Posted: September 30, 2010 in weird

Every person – you included – faces many dilemmas over the course of their lives.  What type of person do I want to be?  Who do I marry?  Do I take the job offer that requires me to move to a new city?  My parents are aging…what is my responsibility in helping them?  A long time friendship is failing, what do I do to rekindle it?  When do we start having children, and how many do we have?  How do I begin saving for retirement?

Our dilemmas are shared, but unique.

I’ve been facing one of my greatest dilemmas for the last 16 years.

Hair?  Or no hair?

It began innocently enough my 2nd semester, freshman year of college.  The universal “guy down the hall who knows how to cut hair” agrees to cut my hair.  One bad turn leads to another.  Soon enough, the only logical solution is to shave it down to 1/8″ length.

I’m a little perturbed.  But it’s college, and you do dumb things, and they are funny.  Soon enough, I become used to the shaved look.  I realize how easy it is to wake up 5 minutes before class, throw on some deodorant and clothes and go….no worries about the hair.  I discover that a pair of clippers only costs about $20.00 and will last for a year.  My roommate faithfully buzzes my hair for me every Thursday night, so it always looks freshly cut.

Then I graduate and get a job at a church, and decide it might be more professional to have hair, so I begin to grow it back out.  Then I realize what a hassle it is to have hair, so I shave it again.

Then, a couple of years later, when I begin selling cars….again, I think that most car buying adults would be more comfortable speaking to a person with hair.  So I grow it back out.  Then…I shave it again.

Then I grow it back out again.  Then I meet Erin.  Then we get married.  And I keep the hair going for about 4 years.  She has only known me WITH hair, not without it.  Then in 2007, I suddenly decide to shave it again.  She hates it.  I grow it back out.

August 2009.  Shave it again.  Welcome it back with open arms.

April 2010.  Shave it freshly before heading to Arizona on a work trip.  Proceed to grow it back out upon my return, and have been letting it grow ever since, with only a couple of trims to make sure it grows out nicely.

I’m 34 years old, people.  I need to make a decision here.  It’s one thing to have a short hair cut versus a medium length hair cut….the one where most people say, “Oh, you cut your hair a little shorter this time.”  It’s another thing to have hair.  Then shave it.  Then grow it.  Then shave it.  Then grow it.

The picture on top is from September 2009.  The picture on the bottom is from 15 minutes ago.

Tell me what to do.  (I already know my wife’s vote, which carries significant weight)

PS – the look on my face in the bottom picture has no bearing on my feelings toward hair-vs-no hair.  I took a couple of pictures with a smile, and they looked really fake.  So I did my impression of “The Rock” instead.

  1. Carol Reeve says:

    I find that females tend to cut their hair after a break-up. It’s a means of gaining control in our lives. We can’t control the weather or other people, but we can control our hair. Color it, cut it, curl it, straighten it. It’s all about gaining control (even if it’s a superficial sense of it). For men, it’s different. With guys, it’s generally a toss-up between inertia and doing the minimum to get by (this is true of men beyond the issue of hair). All that said… I give thumb’s up to the hair while you still have a choice. Someday you’ll regret not appreciating your hair when it was still an option.

  2. Shelley says:

    Well, you look older with a shaved head. You look younger and more full of life with hair.
    I can also suggest shave in the summer, hair in the winter.
    Have you tried a longer shave number on top?
    I also agree with Carol in that you should enjoy hair.

    I don’t think you need to pick one style over the other, but go with what works for you, your wife, the season of your life.

  3. Jason says:

    Thanks Carol and Shelley!

    “minimum to get by” – yes, VERY true. that has always been a big motivation for me when shaving my hair…fast, cheap, simple

    “older with shaved, younger with hair” – agree there too. Shave in summer and grow in winter is difficult, because it takes almost 3 months to grow it back out to a point that it looks okay and well kept.

    “longer shave on top” – doesn’t work me – my head looks sort of like a q-tip when I go that route.

  4. Meriam Bull says:

    If you shave it in June it will be short and hassle free until the end of August. Then get a nice trim and leave it alone. Maybe trim it every two months. Or, embrace your wild side. Go long. Really, you haven’t done that yet. Call it a midlife crisis. Ron goes really short (no. 3 guard on the clippers) and then we go about two months until he finally talks me into cutting it again. (For some reason he thinks Mrs. Bull’s Barber Shop is only open from 11:00 pm to midnight, or between the hours of 7:00 am and 8:00 am.)

  5. Shelley says:

    So what DID you decide?

  6. Jason says:

    haha, the hair is still growing….and is staying. it’s actually been 3 more weeks since that picture, so (at least for me) its actually starting to look a big shaggy!

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