that's not a knife, dude!


on saturday, i decided i wanted to get a haircut. i walked up and down rainier ave, trying to find a decent looking, affordable barbershop. there wasn't one. i took one step into big john's barbershop, and immediately wanted to leave. big john, if that was him, was this big old black dude, who reminded me of my uncle rebel. and uncle rebel isn't someone i would want cutting my hair. big john sat in his chair and had no customers. everything inside his shop looked dusty, rusty and old, like something straight out of texas chainsaw massacre. the shop's crappy interior was a little shocking, since it sits in between yuppified restaurants like geraldine's and tutta bella's, and next to indie/crafty/superchic (whatever you would call it) andaluz. what the hell are you still doing in business, big john?

luckily, big john took cash only, and i didn't have any cash on me. so, i left big john's shop, telling him i would be back. i'm sure he didn't hold his breath, waiting for me to return. i walked into some salon. these black women gave me a what-the-hell-are-you-doing-here look. "how much for a haircut?" "fifteen, but the barber ain't here," this black woman told me. "he's gone for the day." "alright," i said, and left. why is it so difficult to get a haircut in columbia city? i decided that i was just going to have to suck it up and go to helmet head in georgetown. emily recommended it, and despite the exorbitant price, i figured i had no other choice. i walked to georgetown.

the receptionist had no empty slots until two, so i played wii fit with emily until then. i was glad to see that my wii fit age was only 26. i was also labeled "normal" - not underweight or overweight - and told that my profile was the least likely to get sick. good news from a japanese machine. i played these games where you hit soccer balls with your head, skiied down a hill, and ran a short distance. i even hula-hooped. wii fit is a pretty good game for people like myself who are too lazy to actually go outside. i just might have to get one.

this old redheaded woman named elizabeth cut my hair. she talked a lot like this girl i used to work with at tower, jessie, who sounded like she was high and giggling all the time. both of them probably both were. elizabeth grew up in upstate new york, then moved to chicago, then moved to kirkland, then to georgetown. she decided that the pacific northwest was the most beautiful place she had ever been to, and thus decided to stay. she also talked about how she was trying to buy a house, and how she owned a doberman pincher. i guess that having a doberman pincher makes it hard for people to buy a house.

when i returned to emily's, she decided she wanted to leave the house. we walked over to fantagraphics, a store dedicated to graphic novels and comic books. i liked just about everything in the store, but i couldn't bring myself to make a purchase, since i knew i could check out just about any item from the library for free. after that, we went to a store where they sold $300 pillows and other highly-priced goods for the house. i'm talking $400 lamps and $45 candles. how do these retailers justify their prices? how do customers justify their spending? emily bought a tattoo art book. she said she was thinking about getting another tattoo.

after checking out georgetown's shops, we went to miller paint co., where john works. john showed me how the paint mixers work, how the tint machine works, and how he doesn't mind closing ten minutes early. in the back, he offered me a big yellow bucket for free. i thought about taking it and using it as a garbage can, but i didn't. towards the front of the store, there was a display case with an engravement. there was a giant typo, something that read along the lines of "devine paints will transforms..." john found it hilarious that the company spent so much money for the engravement, and that there was a blatant error any ten year old could easily point out.

later that night, the three of us spent a long time at target, game crazy/hollywood video, and safeway. by the time we got back, it was ten o'clock. emily announced that she was starving. i was at the point where i was so hungry that i wasn't hungry anymore. john, however, first found a big soapy stain in his trunk, and felt compelled to clean it up immediately. next, emily pointed out that one of his beers had spilled all over the bottom of the fridge. he then felt compelled to clean that up as well. this led to john cleaning out the entire fridge, and emily fuming, since she was hungry and had no space to cook. finally, she gave up and ordered a pizza from stellar pizza.

we ate our pizza while emily tried to play the wii game she had rented called cooking mama. there was a giant steak on the screen, and she had no idea how to cut it. john and i, in our inebriated states, called out suggestions. "grab a knife and cut it!" he said. "there's no knife!" she told him. "there's a knife right there, to your right!" i yelled. she tried to pick it up. "that's not a knife, dude! that's the space in the cutting board!" i looked closer at the screen, and realized she was right. this got me laughing quite a bit. at last, she realized all she had to do was wave the wii controller up and down, up and down. the steak split into five neat strips. by then, we were all in hysterics over how stupidly simple the whole game was.

on sunday, i finished reading the glass castle by jeannette walls. i liked it a lot, but then again, like the author, i'm fascinated by hardships.

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