Ghosts of the Barbershop

Ghosts of the Barbershop

“Your wife?

“Yup.”

“And you’re a barber?”

“You know it.”

“Sometimes I wonder. Your wife, and you’re a barber…”

“I cut men’s hair, not… okay, I’m not good with men’s long hair either.”

“So when she saw it, what happened?”

“She divorced me. After six months, no less.”

“It is less, man. If it were, maybe two years…”

“Well I don’t really blame her. She looked like an Asian pop star when I got done with her locks. The nutty kind, not the classy kind.”

“They’re all nutty in Asia, man.”

“Well…” Alex paused.

“What, man?”

“She’s the reason I haven’t passed on yet. I just want to cut a woman’s hair right, once. I know I could do it.”

Kurt levitated a pair of scissors. “Like I don’t know that? I want to cut anyone’s hair using only scissors, but I’m a freakin’ razor guy. It ain’t gonna happen. No one’s been down here since they carted away our bodies in ’11.”

The barbershop was underground, but the only sign of damage to the place was the large block of ceiling that crushed the pair of barbers. Kurt lamented not tipping the contractor.

“We’ve been cutting hair since the mid-2000’s, right?”

“Yeah, man.”

“Who cut the long-haired customers’ hair?”

“Uh… Tony.”

“Oh yeah, good ol’ Tony. He was out with mumps that day.”

“Lucky sunnuva…”

Rattling came from the outside. Someone was tampering with the locks.

“KURT.”

“ALEX.”

A high-pitched voice echoed in the stairwell. “Okay, we’re in the Barbershop of the Damned. Remember, breaking and entering into abandoned places is illegal, but fun.”

This was it. A woman for Alex to practice on. Or for Kurt to use scissors on.

“And here’s where Alex Monty and Kurt Segar died. Remember, if you post it on your YouTube show, it’s not illegal.”

“It is, though.”

The woman spun around. Nothing. “Who said that? Get out here!”

The barbers materialized in front of the YouTuber. “Hello,” said Alex. “Can we cut your hair?”

“What, are you trying to scare me? I’ve seen ghosts before.”

“Man–er, ma’am, we need to move on. Can we cut your hair?”

“Are you… Alex Monty and Kurt Segar?”

Alex chuckled. “Guilty as charged. Look, sorry to bother you, uh…”

“Liz.”

“Miss Liz. Can you take off the hat and sit in the chair? One of us would like to practice on you.”

Liz turned her phone off. “I don’t think…”

“No need to think,” said Kurt. “Just choose who’s hotter,” he pointed at himself, “and let them play with your hair.”

Liz hesitated as she took off her hat to reveal…

“You’re bald.”

“Yeah, no, I have cancer and chemo. Sorry to disappoint you.”

“No,” said Alex. “We’re sorry to have imposed on you.”

“What about a wig?” asked Kurt.

“I think they’re itchy and represent a patriarchal concept of women needing to be beautiful. Mostly itchy.”

“No, ma’am. I mean would you be willing to wear a wig and we cut that? We don’t have a wig head, so we couldn’t cut them right, but we do have wigs in the back room.”

Liz rolled her tongue. “Fine. But I want the cute one to do it first. Alex.”

Alex pumped his fist, or the spectral version of it. He picked up a brunette wig that went down to Liz’s shoulders. He picked up the scissors and went to work. After a half-hour, Alex was finished with his masterpiece.

“Is this me?” asked Liz.

“Yeah.”

“It looks great.”

Alex faded away with a big smile on his face.

Kurt stroked his astral beard. “Looks like he’s a real barber.”

“Next. Your turn, scissors guy.”

“No thanks. I actually don’t care that I suck with scissors.”

“Then you must have another reason for still being here…”

Kurt thought. “Oh yeah. The Nintendo Wii U came out after I died. Was it a success?”

Liz forced back a laugh. “N-no. Not even a little.”

“Good.” And then he vanished.

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Red Flagman’s Rally (CREEPYPASTA!!! [not really])

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I heard this story from a friend of a friend of a friend, who was the first friend mentioned in this sequence. That’s how you know it’s true!!

A gamer by the name of MRgaming1019 wanted to play a new kind of game, but everyone was already playing the games he wanted to review for his reviewer man show, The Steven Dackowski Plays Games Show, even though I said his name was MRgaming1019 and not Steven Dackowski.

So he went to a very bad part of town to find a mysterious video game to play for his show. But the only games they had were Undertale for the Nintendo 64 and an old PC game called “Red Flagman’s Rally.” Since MRgaming1019 didn’t own a console, he bought the second thing.

It was 14.95, plus TAX!

The box had an image of a bleeding green flag, and also it was smiling. Whaaaat? That was my reaction, since this was from the 1990’s days.

The flag was being held by a man in sad gray clothing. Overalls made of denim or something drab, right? His face was made of teeth.

“This looks like a normal game, yes?” He put in the game.

Before it closed all the way, it got stuck. He couldn’t play the game if the CD got stuck in the computer! How would he face the day, knowing this haunted game clogged up the disc tray? His two fans would be so disappointed!

But it wasn’t a disc. It was a piece of toast?

He found a crusty yellow note in the game box. It read:

“-It’s been 25 years. Nora’s not waking up.

-Dammit, she’s our daughter! I’d pay 25 more years of hospital bills if it meant seeing her awake!

-I’m pulling the plug.

-NO! So help me God, I’ll divorce you if you kill her!”

Right. He wasn’t a 37-year old man from Virginia. He was a 37-year old woman in a coma for 25 years from Virginia.

Damn. Better wake up.


“How do you feel, Nora?”

Nora’s voice was hoarse, her words turning crustier with each syllable.

“I don’t know if I can feel. I lost 25 years of my life thinking I was a terrible video game reviewer.”

It must be some loopiness from being out for so long, thought her mother.

“All I remember was failing to do a sweet back-flip on my skateboard… There was a guy trying to stop me… he was holding something and waved it at me…”

“Try to rest, dear.” Although her mother worried that she’d slip back into sleep, it had been a long afternoon of doctors, relatives, friends, offspring of pets, and a childhood pal who had visited Nora everyday, often mentioning how “beautiful in lifeless tranquility” Nora had appeared to her.

Nora tried to sleep, but the tears made it hard. Could she ever be normal? She lost so much of her life because of one dumb mistake. Her hands bothered her to look at. They weren’t her hands. Nothing was hers. She didn’t want any of it.

From the view out her window, Nora appreciated the sad fog climbing across the hills. Far beyond the outskirts of the concrete wilderness, Nora spotted a flagman with a green flag, rapidly waving off some kids playing with fireworks.

“Damn,” Nora muttered. “My two fans are going to be so disappointed.”


OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH, snap! Isn’t it weird how our fantasy universes can occasionally overpower our realities and we lose sight of real life? I mean, Ka-POW!

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