I HATE having my hair cut. The social aspect of the occasion is fine. After all, I’ve known my hairdresser, Alan, for years and he is an artist.
What kind of artist may be open to discussion, but he is a brilliant raconteur and font of knowledge as well as wielding the blades of his trade as skilfully as D’Artagnan.
He also has hair like a Musketeer – long, blonde, wavy and lustrous – and, as I tend to wear my own locks in similar fashion, he is the perfect coiffeur to keep them in the style to which they have become accustomed.
If the 17th century ever makes a comeback, Alan and I shall be in the forefront of fashion. Until that happens, we’re not.
Of course, I’ve had long hair since I wore beads and an Afghan coat in the Swinging 60s. In those days one of my best friends was a barber. I lived in the flat above his shop. A visit downstairs was another social occasion.
As my hair got longer I transferred my trade to a chum who was a ladies hairdresser. He trained with Vidal Sassoon and went on to have his own chain of salons in London and Los Angeles. I really was spoilt for style in those early years. There were also disasters.
Like the demon barber in a back street of Blackburn who could have scarred my psyche for life after all the pampering I had enjoyed. It was my own fault. You should never be too forthright on a first visit.