Coping: Why “Rent Haircuts?”

Aging:  It sure beats the alternatives.  But, it’s also not as much fun as being perpetually young.  Hair is something that changes over time and as you age, things like ear trimmers become more important.

This month, my “personal odometer” is rolling over to 69- years and other than not feeling quite as “zippy” as in the past, all systems seem to be working.  Don’t need Viagra yet and except for the “solar panel” on top of the head, there’s enough hair left to make a barber smile.

But they don’t.  Reason is we don’t pay money for haircuts (you only rent them):  I still have that Wahl hair cutting kit I wrote up years ago.  When I started cutting my own hair, the kit I bought was about $20-bucks.  With the ravages of inflation, you can still get a Wahl Clipper Elite Pro High Performance Haircut Kit for men with Hair Clippers, Secure fit guide combs with stainless steel clips but it will cost around $39-bucks now.

(Continues below)


For men, it’s dirt-simple to use.  I just go to the shop (easy to clean up there), take off my shirt, put on the longest blade guide handy, and run it over my head from all directions for about 10-minutes.

There’s nothing left standing longer than the guide by the time I’m done.

To be sure, it helps to have a small “groomsman” type battery powered trimmer and have someone you trust (Elaine) to go around the edges to even things up.  Takes about 3-more minutes, is all.

By now, I figure I’m about 12-years into self-administered haircuts.  With even a cheap one going for $20-bucks (*with a tip) that works up to $960 worth of haircutting for a $22-dollar investment.

Not only that, but as I have gotten older (and crankier) I have less tolerance for “designer” haircuts.  You know the kind:  They wash your hair, rinse it, cut it, and then wring out your wallet.

I’m getting older, but can I still wash my own hair?  D’uh…I think so…

It takes a special kind of person to cut their own hair, I think.  Elaine has always cut her own, too, by the way,  About every 2-months she will trim her own hair.  Looks great, too.

First point of this morning:  I know that my hair cutting gear as saved us a couple of thousand dollars in the past 10-years.  Not just the haircuts.  But the time.  It’s an hour into town  and back from the Outback.  I don’t know about you, but 50-trips to town for haircuts at (whatever) per hour?  We’re talking a great investment every family should have.

Measuring Your Aging

The other morning I mentioned taking litmus test strips and measuring my personal pH.  (Might have been a cheap line about peeing on myself in there, too, since that’d how much style we have around here…)

But there are some other metrics, too.  Reaction speed.

It’s typical for a person’s reaction speed to be somewhat indicative of their age.  So, when you have a couple of minutes, head over here:

And see how good your reactions are.

After taking the test, I was somewhat reassured that although I’m aging (mirrors don’t lie) I’m still thinking at the same speed of someone less than half my age.  A good thing.

Or, at least I thought it was…I mean that’s what the site figures.

But, maybe that means that I’ve forgotten so much that there’s nothing going on to compete with reaction speed. Hmmm…

Another reassuring time sink is  I did OK, I think, but some of the games here are not benchmarked yet.

On the verbal recall I man aged 139 words correctly, but I have no idea whether that’s good or bad.  I gave myself a pass on that since Trump’s physician wasn’t available, lol.

Elaine was signed up for for a while, but we get so busy on projects that it wasn’t a good value.  For now, it’s fun to take reaction time tests and such, but once into your 70’s, there’s a need for a special test.  Which we have simplified as follows:

Special Age Test

(true or false)

  • Kids today are generally rude, disrespectful, greedy, and self-centered.
  • We live in one nation, under God.
  • All people deserve to start about the same.
  • Gender isn’t in the Constitution.
  • America needs a strong military.
  • China is not to be trusted.
  • Russia is not to be trusted.
  • Nancy Pelosi is not to be trusted.
  • is not to be trusted.
  • Liberal teachers at colleges is not to be trusted.
  • Eye for an eye.

As we have it figured with only 6-decades of observation so far, the answer to all these is True.

Save this test.  If you disagree with any of the calls, review it in a few decades.  The older you get, the more likely you’ll change scores to True.

The hell of it is, those selling false andswer are much more vociferous.

Ham Radio Corner

Don’t know if you have read the latest issue of QST, the monthly magazine of the ham radio American Radio Relay League, but one hell of a fine article on antennas and how much energy they suck up from  different kinds of antennas.

Up to 11 dB of tree loss?  Horrible.  The good news is that with our tower propping up the “aluminum overcast” we don’t have a strong incentive to whip out the chain saw.

But, don’t take out a life insurance policy on any of the trees within, oh, 150 feet of the tower:  Those trees are not only costing us maybe an “S-unit” (we won’t bore you with the long discourse on how to convert 20 dB over S-9 into dbm levels) they’re also blocking the sun on the solar arrays on summer afternoons after about 1 PM.

As much as Elaine loves trees, birds, and the park-like setting around here, George Bunyon has been eyeing the Blue Ox and the yellow chainsaw and figuring how (pun alert) this is all going to go down.

Third nail in the coffin for about 10 large pines is that they could fall on my office in a big enough wind.  While there are some trolls who would see this as just desserts, not quick was “sticking it to George” is about.

All I need to do is figure how to monetize it all…

Making report Sunday is the last episode of the Amplifier rehab (verging on serious this week) and new week we will be on to gardening and such…

Have a great weekend, work for something in your heart or wallet between now and Monday, too.  And don’t forget to….

Write when you get rich,

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George Ure
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17 thoughts on “Coping: Why “Rent Haircuts?””

  1. Maybe a dissertation on deep breathing seems to add 20 points to I Q. Just do til relaxed sometime takes 15 minutes but great benefits. As tensions in the day mount go back to deep breathe. Try it you will like it

  2. George
    Happy Birthday! I too hit the year 69 on this ball of rock in February.

    Your story about haircuts reminded me of a razor blade ad I saw on tv yesterday. This blade had a built in LED to light up the area of cutting. It had a Lazer line to allow you to get a level cut of the sideburns and a vibrator to allow the blade to slide more easily over your face. What next will they stuff into these blades, a gyro stabelizor so you can shave while drunk! I think the idea is to drive up the price no matter what is really needed.

    Yes trees eat ham radio signals. Lets think about that. You have a large mass of woody tubes filled with sap, (water), connected to ground. Yep. it’s a lightning rod!

    When I was 23 years old I was sitting at the dinner table. My wife was to my left. My toddler son was to my right in his high chair. My son stood up in his chair and fell forward and out of the chair headed for the floor. Without thinking I caught the child with my right hand clutching him by a leg. The process of reactions that were required to do this must have been in microseconds? Every now and then I ask my wife if I really did this and she confirms it. Devine intervention??

    Happy Birthday again George and many more to come!!

  3. Nearly thirty years ago, I got fed up with paying what, for me, was big money to have some ******* ruin my hair with perms and bad cuts. I bought a top quality shears and a Flowbee. I learned to color my hair too. I figured I couldn’t ruin my hair worse, and I could do it when I needed and cost nothing.

    This has worked well for me. The Flowbee works similar to what you described, and, because of the vacuum cleaner attachment, can be done anywhere in your house with no mess. Trimming with shears is done in the bathroom where cleanup is quick and easy.

    • P.S. my birthday is today. Traditionally, I would eat ground hog (sausage) but have given up on the red meat, so instead, it will be a fattening, tasty chicken dinner from a local cafe.

  4. Ahhh but by cutting your own hair ure missing all the talk going on down at the “barber shop”. I love going down to the local barber shop near me and hanging out with the fellas.

    It’s not JUST about getting a hair cut. Last time I went there, it was an hour and a half wait for a 20 min cut. There was 15-20 guys in there and we had a huge debate about flat earth. Hahahahah

    Yes, I go to a conspiracy minded barber shop! The time before that (same amount of guys) we had a huge conversation about Obama’s adjenda and the Fed policy. Nothing like 15-20 dudes all debating and bring up good stuff /fact checking on their phones about the reality of our nation.

    When you are up here again, I will give ya the barber shops name if you’d like to have solme good laughs and talk about everything from drill bits to the secret illuminati messages places in movies before actual events. It’s a damn good time. :)

    • lol boss where I worked and I was reminiscing about our old barbers.. then one day he was driving by the old neighborhood barbershop and nostalgia set in. He just had to see the old place that he had such fond memories of.
      Stepped in the door and the veil of time passed to his amazement. The same barber whose skills brought such fond memories was still there. A great deal older.. he sat in the chair the barbers skillful hands and clippers went to work. When he flipped the chair around..the haircut looked as if a two year old had cut his hair. Age and unsteady hands had taken its toll

      • Hahahahah! That’s funny. There is three dudes two former marines and one navy fella that cut hair down at the barber shop I go to. All have been to Iraq and Afghanistan. Military barbers/soldiers.

        It’s a damn good laugh/time. One of the dudes is a total Flat earth Guy (a marine). He gets razed quite a bit but stands his ground.

        The other 2 guys are more conspiracy minded than even me. All of them think 9-11 was an inside job.

  5. Not birthday time yet, so I’ll skip that one. I cut my hair with scissors, and many times without a mirror – I just feel it. No need for a flowbee. I use a Norelco three head unit to shave while driving if I go anywhere. As far as I know, that’s still legal unless I crash, and again, no need to see – just feel what I’m doing.

    I like the idea of someone washing my hair if she’s young, cute, personable and available, but it costs too much for the limited service, so that doesn’t happen.

    On trees, I clear cut around my tower, but mostly for security purposes and camera views, with the side benefits of extra wood for heat and of course, R/T utility. Trees near a house are a real problem in many ways, even if they look nice.

    I believe that your question #9 has no viable answer, and a couple of the others are not (yet) true, IMHO.

    Something happened to me with age. I act and almost never react. I don’t know if this is good or bad. It’s hard for me to do a reaction test at all. I respond, but I don’t react.

  6. Wish I could do a screen dump here but not possible with this software.
    Had fun with the reaction time test – got caught out on the first try and accused of having the reactions of a 53-yr old but the second try resulted in 20-something, this got better until it said they’re not sure if I’m an actual human being, reaction time 274ms and no fluke, did it again. Perhaps riding motorcycles for the past 55 years has something to do with it ya think?

  7. I may have to invest in one of those trimmers as my barber is taking more and more time off. Went to town yesterday, Saturday, and he was closed again. It’s a shame as I’ve only in the past couple of years realized I’ve finally “arrived” in that I can now keep up with the older clientele’s story telling. It’s difficult to find just the right place to go when the old ones start dying off.

    Since I’m about to trip over #61 here in a couple of weeks I find myself looking at supplements quite often and read George’s recommendations quite closely. One that I found recently in a Science Daily article ( is Curcumin which has had some actual clinical trials to back up its claims of mood elevator and mental acuity enhancement. Don’t know if it’s just the mid-winter blahs and/or coming out from under my flu experience this past month but I’ve found the need for … something … and I’ve done my thing with doctors this year with the flu if I can help it at all. No insurance yet going on 5 years now. It really seemed to work right off the bat so I’ve kept taking it twice daily. Either my mood has improved … or I just don’t care any more…

  8. Never thought of it as renting a haircut, interesting concept, just thought of it as maintenance. I am however extremely frugal in the hair department as my hubby is the family barber/stylist. He gave me a haircut on our third date in his kitchen and no one else has been allowed near my hair with shears since. Sounds crazy letting my new boyfriend take the shears to my hair, but he said he had cut women’s hair many times before, showed me he had good hair shears and explained the process to me before I said please do it, I need a haircut. He cuts my hair every other month, and he took over giving my boys their monthly haircuts before we married and it saves me hundreds a year on my hair alone plus the time saved. My mom thought it was crazy at first, but admitted he does give a great haircut and now she saves hundreds a year having him cut hers as well as a couple other of my friends. One stopped by when hubby was trimming my locks, she watched intently, complimented him on how nice a job he was doing, mentioned she needed her hair cut, and then when he finished and was uncaping me, she said I’m next! Hubby looked at me, I nodded ok, and he said have a seat. So he asked how much she wanted off, he said OK and gave her a haircut. She was pleased and now stops by to visit to get her hair trimmed. We were invited to a barbecue at her house last summer and she asked if he could bring his shears. I told him he could start a side business, but he said no, he would need to get a license to charge for haircuts and the amount he would earn is less than his current job. So he will cut mine, family members and friends when they ask, but it is not a business option. I do get coworkers and acquaintances asking if he takes appointments, but I don’t volunteer him, I tell them he has a busy schedule.

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