Posted on 8.29.23

Hey Turds! OK, school is back in session so it’s time to get our collective shit together and gear up for the busy season ahead. As always, we’ll cover some specific topics that are helpful to keep in mind, and we’ll wrap up with Chris’s unhinged gripes (and gratitude). Things are picking up in the shop and with students returning we will start booking further in advance. Keep in mind that walking in will become more difficult as we approach October.

We’re really looking forward to the rest of this year…2024 will include several milestones for the team, including Chris and Jenny’s 13th wedding anniversary and their 10th anniversary in Louisiana! This is such an exciting (and long) issue with some big news! Thank you for the love and loyalty over the years; we can’t wait to see where the next year takes us. Stay tuned…

C, J, & H (and)…

TYE… You heard right…The Kid Wizard is back! Book with him on Tuesdays or Wednesdays and show our old friend some love!

HANNAH… You’ll hear a lot about Leos in this issue, and Hannah is no exception! We had an amazing time celebrating her birthday and next month we’ll celebrate her one-year anniversary at Liberty Barbers! Also, her schedule is changing to Thursday – Saturday effective September 7th.

JENNY… Aside from a sassy new haircut and a quick trip home, not much new to report here. She turned 44 on 8/22 but doesn’t feel a day older than 43.5.

CHRIS… When he is not fishing or going to a free pool, Chris is working. Hopefully Tye’s return will help him pool/fish more and work less.

DEBY… The next time you’re here on a Wednesday or Saturday afternoon, be sure to say hello to Miss Deby! When she’s not here sneaking snacks to Moxie, she’s out finding the most amazing deals. An expert shopper, Deby is thoughtful and always picks out wonderful gifts for her loved ones.

MOXIE… Always getting that cheddar. Always loving her mommy.Moxie is great, really-really great!And you may have heard before that she’s EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH LITERALLY EVERY MONTH! That’s old news…but she also wants you to know that she is the greatest study buddy to ever have graced this earth!  #employeeofthemonth #moxiestyle #getusedtoit. 

THURSDAYS ARE WEIRD… We do our best to accommodate a range of schedules by offering some early mornings or late evenings. On Thursdays we’re here 11 – 8, with our last booking occurring at 7:30 pm. You may notice that we close early on quiet nights. Just keep that in mind and plan ahead for those late Thursday appointments.

We want to take a moment to highlight one of our amazing customers,Bruce Harris. Most of you probably don’t know Bruce, but he is an amazing woodworker and is the person responsible for building our beautiful barber stations. Anyone who has opened a small business on short amounts of money knows how invaluable people like Bruce are. He’s a true craftsman with a kind heart and we can’t thank him enough.

FRENCH QUARTER POP-UP… We apologize for the gap in our pop-up schedule. August was full of Leos to celebrate and scorching temps, so we appreciate your patience with our schedule. Please stop by anytime between Noon and 4 (we say 5, but let’s be honest with ourselves). If you need a cut or a shave here are our upcoming dates:

GRIPES & GRATITUDE… Recently I have had the distinct displeasure of trying to park at a Saints pre-season game. I was super excited to go with my brother to the home opener. I found that everything regarding the superdome is something not for me. The upgrades to the dome are tacky and bad but also classist and exclusionary.

Ok…I have to admit a few things first. The first in my litany of confessions is that I had been out the night before at Dirty Linen. For the uninitiated, Dirty Linen occurs the week after White Linen night. Dirty Linen also occurs deep in the quarter in less fancy appendages of culture. 

I drank entirely too much and managed to end my night by eating a frozen pizza while laying down with my eyes closed. I was in rare form, and I knew it as I scorched the entire roof of my mouth with what I believe was a red baron pepperoni pizza. In my defense…ok I have none. I liked bourbon way more than I should have (I should listen to my wife more).

I went home and went directly to bed. In fact, I was asleep in the Uber home. I wasn’t a mess, but I showed less than good judgement regarding my bourbon enjoyment. I worked all day plus it was as hot as the sun all week. Whatever.

So, my Sunday begins with my brother knocking at my door at 10:45. I immediately realized that I had screwed up and shot out of bed. I did my level best to pretend that I had not just awoken    so that my judgy ass brother would not have any more ammunition/proof why I was the second born son.

After a frantic scramble/assist by the wife I was ready to put on my Kyle Turley jersey and get to the dome. The traffic was bad, but I realized it was gameday and I was late. I’m not going to complain about I10. Even though the exchange to the Westbank/Superdome/I10 to Slidell from South Carrollton was designed by a person who has never operated a car or is a complete sadist.

The exit for the Dome is in a less than opportune spot. But what makes it especially trash (not just Saints but Pelicans too) is the mouth breathing turd rustlers who let drivers skip the line and force their way into the line for parking. I have contempt for the individuals who force their way in but unfettered rage for the people who mistake Christian virtue for being a complete sucker. Toughen up people.

What I hate the most is the complete lack of signage by the Superdome. I was born here and am at least in part used to the way things are done. But this pass only Superdome is garbage. I understand that change is inevitable but what has transpired in the parking lots is just not ok. IF YOU ARE MAKING A LOT “PASS ONLY” PLEASE FOR CHRIST’S SAKE HAVE A SIGN THAT CAN BE READ IN TRAFFIC. I understand I’m late and not putting my best foot forward, but the redemptive power of effective signage should save me. It didn’t. Because it didn’t exist. Multiple times I tried to park and multiple times I was late to find out that I was not in the correct parking area. Turns out that the area I was looking for was nonexistent, so I drove the entirety of the superdome parking apparatus twice before parking at the HYATT for $45 dollars.

I’m not going to complain about the absolute extortion that (at the time) I felt that it was. I did two laps around the dome, so I had to have seen this tourist nonsense at least once before. But who would fall for that? Not me…until I did. So bottom line…don’t get super drunk in a bazillion degrees French Quarter the night before and expect that life in New Orleans is any less authentic when you wake up.

So parking sucks and usually things are annoying, but there are surprising times where I find gratitude, and I am grateful for the Jefferson Parish Judicial system. I was summoned for jury duty today. I did not want to go. It is both super bullshit and super inconvenient. I am a small business owner and will lose out on revenue for my business by being a participant in my civil duties. Plus, the court is on the Westbank, and they want you there at 8:30. So I left my house at 7:45 knowing New Orleans does not wake up early but the traffic was horrible because of the ineptitude of the public works department and the Sewerage and Water Board codependent dysfunction. But whatever, Life in NOLA; laugh about it or be super pissed all the time.

I get to the Gretna courthouse parking in my spot by 8:31 and for the first time in a week, the sky literally opens and dumps on my head as I’m trying to get to court on time. Around 9:00 the court guy plays the thank you for being a juror video (narrated by Clancy Dubose) production value was A+ (acting was not).

I get to the room forgetting that as an old person, I should make sure I’ve eaten and that I have sufficiently relieved my bowels before going inside. This place is stuffed with people who can get to court on time. I find a spot and then realize that I have left my phone and the parking pass, and both are needed in this building, so I just start reading my first book in better than 8 years, only to realize that the book really needed to be broken in (and I really need to pee from my more than 45-minute sojourn to the Westbank). For my fellow book people, a book is like a new baseball glove. There is a ritual to ensure that the binding is properly worked in. And the individual pages need to be intimately folded to ensure a proper layout. I know this process absolutely annoyed the shit out of everyone around me; nonetheless I persisted. I cannot open a book and not treat it with the reverence it deserves. Even if I haven’t read one in 8 years. I proceed to read 30 pages and then am called for the first case of the morning.

Bingo; picked first. I’m fine with this, I (being a narcissist) assumed that it was the biggest case of the day. But no, it was a Civil, Medical Malpractice case. As I’m apprised, I sit in my chair and wait for the process to begin. As soon as the Judge addresses the room after we are sworn in, he in no BS terms says that this case will last until Friday (it being Monday) so I know I’m going to have to deal with Voire Dire. Who would have guessed that I was called in the first group to sit in the juror’s chairs and sit for the process. I was ready to do whatever is necessary to get out of 5 days of bullshit in Gretna while the business that I had sacrificed most everything for lay empty. Appointments moved or annulled, I cannot think of anything worse. But whatever, I’m seated, and I have sworn to be truthful. 

Fate has a sense of humor (or so I’m finding out) because this malpractice deals with the very surgery which killed my father. So, I go from being repelled by being part of a trial for five days to a person who has very much a vested interest in the outcome of this case. I immediately loved the defense attorney. She asked if any jury members knew anything about this surgery, I have to say I do (because silence is lying) so I have the very unfortunate position of talking about how my father died in front of 50 strangers. She was kind and efficient in her probing questions. I never once felt like the plaintiff’s attorney objectified my horrible experience to win a case.

I only offered what was asked, many around me just had to address the court offering ceaseless moralizing. Sometimes, as they were spouting how impartial they were. This was the worst kind of partiality to me because they were convinced that they knew their own lack of bias. I knew in a way that I was biased but still able to think rationally and act impartially.

Because I wanted the defendant to pay for what they have done to me (mostly imagined) I was cool with me settling a score with my sworn enemy regarding a subject that ultimately caused my father to be ripped from my life (which did not occur in the state of Louisiana). I was invested, then during the ceaseless nonsense some of my fellow jurors inserted, I had a chance to actually think about my personal moral opinion.

I was perfectly capable of being unbiased; I really was. I knew how my father felt on the very subject. My father had the ability to let us know that he did not want any punitive action against the hospital. I was well versed in unfortunate outcomes vs. negligence. I was 100 percent ok with making sure that if some person could use my father’s cause of death to game the system, I would not allow this to happen. The sense of betrayal would have been too acute. However, if the hospital did act negligently, then I was ready to absolutely skull drag those scumbags for damages. I already did not like them as a hospital and had them on a subject that I knew about.

Fortunately, the system did not let me participate in the petty vengeance that was in my heart; it didn’t let me adjudicate the death of my dad for the benefit of another grieving party, I thought the plaintiff’s attorney was so great. I really did; in some ways, and in the ways of a kid who has lost any advocates for their interests, I wished she could have spoken for me when I was in this very situation. I had no one and I have never felt so alone and powerless in my life. I felt both seen and heard by a person who didn’t represent me but was the archetype defender of me.

I did not get super upset when asked about my dad; I kept my answers brief and to the point (although I wanted by proxy to make sure someone who lost what I have lost, feel some sense of closure). Their loved one is still dead; suing them is not a time machine to bring back brighter days. But I was there and, in a way, I could help bring some order to their situation.

The lead defense lawyer was fierce. Her hair was so perfect. Her suit was a giant houndstooth pattern. I could not let her go in my mind. She embodied a type of person I would fight in court in my grandiose justice/Grishamesque courtroom fantasy. I wanted to be in her confidence so I could uncover the identity of her hairdresser. Rarely do I see great hair; this was. As an aside, she looked like Dr. Girlfriend from Venture Brothers, the rest of her staff was prototypical bad guy stuff. The young attorney needed a less overworked fade, a better suit and less fake tan. Her other lawyer looked like she hadn’t slept for 72 hours. 

So, the scene was set, and I was finally getting the kind of justice I felt I was owed. I never had this ability for closure, and it messed up my family for 10 years over this feeling of not being heard/seen. In what was without a doubt the worst event of my life spread over 6 months; including 94 days in the ICU.

In hindsight it almost seems like a miscarriage of justice that I wasn’t selected for this trial. I wanted the plaintiffs to win but could easily side with the defense if necessary. I had some knowledge on the subject and prior experience regarding the nature of the loss.

I was dismissed from jury service on that court. I should have been. I was uncompromised in the ways that I was aware of the stuff that I didn’t see, and all the bad times came raging back at me in really unexpected moments. I didn’t suppress the flashbacks to harm the defense, I was previously unaware of these unresolved feelings until then. If I were a worse person, I would have said nothing giving the plaintiff’s attorney a willing ally in the jury pool.

I maintain that I could have been impartial. But if the defendants were concealing negligence, I would unload on them with the vengeance of a kid who lost superman. They did not need this, and mercifully I was excused from the nonsense of jury duty.

Hannah’s Birthday Bash 2023 at Aunt Tiki’s