Friday, June 10, 2005

Barbers at the Bombay Gates

I don't know why but most of the guys I saw in Mumbai seem to have had some kind of argument with their barbers. At least an argument when the barber was about to cut his crop. I say this because every one of them looked surly and had a haircut that could have only ensued if the barber had grown very angry and very distracted. I don't know how these guys could have distracted the barber. Far from being able to distract somebody they looked singularly repulsive, the kind you'd rather ignore, so distraction was out of the question.

So why were their barbers so angry, that they chopped up their hair into so many tiny pieces? In the case of one specimen, it had been cut and dyed it into such an exquisite circus, that from far away, I couldn't make out if the guy had an orange stuck on his head or whether he was just terribly sick. I secretly dubbed him 'William of Orange'.

The guy ( and in general all the guys) himself looked terribly mean and upset, only as someone who has paid an outrageous fortune to look like he either had a face transplant with an orange or a rather serious scalp infection could look. He also looked terribly built up, with muscles bulging around in all directions. Some of his muscles also seemed in danger of leaving his shirt and leading an independent existence, roaming the city and joining one of the numerous gangs that no doubt abound the city, looking to beat up barbers.

I am terribly confused. Someone suggested that all the barbers are equally to blame, that they are nothing more than over glorified lawn mower men. I agree, that's what they normally do to my hair. But to have all the barbers go about doing it? And to do it to someone as muscular as 'King William' seems to suggest a sense of reckless daring, audacity, suicidal insanity and a slow if painful death if buddy 'William' ever manages to brush back enough hair from his forehead to actually be able to see.

Meanwhile the barbers seem to be winning this war of the hair. Really. I said meet. Not argue.