Feb 19

Getting My Hair Cut With Alistair

It seems like I can’t get away from these inadvertent slams on me as a primary caretaker. I’m at the barber the other day, it’s a hair salon for guys. I’ve gone to this woman since I moved to Pasadena. She’s cut my hair plenty. We’ve talked about my kids. It’s been great.

Well, this last time I had to bring my 4 month old with me. I just wheeled him back to the barber chair. Fortunately he slept for the majority, but he did get up and get a little cranky for a portion of the time. I remember when a crying baby in public would have stressed me out, but this time I just kept pushing the stroller back and forth while I was getting my hair cut. Seemed to keep him mellow. Does that count as multitasking?

The interesting thing was our conversation. Noticing the baby in the stroller, she said, “Oh, you’re wife is working today?”

I said, “Yep”

She said, “Are you taking the day off, then?”

I said, “No, I’m a stay at home dad”

And this is where things always seem to take an interesting turn. In her case, she gets this quizzical look on her face, as if this is the most bizarre thing she’s ever heard.

She says, “You know how to take care of children??”

I said, “Sure.” I can already tell where this is going. And she’s already under my skin.

Then she follows up, “You have experience with children??”

At this point my gut tells me to defend myself and relate to her that I DO have a 3 year old, and have managed to keep him alive. I most definitely have experience with children. I really want to prove that I am capable of taking care of kids, and convince the opposition with facts and figures. But I’m really quite over all of that at this point.

I replied with an unsure tone, “I’ll just learn as I go, right?”

The cherry on top was getting advice that I need to have a hat on my child. This is one of the most frustrating things that happens to me. I want to get a T-shirt that says, “No Unsolicited Advisors” or “Qualified Dad – Don’t Tell Me What I’m Doing Wrong”

Incidentally, my 4 month old survived without a hat. No pneumonia. Must have dodged that bullet.

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