Should I get a haircut?

This is not a request for readers to tell me whether I’m too shaggy; I already know that I am (see below). What I’m asking is whether, given the pandemic, I should go to the local tonsorial parlor for my occasional haircut.

As you know, a haircut involves big time violation of the “social distance” rules.  My regular haircutter stands right next to me, puts his hands on my head (washes my hair at the beginning, too), and generally touches me extensively. They may be using gloves now, but that’s not much protection. And I am OLD: in the “susceptible” class.

I haven’t seen anybody raise this question, but most people get haircuts. I even asked my doctor, who told me it was a “judgment call.”

The laws of physics have already determined the outcome, but those laws have compelled me to ask readers and will compel those readers with answers to make comments, which will then have been determined to affect my neurons in a way that will either drive me to the barber or not.

What say you? (About the haircut, that is.)

184 Comments

  1. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    DIY DIY DIY!

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

      Let it grow, and embrace the Warhol. Maybe have a goatee beard going with it. Since your social life will take a hit anyway, why not experiment. 🙂

      Else, DYI with is typically not too difficult if you already have the haircut, but just need bit of trimming. That’s easier when you have a electric razor that can trim hairs. Take the hair as if your index and middle finger were a scissor, get the length you want, then mow over your finger-scissor to trim.

      • Heather Hastie
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

        I like this idea! I’d like to see Jerry try out long hair, a beard, and a mo until this is over! It would be good entertainment to see the progression of hairiness! 😀

        Maybe he could even try to grow some ringlets like the hardcore Jews …

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted March 20, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

          Lol. “What religion are you?” “Hardcore Jew”.

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted March 20, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

          Lol. “What religion are you?” “Hardcore Jew”.

    • gluonspring
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

      I vote DIY.

  2. BobTerrace
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    No haircut. I foolishly went and got mine (both hairs) cut a week ago.

    My cardiologist no longer sees patients unless necessary. Telemedicine now.

    • JezGrove
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

      That reminds me of the story about a man with three hairs going to the barber’s. After trimming the hairs, the barber asks the customer which side he would like the parting. As he combs the hairs into position, one falls out. The barber apologises profusely, and the customer tells him not to worry, but to give him a centre parting instead. Again, the comb dislodges a hair and the distraught barber apologises once more. “Never mind,” says the customer, “I guess I’ll just have to look a mess”.

      • grasshopper
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

        A favourite joke, which I am approaching the butt of.

  3. Hardrada
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Sure–keep getting haircuts, but STOP TOUCHING YOUR FACE.

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:50 am | Permalink

      OOPS! I told you it was unconscious! In my defense, this was about 5 minutes after I washed my hands and hadn’t touched anything but an apple.

      • BobTerrace
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

        An Apple!!!!

        Remember Eve…LOL

  4. Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    Clippers for the front and sides until it grows out enough to put it in a pony tail or a man bun. Then, photos.

  5. Simon Hayward
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    My wife had this same dilemma and asked my opinion. I said “sure go ahead, if we both die it’s your fault”. So she ignored my considered advice and cancelled.

  6. David W Andrews
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    Humble Brag! You’re just showing that YOU HAVE HAIR!

  7. eric
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    I’d say skip it.

    It’s not just about whether they might give it to you. AIUI, it’s unclear but possible that Covid-19 is contagious before symptoms appear. So it’s possible (however unlikely) that you might give it to them.

    If you have a specific place you frequent, and you want to support them through the crisis, maybe go online and see if they offer gift cards. Buy one as a way of ‘paying for it now, getting it later.’

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

      That’s a great idea.

      • eric
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

        It also works for favorite restaurants. Which, from all the food posts, is probably an idea of much more utility to Jerry than the hair cut one. 🙂

    • notsecurelyanchored
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

      Love this idea, Eric. Just called my haircutters.

  8. JohnH
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    I’m equally shaggy and am not going, but my wife higher risk and I’m not taking a chance of bringing it into the house just because my hair is long. It was longer when I was college.

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:58 am | Permalink

      That just reminded me of pics of a much younger Jerry with a wealth of long hair.

  9. Andrea Kenner
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    I’m not going! My latest dye job is growing out, and it looks horrible! But I’m working from home, so no one will see me, and I can always wear a hat. (If I make it to a store, I may be able to pick up some hair dye.)

    And NO, I am NOT sending pix!

  10. Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    No. You are too at risk.

  11. Claudia Heilke
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    Don’t be an ass. Stay home.

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

      Seriously, “don’t be an ass”? Have you read the Roolz?
      And look in the mirror when you make that statement.

  12. James Heard
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    I don’t know; but you have a mirror and a pair of scissors don’t you?🤷‍♂️😜

    • JezGrove
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

      Or go full-on Keef Richards and dispense with the mirror!

  13. Diana MacPherson
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    Nah leave it. I cut my own bangs yesterday.

    • merilee
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

      And I cut mine this morning. My hairdresser normslly does free bang trims but I just got an email saying they have closed. My bangs turned out OK (not like Mamie Eisenhower…)

      • Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

        I hacked off my tresses last week, including the back. My husband neatened up the very back which took him just several minutes (even with his hand tremors), since I’ve got proficient at cutting blind after years of practice.

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

        I usually cut mine in between hair cuts anyway. Last time I didn’t do a very good job but most times I do okay. I’ve had years of practice but I can probably only do it on myself.

    • Mark R.
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

      I gave my bi-annual buzz cut last week; haven’t had a “professional” haircut for years.

  14. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    One word – pomade.

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

      Ugh. Pommade.

      • Filippo
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

        Well, when one is at home, and not expecting company, pomade or lotion or oil is an OK thing, for the sake of keeping the scalp from being too dry.

        In this season of social distancing, I wonder if sales of Gibran’s “The Prophet” are up: “Let there be spaces in your togetherness.”

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

      Better word, Flowbee! 🙂

      • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

        Lulz

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

        Now I’m thinking of Dippity-Do hair gel.

        • Paul S
          Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

          Ha! My mom used Dippity-Do to straighten her hair.
          As far as getting a haircut, I’m not going, Not concerned for myself but my barber is in his 70s. Maybe I’ll see if I can match my high school fro.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

            I think I had a big tub of it in the 80s. I think it was pink. I can almost smell the sickly artificial smell of it.

          • Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

            I think I used Butch Wax to make the front of my flat top stand up straight 🙂 Loved the smell!

            • Frank L Wagner
              Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

              I remember that stuff. I had a crew cut all thru high school and into college and used Butch wax occasionally. My dad was a barber and I never paid for a haircut until I was in college. Of course, I got my hair cut frequently and never could grow it long, even had I wanted to.

  15. Brujo Feo
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    I’m 64 with a stent on the LAD–the “widowmaker.”

    I compromised–yesterday, I got my hair cut, but I got it REALLY short (No. 4 clippers), so I won’t have to go back for a long time. But my hair grows SO fast. I don’t complain about that–my brother had a natural monk’s tonsure when he was 18.

    • Filippo
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

      I take it that you yourself have won the tonsorial genetic lottery, and take it as an opportunity to be solely grateful.

  16. Chris Lang
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    No haircut. At least, that’s what I’m going to do; I’m not going to take a chance. I reckon I’m going to get pretty shaggy (which my students might find amusing as I finish the semester teaching online).

    (in case links aren’t allows: “Almost Cut My Hair” by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.)

    • JezGrove
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

      Yes, you’ll just have to let your freak flag fly…

    • Filippo
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

      Will your students be revealing their own tonsorial splendor online?

  17. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    I will be trimming my own. I can only trim what I can easily see, but it’s better than nothing. Personally, I think you look great with long hair. You could get away with the 60’s hippie look…tie-died clothes, bell bottom pants, bandana, etc. Make that hairdo work for you!!

    • Frank Bath
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

      Yes, go hippy man. Tie it back, it’s not as if you’ll be going out a lot, and if you want to wear a hat.

  18. Charles Minus
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    Please stay home. Cut it yourself, it’s not that hard and how bad could it be? It will grow out. If you do go, it may never grow again.

  19. Rita Prangle
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

    Stay safe, don’t take a chance.

  20. mvanbellinghen
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    Stay at home!

  21. Alan Jardine
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    I was overdue for one, but elected not to go. My wife did my haircut – she’s not professionally-trained but did a good job.

    Actually, I may continue to do this in the future. I hate going to my local shop where they play a radio tuned to junk music and the only thing to read if there’s a queue is the “Sun” newspaper. Yuck!

  22. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Cut your own. I’ve been doing mine for 30+ years with a barber kit.

  23. Jim batterson
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    No old friend, absolutely not. I raised the issue with my retired rn wife yesterday and she dug out the clippers and scissors from years ago and we accomplished the task in house. I do not know if she was worried about me getting sick or me as a vector coming home for her getting sick, but she was absolutely unyielding. Soagain, no 0lease do not visit your clippery atthis time.

  24. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Absolutely not! You have no idea how many people he’s been in contact with and you’ve just reminded us how long lived this virus can be aerosolised and on surfaces. It’s not worth the risk. Not only are you (we) in the at risk age group but the emerging stats are that more are more likely to catch it and more likely to suffer adverse outcomes. Embrace you internal Shaggy (It wasn’t me 🎵)

  25. Mike Anderson
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Haircut seems like one of the more risky activities. My layman guess.

    If for some reason I really needed one I’d want the barber to wear a mask, and they probably don’t have masks.

  26. Randall Schenck
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    I got my hair cut about a week ago. I don’t see it as a big problem but it probably depends on your own situation. I go to a real barber, not these cut rate chop shops.

    • GBJames
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

      Real barbers aren’t immune.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

        No kidding? I thought they were. Tell me though, do you ever do anything without assuming?

    • eric
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

      I don’t see it as a big problem…

      To repeat what I mentioned to Jerry; Covid-19 can spread pre-symptomatically. Which means that when you go to the barbers, you’re not just risking yourself getting it from them, you’re risking them getting it from you, even if you’re “not sick”.

      Do you really want to be that guy?

  27. Lynne
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    Remember Dippity Do? Go grease lightning style? Could be fun for 14 days. Note: this is where the child in me wants to add “I double-dog-dare you!” 😉

  28. A C Harper
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    My wife hummed and hahed for a couple of days about going to the hairdressers. We are both near enough the age to practice social distancing. The key question was what would she feel like if she (or anyone else) coughed or sneezed in the salon.

    In the end she decided to cancel and I will trim her fringe (but no extra hair colour).

  29. Tim Elsey
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    In Colorado our health department shuttered salons and similar businesses yesterday

    • charitablemafioso
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

      Yep. No haircuts til the end of next month (at least) if you’re in Colorado.

    • JoanL
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

      Barbershops, salons & all non-essential businesses are closing after this weekend in New York state, too.

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

      Same in WA. I am as shaggy as PCC but feel no guilt about it now. Ah, the war stories we will tell.

  30. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    Now is a great time to learn how to cut your own hair. It is true because the intarwebz says so: https://www.thecut.com/2020/03/should-i-cut-my-own-hair.html

  31. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    Time to get the bowl out!

    • C.
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      Or the Flowbee!

      • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

        I had to look that up as I’ve never heard of Flowbee. Amazing! I wish I had bought stock before the pandemic struck.

        • C.
          Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

          Are you in the U.K.? If so, you could always hook the Flowbee up to a Henry Hoover, you know, for the personal touch. Just like having a real barber!

          • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

            Born in the UK but in California now. My mom always called the vacuum cleaner a “hoover”. Actually, I thought that was common in the US as well but growing up with English parents I have trouble knowing which words are UK-only.

      • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

        Great minds…. 🙂 also my suggestion above

  32. KD
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    When your number is up, your number is up.

    If you have symptoms, self quarantine. If the government makes rules around travel or the use of public services, obey in order to protect others.

    Otherwise, carry on your life normally, including getting a hair cut (but don’t buy a 90 day supply of toilet paper). The only exception is if you lived with or in close proximity to someone old with serious health problems who could get exposed if you got sick.

    • eric
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

      Yours is terrible advice.

      The virus can spread pre-symptomatically, which means we all need to be self-isolating basically now, regardless of whether we have symptoms or not. If you continue to go out and use services in public until you show symptoms, that means you’ve been exposing other people to the coronavirus for up to two weeks.

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

        +1

  33. Roger Lambert
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    My wife just told me the tale of a small town in Italy who tested everyone in town, regardless of symptoms. 50% of the positive results came from people with no symptoms.

    (They quarantined these folks, and the infection rate plummeted.)

    So, no, if I were you I would break out the shears of clippers myself.

  34. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

    Don’t do it. Not good for either of you.

  35. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

    Let your gair grow until this mess is over, then you can show people how long the time was. Remember the old movie, For Whom the Bells Toll? Someone asked Ingrid Bergman how long she had been a prisoner and she pulled out her short hair and said, “this long.” I got mine cut really short 5 weeks ago, and I’m going to let it grow until the virus gives up and sanity returns. I, too, am in that age bracket (older than you, I think).

  36. Jonathan Dore
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

    Stay shaggy. The crucial point is thinking how many other people have sat in that chair and been touched by your barber previously.

  37. Robert Lundgren
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    If you lived in Minnesota that decision would already have been made for you. Barbershops are closed until at least March 27. Besides, you can think of yourself as young again aka the 60s and 70s. Didn’t we all have that haircut then?

  38. Laurance
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    Nope! Stay home and get shaggy. (I’m deciding whether or not to go to the dentist. I do have something that needs done. I will call the dentist and see if I can postpone.)

  39. wukoki
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    Revel in that full head of hair, oh hirsute one.

  40. phoffman56
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    True Confession:
    I’ve cut my own hair for more than 50 years, except once regretfully allowing a girlfriend of my son to make a mess.
    People around me don’t dare to articulate the negative comments undoubtedly passing through their minds; but they’re by now used to some (considerable?) unevenness.
    There is a handy tool using old-fashioned razor blades to do 30 seconds worth trimming every few weeks, and then after several months, the big snip.
    In the days when identification as a Vietnam war opposer or supporter was often guessed by hair length, those intervals of time were much larger.
    Just as with largely avoiding TV, it saves a helluva lot of time for other things. And I suppose it adds a wee bit to my inheritors’ booty.

    • Jonathan Dore
      Posted March 23, 2020 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

      In my teenage years I used one of those razor-blade tools for several years. I stopped when I overheard someone say I looked like a monk.

      • phoffman56
        Posted March 23, 2020 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

        Maybe that’s why, perhaps to compensate, my behaviour is usually the opposite to what is expected from a monk, celibate or non-cursing or practising moderation, or etc.!

        • Filippo
          Posted March 23, 2020 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

          ” . . . practising moderation . . . .”

          I contemplate practicing moderation in moderation.

  41. Liz
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    I would say probably not and maybe not anyway.

  42. Josh Lincoln
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    No help on the haircut issue although I went the DIY route with a d_g clipper. However, it reminded me of a section in the great book “Tropical Nature” by Forsyth and Miyata (which I reread any time before I visit the tropics). I was pleased this year to recognize a certain PCC had an interesting interaction with a Cuterebra larvae on his noggin.

  43. C.
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    That you asked suggests that you are leaning towards the Yes vote. I probably wouldn’t but barbers and salons are already hurting for business, so assuming they have not been all that busy, take precautions, you and they are asymptomatic then maybe? I wouldn’t get a massage or hit up the strip clubs for a lap dance though. Well, I wouldn’t do those things anyway but my social anxiety already includes a fair amount of social distancing anyway. And strip clubs are oogy anyway.

    My question is should I get a puppy? I saw in my local paper that someone is giving away free border collie/lab puppies and I’ll be home at least until April 6 due to my work closure, plus, it might make a decent companion for me and my obese cat. Thoughts?

    • Filippo
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

      Respectfully suggest that you consider holding off until after you can again go out in public unencumbered. Cats seem predisposed to function without the (frequent) presence of their human servant(s). From my experience not so much a canine, especially a young one. Of course, I don’t the least bit hold that against our girl, going into her 11th year. As I’m “stuck” at home, getting this and that done so as to make our domiciliary circumstances optimally appealing or at least tolerable, I find myself occasionally checking on her, rubbing her ears, talking sweetly to her. May she live as long as possibly. To have a pet is set oneself up for heartbreak. (Of course, the older one gets, the more possibly, likely, it is to set the pet up for heartbreak, eh?. What is the agreeable option – to have never lived so as to avoid this sort of thing?)

      • C.
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

        I’m still torn. I really miss having a d*g. It’s been about four years since I lost both of mine. My cat helps, mostly. He’s a bit of an asshole, yowls at me like a whiny teenager probably due to separation anxiety (he was orphaned before weening), feels the need to right next to or on top of me almost constantly… I don’t know. I think a d*g would be good for him too, as he was used to having canine and feline company in his previous (foster) home. But you are right, it might be best to wait. It might also be best to find a smaller dog to fit my small house. Damn it I don’t know.

  44. Bruce
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    Triple dare – don’t get a haircut until Trump leaves office. (I’m trying to hold out since Christmas)

  45. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    1. It isn’t long. It’s beginning an Einstein-look. Cute. Don’t cut, don’t slick it back.

    2. My daughters and I had this very same messaging conversation going on early this morning. Our conclusion:
    https://scontent.fbed1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.15752-9/90088247_3041706259215686_6217337994186063872_n.jpg?_nc_cat=100&_nc_sid=b96e70&_nc_ohc=2F1-1GrAC-EAX_KZ9RP&_nc_ht=scontent.fbed1-1.fna&oh=a3b123410efca36c3a93ad15ea023659&oe=5E99D25B

    I really hope that shows up in this feed.

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

      Great pic!! 🤣

    • phoffman56
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

      Isn’t there a Far Side/Gary Larson cartoon about the little known fact that Einstein took up physics only after failing as a rock musician? \But I can’t find it.
      Aha, found!
      It’s written
      “Unbeknownst to most historians, Einstein started down the road of professional basketball before an ankle injury diverted him into science.”
      So not rock and hair, but the drawing is a very Einsteinish head, as he is about to launch what we used to call a hook shot.

      • Filippo
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

        Ah, for the ancient days of the two-handed set short.”

  46. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    No. I am cutting my husband’s hair as we are both older & at high risk. Isn’t there anyone who could do that for you? Even a less-than-perfect haircut might be better than shaggy and certainly better than the risk of exposure to COVID-19. 😊

  47. GBJames
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    Should you? No.

  48. Frank Wagner
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    Governor Cuomo has issued an order closing all barbershops, beauty parlors, etc. in NY State as of 8 pm on Saturday. I need one too, but even if he is open, I’m not going.

  49. Sue B
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    Please don’t risk it (being a distributor or receiver of virus). Pennsylvania shut them down yesterday.

    If you can get a gift card (online please) or such that would be so helpful to your barber.

  50. Ray Little
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    I haven’t seen this much consensus ever on a website comments: check with Guinness Book of World Records. Don’t do the number-four clippers route, though. You’re a man with prominent features, needs hair (lucky you for a well-populated scalp) to balance them.

  51. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    Filthy hippies taking over the world AGAIN https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVsbqVJLFow

  52. E.A. Blair
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    When I was an 18-year-old college freshman, I started patronizing a hair salon in the student union at UW-M. There was one woman there who gave me the best cut I’d ever had, and I adopted her as my regular cutter. I am now 63, and Gemma still does my hair 45 years later. It’s much more than a business relationship; we often go out to dinner or see a movie (but not lately), and when it’s time for me to pay for my cut it’s awkward for both of us. She tells me that my hair hasn’t changed since I started with her – still thick and no grey, and that among her colleagues that I am a record holder for longest-standing client.

    She’s on hiatus, so I called her this week to ask her to let me know when she was going to go back on duty. Long hair won’t kill me, but breaking home stay could. It’s not like I’m dealing with a complete stranger or someone with whom the relationship is strictly business. She’s too good a friend to put her at risk.

  53. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    As long as it doesn’t scare the ducks, anything goes!

  54. Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    I’m sure your barber is trained not do draw blood. 🙂 You’ll be fine – get the cut. If anything, any job where close contact with people is expected is on the leading edge of careful sanitizing. If they’re not, they lose business. So long as you’re not going to some big-box, tens-of-people-per-hour shop, you’ll be fine.

    Also, if you don’t go now, you may not get there for a while. Meaning, you might get a shelter in place order from your governor. Rumor has it North Carolina is about to get that order in the next 24 hours.

    • GBJames
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

      You’re aware that Covid-19 isn’t transmitted via blood?

      • Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

        Hence the smiley. 🙂

        • GBJames
          Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

          I had to check. The rest of the advice is unsound, IMO. Maybe it, too, was intended sarcastically?

  55. Warren Johnson
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    google “video self haircut”, and then buy electric clippers on-line. As per your previous post, Let the cardboard box ‘age’ for 24 hours.

  56. Philip Davis
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    Badly in need of a haircut, I too was in a quandary until my local Great Clips closed in advance of county and state orders that closed all hair cutting shops. Let your hair grow out in the comfort and privacy of home. Don’t put yourself, the barber, or hospitals at risk. We can live looking like cavemen.

    • phoffman56
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

      We can thrive looking like cavemen.

    • phoffman56
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      The student evaluations never complained about the haircut. A few did dislike the sweat pants.

  57. merilee
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    How about a Woody Woodpecker-style pony tail on top?

  58. Matt Young
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    Cut it yourself. The only difference between a bad haircut and a good haircut is a week.

  59. JezGrove
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    For what it’s worth, all hairdressers in Spain, where my father-in-law lives, are closed.

  60. Muffy Ferro
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    NO — you should not get a haircut. Risk v. reward — not even close to being worth it. DO NOT.

  61. phar84
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    Don’t get the haircut.
    Do what you would do if/when they shut down essential businesses.

  62. sted24
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    On your behalf I circulated your portrait to several of my women acquaintances and the neighbour’s cat: “This is a distinguished person, what should he do to remain distinguished-looking?”

    Responses were varied (and some, I am afraid, mentioned Donald Trump): ‘Get a comb’, ‘Get a better camera’, ‘There’s this great hair app…’, etc.

    Only one set of responses were in any way consistent and they came from a clear outlier: “Hoard more cat food.”

    Hope this helps.

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

      Oy, that stings!

      • sted24
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

        In your defence I should explain that my statistical pal explained that the ‘p value’ (or it may have been something entirely else) of my ‘study’ was about 366. Or, “technically useless” for every single day of this year.

        Except, it appears, for undocumented reasons, for the responses of the cat. Which should probably be taken seriously. p or not.

        • Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

          Read the comment below. I don’t appreciate others making fun of my appearance here. I already said I needed a haircut.

          • sted24
            Posted March 20, 2020 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

            I don’t believe I anywhere made fun of your appearance. Although, I may have lampooned your request for advice. Satire, poor though my mine may have been, is legitimate. No?

            Let me be clear, as the pols say, I really don’t care what you look like. Why should I?

            When you raised your appearance? Well, then there may be a legitimate forum for fun.

            ‘Making fun of’ is a heathly impulse, I believe. Although, of course, you have every right to ban it, if you choose, from your site.

    • Filippo
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps you’d care to solicit photos of these sweet, beguiling lassies to publish here, so as to allow viewers to similarly critique them.

      • sted24
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

        I believe you may miss my point.

        Has it occured to you that this may be satire? Enirely made up?

        Or, as we say in the UK, ‘Taking the Piss”.

        That may be the most important freedom we have.

        Cetainly, if it allows old farts like me to make fun of the apparent long strived for human right, or wisdom, to have (or not) a haircut. In a time of apparent emergency.

        Or the the appeal to crowdsourcing thereof of opinon, thereupon.

        In shorter terms: this is, in my view, an utterly trivial matter. And funny. Others, of course, are welcome to disagree.

  63. revelator60
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    I would say no, unless your barber will be wearing gloves and a proper face mask!
    There is nothing wrong with looking shaggy at this time, and a man of your age can take pride in having a bountiful head of hair.

    • phoffman56
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

      Thanks, indirectly, since I’m about 12 years older than Jerry I think, and hairier on the head at least. And (see no evil, …) have never seen any grey; the mirror has some defects which just make it look that way.

  64. Reggie Cormack
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Haircut? Na, let’s see what you would look like doing an Einstein impersonation. Personally I ask my wife for a very slight trim when even I know what hair I have is totally out of control. Short hair is way over rated imho.

  65. Joe Dickinson
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    My wife cuts my hair. I haven’t been to a barber shop in probably 40 years. By rough calculation, we may also have saved something like $20,000. What does a haircut cost these days?

  66. wendya3d
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

    Let it grow. There is an awkward stage at first, but eventually it will be long enough to make a pony tail. It’s a cool look.

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

      Hi Wendy. You seem like a lovely person, and I’m sure you meant well, but that is a Very Bad Idea. Ponytails on men are for David Lynch villains or 80s drug dealers. Avoid at all costs.

      • Mark R.
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

        Yet they’re still not as bad as “man-buns”…Why did that ever catch on?

        • Saul Sorrell-Till
          Posted March 21, 2020 at 8:10 am | Permalink

          I think man buns look good actually. It’s the position of the knot that makes all the difference. At the nape of the neck, as with a ponytail, and it just looks…rubbish. I don’t know why. But higher up, nearer the top of the head it looks quite good. I think David Beckham was the pioneer, back in the mid noughties.

          Plus it has a hint of the ancient Samurai look. They used to tie their hair up like that.

      • Mike Anderson
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

        The George Carlin look is making a comeback.

  67. Ken Kukec
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    I go to the barber about once a month, and, since I went a couple weeks ago, I’m a couple away from facing the “shear or not to shear” dilemma myself. I can get by easily enough for another week or two beyond that, though I doubt I can outwait the pandemic.

    In the meantime, I’m considering shaving the facial hair, since we’re supposed to keep our hands away from our faces and since I have a habit of stroking the chin whiskers when I’m thinking. So it’s either a clean shave or, for all the good it’s doing me, maybe I’ll just forego the cogitation. 🙂

  68. Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    People like to yak and laugh with the barber or hairstylist, so at those close quarters, who knows how many droplets are being lovingly exchanged?

    It was funny to see Prince Charles on TV automatically extend his hand to greet the first in a line of people, but he caught himself and did the Namaste greeting instead. All well and good, but then they immediately laughed together about it, not even 6 feet apart. It’s hard.

  69. Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    All hairdressers in Germany are closed and are eligible for emergency finances.

  70. Terry L Pedersen
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    The salons are all closed here! Berkeley, CA.
    What gives in Chicago? Are you all immune? Crazy.

  71. ivan
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    Personally, I’m going diy but here’s some advice.
    No, You Shouldn’t Get a Haircut Now. But You Can Still Support Your Stylists https://www.glamour.com/story/hair-salon-safety-coronavirus?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=onsite-share&utm_brand=glamour&utm_social-type=earned via @glamourmag

  72. Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Two reasons, besides the obvious, to stay home and not get a haircut: 1) if you’re not socializing anyway it doesn’t matter how shaggy you look and 2) the more you look like you do in the photo, the more likely people are to keep their distance.

    • Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

      I’m not quite clear why people are using this opportunity to be rude.

      • dabertini
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:32 pm | Permalink

        No class!! Nevermind. Let the hair go. I for one think you look devine (a la Ceiling Cat) with long hair.

      • Posted March 20, 2020 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

        “I’m not quite clear why people are using this opportunity to be rude.”

        Oops–sorry! It was intended to be an implicit compliment to your sense of humor. I’ll try to be more careful.

    • Filippo
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

      Pray tell, how should one look so as to not predispose another NOT to keep their distance? Is your own look today calculated to achieve that desired response from another?

      (It occurs to me that the modification of ones appearance might be a useful stratagem for keeping people at a distance so that one might uninterruptedly get some tasks done and otherwise make progress in ones life.)

      • phoffman56
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

        How to do the opposite:
        A beany-cap with a very large propeller on it might accomplish several tasks, making it too dangerous to venture too close, hiding the lack of haircut, and indeed indicating you may have approx. 13 pens clipped onto your shirt.

        • merilee
          Posted March 20, 2020 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

          My son went through several of those propellor caps when he was young🤓

  73. Diana MacPherson
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    My dad bought some hand held thing from I think the drugstore a while back that he uses himself. You set the depth on it then you run it around your head. I think it has batteries in it. It seems to do a pretty good job.

    • phoffman56
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

      “I think it has batteries ..”
      Aha, mine uses human muscles only–and hardly raises my pulse–as long as I don’t look too closely in the mirror.
      But maybe I’m old enough to be your grand-dad!

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

        No my grand father would have been in his 90s if he were still alive. My still alive great aunt is 95, living in NZ and still driving.

        • phoffman56
          Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

          Well, maybe not 2, but 1½ generations.

  74. Mike Anderson
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

    A fresh, professional haircut would mark you as a social distance violator and you would be ostracized.

  75. Ruthann Richards
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

    No haircut! I’ll be trimming my bangs, but that’s it. I realize the women at the shop where I go need the money, but they tend to cut whether they are sick or not, so I don’t trust them.

  76. Saul Sorrell-Till
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

    Definitely not. Even if you really don’t like it(and it looks good long) you could easily do it yourself. Barbering is a con, like homeopathy or wine-tasting.

  77. Mark R.
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    Don’t do it Jerry! I have a friend that gave his hairstylist money for a haircut he didn’t get though, just to help her out.

  78. Mark
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    “Barbering is a con”

    Explain how “barbering” is an instance of deceiving or tricking someone.

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

      I wasn’t being entirely serious, hence the use of the word ‘barbering’.

      • Filippo
        Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

        I’m glad to find out that “barbering” somehow jokingly connotes deception. That was not immediately evident to naive me.

        Does there exist somewhere a list of “not entirely serious” words and phrases, so that one might avoid mistakenly taking someone seriously?

        • Saul Sorrell-Till
          Posted March 21, 2020 at 7:56 am | Permalink

          I actually thought ‘barbering’ was a word I’d made up. Then the OP put it in inverted commas so I assumed they knew what they were talking about too.

          As for whether I was being serious or not…you could just take my word for it couldn’t you? Instead of doing your passive-aggressive thing.

  79. natalielaberlinoise
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    Haven’t read other answers. I say do not go to your hairdresser for a haircut. Reason: The transmission happens most readily through droplets of exhalation in the air and nobody knows whether they are a carrier of the virus or not, especially since people can have it without symptoms and are also contagious before they get symptoms. Of course you know all of this already. The best information I as a layperson could find is the daily podcast of Charite virologist Christian Drosten on ndr info, he developped together with others the test that is now used worldwide and is in contact with doctors from all over the world gathering info. I suppose you can get it in the US too, and you have very good German so you can understand it. May the laws of physics be in your favour!

    ndr.de/nachrichten/info/Corona-Podcast-Alle-Folgen-in-der-Uebersicht,podcastcoronavirus134.html

  80. rickflick
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    I just heard the head of the Navy just nixed frequent haircuts for sailors. Maybe he means once a month instead of once a week. 😎

  81. rickflick
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

    My wife has been cutting my hair since we were married. She learned the skill as a volunteer in a military hospital.

    But, I’d say no. Let your freak flag fly.

  82. grasshopper
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    Does Edward Scissorhands do house calls? I don’t think he touches his face any more since that time he trouble with a zit.

  83. dogugotw
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    A decade or so ago I had a full and luxurious pony tail that cascaded down to the middle of my back. It was an easy style to manage; when it got too long, just pull the tail to the front and use scissors to lop of an inch or two.
    I opted to participate in a fund raiser for St. Baldrick’s and got the whole mess cut down to the scalp.
    I discovered that super short hair was even easier to manage than my long hair. I use almost no shampoo, don’t get my tail caught under me when I’m sleeping, and I can maintain it with a good set of electric clippers.

    If you like long hair, just let ‘er rip.
    If you want low maintenance, cut it off.

  84. Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    Go for the Jeff Bridges motif, and stop touching your face.

  85. Matthew Jenkins
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    Grow it long into a ponytail, like Wally does in one of the Dilbert cartoons.

    It’s not sensible to risk this illness just to tidy your hair.

  86. Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    NO, social distancing is just that, where does is say you must haircut on subjective demand. Tell that meme to fuck off… your great leader should help barbers and the like, like they did for banks, auto companies after the 2008 meltdown.
    Science and reason still needs help and you can do that no matter what hairstyle your sporting.
    Could the hairdresser get tested regularly and do house calls, wear the appropriate gear and wash hands etc, that could be an option for them.

  87. amyt
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    “Let it grow, let it grow, let it grow”. Would be a pity if you were taken out by a haircut. The ducks won’t care.

    • Amyt
      Posted March 21, 2020 at 9:25 am | Permalink

      Clarification. “The ducks won’t care”
      The ducks WOULD care if you were taken out. The haircut, not so much.

  88. enl
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

    If you cut, do it yourself. Really.

    I was a long-hair hippie freak until the early 2000’s, with a ponytail to my butt (I also rode a Harley…. Several, actually) at which point a job change pushed me to cut it– went back to the machine shop part time– and a bet with an entirely too young, but very fun, bartender– she was 20, and I was considerably more– pushed me to the hairstyle by Gillette.

    Fast, easy, cheap. I have, mostly, kept to that since. A clipper with a spacer does the routine work.

  89. JezGrove
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

    I see Illinois has its own ” stay in place” order now, so I guess that answers the question posed here!

  90. Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    Live dangerously!

  91. phoffman56
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

    In the one direction:
    You mean there’s no iphone app that’ll cut your hair?? What the hell good is Siri if she can’t give you a shave, shower, shampoo,..?
    I’ll omit the 4th in the 4-SH-club.

    In the other:
    How far in the past was it that the first deliberate human haircut took place? Surely no more than 40,000 years. So we managed for the first 260/300 or about 86% of human existence. A brief interregnum of 1/300,000 surely is survivable.

    But I have a good little plastic doo-hickey, a couple of razor blades, and a Brooklyn Bridge, if anyone is interested at the right price.

  92. Russell La Claire
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

    As haircuttery is not essential, I’m with the DIY group. By the way, I shave my head since it seems to me cleaner and neater.

  93. Posted March 20, 2020 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

    I don’t cut my hair… But if I did I think I would just use some shears and buzz it off once in awhile DIY style.

    • phoffman56
      Posted March 21, 2020 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      Just stay away from the chainsaw.

  94. max blancke
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    Think how you would feel if, a couple of days after the haircut, a HHS staffer were to call you and say that the barber had listed you in their contacts prior to showing symptoms.

    Also, there is a thing called a barracks cut. I have had many. Worst case, it grows out.

  95. Barbara C. Radcliffe
    Posted March 20, 2020 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    Re the hair-cut, I’m not too fussed. When it gets to point that you can’t see through your glasses (in the Land of Oz, we’d call it being ‘wool-blind) then seriously consider going to the barber. I continue to go to the hair-dresser about six-weekly, and am continuing to not worry about it!

  96. Posted March 21, 2020 at 12:32 am | Permalink

    Nah. Give it a miss, mate.
    Go hippy for awhile. “Hair Peace” as John and Yoko said. You can always get a short back and sides in a month or two.
    sincerely,
    D.A. (bald NYer)

  97. Posted March 21, 2020 at 1:56 am | Permalink

    It’s a question I posed myself. Here in Baden-Württemberg, you could visit your local Frisör, a situation that just drew a comment on the orthography on Facebook. Since yesterday night all Friseure are closed.

  98. Walter Holberg
    Posted March 21, 2020 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    I stopped in yesterday afternoon. One barber instead of the usual three, four people ahead of me. One look at the room and its distancing, and my gut told me to go home. “I’ll come back a little later,” I said. By the looks of things it will be May at the earliest. I’m 76 with asthma – not worth the risk. Stratford, CT.

  99. docbill1351
    Posted March 21, 2020 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    No, no haircut. It’s not the washing or the gloves but everybody who has been in and out of that place. High risk activity.

    The Universe has already determined that you will become shaggier, nay, stylish as will your faithful readers who are also NOT GETTING THEIR HAIR CUT! Kink says, “Listen to the Universe, well, actually, don’t bother because the deal is done!”


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