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Wednesday, April 16, 2008


I went to get a haircut at LaBelle this morning. Place was empty except for Nettie, the middle-aged Latino woman who cuts my hair. Usually the owner, a Vietnamese woman, is there, but not today. Very rarely is there ever another client there. I wonder how they stay in business. Of course, I try to time my visits so there won't be a lot of other people there, but still. It's a big place with half a dozen each of nail, hair and pedicure stations.

I have tried going to a barber several times, but my wife has never been happy with the haircuts I get there, so I go to salons. It's hard to find one that is acceptable, never mind trying to find one I actually like. Usually they are expensive and have that fake nail stench that is just repugnant. This place is okay, with no clients, there is no stink, and a haircut only costs $12. Since a haircut will last me at least six weeks, that comes to $2 a week. I think I can afford that, even though I am unemployed.

Part of the problem with the business is that there are seven hair salons within a couple of blocks of this place. I only know of one other, okay, maybe two or three others, but Nettie has it all scoped out. Used to be there was a law that prevented a salon from opening within a mile or so of another salon, but then the law changed and now people can open them wherever they want, not to mention all the people who work out of their houses.

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