He’d stopped on his way home to get a haircut. Some forty five minutes later, the young lady held a mirror behind as he looked into a mirror ahead and asked, “Do you like it?” And of course he did. It was a very good haircut. And she was pleased that he was pleased.
When she handed him the bill, it was only twelve dollars. All that work. For twelve dollars… of which she would earn six. That didnt seem right, so he added a twenty dollar tip. She stared at it in disbelief. “You’re not serious…”
“You did a good job,” he said as he signed the receipt and left. On the way home, he thought about the gesture. It was a good thought. Suddenly he understood.. many things. As he pulled into the long circular driveway that led to his mansion, he thought some more.
His wife met him, as she usually did, at the door, martini in hand. “You’re late,” she said, in a voice that held neither suspicion nor petulance. “I got a haircut,” he replied. She nodded and went into the kitchen to ask the cook how dinner was faring. Over a remarkably good piece of chicken, he dabbed his mouth with his napkin and said, “I think we should sell the house.”
“Why on earth would we do that?” his wife asked.
“It has, what, ten bedrooms? Eight baths? We only use one of each, so what’s the point of the rest?”
“You’re not serious…” she replied. Realizing he was, she made it clear that that night they would use two.
The next morning, he arrived at work to be greeted by his secretary and his office assistant. “Executive meeting in fifteen minutes,” he said. Fifteen minutes later, the boardroom was filled with thirty smartly dressed men and women. How much, he wondered, do they pay for their haircuts? He held up a copy of the last quarterly report. “This is not good work, ladies and gentlemen. Not good at all. As such, I’m cutting your salaries by one-third.”
There was outrage all about the room. “But I have a mortgage on our house on Long Island — !” “But my country club condo dues — !” “But I was planning on a trip to Europe, and — !” He stopped them all with a single raised hand and quietly said “Do a better job. Dismissed.”
“You’re not serious!”
He merely looked at them. Stunned, they left the room. He picked up the phone and called his wife. “I want you to meet me at this address. It’s a comfortable two bedroom house. I think you’ll like it.”
She sighed. “But I have an appointment at the beautician’s.”
“No,” he said with a tiny smile. “I think you should go get a haircut.”