Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Day the Hair Ran Out

I remember all too well an experience I had my freshmen year of college when a group of boys from the nearby dorms asked me and my roommate if we could cut hair. We told them sure we could and to come on over. Why either of us said such a thing, I am not sure because neither of us had the faintest idea how to cut men's hair. At the time I do remember thinking it couldn't be that hard.

genealogy, family history, story, family, Sanford Colorado, Orson Ganus
My roommate had at least watched her brothers get their hair cut a few times, so it was decided that she would be the authority and we would sit the guys in chairs side by side and I would watch what she was doing and mimic it.

The appointed time arrived and not one or two, but a handful of young men from the boys' dorm showed up. We set two chairs side by side and a guy plopped down in each chair.

I cringe, knowing that neither of us had hair cutting scissors. It only got worse because she got a guy with regular hair and I got a guy with extremely thick curly hair. The same method did not work on both heads of hair.

I don't remember the specifics of what happened when I was done or what was said, but maybe that's a blessing. What I do remember is that  I avoided that guy for a very long time afterwards. I can only imagine the conversation that went on in the boys' dorm that night. Not surprisingly, no one ever asked us to cut their hair again.

Apparently I am not the only one who was naive enough as a young girl to think that just anyone could cut hair. One of the funniest stories I came across in Olive E. Faucett Christensen's autobiography is a similar story involving my grandfather's twin, Orson Ganus. Olive shared the following experience:
"Now I want to tell one on Orson and I.  He had a heavy head of hair almost black and wavy. He was really getting shaggy.  I had watched people cut hair so I suggested I cut his hair. He said okay. We never said anything to Mamma, but got out by the house, kinda out of sight. I got my sissors and went to work on him. I cut for quite a while but it didn't seem to be shaping up like I thought it would so I'd size him up, cut some more here, then it needed something on the other side or in the back. I still whacked a little, by now I was getting a little worried. I began to wonder what I was going to do when the hair ran out. I was still clipping a little but feeling smaller and smaller until I didn't feel larger than a midget. I began to wonder what the haymen would say and what Papa would say. I quit cutting his hair and began to talk good to Orson and asking him to stay away from the dinner table and I'd bring his dinner to him. So he hid out at noon but we had to tell Mamma, she couldn't help but laugh because he looked a fright. That was one time I was glad hair could grow out."
Orson Merritt Ganus, Family History, Genealogy, family story, Sanford Colorado
Orson Ganus with unknown child,
Orson maintained a thick head of hair most of his life
Generously shared by great grand-daughter, Amy Moss

We've all had our bad hair days, but I can only imagine how Orson felt the following day when he faced the other men and boys in the hay fields. Although hair thankfully does grow back, Orson likely remembered that hair cut for a long time and the day the hair ran out.

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2015, All rights reserved

7 comments:

  1. Oh, Michelle, hilarious! And that doesn't just happen to amateurs. The last time my husband went to get his hair cut, he had a new person. They got into an interesting conversation--a little too interesting, it turned out. He almost had his hair "run out" too. Next time, he's decided he'll keep his mouth shut and play the boring customer!

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    1. Oh Jacqi, that is a great story too and I suspect he is not alone !

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  2. Both stories are hilarious. Fortunately, Orson probably wore a hat in the fields anyway, so maybe he managed to avoid too much teasing.

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    1. I would imagine you are right Wendy. Poor guy.

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  3. Oh Michelle! These stories are so funny! I can only imagine what the other boys in that group were thinking as they watched the first two get their haircuts. Did they still take you up on the free haircut offer?

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  4. We finished cutting all of the boys that came.....but I honestly don't remember much of what happened after that. I bet they remember though... ha ha.

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  5. Michelle,

    I want to let you know that your blog post is listed in today's Fab Finds post at http://janasgenealogyandfamilyhistory.blogspot.com/2015/09/follow-friday-fab-finds-for-september.html

    Have a wonderful weekend!

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