4/23/20. Except where indicated, photos by David Kramer.As seen in An eerie quiet at Rochester Institute of Technology, when visiting RIT, Professor of Philosophy Timothy Engström took my picture outside Liberal Arts Hall. The sorry state of my coiffure displays the effect of the shuttered doors of the barbers who cut my hair and trim or shave my beard. Actually, my bicycle helmet had flattened down the mess, hence — as seen above — not revealing my full hair-abandoned condition.
On Tuesday, Democrat and Chronicle columnist Jim Memmott, “Sheltered in place, hair-cutting issues hit home: try DIY or let nature run wild?”, offered some advice on do it yourself haircuts.
Having eschewed DIY, I’ve gone total Let Nature Run Wild.
Hence my question. Dear readers, does anyone know someone who can safely cut my hair, at my home or theirs? I can shave. If so, please email David Kramer at [email protected]
Normally, I patronize the barbers of Upper Monroe. The profession of barbering is especially esteemed in minority and immigrant communities; all my barbers have been black, hispanic or middle eastern.
Do be prepared to stay a while. These men take their craft seriously. A haircut with the Barbers of Monroe is not an assembly line in-and-out; it’s an event. Lavishing attention, the barbers wield their razors, clippers, blades, trimmers, combs, brushes, neck dusters, mirrors, oils, creams, lotions and powders with precision. No stray stand is left uncut. One man gives tips on the finer points of hair grooming. Unless absolutely necessary, don’t shave everyday. Shaving is actually a form of micro surgery. A daily — often hurried — scraping causes unsightly skin bumps. If you must shave daily, only use the blade in one direction, either up or down but not both.
As I began my excursion, I met Jacob Covey who was trying out his new camera, taking shots of the Cobbs Hill Building 3. Although he looks great compared to me, Jacob has not shaved in about three weeks. His last top trim was over two months ago. A friend was cutting his hair, but right now they are keeping social distance.
Jacob is nurse in the hematology and oncology unit at Rochester General Hospital. His next shift is tomorrow morning at 3 a.m. Taking photos is therapy. Jacob’s unit is relatively calm, but ICU and the Covid-19 dedicated units are stressed. Nonetheless, staff morale is strong. Jacob says the community has been amazingly supportive, donating food, homemade masks and other useful items. Jacob sees reason for optimism. Every day, the staff is learning more about treating the disease, keeping everyone updated through emails and meetings.
While Jacob feels the situation in Rochester is stable and improving, in NYC, it’s unfortunately still grim. Jacob’s cousin, a travelling nurse living in San Diego, volunteered to work in a Manhattan hospital. She describes the situation as unimaginable. Before every shift, the staff gathers for prayer.
Next door to Furat Al Atlace Barber Shop is B.K. HAIR SALON, 463 Monroe Ave. As B.K. is For Women Only! , currently I am not eligible. Perhaps if my hair grows long enough, I can pass.UPDATE: 4/25/20. Did the DIY.