14 Jul 2024
Daddy State: Fuzzy Math
Family Lifestyle

Daddy State: Fuzzy Math

“Why is your hair fuzzy?” my daughter asked me. Sweden, I thought. Another thing to blame on Sweden.

As an American, prices here in Sweden seldom fail to surprise me. After 13 years here, I still convert price tags into dollars and I’m still hurt by what the computation works out to. The pain doesn’t go away!

10 dollars for a Budweiser? 150 dollars for a pair of jeans. 45 dollars for a little summer dress for our baby. 25 dollars for a hamburger and fries.

When it comes to important things I care about, I’m willing to splurge. Like hamburgers. I’ll pay anything for a good one. (Please don’t tell the geniuses at Flippin’ Burgers this.)

But there are plenty of areas that I’m looking for discounts. Hair is one those. When it comes to my hairdo, less is more. I’m looking for the best way to not have to think much about what’s growing on my head. Trim it up every now and then. That’s good enough for me. Maybe as importantly, I don’t want to pay much for this every-now-and-then trim. And that’s how the fuzz happens.

In the center of Stockholm where we live, it’s not uncommon to be charged 50-60 bucks to have someone clip a bit around the edges. This just strikes me as high. I remember getting like seven dollar hair cuts at Great Clips when I was growing up. Compare that to the charming looking shop in the building next to ours here in Stockholm: 68 dollars for a regular to do the cutting. 64 dollars if you’re willing to let a student practice on your head.

So I got to thinking: how much to do this myself? Buy a hair buzzer and buzz off my own hair.

That turned out to also be around 60 dollars. Considering I don’t care much, why not just buy one of these machines and do the deed myself every couple months for free. So that’s what happens.

The result is fuzz. A look clearly crafted by someone unwilling to pay a professional (or student!) to do the job. At work, important meetings, nice dinners out, weddings. You name it. I go there fuzzy, or with overgrown hair where fuzzy would represent improvement.

That’s the answer, darling daughter. Sweden’s cost of living. Swedish wage agreements, inflation and monetary policy => bad haircut for me. Make sense, honey?



by Joel Sherwood


  • ruth 13 Jun 2014

    hahah! Joel you’re not alone! I have waist length hair and being an Indian my hair is one of my prized possessions. But now when in Sweden I clipped my hair on my own, it turned out ok, heheh! Haircuts for women or ‘kvinna’ are way more expensive!

  • Alejandra 1 Jul 2014

    Yup, been there.. My hair turned orange by refusing to pay 1,800kr for highlights!

    Living in NYC thought no one couldn’t beat the city prices until, of course I moved to Sthlm!
    I can’t even describe the homesick feeling about 90c stores, Tjmaxx, and the convenient Duane Reade!

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