Sunday, September 25, 2011

How YouTube Sharpened My Scissors

I can cut hair. I've cut Brian’s hair for years. I run clippers over it and trim the stragglers around the ears and, ta-da, I’m done. We did the same thing for the boys for their first three or four haircuts—just with the clippers and a long attachment. Then the other night, after discussing options for Brian’s long-for-him hair, I looked up how to blend guys’ hair on YouTube. I had no confidence in my blending skills.

You know how it’s impossible to watch simply one YouTube video? You have to watch all the suggested, related ones until it’s way too late and the dishes are still dirty and your tea is cold and you promise yourself you will only watch one more montage with cute hamsters drinking out of straws, and how did you live your life this long without watching cats paint? But then somehow you find a video of the last out or run of all the past World Series’ wins and you’re crying into your cold tea because you love baseball and it’s almost October and why are you still awake? 

Well, it actually didn't end up that way for me this time because I was so motivated to get my blend on. I watched this series of short, dry clips of a stylist cutting a man’s hair, each clip a different step of the process. She made it look so easy to blend hair from the short, clipped bottom part to the longer top part! I could so do that. So I did it when I cut Brian’s hair. It wasn't quite as easy as she made it look, and it doesn't look quite as nice as hers, and I was thankful that Brian had football to watch while I cut because it definitely took longer than normal. I'm proud of myself, though it isn't amazing. He says he likes it. I’m still looking at in different lighting and imagining other approaches I could take while cutting it next time. Winning.  

Then Brian noted that the boys’ hair was a little shaggy and so the next day I surprise-attacked Cal. It was only me this time though, no Brian to hold him back. The scene is a blur in my head now. Cal was incredibly good, all things considered, but it took every ounce of my patience, every last minute of a Signing Time movie, and nearly every square inch of our living room covered in hair to give him a passable real haircut. By the end I was covered in hair and there was no way I was going to cut Clark’s too. But I think I did a decent job. Again, it’s not amazing. But it’s not hideous. A few days later I cut Clark’s too, and so now, thanks to YouTube, I have modest confidence in my hair cutting abilities. Thanks, YouTube! 

Freshly-cut Cal, shaggy Clark... and a chicken nugget on a head!
Addendum: Some other cool things that have happened lately: I was a featured blogger on the blog Multiples and More, I was interviewed by writer Anna Deskins for her blog, and I got to listen to and meet one of my favorite poets, Sherman Alexie, at the National BookFestival today. You Inland Northwesterners will appreciate his inscription to me:


  1. Seriously, I should have said what I was thinking today about how good the boys' haircuts looked. I am mucho impressedo. So is your mom.

  2. Oh, good. I'm glad I didn't mistake your silent admiration on their haircuts for a, "How can she let her kids' hair look like a rabid monkey with scissors attacked it?" silence.

  3. The whole post tickles my funny bone, but Alexie's inscription has to be my favorite part, for obvious reasons. ;-)

  4. I'm glad, Hattie! I love that you get the inscription. :)


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