Well it turns out, God sure has a sense of humor.
Last night at 2:30 am Flannigan “Caught the chain” that means he was transported to the transfer prison unit in Gurney, Texas. It is a division of the Texas Department of Corrections.
I got to be friends with Flannigan he was just sentenced to 8 years in TDC for the manufacture and delivery of methamphetamines. He has 2 sons Keith and Aaron and an ex-wife and of course a crazy girlfriend. He wasn’t worried as we prayed together prior to his departure. The introduction to real prison life is apparently often accompanied to physical confrontation. Flannigan was prepared for whatever may befall him. I prayed for his protection and that he would make a Christian buddy upon arrival.
Among other things, Flannigan was the barber here, he cut the hair for about half the men in this jail. We were discussing his job one day about 3 weeks ago. It sounded interesting , so I decided to put in an application.
This morning they woke me up to go to work for the 14th day in a row. This time, however, I would trade my mop and broom for some clippers and a comb. That’s right I am now the barber here in Denton County Jail.
Don’t worry about the little church, that job has been passed on to a young man that I am tutoring toward his GED. We read the Bible together every morning. I will make sure he understands the importance of his job at the church. God is passing on the opportunity.
The poor victim of my first hair styling was a normally sort of fellow. His name is Brent. He is a regular white guy with short brown hair cut all the same length. Great, what an easy haircut to start with. Awesome.
“Ok, Brent, unfortunately for you I’ve never cut anyone’s hair before. Yea buddy, you get to be the guinea pig.” Brent was very encouraging. He said it would be ok. There was really no way to mess it up. He said “just cut it with a #2 guard all over, that’s it.”
Man, I can handle it, no problem. I sat him down and put that apron thing on him to keep the hair out of his lap. Then proceed to start in on the back of his head. Buzz, the clippers were sprinting, I was so anxious I asked the poor man his name four times.
Then I started in right at the base of his neck moving in a rather smoothe, against the grain, upward movement. I clipped aggressively all the way to his crown. Then again in a parrellel stroke. I though to myself at about this point that I sure was removing a considerable portion of Brent’s hair. It was piling up fast around my feet. It befin to slowly dawn on me that something might be going awrey. I looked down at the pile of hair then gradually began to focus on the very tip of my clipper mechanism.
Oops – it appears as if I had failed to attacth the appropriate #2 length hair cutting guide that limits the length of hair that can actually be removed. Oh, yeah – but then it got worse. Brent couldn’t see the back of his head, but he did notice the expression of fear and disbelief that was broadcast from my sweat infused brow.
He instinctively lifted his right hand to touch the rear of his head only to discover he was going “Telly Savalis” with his new look. Oh, no! This guy could have come unglued but instead he just sighed, “Oh, man”.
I couldn’t help it I just had this huge smile on my face that wouldn’t fade away because I knew I was going to have to share this story with you good people and you would just all start shaking your head at me even through the jail bars. Needless to say old Brent ended up with a tight Burr haircut today, man. The rest of the day, to this very moment, I’m just laughing about old Brent. He sure was a good sport.
The rest of my haircuts were uneventful, relatively speaking. I’m getting the hang of it, thanks to Brent. The good news is that I get to speak with almost half the men in the prison one by one. I suppose you know what we will be discussing. . . speaking spanish is definately an advantage. The mexican guys here know I have a heart for them, they just sense it.
For now, pray for me to have a steady hand. A man won’t listen to the gospel if he has a whole in his head you know. Pray that the men will listen to the gospel according to Barber Johnson. I told you God had a sense of humor.