There’s a short list of things I love, an even shorter list of things I hold dear and would kill for. Top of that list is my hair. Yes, I have a resided hairline, or a big forehead, no matter how you look at it, I love my hair. This comment may sound a bit strange coming from a man, in his twenties, and with short hair. The amount of detail I put into making my hair before I leave the house is worrying, I picture me and my wife fighting over shelf space for hair products, and God gives her the wisdom not to touch my products, that’ll be immediate grounds for divorce.
I hate it when people touch my hair. So at this point, if I have let you touch my hair, know you are dear to me. Once every fortnight or so, I have to trust the fate of my hair to another man. This thought disgusts me, a stranger running his fingers through my hair, does he know how much feeding has gone into the hair? Nonetheless, I have to, the thought is, however, less repulsive when I remember my barber does the greatest job.
He is a tall, dark and long-nailed man. I have known him for a couple of years now, he rarely goes wrong. However, I cannot take any risk, before visiting him, I have to ensure the good Lord and I are at appeasing terms, then I have to go into rigorous prayers where I intercede for my barber. I pray for a precise eye, a steady hand and a sober mind. It also helps if Manchester United has won a game recently. Unfortunately, I’m not the only one who has realized he’s the best in his trade, so, it is very hard to find him unoccupied. I plan on one day making him an offer of an exclusive relationship. Twice a month, his work will be to trim and style my hair, the rest of the time he can spend supporting Man-U.
This evening, I’m on my way to see him. I’ve added an extra request to God almighty, I want to find him unoccupied. However, I’m prepared to wait for as long needed. The heavens must have heard my prayers, I find him seated in the barbershop, scrolling through his phone from what looks like Sportpesa’s homepage. I make one final prayer as he looks up.
‘The usual?’ He asks waking up from the seat and reaching for one of those Wrapping sheets they use around you.
‘Yes, you know how I like it, short but not too short, professional but spontaneous’ I can feel a smile edging up on my face. He knows how I like my hair cut, despite the dozens of clients he gets on a daily basis, he still remembers what I want.
He turns down the volume on the radio, perhaps to have a conversation as we undergo the life-altering procedure. He dusts off the wrapper a few times then cocoons me inside it, carefully tucking it in my neck. He then gets the clipper, brings it alive by flipping the switch and then soaks it under the cleansing spirit.
I close my eyes and feel the clipper vibrate on my head, cutting down beautiful hair. I don’t mind closing my eyes, it makes the process easier.
‘Wow, that’s some lovely hair you have.’ A sharp voice from the next seat utters.
I open my eyes and look at the reflection in the mirror. A damsel stares back. She looks like she’s just from a hard rock concert, her hair is long at the front and short to the sides and back, she has a nose ring and a beeline of others on her ear, she has one more on the left side of her upper lip.
Is she allowed to walk through a metal detector? Just how much skin is covered by metal? Doesn’t all that metal slow her down? Can I threaten her with a magnet?
‘Thank you,’ I respond to her, ‘and so do you.’ It’s rude not to give a compliment back.
The barber is deep into his work, he barely notices the conversation. I smile back at Miss Metal and close my eyes once more. The rest of the shave is heavy with silence save for music in the distant background. When I open my eyes, I’m exhilarated by the man staring back at me, the one with short but not too short, professional yet spontaneous hair. I pay the barber his due, give a smile to Miss Metal and head home.
I have an interview tomorrow. The details are still scanty as I got the call rather late, I had applied everywhere and I cannot recall all of them. But since I had applied for more or less the same position, I’m pretty much prepared.
It’s 9 PM, I’m cozy in bed, trying to get the whole eight hours sleep experience. But the apartment’s agent is running her mouth about something. Why she chose this day, at night, I have no clue, but it furthers the bad blood between us. She has never been fond of me, despite having an impeccable rent payment record. And I certainly don’t like her, chiefly because she pronounces agent as ‘urgent’. I’m not one to judge, but I do sincerely hope there’s a special place in hell for all who pronounce it the same, those and the people whom you give your gum to take a pellet, and they end up keeping the rest of the pack with them.
It’s a frigid morning, it feels like the morning is a degree away from freezing. The hot water hitting my body is just what I need to combat the cold, God bless whoever invented hot showers. My clothes are neatly pressed and hang. I get dressed, have a hot cup of milk, get all my documents, and head out, dressed to kill, ready to impress.
On my way to the bus stop, I can see a blurry image of a man through the fog, he’s headed towards me. As the man nears, I see sweat breaking from his forehead, his body tightly hugged by a black plain t-shirt, his muscles beautifully wedged between the tee and his bones. He has teal shorts on, covering his waist down to his knees, the rest of his legs is covered with long erect hair. As we pass each other, we both give the other a glance, he must’ve thought I was admiring his biceps. On the contrary, I was trying to figure whether he had just come from a morning jog, or if he was a night-runner. The rest of the walk is pretty much uneventful.
I seat next to the driver, the bus fills up rather quickly as no one wants to stay in the cold. The driver shoots small talk directed towards me, soon he stops his attempts after reading my disinterest. The chilly morning gives a somber mood the rest of the journey.
I get to the interview half an hour late to find a full house. I was advised against wearing a tie as the interview is supposedly super casual, and looks like everyone apart from me heeded the advice. I don’t have a tie, but I’m still smartly dressed, with my leather document holder completing the ensemble. I can feel everyone’s eyes on me. From the few expressions I read, they perceive me as the interviewer. They sit upright, pull down their dresses to decent levels, it’s hilarious when I seat down next to them.
Seated next to me are two beautiful ladies, one of them is a striking image of Whoopi Goldberg, and she has the hair to complete the look. The other, her cousin, has beautiful round eyes and the face of a goddess. They’re deep in conversation and barely notice a stranger take the seat next to them. They were working down their family tree, trying to see who was most spoiled, most privileged and so on. I find myself eavesdropping on the conversation. No, not because I’m a pry, but because it’s a cold Friday morning and there’s nothing better to do than listening to family drama.
One hour later, we’re informed the interview is about to begin. I still have no idea what I’m interviewing for as I’m at a third party agency.
The interview panel is made up of two ladies and one gentleman. One of the ladies makes it nearly impossible for me to concentrate in the interview. She has a ton of makeup, her eyebrows are meticulously protracted, and her lips are crimson with lipstick and her lashes long and curly. I keep letting my imagination get the best of me. ‘Did she do all this by herself?’ ‘How many layers of makeup has she got on?’ ‘How long do you think it took her to apply all that?’ ‘Does she do it all by herself?’ ‘How much wet-wipes does she go through in a month?’
The interview is over and I’m not quite certain how I did. Oh, they mentioned Safaricom at some point, but I think I was too absorbed by the lady’s makeup.
I’m on my way home, they said they’ll communicate via email to the successful candidates.
Oh, here’s an email, I wonder who it’s from…