In my efforts to enjoy the decline, I decided to treat myself to a haircut and beard trim at a haberdashery. If you don't know what a haberdashery is, it's a high end man's store. I'd like to say clothing store, but they also typically include hats, accessories, cigars, and a barber shop. Not every town has one, but the Twin Cities does - Heimie's Haberdashery.
I did not want to bother the workers, annoying them if I could take a pictures of their entire store, so all I asked is if I could take a picture of the barber shop area and here it is:
Obviously, this is not Great Clips, and yes, you are going to pay more for a hair cut and a trim at a haberdashery, but permit me to convince you why you should AT LEAST ONCE in your life go to a haberdashery before you die.
The hair cut and trim are the best you will ever get. I got not one, not two, but three different hot towel treatments. The reasoning or mechanics behind treating my face with three different lathers, soaps and conditioners was beyond me, but they are professionals and know what they are doing. Additionally, they have to be as all beard grooming is done with a straight edge razor. It is that freaking old school. The end product was a "Tony Stark" beard and hair cut, laser precision definition and jib. I walked out, in all honesty, about an additional .8 points on a scale of 1-10. That is how practical and beneficial a high end hair cut at a haberdashery is.
Also when you walk in it screams "man." Women are of course allowed in, but let there be no mistake this is a place for men. Everything is for men, everything is about men. You can speak freely and be a man. Feminists would burn much like a vampire would in a church if they were to set foot in there. In short it is about the one of the few, pure bastions for men remaining and shows you what men can achieve in terms of fashion and class if left to their own devices and desires.
The music, at least at Heimie's was jazz. Old school jazz. It was perfect. No teenybopper, Top 40, Kate Perry, Rhianna crap. It was talented musicians from the olden days who actually had talent and skill. Duke Ellington, Frank Sinatra, Artie Shaw, they got as recent as Miles Davis (unless I misheard the song). It was music for men. Not boys, not girls, not women, but men.
Finally, the staff was impeccably dressed. Not corny 1880's, barbershop quartet old school, but vests, suspenders, sharp shirts and tasteful hats that COULD be worn indoors. They were also quite dapper looking young gentlemen that would cause palpitations in the hearts of young ladies. I felt a little bit of shame coming in as I did (jeans and a sweatshirt) and believe next time I will wear a suit so as not to offend the staff or disrupt the aura of the haberdashery.
In short, whether it's Heimie's or another haberdashery in the large metro you live in, I don't recommend you go to one. I COMMAND you go to one. This is one of those things men NEED to treat themselves to before they die, and preferably once a year. The experience is like fine dining except when you eat your food you don't say, "Well, shoot, I could have grilled a better steak at home," you walk out and say, "Wow, that's nothing I could have done at home." It is such an experience, even women would love to just sit and watch the craftsmanship of the barber trim your beard. And ladies, if you're looking to get your man a gift, this is what you get him. It is a way for all to enjoy the decline.