I remember growing up on the 1950’s..Every Man or boy had to have a fresh haircut once a month. If by any chance you had a special event to go to in between that month such as Wedding, Bar mitzvah, Graduation, Funeral whatever you got another haircut. That’s the way it was back in the Old days. If your mother wasn’t on your case for getting a haircut then there was always a friend or relative that would steam up your mother my mother had such a friend for the purpose of this story I shall omit her real name a refer to her as Gertrude “You let your son walk around like that, without a haircut “Yelled Gertrude to my mother.My mother would reply back “He don’t want to go to the barber what could I do? Gertrude replied back” whose the boss you or him.. and my mother would give me instructions “Here’s the haircut money don’t come home with out one. You see nobody wanted to there years ago…the Barber Shops were hit and miss as far as getting a good haircut ..you’d walk in perhaps hair a bit long but none the less lookin great …but and you walk out looking like a shmuck/
What struck out most was the Unacceptance of the Square Back as apposed to a tapered cut. In the 1950’s only the rough crowd.. The punks.. The hoodlums all had square Backs. Gertrude pointed out to my mother some unsavory teenage punks in our apartment building who sported square backs…. Gertrude steamed up my mother & my mother told me when I came home from the Barber with one.. My mother made me go back and get it tapered I can’t tell you how many times that I heard the snide remark” ” What are you posing for Holy pictures or do you want a violin “? Today you can see even rabbi”s wearing a square back..boy have times changed !
When I was in the service I came home on leave in Dec.27th 1967 and returned to my duty station Jan.12th 1968 everyone had clean cut Haircuts.. I stationed in North Carolina & I used to phone home home every Saturday It’s Mid February and I phone I call home & my father asked are you growing your hair long? I replied back that I have a crew cut plus every Monday we gave an inspection we gave to get white walls( high and close) My father informed me that everyone is letting their hair grow long with long hair long sideburns too. When I retured to N.Y.C. in March of 1968 long hair was the norm..even the old generations stopped going to the barbershop . Today haircuts are in..I JUST THOUGHT THAT I”D TELL EVERYONE HOW IT WAS BACK IN THE DAY !
MOSES LERMAN BLOG ADMINISTRATOR & EDIITOR