Posted by: haircutsrevisited | August 1, 2008

Over The Ears

Over The Ears 
By Tammy

Foreword: This one was inspired by one of my clients who is a police officer that comes to have her Pixie haircut trimmed every 4 weeks, she inspired me to write a story about the Police Academy when she first cut her hair short. 

I went to the Police Academy when I was 22 years old. It was my life long dream to become a Police Officer. I was hired by my local Police Department where I grew up and was told to report to the Police Academy for the summer training session. The Police Academy served all of the Police Departments in my area and was located far up north in a very small farming community. There was nothing around there but farmland which meant there was nothing to do except focus on our training.

After a very long drive my parents dropped me off at the academy to start my training. I was really excited and eager to get started. This was going to be my new home for the next 20 weeks. My class had 32 cadets and only 6 of us where female recruits. On the first day we where told about the Dress Code standards and we where issued our cadet uniforms and training outfits.

Grooming standards stated our hair was to be cut ‘above the collar’ and ‘above the ears’ and to be kept neat. It said that female cadets where required to keep their hair ‘above the collar’ either by cutting it or pin there hair up tight in a bun so it remains ‘above the collar’ and ‘above the ears’ at all times during the training.

There was a Barber that was made available that day to cut anyone’s hair that was past the collar. The females where offered haircuts as an option and all 6 of us cadets opted out of cutting our hair and decided to pin our hair up instead. Most of the male cadets had already cut there hair back home however a few cadets who were told to go see the barber.

I was intrigued by the Academy Barbershop and had to have a peek inside to see all of the action. The barber was an older man and was very fast as he worked. He did all the same haircuts with it short in the sides and back but left it a little longer on top. The male cadets came out one at a time with there new short haircuts and I thought they looked stunning. We were informed that the barber returns every Monday for up-keep during the rest of our training and we were to ensure we continue to comply with the dress-code.

The first week at training I struggled with pinning up my hair. We all struggled with it really as it took more time in the mornings and we sometimes ran late. We lost demerit points for being late and even more points if our hair wasn’t put up properly. This definitely gave the male cadets an advantage over us as we struggled with dealing with our hair.

The barber returned every Monday afternoon during our physical training class. The instructor would ask if anyone wanted to go to the barbershop and any cadet would stand up if they wanted to go. Two of the guys stood up when he called out. When the instructor called out for last chance to go to the Barbershop one of the female cadets stood up at the last moment. I looked over and it was Jennifer.

Jennifer was struggling with her hair like I was. Seeing her stand up made me think about going as well as my hair was starting to get to me too. I was really nervous about cutting it though so I couldn’t find the nerve to stand up. The three of them were dismissed and went off to the Barbershop.

When they returned I was really shocked at how short Jennifer’s hair was cut. It was cut really short in the back and sides with a bit of length left longer on top. It looked so different on her and I was really surprised she had cut it so short. She was quiet about it though and just focused on her training so I didn’t ask her about it.

As that week went on it was starting to get a lot hotter and I was getting even more tired of my hair now. I was envious of Jennifer as she was improving a lot with her training. She had the extra minutes in the morning to snooze a little and was never running behind. She also didn’t have to deal with her hair falling out during the training anymore.

During our training I was partnering with another cadet named Carrie quite a lot. We worked very well together and always made sure to ‘watch each others backs’. We did well together as partners in our Crime Scene Scenario storming into makeshift residential crime scenes and we always backed each other up.

The next Monday came and I had just about enough with dealing with my hair. I mentioned to Carrie about going to the barber and she agreed to come with me. That afternoon during our Physical Training the instructor called out for anyone who needed to see the Barber. I was really nervous but I stood up. Carrie stood up right after I did. We where dismissed and off we went.

We walked together back to the main building where the Barbershop was. We had our hair pinned up tight under our Cadet hats. I was nervous when we walked but mentioned I was thinking of cutting my hair a little shorter to make it easier but not too short. I wanted maybe a bob to make it easier to deal with but I definitely didn’t want to go as short as Jennifer did the week before. A bob felt right as it would be easy to grow it back after our training was completed. Carrie agreed so we committed to getting our haircut together into a bob style.

We got to the Barbershop and I was really scared so I moved a bit slower. Carrie was ahead of me a little so she entered the room first and I followed in behind her.

“Good afternoon Ladies,” The barber said as we entered and I nodded back to him.
“Take a seat,” he motioned to Carrie towards the barber’s chair as she was the first to enter the shop. She promptly took a seat climbing up into that large barber’s chair. I could tell she was nowhere near as nervous as I was.

The barber came across as a very friendly old man and was very welcoming when we entered. It was strange being inside a Barbershop as I had never been inside of one before. Carrie took her cadet hat off and started loosening her hair from her bun. I took a seat on the waiting bench and watched.

Carrie shook her hair loose and her long and wavy dark brown hair rolled down her back and over the back of the barber’s chair. She ran her fingers through her hair loosening the curls as she started to instruct the barber for her haircut.

“I was thinking of cutting it to about here,” she said pointing to her neck-line.
“Bobed so I can grow it out after.” She told him. “Not too short as it curls,” she added.
“Oh I don’t do those types of haircuts here.” He told her.
“I can cut it for you over the ears and leave it a bit longer on top for you to style it. This haircut would be very easy to take care of and is out of the way for your training,” he suggested.

She turned her head side to side looking at her reflection.

“Over my ears and longer on top.” She asked him.
“Over the ears and longer on top.” He confirmed.
“Not too short though,” she told him. “I want to grow it out after.”
“I always leave a little more length on top for my female cadets.” He told her. “I’ve been doing these haircuts for years without any complaints.” He added convincingly.

She sat there moment thinking about it.

“OK,” she said. “But not too short. Over my ears and longer on top so I can style it,” She told him.
“One haircut over the ears, and longer on top coming up,” He sang cheerfully as he grabbed a light blue cape and swung it over her.
He pinned the cape to her neck and said. “This will be very easy to take care of, you will see,” reaffirming her and she smiled saying “OK.”

I watched as he took a comb and a large pair of scissors and started combing out her long hair on the top. He took a section of her hair on top of her head and held it between his fingers barely a couple of inches off her scalp. I watched in aw as he took the first snip and over 30” of her long dark wavy hair fell loosely and quietly onto her lap in front of her. I could see her tense up from the sight of loosing the first lock of her long hair. He held up another section and methodically snipped away across the top of her head very quickly reducing her hair to its new short length on top. He moved to her right side and cut the length off very short over her right ear and did the same on her left side after as well. With each snip the locks of her hair rained down in front of her and onto her lap. She had a look of horror on her face watching this.

“Wait a minute,” she finally said and he stopped. “You said you where going to cut it over my ears and longer on top.” She explained. ”This is not long enough to cover over my ears and its really short on top.” she told him.
“I said over your ears.” He told her, “I am cutting it over your ears so that it is out of the way to make it easier for you,” he said. “That is what I told you,” he said.
“Oh my god!” she replied, “I thought you meant long enough to cover over my ears and longer on top so I could style my curls.”

“We don’t do those types of haircuts here,” he told her again.

I watched her sigh and my heart sank for her. I could tell that this wasn’t what she thought he meant. It was already way too late as so much of her hair had been cut off already. I felt really horrible as it was my idea for us to come here in the first place.

He went quickly back to the cutting again without any consideration to the situation reducing the rest of the length in the back of her head to a really short length with the scissors. I was mesmerized as I watched the last of her long wavy locks of dark hair fall to the floor behind her. He finished when all of her hair was reduced to a very short and messy pixie cut length. He put down the scissors and grabbed a pair of large clippers. They popped as they turned on. I felt my stomach muscles tense as I watched him move to behind her and he tilted her head forward.

The sound of the clippers filled the room and the humming sound deepened as he pushed them up the back of her head. They left a path of very short hair with each pass as he continued across the back of her hair and over her ears reducing her hair to a very short length in the sides and back.

“Now this is over your ears,” he told her as he turned off the clippers. She sat there very quietly.

He placed the clippers down and grabbed a spray bottle and wet the top of her hair. He returned with a comb and a smaller pair of scissors and neatened up the sides and back where it met the longer length on top. He went over the top leaving about 1” in length at the top. He put the scissors and comb down and grabbed a hairdryer

“You see I left it longer on top for you to style it,” he told her, “Just like I said I was going to do.”

Then he started up the hair-dryer. He blow-dried it ruffling the top with his fingers. He finished drying it and went over the hairline with a smaller set of clippers cleaning off her neckline.

When he finished he dusted off her neck and removed the cape and grabbed a hand mirror to show her the back. It was really short and I was stunned at the sight of it. She sat there very quietly as she saw the reflection in the back for the first time seeing the shortest length in the back. She reached her hand up and felt it for the first time.

“Oh my god.” She said staring at her reflection.
“I had no idea you were going to cut it this short,” she told him.
“I’ve been doing these haircuts for years and I know what is good for my cadets.” He said as he held the mirror. “I’ve never had a complaint before and I know I won’t have one now. You will have an easier time with this haircut, you will see.” He told her.

She sat there for another moment staring at her reflection and eventually gave a little nod at him and he put the mirror away. She got up out of the chair and stood in front of the mirror to see it closer and ran her fingers through her new haircut looking at her reflection.

She paused again looking at herself and turned her head to one side. “This is so short.” She beamed out with an enthusiastic tone and started to smile. “I can’t believe I just did this.” she added running her fingers through it. “Oh My God that feels so amazing,” she said loudly feeling her new short hair in the back.

She turned around and caught a glance at her hair sprawled on the floor around the chair and yelled “WOW” seeing the sight of it and started to laugh “that is so much hair,” she belted out.

I was really surprised at how well she was reacting to all of this. The one thing I knew about Carrie was she always had a confidence about herself and was never afraid of any situation. She was also the best partner I had in the program. She came over and took a seat next to me on the waiting bench and smiled at me with that confidence I came to know from her very well.

“Well what do you think?” She said to me looking for approval with a big smile on her face.
I reached up to feel it.
“Wow.” I told her. I was so shocked I didn’t know what to say.
“So much for our Bob’s now I guess,” she said sarcastically.

“Next,” the barber called out staring right at me as he spun his chair to face me.
“Your turn.” She said with enthusiasm.
“Oh, I don’t know.” I told her.
“Oh go on,” she said as she nudged me. “We’ve started this together so let’s finish it. I wouldn’t even be here if it wasn’t for you,” she told me.

I sat there frozen. I knew exactly what she meant. We came together and we had to go back together as partners to face our peers. Obviously we weren’t getting the bob’s we were hoping for and for her it was already too late. If I backed out now after what happened to her I knew I would have to face my peers for it. It went against what we were learning and I needed to show some solidarity.

“Let’s go,” The barber called out impatiently.
“Go on,” Carrie said again nudging my arm again. “I’ve got your back and you’ve got mine,” She added.
“All right, All right,” I answered back.

I took a deep breath and gathered whatever strength I could and stood up to get into that chair. My knees felt so weak and wobbled as I stood up and my feet felt very heavy as I tried to lift them to walk. I had to step over the massive pile of locks that where left lying around the chair from Carries’ haircut a moment ago. The sight of it was overwhelming.

I turned and slid up into that large chair and the big red seat felt warm and very comfortable for some reason. He spun me around so I faced the mirror. My cadet hat was still on and my hair was tucked and pinned underneath it in its bun. I took my hat off and placed it on my lap and started to unpin my hair. My long blond hair fell out and down over my right shoulder and I ran my fingers through it one last time and took a deep breath.

He slid the light blue cape over me and pinned it at my neck. I closed my eyes as he started fastening the cape and didn’t dare open them again. I sat in complete silence with my eyes closed waiting for what was about to happen and wishing it wouldn’t.

I could hear him come around behind me now and felt as he started combing out my hair on top of my head. Then I heard the sound of the scissors close for the first time. My stomach churned at the sound. I tried to maintain my composure as I felt him combing out another section and could hear the scissors snip once again, mercilessly at the top of my head. I still kept my eyes closed. I could feel the weight of my hair gathering on my lap as it gathered on top of the cape. I could feel my head feeling lighter and lighter with each new passing Snip of the scissors. I could feel him working over my ears now and my head was feeling very light by now. He tilted my head forward and I could hear him cutting what was left at the back of my head with the scissors until all my hair had been completely cut off, and then the scissors finally stopped.

I dared to open my eyes but only for a moment. I didn’t recognize the reflection staring back at me and so I just closed them once again in fear. I felt his hand on the top of my head tilting my head forward and I fought to maintain my composure.

I heard the clippers pop to life and I shook nervously at the sound. I felt the steel on my neck and heard the sound deepen as I felt them pushing up the back of my head. I sat there tense as I felt pass after pass up the back of my head.

I opened my eyes again just for a moment as my head was pushed forward towards my lap and I could see the massive amounts of blond hair gathered on my lap on top of the cape. I was in aw by the site of my beautiful long blond hair shorned and gathered on my lap. I didn’t dare look up at the mirror and closed my eyes once again as he continued with the clippers. The sensation of the clippers was so overwhelming that I let out a moan for a moment. I struggled to regain my composure once again.

I heard the clippers stop and I opened my eyes to finally look at my reflection. I started to take it all in. My hair was all gone now. It was cut really messy on top and it was clipped really short over my ears.  I watched him spraying water on top of my head and he took a comb and scissors to finish my haircut neatening up the top and tapering it in with the sides and back. I was mesmerized at the sight of it.

He got the hairdryer and dried it off for me ruffling it on top like he did Carries. I started to relax now as the cutting part was over and I smiled for the first time as he was drying it off. The sensation of it felt overwhelming.

He finished drying my hair off and took a smaller pair of clippers and went over my neck and around my ears. He dusted me off and removed the cape from me and showed me the back with the hand mirror. It was really short like Carries’ hair but it looked different on me then hers did on her as her hair was a lot darker then mine. Mine sat more forward on top and hers stuck up a little more on top from her curls.

I felt it for the first time and it felt amazing. I smiled and nodded in approval as he held the hand mirror and said “Thank-you” as he put the mirror away.

“My Pleasure,” he responded. “And good luck with the training ladies.” He told us

I got up and went and sat back down on the bench next to Carrie where she was waiting and I was greeted by her huge smile. I felt better now that it was done.

The pile of my blond locks gathered on top of Clair’s dark wavy hair around the barber’s chair on the floor and it was a sad sight as I loved my long hair. I took in another sigh at the site but new it was too late now anyways. I took one last look as the barber started to sweep our long hair away with his broom and realized he was sweeping away a big part of my past. I felt like I was leaving a piece of my old self behind in that barbershop that day as I was moving on with my career and a new life.

We left to rejoin our class. We laughed as we walked back as we couldn’t believe what we just did. Carrie admitted to me that when the barber told her he was going to cut it over her ears and longer on top she thought he meant cutting it long enough to cover over her ears and even longer on top. That was what she was picturing in her head and thought it would look nice with her curls. She said she almost freaked as he started cutting it at first and she froze as he was moving so fast. I only cut mine as I couldn’t abandon her after what had happened to her. But I didn’t regret cutting mine either now that it had been done.

When we got back to our Physical Training class everyone was really shocked to see our new haircuts except Jennifer who was beaming when she saw us. She said she wasn’t expecting the barber to cut hers as short as he did as well as she asked him to just clean it up for her for the training. She was so upset after. She felt a lot better seeing us with the same haircut now.

The three of us excelled much further then our other female counterparts from that point on as it was a lot easier to take care of and no longer a distraction for us. Our focus was on our program anyway and not our vanity. I just remained focused on that until graduation.

When I finished the academy I tried to grow my hair out again but found I didn’t like it long anymore. I had long hair all my life and found it too much maintenance now so I kept it short but with a better style as I started going to a nice salon back in my home town. Cutting it short for the first time that one day was an overwhelming experience and one that I will never forget.

Thanks for reading,

Tammy

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