I offer a cautionary tale of sorts today. It’s partly about the efforts I am taking to stay safe, but I must also admit to the fact that it speaks to my own sense of thriftiness.
I should also mention that that I did seriously contemplate legal action to compensate for pain and suffering that I received during the event I’m about to share with you, namely mayhem upon my ear. It ultimately occurred to me though, that the defendant against whom I would be making such a claim, happens to be listed as a co-owner on our homeowners policy. This means that by extension I would be also suing myself. I suspect a court would reject the claim.
Allow me to explain…
Perhaps the only bright spot for us during this pandemic, and hopefully for you too, is the impact that it’s had on our household budget. Other than food and prescription purchases, discretionary spending is at a level I haven’t seen since my early twenties, when “discretion” was merely a term that helped guide me to pay either the electric bill or see the Talking Heads in concert (it wasn’t a hard decision; I owned several flashlights).
This time around the choices aren’t thankfully as stark. All of our obligations are safely being met with even a wee bit of a surplus to boot. Items such as clothes, cosmetics, restaurant meals, etc., now represent a paltry sum in our monthly expenses. For that we are fortunate, especially as so many others out there continue to be struggling.
As an example, I single out one expense in particular that has a big fat zero for your humble blogger: haircuts. Of all the public places and spaces into which we’ve made tentative steps since last spring’s stay-at-home ended, I personally have not set foot in my local barber shop. It’s not a point of pride but rather an outlier example of my own covid squeamishness. We own a set of hair clippers, so I’ve begged, pleaded, and cajoled Gorgeous into doing the honors for me. Safe and cheap.
It’s all gone down swimmingly, if I say so myself. I really don’t care how my hair looks, but I think she actually does a dandy of a job. For instance, with my mask on while out in public now, I am constantly mistaken for Hugh Grant. Definitely a win-win when you include the savings.
Unfortunately, this process hasn’t been completely without drama. I’m speaking now of the ear incident mentioned earlier, not the problem of women constantly asking me for my autograph. Now that the drama is all over, it’s quite a charming little tale to be honest. At the time, however, was somewhat frightening. What with all the blood and all.
The fun began after Gorgeous removed the razor guard on the hair clippers to shave the back of my neck. It was here when she noticed areas around my ears that needed extra attention.
What is it about older men and hair anyway? I remember when my dad began to sprout in odd places about his dome too. One can complain about the ravages of gravity, but for me it’s more about the hair. Quite often now I’m seeing it coming out in areas which previously I considered to be part of my most chiseled features (re: see Mr. Grant, above).
But back to the mayhem. Either Gorgeous forgot that she removed the clipper guard, or more likely she confused my head with one of her art projects. Either way, she proceeded to GOUGE part of my left ear in an attempt to rid it of its excess bristle. This happened during the final moments of the haircut; a most unhappy ending. So to speak.
Immediately my mind went right to that classic SNL skit with Dan Aykroyd impersonating Julia Child (“Oh, now I’ve done it -I’ve cut the dickens out of my finger!”). With blood beginning to pour from the ear and onto my t-shirt, I thought it might be a good time to stop the proceedings and apply first aid with water, alcohol, and maybe an antiseptic topical of some kind. But Gorgeous, bless her, was determined that we continue to rid my noggin of all those unsightly growths.
I wasn’t dying, for G-d sakes. Man up.
A later inspection showed the ear to be fine. There’s a small wound that is already healing quite well. “Barely noticeable!,” Gorgeous remarked in bright, optimistic tones the other morning. “You’re all set now for another couple of months!” It was the gleam in her eye when she spoke that I found to be the most disconcerting part; as if she’s rather looking quite forward to that next opportunity.
If one takes Doctors’ Redfield and Fauci’s time estimates on getting a vaccine to be realistic, which I do, then it appears that we’re all going to continue to wear masks, practice social distancing, etc., until at least next summer. For me this means I’m going to remain remain wary about eating in restaurants, traveling, going into small shops, and all of the other things that I so desperately miss.
But I will have to wrap my head around whether or not I’ll go back to the barber shop. Which might be better than actual wraps around my head.
Tonight is the last night of the Jewish New Year and the Rosh Hashanah holiday. Hope springs that this time next year will be sweeter for all of us.
Until next time…