Home > Magazine > ChaiTime > Fun Time: DON’T TAKE THE RISK OF CUTTING YOUR OWN HAIR



Compiled/partly written by Melvin Durai Email Compiled/partly written by Melvin Durai
June 2020

While some men get a haircut every month, I get a haircut every two months or so. That’s partly because I’ve got a big bald spot. When my hair grows long, it covers the bald spot, and I fool myself into thinking that my hair follicles have produced new strands of hair. This delusion disappears the moment I get a haircut and the hairdresser does the unkindest thing anyone can do: puts a mirror behind my head to give me a rear view. The only thing I see, of course, is a map of the Sahara Desert.

Despite such indignities, I was quite grateful to get a haircut a few weeks ago. That’s because the hair salon closed its doors the very next day to follow coronavirus- related rules. Many hair salons and barbershops around the world have remained closed for a month or longer. As a result, the most popular search term on the internet nowadays is “How to cut your own hair.” The second most popular search term is “How to correct a bad haircut.” The third most popular search team is “How to get people to stop laughing at you.”

Health authorities have told us that it’s not safe to leave our homes at this time. This is very true. It’s much safer to stay indoors and not be exposed to hundreds of bad haircuts. If you must leave home, make sure you wear a mask that covers not just your nose and mouth, but also your eyes.

If you keep your eyes uncovered, you will see not just bad haircuts, but UGLY haircuts. Some of them are so ghastly that legislators in the State of Texas are trying to pass a law requiring background checks and permits for anyone who wants to buy hair clippers.

Unfortunately, millions of people are so desperate to get haircuts during the pandemic that they’re reading tips and watching videos online. Some of these people, thanks to the home-improvement craze, are addicted to DIY projects. DIY, as you probably know, stands for “destroy it yourself.” The logic behind it is this: why hire someone to mess up your home when you can save lots of money and mess it up yourself? Some people are so convinced that they can do anything themselves that they’ve googled such terms as “how to give yourself heart bypass surgery” and “how to have a baby without involving a single man—or a married one either.”

Compared to such endeavors, a haircut may seem quite simple. But it’s important to remember that hairdressers (or barbers) are professionals who have undergone months of training and gained years of experience. They are committed to giving people good haircuts and manage to do so an astounding 8.5 percent of the time. In comparison, when untrained people try to give themselves haircuts at home, their success rate is about 0.85 percent.

If you are one of those poor souls who have given themselves bad haircuts, please don’t despair. There are a lot worse things that could have happened to you during the coronavirus pandemic. At least you have some options. One of the best ways to correct a bad haircut is to shave your entire head. Just tell people that you did it for religious reasons. It’s against most religions, after all, to scare little children.

Another option, of course, is to wear a hat. This may seem obvious, but there are many attractive hats you can wear until your hair grows back. Also, if you have been considering converting to a religion that requires followers to wear a head covering, this might be a good time to do it.

Compiled and partly written by Indian humorist MELVIN DURAI, author of the novel Bala Takes the Plunge.

[Comments? Contributions? We would love to hear from you about Chai Time. If you have contributions, please email us at melvin@melvindurai.com. We welcome jokes, quotes, online clips, and more.]

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