Hello again from Woody’s Barbershop. March isn’t like any other month of the year here in Saratoga Springs. It’s a month of goodwill, hope, change and optimism—and, of course, March Madness. A number of my customers—including me— have been battling the flu, colds and sinus infections. Not to mention freezing wind chills; giant snowbanks; rotten snowplow drivers that laugh as they fill your driveway back up with snow; and those nasty winter blues that seemingly go on forever during the winter months. Yes, March is a month of hope!
Now, for me, I personally have been way, way, way under the weather for quite some time. That’s because I cut the hair of some people, who’ve talked themselves into thinking that, because they’re sick, it’s OK to skip out on work—but totally fine to go infect their local barber. (I’ve learned that that’s just a risk of my profession.) Not that I enjoy working with sick people or catching the cold or flu, but being a barber is a job where I just take the good with the bad (I lost ten pounds these past couple of weeks…yee haw, I’m bathing-suit ready! You see how I turned that negative into a positive?)
But now it’s mid-March, and March Madness is upon us. That, and St. Patrick’s Day is this weekend, when the amount beer consumed won’t be small like a leprechaun. Soon, a couple of great weather days will creep in, and the snow will start to melt away…and away…and away…and it’ll soon be gone from our collective memories completely. We’ll get our golf clubs out and shine them up real pretty, so we can go get them dirty again. And we’ll get the lawnmowers tuned up for the upcoming season and begin cutting our front lawns.
Yes, March is a time for optimism. I have spent the last few days studying the college basketball world and working on my brackets, and gaining all the insight I can gather, because during the first few weeks of March, that’s what the majority of men are thinking about. No, of course, we don’t share all of the fantasies about winning the big bracket full of cash with our wives or girlfriends. That’s barbershop talk! That’s our world; that’s where we give our opinions and insights to one another on who’s winning, why they’re winning and what we’re going to do with the money when we finally win it. None of us ever talk about Jim Bob’s wife, Earle Anne, who’s never watched a single college basketball game in her entire life, and has won the office pool the last five years in a row, just by filling out her bracket with teams based on their mascots’ names. No, she just got insanely lucky. She knows nothing!
Additionally, March also happens to be when all the Kentucky Derby prep races are run (I already know who the winner is, but you’ll have to come in and see me for that kind of info); the NHL playoffs gear up; and the baseball season is almost underway—although I’m pretty sure there isn’t much use watching this season unless you’re a New York Yankees fan. (I’m rather confident that they’ll be winning again soon enough.)
Yes, March is a great month. (Heck, I already feel better just saying that out loud!) Go ahead and try it for yourself: (altogether now) March is a GREAT MONTH! You see? It worked, didn’t it?
One more thing before I sign off: It’s also a busy time in the barbershop right now, because this is when guys like to get their hair that’s grown long during the winter cut for the first time in awhile. And also get their golf haircuts prepped and ready to rock and roll on the fairway. So if there’s a line at the shop, just sit down and relax, grab a beer, soda or coffee and enjoy the latest, greatest conversation. It’s something that is much needed after a long, cold, wet, nasty winter. After all, you deserve a break. It’s March Madness!
P.S. Congratulations to my Villanova Wildcats on beating Virginia for the NCAA National Title. Oops, did I just say that out loud?