by Marissa Marangoni

When I asked where I should take my son for his first haircut, many people suggested places where the kids sit in a Rolls Royce and watch Spongebob on an 84-inch television and eat bacon from a silver platter served by a butler while someone cuts their locks a single hair at a time. I, on the other hand, let Joseph’s 20-year-old uncle cut his baby rattail off with a butcher knife at my sister-in-law’s dining room table on Thanksgiving. 

Since the army uncle isn’t available consistently for his hair cutting services, however, I’ve taken Joe to a few other places to tame his hair, and this last place is where I will continue to take him from here on out. The Locker Room Barber Shop in Copley is a no-frills, cut-to-the-chase kind of place. Its bathroom upholds the same aesthetic.

Barber Marcus, who is friendly and good at what he does, happily made conversation with my 3-year-old as the lovely child constantly and loudly voiced his opinion that it was “TAKING FOREVER” for it to be his turn for his haircut. The guy didn’t even flinch when that same lovely child suddenly yelled, “I HAVE TO GO PEE! DO YOU HAVE A BAFROOM? BECAUSE SOMETIMES I HAFTA GO PEE!” 

The bathroom is straight to the back of the shop through a dark supply closet to the right. The dark supply closet led me to assume the bathroom might also be dark and maybe cringe-y, but it was not. It is small, and I wouldn’t recommend two people go in it at the same time, but this restroom is less about rest and more about utility. Everything you need for a quick trip to the call center is here. 

This little loo was given more attention than I expected, especially since the foot traffic to this facility is probably light. But that foot traffic happens on grey wood (likely laminate) flooring, which is a wise color choice when it comes to camouflaging all the errant hair. I can’t imagine how hard it is to keep floors of hair places clean. My own hair seems to be everywhere in my house, and I am not cutting it every day multiple times. 

The walls are white, there’s a mirror above the sink, and the cleaning products are visible. There’s a puddle of one of them on the back of the toilet, but I just take that as evidence that cleaning is happening, and, well, we like that here at UL. 

My favorite feature in The Locker Room Barber Shop was the small stool. Hand washing, as we all know, is of paramount importance right now, and stools do wonders to encourage it for smaller patrons who can’t easily reach sinks but like to do things like pull ABC gum off the bottom of chairs with their little bitty fingers.

Overall, this bathroom could use some pizazz, but it’s functional and mostly clean and that’s what it’s all about. ⅘ toilets for the bathroom at the Locker Room Barber Shop, and 5/5 for patience and affordable cute haircuts for impatient kids. 

Marissa Marangoni has been one of Akron’s unofficial Public Restroom Executives since 2015.

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