TO BEAT THE BAND
There’s a small barber shop in a small town in New York where it is almost impossible to get a shave. Men line up for hours in advance and stay there throughout the day waiting for a shave. When there are hurricanes, they hold onto street signs and cover themselves with sheets of plastic or canvas. When it snows, they wear warm mufflers and drink thermoses filled with hot cocoa. In the springtime, they enjoy the May blossoms but they are often sneezing and wheezing to beat the band. The summers, however, are perfectly fine. In this town, it never gets terribly hot in the summer, and so waiting for a shave can be a pleasant experience in July, or even August, particularly if there is someone next to you in line who is a good conversationalist and the thermos that you usually use for hot cocoa is filled with lemonade. Not brandy. But brandy can be nice when you are talking about the weather. Still –
Getting a shave when you are drunk is a terrible thing.
You should do it once in your life.
But not twice.