Friday, October 8, 2010

Day 19 in L.A. (My Strength, My Money, MY HAIR!!!!)

I currently don’t feel like myself anymore. I feel weak and out of place, all because of this barber who destroyed my high top. Before I start to explain what happened, I’m not going to write this blog with the intent of slandering anyone’s business. That one barber does not represent the whole establishment and at the least, the owner did show some concern about the issue. Nevertheless, I’m now stuck wearing a hat to cover up my head and I’m $40 poorer. Wait until you finish reading. It’s unbelievable and I don’t know why I didn’t “set it off” in there. I’m going to be pondering about what happened for weeks.

Finding the right barber has been a big concern of mine upon relocating to L.A. When I started growing my high top in 2007 it was mostly described as a large kid and play box, which people pointed and laughed at a lot. Then in 2008 I was introduced to a barber named Jay D. Since we met, he designed a new style and increased my level of confidence with my high top fade. I loved it and all fans adored it. 

Furthermore, at the networking mixer I attended on day 16, someone told me about this one particular barber shop. I looked it up and they appeared creditable. Their website and Facebook page was impressive to me with great video presentations. I called about pricing and a young lady told me “$25 a cut.” I said, “Say that again!” My heart skipped about 3 beats because I’m use to paying $15 for my cuts. It was hard enough making the transition from $10 per cut and now I have to jump to $25. A few people told me that price was about average around here, so I sucked it up. In this industry, it costs to look good and I figured I was going to have to make the sacrifice. 

When I arrived at the shop, a barber outside noticed my high top and asked me if I was here for a cut. I then asked him “Can you handle a high top fade, because not everyone can handle a high top fade?” He said, “man come on.” I also stated, “I’m really particular about whom and how my hair is cut; I just moved out here 2 weeks and 4 days ago.” To make sure we were both on the same page I pulled out a picture from my bag and pointed out exactly what I wanted. I made sure he knew I wanted the top oval/ rounded and not boxy.
He immediately begin cutting. The first thing I noticed was his different style of cutting. He was a lot quicker and rougher than my barber back in Tampa. At this time there's a voice in my head saying, “Just relax, everyone has a different style of cutting.” What I hated most about the ordeal is that I couldn’t see my hair being cut. Barbershops these days don’t make enough mirrors available. My confidence went up when a random person complimented the way he was cutting my hair, but he hadn't reached the top of my head yet, only the sides.

Throughout the whole experience, I kept trying to look at the barely visible mirror that was blocked off, but I wasn’t getting any good results. He started cutting the top of my head with a scissors. Again, completely different from my other barber, but I figured it was his style. At this point, I should have stopped and got a clear look. Later on when I noticed a decrease in my hair, I asked him, “Are you sure you’re not cutting off too much from the top?” He replied by saying, “naw man.” The look of disappointment was plastered all over my face by now. Finally, when he was done, I told him he took way more much then I expected. He said, “you asked for the box to get cut off.”  I never said that.  What makes it worst, is I distinctly showed him a picture of what I wanted. 

Me, not being a problematic person, I was ready to go. I told him, “how much, $25?” He said, “High tops are actually $40 but I’ll give it to you for $35, since you’re not a happy customer.” I couldn’t believe my ears. I then gave him a bill of $100 and he left for about 10 minutes trying to find change. While he was gone, the owner came up to me. He noticed I wasn’t happy with the cut, but he and a few others thought the cut was so "great."

He started telling me that that barber is one of the most premiere barbers around here. He cuts The Situation’s hair and other people from Dancing with The Stars. He even showed on Facebook a previous high top he cut from a phone. The picture was nice but I honestly didn’t care. He jacked up my head and there was nothing he could do about it. I showed the owner the picture that I showed him of myself and he pointed out things he didn’t like. That kind of made it worst. Before I left, I told him “I respect your artistic point of view but this isn’t what I asked for. The fade on the side of my head is fine, but he took too much off the top. I didn’t ask for that.” 

When the barber came back, he gave me $60; which means he still charged me $40 for cutting off my high top. I don’t think the barber really cared since he cuts The Situation’s hair. I guess it was no big deal to him that he messed up my hair and I’m unknown to him. 

Front few after.
I respect the owner for addressing the issue but he should have spent some time talking to the barber and not just me. Before I left he told me he’s not used to customers not being happy and he offered me a free cut the next time I return. He also said it didn’t have to be by the same barber.  At first, I thought the offer was cool but the more I look at my head the more pain and suffering it causes me. I’m not going back to the shop. Now I’m stuck with a hair cut I hate until it grows back. The real question: is will this affect me when I get a called for an audition. I now look completely different from my acting/hosting profile pictures!

Side view after
Some of you who are reading this is probably saying, “He messed up your head and took your $40, I would have “Set it off” up in there. “  Looking back, I kind of wish I did. I shouldn’t have paid for that cut. If anything this cut might lose me more money. I was able to get the cut off my mind for a few hours by catching a movie. I saw The Social Network. I really enjoyed it. When it was over, I realized the horror of this hair cut is just beginning. Before I went to bed, I considered looking up the owner on Facebook and fully addressing my thoughts to him in a written message.  

This day has been my worst day in L.A. so far. I was supposed to meet up with a guy was featured in a Beyonce video.  I was completely out of it and I didn’t even reach back out to him.

On a positive note, I've received two additional donations to further my quest.

For detailed information click here.

As the quest continues…

Motown Maurice 


  1. Jermaine Octavius SmithOctober 9, 2010 at 5:07 PM

    Motown, this is not the time to go on a roller coaster. Suck it up brother and stay on the move. Don't miss any opportunities. You are bigger than your hair. You are what you believe in your heart. If you believe you will still be successful, you will. I believe in you brother. I also know how it is to get your hair jacked up. Go home, have a nice cry and keep it moving. Love you bro.

  2. Same thang happened to me. I had to get my hair fixed in Miami! I feel your pain.


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