One of those things about getting a hair cut is the experience of being served in a very intimate way. Other than being seen by a doctor or other health professional there is hardly another profession outside of personal grooming where we are touched. It hasn’t always been this sterile of a life. What we have lost is anyones guess.
As a gathering place our hair cutting choice is about who we want to “touch” us. Who we want to converse with us and who we want to financially support. Has anyone noticed how barber shops and hair styling salons are prolific in black communities where life on the “street” is out in the open? Why is that and what is the tradition they hold on to when Corporate salons which dot the streetscape in “other” read white demographic, are all about the cheap in and out.
Barcelona July 2011 photo by Nick F. Barber Chair
Get a hair cut for what it’s worth at a corporate salon and there you have the petri dish DNA of the past 4 decades in American history. Take the profit out of a necessary function, kill the independent competition and along with it the soul and replace it with cheap labor.
Is the way we have treated barbers in America the way of bike shops? Will bike sharing in some 4 decades be the norm? Will bike shops disappear altogether and with it bike ridership?
Barcelona July 2011 Photo by Nick F. Bike Share
The optimist in me wants to believe that bike shops will thrive and ridership will increase in America not in spite of Bike Sharing. With so many issues surrounding bike riding getting voiced in social media the momentum for increased ridership is mostly centered in small populations of whites in a dozen American cities. From the perspective of looking towards 2012 and winter ahead of us up north there is no better time than now to get in touch with your bike and bike shop owner. If that is as little as shaking hands then do it. Or a pat on the shoulder for the work they do for you. As there is no remedy for the lost years of youth for those that don’t relish old age there is nothing worse than missing an opportunity to be thankful for what we are given in our time.