The barber was chatting me up while doing my crew cut, which is usually a waste of her time. Since we were celebrating the Norman Langlois Veterans award for his donations of the Empire Beauty Schools services to Veterans, however, I was feeling a little chatty.

She had a barber’s license and a cosmetologist license. A barber’s license required 800 hours of training from a school of barbering. A cosmetology license required 1500 hours from a school of cosmetology.

She banged out the crew cut, did my eyebrows for good measure, rubbed my skull for luck and sent me packing.

My mother took me for crew cuts in my formative years, which lasted until I escaped to college. There is a Hopkins Broadway lore that my parents took me to see the famous Jackie Gleason in a show called Take Me Along and when he was taking bows with the house lights up, he spotted me with a red velvet blazer and crew cut. He came off the stage to rub my skull for luck.

Boy, 800 hours of barber school and 1500 hours for cosmetology school. I’m in good hands with that kind of training.

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Mr. Langlois’ story is the American entrepreneurs’ dream. There are some good stories about him, via search engines, that do more justice to his accomplishments than I can. The recent award involved a big ceremony and party at Watson Fields which is his home now. I’ll post some pictures of the event and Norman, looking dapper as usual, in the company of his son and daughter.

Congratulations to the Langlois family. The high standards of their beauty schools for training and licensing reassures consumers that they are in well-trained hands.