-smudged ecosystems. I want to patronize struggling businesses. I want to bath an oily fish and then give it to a bayou chef who’ll cook it up and serve it to me with some tasty red beans and rice.
I want to do something other than sit and get depressed about my inability to do anything but pray.
So now I’m excited because I’m helping by just sitting here and sprouting hair. In fact, growing hair for a reason might be my most productive endeavor since I started blogging.
One report I read said hair grows 1/2 an inch a month. That sounds skimpy to me. The exuberant hairs up my nose grow that much when I’m watching one hour-long episode of “Survivor.”
Still, given my track record, I know my efforts to grow enough boom-worthy hair would be half-assed -- and would still be even if I remembered to shave the unsightly patches from both sides of that plush region.
The idea is generating widespread interest. In an era when any 50 percent of the population thinks the other 50 percent are idiots, this is one solution that’s garnering universal support.
Everyone has a suggestion. Some are saying, “Shave all the hippies!” Some are saying, “Shave all the Rastafarians!” Some are saying, “Shave all the dogs!”
We’ll save the gulf with a Great Hairier Reef!
I’m wondering where we can find just one Rastafarian hippie dog for me to shave.
That’d be a good test case for a budding barber with sharp scissors and shaky hands.