Sport Clips: Where MEN Go To Get A Haircut

*Originally published on Slackjaw, Feb 2023
10 Most Read Pieces Of 2023 – #6

Haven’t you seen the commercials? Sport Clips: the place MEN go to catch a ballgame AND have hot chicks cut their hair. It’s basically Hooters for haircuts.

Here’s how it works. You drive to the nearest location without signing in online. You park your car, probably a lease, and head inside. There are five men ahead of you in line and only one babe — you call their employees babes — tasked with cutting all these men’s hair and running the queue system at the front desk.

“Did you check in online?” she shouts from the chair in the back corner of the building. “We’re short staffed today. Take a seat, we’ll be with you shortly.”

“Shortly” means 90 minutes, but don’t fret. You get to grab a seat in the bullpen and enjoy the total fucking alpha fest that is the Sport Clips waiting room. There’s so much to do to pass the time: compare yourself to the other muscle-bound men with overgrown hair wearing blue jeans with no belt; sign up for a woodworking class; claim your first free bet on DraftKings. The possibilities are endless!

Eventually, your name will appear on the waiting screen where every man’s name belongs: at number one.

“Ben K.?” the babe calls out. You rise, the lone man in a crowd of betas. She guides you to your chair.

“Two on the side with a light fade? An inch off the top?” The stylist reads your last haircut to you off a tiny sheet of paper. I gotta remember that, you think. But you won’t.

Her trimmer turns on and she runs it aggressively back and forth across the overgrown field of follicles where the neck meets your head.

“Busy day?” you ask her, coyly.

“Yes,” she says. “But I like it that way.”

“I bet you do,” you say suggestively. She doesn’t speak again for a long time.

In the silence, you notice the vibrations near your ear holes have a strange calming effect…

That a woman’s touch you’ve longed for puts you at ease…

That nine flatscreens airing the same segment of SportsCenter have a strange hypnotic effect….

Stephen A. Smith’s yelling at another talking head about how women shouldn’t compete in mixed martial arts, yet you can barely keep your eyes open.

Suddenly, you hear a voice. The haircut is over.

“Do you want the MVP treatment?” she asks.

Your crypto investments have done surprisingly well in this market, so you tell her yes.

“Then follow me.”

She leads you to the back of the building to a curtained-off area. Inside you find a door. A metal street sign above it reads: Man Cave: Enter at Your Own Risk.

“You have to go in first,” she says. “There’s a testosterone detector.”

You bench press your way through the door’s invisible barrier into a room full of white light. Three geishas stand in the center around a single massage chair. They wear skimpy tight referee uniforms and blow whistles at you. “Show us how strong you are,” they say, flirtatiously.

You crank out 20 push-ups with ease.

“Are you ready?” your stylist asks.

“Are you?” you say. All three geishas laugh at your confidence and very funny joke.

The women lower you into the chair. You close your eyes. As the geishas work knots out of your neck and shoulders, your stylist lathers pomade in her fingers and rubs it gently into your hair, giving you a sensual temple massage as she works. The pomade smells of mint and public transportation. But you don’t care.

“This really is the MVP treatment,” you say.

Every woman in the room laughs again.

The stylist sets your hair to the left, giving your narrowing widow’s peak favorable coverage. She places a hot towel over your eyes and joins the geishas in massaging your overworked muscles. Steamy eucalyptus stings your nostrils. The ecstasy of it all becomes too much to bear…

I’m close, you think. I’m really, really close.

“Excuse me?”

Opening your eyes, you realize you and the stylist — who seems very angry — are in an industrially dark corner at the back of the salon. The eucalyptus you smelled earlier has been replaced by the scent of wheat bread toasting through the wall at the Subway next door.

“Did you just say you were going to cum?” she demands. “You need to leave, right now.”

You pay, leaving a generous $3 tip to show her you’re a good guy. Before you can even tell her to smile, she’s reading Kyle M.’s haircut to him off his own tiny sheet of paper. You wonder if what you two had was even really that special.

Humbled, you turn toward the exit, taking a quick glance at her nametag. Zelda. Like the videogame. You’ll look her up later on LinkedIn.

The sea of virgins in the bullpen all stare at you funny. Outside, you realize why: in the glass window of the Subway next door, you see your beloved stylist missed several spots and every one of your cowlicks. But it’s okay, all things considered. You got a haircut like a man should. You, if only for a few fleeting moments, were an MVP. Also, you opened a Roth IRA recently.

In your car, you begin weeping when you realize it will be six to eight weeks before your hair grows back and you get to feel this way again; albeit at a different location.