Ami Foster

"My husband and I have a running joke where I ask if I can cut his hair. This time he said yes."
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That time Ami Foster gave her husband, Ben, a haircut…

For 25 years now, my husband and I have had a running joke where I ask him if I can cut his hair. This is one of our “bits”—shorthand jokes that allow us to ride along easy and well-worn tracks to a shared smile or chuckle.

We laugh over all the ways I am terribly ill-suited to this task, all the ways it could end badly…and then, five weeks later, when he is overdue for a visit to the barbershop, we make the joke again. Rinse and repeat.

Except this time when I asked, because of this new COVID-19 world we inhabit, he said yes.  And I, like a dog who has finally caught her tail, didn’t know what to do with myself.

“I thought you’d be more excited,” he mused at the dumbfounded look on my face. In all these years I never once considered what I would do if he said yes.

So I look up YouTube videos on how to cut hair, laugh at ridiculous stories on Twitter over home haircuts gone wrong, and practice the wrist movement that is apparently key to getting a nice gradual fade. I find myself, in the midst of this crisis, grateful for something to learn, grateful for a situation I can stretch into a fun family event, spin into a yarn for friends on Zoom.

But the consequences of me doing a terrible job are minor; they will just get rolled into a funny story of the time I finally did cut my husband’s hair.

How do you fix a bad haircut? Give it two weeks. How do you fix a pandemic?


Readers: We want to hear your stories. Send your 300-word COVID-19 story and a photo to editorial@arlingtonmagazine.com. You can read more Covid Chronicles essays at arlingtonmagazine.com/category/covid-chronicles/

Categories: Covid Chronicles
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