A photographer, a barber and a tailor are very crucial people yet the least acknowledged. Let’s first admit that before we dig any inch deeper into this post. Sometimes you have an important function to attend so you wake up early to iron your favorite outfit only to realize it’s torn under the armpits. So you rush it to a tailor who saves your day. Alternatively, before that beautiful scarf finds its way around your neck, it has to go through hands of a number of skilled and semi-skilled tailors but who the heck cares about the hands behind it? You find a very gorgeous photo on instagram and voluntarily double-tap and drool over it and spend the next thirty minutes staring at it and admiring every bit of it, but nobody remembers to acknowledge the guy behind the lenses. If you are a man and want to have a good number of hunnies storming your inbox and flawlessly spitting “sweethearts” and “babes” all over your conversations, it’s very simple – own a camera and know how to focus the subject and blur the background. Once you know that you don’t need to approach any hunny like the rest of us, just carry your camera around then come back here and tell me if you will not attract at least ten hunnies (strangers) who’ll come to you smiling. Hunnies who’ll call you “sweetie” on day one of your conversations and give you blue ticks the moment you send them those fine artistic photos you took with your cam because they’ll have achieved their mission. No wonder the famous saying: behind any beautiful girl’s pic lies a friend-zoned DSLR camera man. Enough with cameras and camera guys.
I like my hair short, short because it gives me easy time to get ready for class. If you happen to be a hunny and men who keep Afros and dreads are your type then I’m waaaaaaayyyy out of your league. The other day I had just left my beards unattended to for two weeks and I could see the rage that came from my mom’s eyes whenever we interacted. But I think she was just being jealous because she didn’t want me to compete my dad who had just done away with his hardly a week earlier. What do you do when your mum tells you to reduce that thing then you inform a few girls in your circles about it and they tell you to keep it cause it’s one of the reasons they hang around you? You will listen to the hunnies and keep your beard, right? You are lying. Me I listen to my mum than to anybody else because she’s seen me through thin and thick. So I shaved and dissapointed those hunnies because if it’s the hair under my chin that keeps them close to me then to hell with them, I am more than just hair.
Earlier this week – on Monday to be precise, I rushed to Rongai to get a cut from my Kinyozi. There’s this guy that has been shaving me for 12 months now. Look, for one whole year no one else has ever touched my head and it’s not like I shave once in a blue moon, I do it frequently (make it after every two to three weeks). I can be that faithful. I am team loyal. Ama based on my consistency to my barber, on a scale of 1-5 where do you guys rate my loyalty? Well, so before I left my pad I hollered him just to confirm he was there. I left my room at 6 in the evening but due to the heavy traffic congestion, I ended up getting there 25 minutes to 7 when darkness was just kicking in. I find him attending to another guy so I wait. Done, he wraps that cloth around me, combs my hair then asks “kama kawaida?” which I nod in agreement. Then I direct my attention to my laps as opposed to the large mirror in front because of the reasons below.
You see, I have a dislike for mirrors especially on two occasions – the first occasion is while I’m having a haircut and the second is once darkness sets in. I’ll explain. I don’t like staring at the mirror when my head is being worked on cause the last time I did that (two years back), I found myself shouting to the barber “boss! Sikusema uninyoe hivyo” which he didn’t take kindly. So he switched off the shaving machine, held it above my head and responded ” si nikupee machine ujinyoe?” which attracted a 10 seconds silence then later “najua kazi yangu mzae” he added. I had to identify an alternative spot during the remaining session only for him to finish and ask me if that’s the style I wanted. And when I checked in the mirror, he had done it exactly the way I wanted. From that time, I never plant my eyes on the mirror in the middle of a shave. Secondly, I don’t look at the mirror once darkness sets in because I don’t want to die. I grew up believing that staring at the mirror at night would earn you a direct ticket to hell – repercussions of checking yourself in the mirror at night were that instead of viewing your image, you’d see ghosts and when you see ghosts you die and go to hell right away. AND I AM NOT READY TO GO TO HELL, at least dying is not a bad idea.
I said this guy has been shaving me for the past one year, right? Ok, so he starts his job and spends the next 20 minutes on my head. By the time he finishes it’s 7:30. When a guy has perfectly operated your hair over a one year period, you don’t have to doubt their work so I stood and handed him 250bob and off I was to my digs. While in the matatu on my way back, I ran my left arm through my head and felt something was not right. It felt so soft I thought I was touching a baby’s bum. The more I caressed my head the more I became agitated to check myself in the mirror. So when I reached home, the first thing was to look for any reflective surface. Luckily, the mirror was right on top of the table. Quickly, I grabbed it and behold! There was another human being staring at me, for now just know that I screamed and dropped it on the floor and sat down waiting for my death because my mind told me that the one staring at me was the famous ‘ghosts’ that appear when you check yourself in the mirror at night. I had just acquired a direct entry to hell and because I didn’t want to die watching, I lay in bed waiting for my death. My people, I didn’t die.
The next morning I’m in class and a number of guys reach out for my head and ask me who shaved me that way and I’m like ‘kwani what’s wrong?’ Only on running to the washrooms and standing against that large mirror did I realize that what I saw last night was actually me in my new bald hairstyle, not the ghost I thought. If you didn’t get a chance to see me in that bald head you missed out a lifetime experience. I was a perfect prove that zombies exist and live among us.
As Irvin would frame it, hunnies can only complain of a bad hair day cause they can run back to the salon and have their hair done within two hours. Which is totally different from men because for us, a barber’s overexcitement on your head remains the center of attraction and you have to walk around with it for a whole week silently praying that hair grows back faster. And it’s only during these skewed hair moments that you will bump into people you least expected. But I’m never going to trust any barber again to the extent of assuming they know my normal cut.